This varied itinerary will take you from the most impressive cultural cities in the centre of Spain to the lush greenery of the northern coast and the Cantabrian Sea. Madrid, Castilian cities like Toledo and Salamanca and the best representatives of the north: Cantabria and the Basque Country.
On this trip you will visit:
- Madrid, another city that never sleeps, you'll always have to decide between three or four different plans. You can visit the Prado museum, one of the most important ones in the world, and take in the pretty sights and the great environment on the streets, bars and plazas. You will discover a restless city.
- Toledo: mystic, mysterious and medieval. Also known as the city of the three cultures since Muslims, Jewish and Christians cohabited here for centuries and all left their mark. You will feel that you're in an open-air museum, there's charm and grace everywhere you look. The narrow, cobbled streets make Toledo seem like a great labyrinth.
- Salamanca, the gothic plateresque architecture makes its downtown one of the most spectacular ones in Spain. The streets, monuments and university environment will mesmerize you.
- Santander: another picturesque little city with small palaces, unspoiled beaches and plenty of typical food choices to try.
- Bilbao will surprise you with its dynamism and vitality, with its museums such as the Guggenheim and its spectacular old town, the perfect place to relish the typical pintxos.
- San Sebastián: you will be immersed in one of the most beautiful cities in Spain, an elegant reminder of past times. Its home of one of the most beautiful city beaches in the world.
Start your trip! Depending on what time you arrive, you may be able to explore Madrid in depth or simply get your bearings. Take a stroll or go out for dinner and a refreshing drink. You deserve a rest after your travels!
Today will be spent in the historic city of Toledo, approximately one hour from Madrid by bus. When you arrive, you can start your visit to Toledo by climbing to the highest point of this UNESCO World Heritage Centre. There you will find Alcázar, the imposing square fortress that crowns the city. Carry on with your visit by heading towards the Toledo Cathedral, a magnificent building with many overlapping styles. For art lovers, you can see the Burial of the Count of Orgaz, one of the masterpieces of the painter El Greco, in Santo Tomé Church. If you would rather just walk around the city, then Toledo is perfect for that. Among its narrow paved streets and the slopes of the huge old town you will feel transported to the medieval age. Walk around the Jewish Quarter and admire the city's many churches and the mix of cultures that Toledo's history has brought together. Getting back to Madrid for the evening will allow you to go out for dinner and enjoy the fantastic nightlife in the capital.
Your day in Madrid should include a visit to the Golden Triangle of Art, the three most important museums of the capital: Prado Museum, Reina Sofia Museum and Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum. If you have to choose, go to Prado if you like classical or to Reina Sofia if you prefer contemporary. After that, you can go to Barrio de las Letras (the Literary Quarter) and eat or drink something in one of the many bars of Huertas Street or Santa Ana Square. Carry on your visit by going to Puerta del Sol and after to Gran Vía, the main commercial street in the city. In the evening, you can go up Fuencarral street to the neighbourhoods of Malasaña and Chueca, which contain plenty of life and lots of bars to have some drinks and keep the night going until very late in a more alternative atmosphere.
During the morning in Madrid, you could visit the Retiro Park, the biggest green area in the city centre. As you make your way towards the park you will go through the famous Plaza de Cibeles, the magnificent Correos building (now the City Hall) and the Puerta de Alcalá (Alcalá Gate), next to the park entrance.
Spend your first evening in Salamanca getting a feel for the city. Take a stroll around the pedestrian streets and squares of the city centre, noticing how the atmosphere livens up little by little until it's time to eat and maybe go out to the many bars and pubs of the city, famous for its nightlife.
Start your day in Salamanca by visiting the city's two cathedrals. The old one is smaller and a mix of Romanic and Gothic styles and the new one is a combination of Late Gothic and Baroque styles. Continue your tour of the city centre, where you will see the main monuments, such as the Plaza Mayor, the University and the Casa de las Conchas (House of Shells), all symbols of Salamanca. In the evening, you can go for some tapas on Van Dyck Street, where the bars are good value for money. For the sunset, you should go to the Roman Bridge with outstanding panoramic views of the city centre. If you like to party, Salamanca won't let you down. There are many options at night in this university town full of young people.
One way to spend an evening in Santander is to go to the area by the docks where you can walk around the Paseo y Jardines de Pereda. You will pass the Palacete del Embarcadero and the Stone Crane, to eventually reach the Maritime Royal Yacht Club, a boat-shaped building. If you are a sea lover, you can visit the Cantabrian Maritime Museum, with a huge whale skeleton in the entrance hall. If you still have some more time, walk on the beach and then make your way to the city centre. At night, go to one of the many seafood restaurants and enjoy the city's atmosphere.
You can start the day in Santander visiting the Magdalena Palace, the most remarkable building in the city, located on a beautiful green peninsula. After that, spend part of the day walking along the succession of beaches that make up the Sardinero, with some of the more excellent ones including Camello Beach and La Concha Beach, where you could also go for a surf. While walking along the promenade, you will see the Sardinero Big Casino, an imposing white building. For some top views, you should go to Cabo Mayor, following the path near the cliffs at the end of the beach. The best evening plan in Santander is to go out for pinchos. Finish the night in one of the many pubs or clubs.
Start your day in Bilbao by going to the modern part of the city. Walk along Gran Via and discover the major commercial centre, with straight lines and bigger streets. A must-see attraction in Bilbao is the Guggenheim Museum. Just viewing it from outside is a worthwhile experience, but inside you can find permanent and temporary world class exhibitions. If you are a football fan, go to see the new San Mames, Athletic Club Stadium. Alternatively, visit the outskirts of Bilbao, for example, Portugalete where you can see the famous Vizcaya Bridge. After seeing all the tourist attractions, spend the evening in Casco Viejo, moving from bar to bar and eating pintxos and drinking the night away. There is always a party happening in Bilbao.
Start your morning by taking a walk along the ría (estuary), from near to Abando train station towards the Guggenheim Museum, passing the City Hall and enjoying views of the city on both sides. If you have time, go inside the museum, the city's most famous attraction. After this, you could go up the cable car to Artxanda Lookout and delight in the best views of Bilbao from the top.
You can spend the evening in San Sebastián walking along La Concha beach, one of the best city beaches of the world. The stately mansions in the front line of the beach will take you to a past age. Now you can continue your visit going to the commercial area of the city, where the cathedral is, or you can go either to Casco Viejo and be caught up in the rhythm of the pintxos bars, spending the hours dawdling.
Your day in San Sebastián/Donostia should start in the Peine del Viento, on the west side of La Concha Bay. From there you can walk almost two kilometres along the promenade, crossing the Ondarreta Beach and La Concha Beach (one of the most beautiful beaches of the country). Between them, you will find the English style Miramar Palace. Also during your walk, you will discover remnants of the Belle Epoque period, including big stately mansions like La Perla, a former aristocracy health resort, and the London Hotel. Another excellent walk follows the Urumea River, where you can delight in more of the city's big old buildings, such as the Victoria Eugenia Theatre. The best place to spend the evening is in Casco Viejo, which has one of the highest numbers of bars per square metre in the world. The night will involve eating pintxos and drinking some wine and beer. Anything could happen in San Sebastian.
There are some possibilities to spend the morning in San Sebastián, depending on what you prefer or see before. A good one is climb up to the Igueldo Hill and enjoy the nice view of the bay from above. Another option is to spend the time in La Concha beach, the most important of the city, or cross the Urumea river to the west and spend the morning in Zurriola beach, smaller and quieter, where you can try some surf if you like. In your way there, you will see the Kursaal Centre, seat of both cinema and jazz festivals known worldwide. You also can climb up the Urgull hill, the other small summit that flanks La Concha Bay; it's located behind the Casco Viejo.
Walking around the area known as Madrid de los Austrias including the Plaza Mayor, San Miguel Market and Arenal Street is a superb way to spend an evening. Walk through the small streets of Madrid's city centre and delight in its charm. For the sunset go to Plaza de Oriente, where the Royal Palace and the Almudena Cathedral are located. The sun's rays give all this area a distinctive orange colour. Finish the day having some tapas and beers in the trendy La Latina quarter, where certain clubs are often open until dawn.
R.D.L. 1/2007, Ley General para la defensa de los Consumidores y Usuarios. Ley34/2002, Ley de Comercio Electrónico.
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