Classic Spain and Portugal Trip Notes

Classic Spain and Portugal

Last Modified: 25 Apr 2016
Classic Spain and Portugal
Trip code: ZMSJC
Validity: 01 Jan 2016 to 31 Dec 2016
Tour Spain and Portugal's pin-up attractions on this classic adventure. Soak up art and history in Madrid, be staggered by the grandeur of Alhambra Palace in Granada and take in the dramatic spectacle of a flamenco performance in Seville. Travel to Portugal to chill out in the Algarve, get footloose with Lisbon locals in the Bairro Alto and imbibe delectable port wine in Porto. Back in Spain, visit Santiago de Compostela and Salamanca en route to Barcelona - the epitome of all things stylish, cultural and fashionable - before continuing on to Pamplona, Longrono and the glorious beaches of San Sebastian.
Table of Contents
StyleYour fellow travellersFinishing point instructions
ThemesAccommodationEmergency contact
Is this trip right for you?Meals introductionVisas
Why we love itMealsWhat to take
MapMoney mattersClimate and seasonal information
ItineraryGroup leaderHealth
Itinerary disclaimerJoining pointTravel insurance
Physical ratingJoining point descriptionA couple of rules
Included activitiesJoining point instructionsResponsible Travel
Important notesFinish pointThe Intrepid Foundation
Group sizeFinish point description
Style
Original
Themes
Explorer
Is this trip right for you?
- - As there are potholes and cobblestones in many European cities, it's recommended that you leave any wheelie bags or cases at home and bring a backpack instead.
- - Summer temperatures can be extreme in many of the regions visited (over 40°C), which can be uncomfortable. It’s important to use sun protection, wear layers to combat the heat and drink plenty of water. Please carefully consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.
- - As accommodation on this trip is multi-share, single travellers will share a room with another traveller of the same sex. If you’d prefer not to share, a single room supplement is available at an additional charge. Please ask your travel consultant for more details. Also, hotels in Europe often don't have double beds, but rather two single beds that can be pushed together.
- - Please note that only selection of our hotels will have Air-Conditioning in all rooms.
- - Rooms in Europe can seem rather small by American or Australian standards.
- Please note that shops, attractions, sights and businesses may be closed for up to 5 hours in the middle of the day for siesta time. This gives the locals time to escape the heat and spend time with their families, eat a large lunch or simply sleep through the most uncomfortable time of day. This means of course that people work later into the evening and dinner time can seem quite late: 9.30pm is not uncommon for family dinner time.
Why we love it
- - Gaze in awe at the artistic feats of the Spanish masters in Madrid, and experience a different sort of mastery with a fiery flamenco performance in Seville
- - Get lost in the labyrinthine streets of the Albayzin in Granada, before crossing the river to visit the imposing Moorish fortress of the Alhambra
- - Unwind in a laidback fishing village in the Algarve, Portugal's scenic south coast. Soak up the sun on a beach and enjoy a cocktail-coloured sunset over the Atlantic Ocean
- - Lisbon and Porto are two of the most visited cities in Portugal, and for good reason. Explore a medieval fortress in the middle of cosmopolitan Lisbon and sweeten your day with a port tasting in, well, Porto
- - People from all over the world come to Spain to walk the famous Camino de Santiago. Join pilgrims along the last leg of the journey, as they reach the historic cathedral in Santiago de Compostela
- - Rub shoulders with the chic in the exciting city of Barcelona. Pulsing with culture, art and an outstanding drinking and dining scene, the city is also home to fascinating architecture; the star of which is Antoni Gaudi's cathedral, La Sagrada Familia
- - The fortified medieval city of Pamplona is a great place to discover on foot. Weave through the city's winding alleyways to the immense Gothic Cathedral and walk down the street of the famous bull run.
- - Logrono is bursting with delicious local produce and wine, just waiting to be enjoyed on an included tapas crawl. Delicioso!
- - Take a long siesta on the golden beaches of San Sebastian, one of Spain's most scenic coastal destinations. As the sun goes down, join the crowds as they come out to play among the city's exciting nightlife
Map

Itinerary
Day 1 Madrid
Hola! Welcome to Spain.
Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1.

You can arrive at any time during the day as there are no activities planned until this important meeting; please check with the hotel reception where and when it will take place, or check the reception notice boards. If you can't arrange a flight that will have you arrive at the hotel by early evening, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
Madrid offers a remarkable blend of sights, sounds and experiences. Soak up the art, be wowed by the architecture and swoon over the exceptional food.
As there's limited time for sightseeing in Madrid we recommend you make arrangements to arrive a few days early to see the highlights of the city and surrounds.
While away hours on the Paseo del Arte, or Art Walk, for a panoramic perspective of Western art history. Start with the Museo del Prado, one of the world's finest collections of European art from the 12th-19th centuries and an unmissable stop on any art tour. Discover modern Spanish masters, including Picasso and Dali, in the Museo Reina Sofia's 20th century collection. Finish with the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, which spans eight centuries of European painting.
Take a break in the oasis of Real Jardin Botanico, a botanical wonderland dating from the 18th century.
Optional Activities
  • Abono Paseo del Arte (3 museum combo voucher) - EUR27
  • Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza - EUR12
  • Museo del Prado - EUR14
  • Real Jardín Botánico - EUR4
  • Museo Reina Sofia - EUR8
    Accommodation
    Hotel (1 nt)
    Day 2-3 Granada
    Travel by bus to Granada. (approx 5 hours)
    Home to the stunning Alhambra Palace and set against a backdrop of the spectacular Sierra Nevada mountains, Granada is one of Andalucia's most enchanting cities.
    Visit the Renaissance cathedral with its ornate facade and gold-and-white interior, dating from the 16th century.
    Take a walk around the Albaicin, the old Arab quarter, a labyrinth of crooked streets with alleyways, fountains, plazas, whitewashed houses and villas. If you are feeling energetic continue on and watch the spectacular sunset from the most famous viewpoint in Granada - the Mirador de San Nicolas, located at the top of Albaicin's steep streets.
    Explore the Alhambra Palace, which was first built by the Moors as a fortress. Its instantly recognisable exterior hides richly decorated rooms and luxurious gardens with bubbling fountains, and a walk through the compound gives us an idea of the decadent lifestyle the Moorish kings used to enjoyed.

    Granada was one of the region's most important cities during the Muslim rule of Spain and the Alhambra is a very good example of this period. The Alhambra is made up of three parts: the Alcazaba, the 11th-century Muslim wing where you can get spectacular aerial views from the tops of its towers; the Palacio Nazaries, the centre of the complex; and Generalife, the summer palace of the sultans.
    Included Activities
    • Alhambra entrance
      Optional Activities
      • Jose Guerrero Centre - Free
      • Mirador de San Nicolas - Free
      • Science Park - EUR5
      • Science Park Planetarium - EUR2
      • Catedral de Granada - EUR5
        Accommodation
        Hotel (2 nt)
        Day 4-5 Seville
        Travel by train to Seville, one of the most vibrant cities in Spain (approx 2.5 hrs).
        Seville is renowned for its oranges, tapas and flamenco - all three are ingrained in the fabric of the city and its proud people.
        Visit the Alcazar - a magnificent palace dating from Moorish times.
        Explore the world's largest Gothic cathedral. You can also the climb the cathedral's adjoining 76-metre Moorish tower, known as La Giralda, well worth it for the excellent views of the city and surrounding area (be prepared for a line-up).
        Catch a glimpse of true, local flamenco - filled with emotion and drama, it's a real highlight.
        Included Activities
        • Flamenco performance
          Optional Activities
          • Torre del Oro - EUR3
          • Santa Paula Convent - EUR3
          • Indias Archive - Free
          • Museum of Fine Arts - EUR2
          • Archeological Museum - EUR3
          • Andalusian Contemporary Art Centre - EUR3
          • Alcazar - EUR14
          • Art and Popular Customs Museum - EUR2
          • Catedral and Giralda Tower - EUR9
          • Casa de Pilatos - EUR8
            Accommodation
            Hotel (2 nt)
            Day 6-7 Algarve
            Travel by bus crossing into Portugal and the seaside town of Lagos (approx 5 hours)
            Gifted with a temperate Mediterranean climate, a bounty of beaches and a rich heritage, Portugal casually flies under the European travel radar. Home to culinary greats, effortlessly cool cities, charming colonial towns and magical stone villages, travellers will find that this enduring historic heavyweight still packs a punch.
            The southern coastline of Portugal is known for its fertile plains, rich with orange and olive groves, fig trees, almonds and maize fields. Long beaches and hidden coves await us.

            Our base is the lively town of Lagos. During the day, join your leader for a picnic lunch on Praia Dona Ana, one of the most photographed beaches in Portugal. In the evening, wander the cobblestone streets and discover the history of town which launched many naval excursions during Portugal’s extraordinary Age of Discoveries, or simply relax at the numerous cafes.
            Included Activities
            • Beach Picnic
              Optional Activities
              • Boat trip - EUR23
                Accommodation
                Hotel (2 nt)
                Day 8-9 Lisbon
                Head north by public bus to Lisbon (approx 4 hours).
                One of Europe's most pleasant and affordable capital cities, Lisbon combines the best elements of Portuguese life, offering fantastic architecture, a multicultural population, delicious seafood and non-stop nightlife.
                Lisbon has a number of remarkable museums of modern and ancient art, such as Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, National Museum of Contemporary Art, National Coach Museum, and Carmo Archaeological Museum. However, Lisbon isn't all history and culture - Bairro Alto is the centre of the city's nightlife with various bars and restaurants where fado, traditional Portuguese music, can be enjoyed.
                Included is an orientation/sightseeing walk led by your group leader.
                Visit the medieval Citadel in the city centre. Lisbon is a city swarming with endless angular white houses and buildings with distinct red terracotta rooftops. From the citadel, this makes a sharply contrasting panorama when viewed against the deep blue of the sky and ocean.
                Included Activities
                • Orientation Walk
                  Optional Activities
                  • Fado Show with Dinner - EUR25
                  • Lisbon Sunset Fado & Tapas - EUR62
                  • Experience Lisbon Walk - EUR41
                  • Naval Museum - EUR4
                  • National Art Museum - EUR6
                  • Folk Art Museum - EUR3
                  • Oceanarium - EUR16
                  • Puppet Museum - EUR5
                  • Gulbenkian Museum - EUR5
                  • Citadel - EUR9
                  • Belem Tower and Monastery - Lisbon - EUR12
                    Accommodation
                    Pension (2 nt)
                    Day 10-11 Porto
                    Take a bus further north to Porto. (approx 3.5 hours)
                    Porto, the capital of the north sits between the north bank of the River Douro and the Atlantic Ocean. The World Heritage-listed Ribeira district is filled with a collection of twisting alleys, criss-crossing staircases and baroque churches. For a sensational view of the whole town head to the Torre dos Clerigos.

                    Indulge in a port tasting, Porto being the namesake of the sweet fortified wine. If sampling the best from the region piques curiosity, why not learn more about the history of wine and port making at the Museu do Vinho.
                    Included Activities
                    • Port Tasting
                      Optional Activities
                      • Experience Porto's Bites and Sights - EUR52
                        Accommodation
                        Hotel (2 nt)
                        Day 12-13 Santiago de Compostela
                        Travel by bus back to Spain and famous Santiago de Compostela. (approx 3 hours)

                        Be surrounded by piety in Santiago de Compostela, the finish point for pilgrims walking the Camino de Santiago. Soak up religious fervour in the cathedral where St James, one of the 12 Apostles, is purportedly buried.

                        Join the pilgrims on the last stretch of Santiago de Compostela route. Take an early bus to O Amenal village where our 15 km walk starts. It will take us through villages, fields and rivers of Galicia. In Lavacolla village we will cross the river in which pilgrims used to wash themselves before entering the city of Santiago de Compostela. From there we will head to Mont de Gozo. From its top pilgrims could see the first view of The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, the end point of their journey.

                        The entire walk takes approximately 4 hours to complete. It is important to have comfortable footwear and rain coat, as weather in this region of Spain is highly unpredictable, even during summer months.

                        For those not wishing to join the walk, there is an opportunity to stay and enjoy Santiago de Compostela, and numbers of activities it has to offer.
                        Optional Activities
                        • Visit to a local Cheesemaker- Santiago de Compostela - EUR20
                        • Bike hire- Santiago de Compostela - EUR10
                          Accommodation
                          Hotel (2 nt)
                          Day 14-15 Barcelona
                          We'll take a short flight from Santiago de Compostela to Barcelona.
                          Spain's cosmopolitan second city, Barcelona offers ground-breaking art and architecture, stylish shopping, superb dining and non-stop nightlife.
                          During free afternoon, visit the labyrinthine streets of the old Gothic Quarter, the Picasso Museum, wander the Rambla - the tree-lined pedestrian boulevard, or take the funicular to the top of Montjuic or Tibidabo for panoramic views of Barcelona and the harbour. Gaudi's bizarre La Sagrada Familia Cathedral is possibly the most iconic landmark in this city rich with famous sights.
                          As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and you're welcome to attend, as this is a great chance to meet your new fellow travellers.
                          Optional Activities
                          • La Sagrada Familia - Barcelona - EUR15
                          • Barcelona Tapas Tour - EUR69
                          • Snapshots of Barcelona - EUR47
                          • Cathedral visit - EUR7
                          • Guell Palace - EUR12
                          • Andean-Amazonian Ethnographic Museum - Free
                          • Casa Batllo - EUR22
                          • Museum of City History - EUR7
                          • National Art Museum of Catalonia - EUR12
                          • Old Santa Creu Hospital - EUR10
                          • Picasso Museum - EUR14
                          • Museum of Gaudi - EUR6
                          • Cable car to Montjuic (one way) - EUR8
                          • Contemporary Art Museum - EUR10
                            Accommodation
                            Hotel (2 nt)
                            Meals
                            1 breakfast
                            Day 16 Pamplona
                            Travel by train to Pamplona in the heartland of Basque country.
                            Named after its founder, Pompey the Great, Pamplona has served for centuries as both a military stronghold and an important point on the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage trail.
                            Following an orientation walk, set out to explore this well preserved fortified medieval town and its impressive 16th century walls and citadel.
                            Included Activities
                            • Pamplona Orientation Walk
                              Optional Activities
                              • Gothic Cathedral - EUR5
                                Accommodation
                                Hotel (1 nt)
                                Day 17-18 Logrono
                                Travel to Logrono by public bus.
                                A small, friendly town known for its red wine, Logrono has plenty of tapas bars to explore.
                                Visit the wine museum (July to September) to learn more about this region's famous tipple. When the museum is closed, our group leader will take us to visit a local winery.
                                Included Activities
                                • Tapas Crawl - Logrono
                                • Ontañon winery visit - Logrono
                                  Accommodation
                                  Hotel (2 nt)
                                  Day 19-20 San Sebastian
                                  Take a bus from Logrono to San Sebastian (approx. 2 hours).
                                  With its great beaches and vibrant old city, San Sebastian is a fantastic place to stroll along the promenade, shop and consume pintos (Basque-style tapas) to your heart's content, or just soak up the sun.
                                  Take a walk up Mount Urgull for stunning views of both the town's beaches.
                                  For a different perspective of the most central beach, La Concha, why not climb or catch a cable car to Monte Igueldo.
                                  If you crave more culture, there's plenty of time to catch a local bus (approx 1 hr) down the road to Bilbao to visit the world-famous and architecturally awesome Guggenheim Museum.
                                  Included Activities
                                  • Monte Igueldo Cable Car - San Sebastian
                                    Optional Activities
                                    • San Telmo Museum - EUR6
                                    • Guggenheim Museum - EUR13
                                    • Aquarium - EUR13
                                    • Catedral del Buen Pastor - Free
                                    • Grab Your Pintxo - EUR65
                                    • St. James Way Adventure - EUR55
                                      Accommodation
                                      Hotel (2 nt)
                                      Day 21-22 Madrid
                                      Journey by train or bus to Madrid.
                                      With incredible restaurants, art galleries, shopping and nightlife on offer, Madrid is a truly world-class city that exudes confidence and style through every pore.
                                      While away hours on the Paseo del Arte, or Art Walk, for a panoramic perspective of Western art history. Start with the Museo del Prado, one of the world's finest collections of European art from the 12th-19th centuries and an unmissable stop on any art tour. Discover modern Spanish masters, including Picasso and Dali, in the Museo Reina Sofia's 20th century collection. Finish with the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, which spans eight centuries of European painting.
                                      Take a break in the oasis of Real Jardin Botanico, a botanical wonderland dating from the 18th century.
                                      Enjoy a coffee in one of the atmospheric streets and squares around the famous Plaza Mayor. At night, head out to Chueca, Plaza Dos de Mayo or Plaza Santa Ana, where the pulse of the city will lead you from bar to bar on a night out you are sure to remember.
                                      There are no activities planned for the final day and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time.
                                      Optional Activities
                                      • Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza - EUR12
                                      • Abono Paseo del Arte (3 museum combo voucher) - EUR27
                                      • Real Jardín Botánico - EUR4
                                      • Museo del Prado - EUR14
                                      • Museo Reina Sofia - EUR8
                                        Accommodation
                                        Hotel (1 nt)
                                        Itinerary disclaimer
                                        Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. For the latest updated Trip Notes please visit our website: www.intrepidtravel.com Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route.

                                        OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
                                        Physical rating

                                        Included activities
                                        Alhambra entrance
                                        Flamenco performance
                                        Beach Picnic
                                        Orientation Walk
                                        Port Tasting
                                        Pamplona Orientation Walk
                                        Tapas Crawl - Logrono
                                        Ontañon winery visit - Logrono
                                        Monte Igueldo Cable Car - San Sebastian
                                        Important notes
                                        1) A single supplement is available on this trip. Please see Trip Notes for details.
                                        2) Names as per passport are required at the time of booking due to the internal flight on this trip.

                                        Group size
                                        Maximum of 12 travellers per group.
                                        Your fellow travellers
                                        GROUP TRAVEL
                                        As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

                                        A single supplement is available on this trip, please refer to your booking agent for further information.
                                        Accommodation
                                        Hotel (19nt), Pension (2nt)
                                        Meals introduction
                                        While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. On our camping trips we often cook the region's specialities so you don't miss out. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though.

                                        Your group leader will endeavour to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible, and vegetarianism and gluten intolerance will be catered for in most instances. There are, however some meals and activities that are fixed in advance and therefore cannot be modified to suit dietary requirements. These instances will be indicated in the ‘trip notes’ itinerary. Please notify your group leader of any dietary requirements in your group meeting at the start of the trip.

                                        For those suffering from particular food allergies, your group leader will endeavour to disclose to their fullest knowledge the main ingredients in dishes being consumed. It is, however, your personal responsibility to ensure that you do not ingest any foods to which you are allergic.
                                        Meals
                                        1 breakfast
                                        Money matters
                                        The Euro (EUR) is the official currency in the following destinations: Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain. All other European countries still have their own national currencies.

                                        The most convenient and cheapest way to acquire money is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or Bancomat as they are often referred to. Check with your bank in advance concerning the suitability of your account / card overseas and any international fees that will be applied.

                                        You can obtain local currencies easily at airports and major train stations, but be sure to bring some extra emergency cash in a major currency that can be exchanged if the ATMs are not functioning.

                                        When leaving home don't forget your PIN and make sure you know the telephone number for cancelling your card if it is stolen. Keep this in a safe place.

                                        Credit cards are not always accepted in stores and restaurants. While travelling we recommend you carry some cash to pay for restaurant bills and other services. Change can be difficult to obtain so throughout the day, try to gain as many small denominations as you can.

                                        You might be advised to take some of your money as travellers' cheques from a major financial institute. Travellers' cheques have security advantages, however please be aware that the exchange rates may not be favourable and that it is difficult to change Travellers' cheques in most countries. Be particularly aware that after hours money exchanges and hotel receptions carry high commissions- sometimes up to 20%.

                                        For money safety we recommend that you carry your cash and credit cards in a secure money belt or pouch concealed under your clothes.

                                        EUROPE

                                        TIPPING
                                        If you're happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. The following amounts are per person suggestions based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers: In local markets and basic restaurants and cafes - round your bill up to the nearest €1. In more up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of your bill. Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your tour leader. We suggest €2-€3 per day for local guides. You may also have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group, however we suggest €1-€2 per day for drivers. You may also consider tipping your tour leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline €2-€4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service. In total, we recommend you budget approx €5-€10 per day of your trip to cover tipping.

                                        All departure taxes should be included in your international flight ticket.

                                        Please budget for additional meals and expenses while on your trip. Our suggestion is based on past traveller feedback but you may choose to spend more or less. This amount is suggested per person.

                                        EMERGENCY FUNDS
                                        Please also make sure you have access to an additional US$500, to be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (e.g. a natural disaster, civil unrest, strike action or an outbreak of bird flu) necessitate a change to our planned route.
                                        Group leader
                                        All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders.

                                        Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.
                                        Joining point
                                        Gran Legazpi Hotel
                                        71, Paseo de la Chopera
                                        Madrid
                                        28045
                                        SPAIN
                                        Phone: 34 914023280
                                        Joining point description
                                        The Gran Legazpi Hotel is a centrally located modern hotel, offering fully equipped rooms with the latest amenities. The hotel is located next to the emblematic Plaza de Legazpi, making it close to Madrid's shopping, cultural and financial centre
                                        Joining point instructions
                                        Madrid International Airport Barajas (MAD) is located within the city limits, 9kms from the CBD. Options for arrival transport include:

                                        By TAXI
                                        Metered taxis are available in taxi ranks outside any of the main terminal exits. Expect to pay around 20--25 EUR plus an additional charge for each bag. Journey time is 20-25 mins.

                                        By TRAIN:
                                        From the airport take metro line 8 from Nuevos Ministerios and then metro line 6 (circular line clockwise) to Legazpi. The hotel is just off the plaza next to the Gas Station - Respos.
                                        Journey time is approx 30 minutes and tickets are EUR3 for a one way journey available from ticket machines.

                                        Please note that the metro line from the Madrid airport to the city centre is particularly notorious for pickpockets, and travellers with backpacks or suitcases are indeed a target. Please ensure you are careful with your valuables on the metro.


                                        Pre booked arrival transfer from the airport:
                                        You will be met on arrival by your transfer driver who will be holding a board with your name or Intrepid's logo in the arrivals hall.
                                        In case of flight cancellations, changes or if you are not able find the driver, please contact to the emergency +34 91 7477 570

                                        Finish point
                                        Gran Legazpi Hotel
                                        71, Paseo de la Chopera
                                        Madrid
                                        28045
                                        SPAIN
                                        Phone: 34 914023280
                                        Finish point description
                                        The Gran Legazpi Hotel is a centrally located modern hotel, offering fully equipped rooms with the latest amenities. The hotel is located next to the emblematic Plaza de Legazpi, making it close to Madrid's shopping, cultural and financial centre
                                        Finishing point instructions
                                        If you are making your own way to the airport the hotel will be able to help book you an airport shuttle or taxi. Please ask at reception.

                                        If you have pre-booked a departure transfer: You will be collected at your accommodation 3 hours before your flight departure time.
                                        In case of flight cancellations, changes or if you are not able find the driver, please contact the emergency phone number: +34 91 747 7570
                                        Emergency contact
                                        In the case of a genuine crisis, emergency or logistical issues, our local operator, PEAK DMC Europe, can be reached on the following number: +49 8677 918 66 57.

                                        While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

                                        We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

                                        You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

                                        Peak Marrakech: +49 8677 9186 657
                                        Visas
                                        SPAIN:
                                        Australia: No - Not required
                                        Belgium: No - Not required
                                        Canada: No - Not required
                                        Germany: No - Not required
                                        Ireland: No - Not required
                                        Netherlands: No - Not required
                                        New Zealand: No - Not required
                                        South Africa: Yes - in advance
                                        Switzerland: No - Not required
                                        UK: No - Not required
                                        USA: No - Not required
                                        What to take
                                        PACKING
                                        On this trip you must pack as lightly as possible because you will be expected to carry your own bag and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we strongly recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb. Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps to accommodate the cobbled streets, uneven surfaces, stairs and steps you are lightly to encounter while carrying your luggage. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips. You can find Intrepid's Ultimate Packing List on our website. It should be used as a guide only and isn't intended to be a complete packing list.

                                        WATER BOTTLE:
                                        Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. We recommend at least a 1.5litre capacity. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments.
                                        Climate and seasonal information
                                        SPANISH SIESTA:
                                        Please note that shops, attractions, sights and businesses may be closed for up to 5 hours in the middle of the day for siesta time. This gives the locals time to escape the heat and spend time with their families, eat a large lunch or simply sleep through the most uncomfortable time of day. This means of course that people work later into the evening and dinner time can seem quite late: 9.30pm is not uncommon for family dinner time.

                                        One of the great things about our trips is that we encourage every member of the group to spend time interacting with local people. In order to best be able to do this in Spain, we recommend that you try to do as the locals do - avoid the heat of the day, and stay out later at night.
                                        Health
                                        All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

                                        You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.

                                        DRINKING WATER:
                                        As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it contains much higher levels of different minerals than the water you may have at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. The truck will have access to treated water, while bottled water is widely available and your leader can recommend safe alternatives when available. Water consumption should be about 3 litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.
                                        Travel insurance
                                        Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

                                        When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

                                        If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.

                                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php
                                        A couple of rules
                                        Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts you and your fellow travellers at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our leaders have the right to expel any traveller if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

                                        Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment at Intrepid, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.
                                        Responsible Travel
                                        We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.

                                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller

                                        The Intrepid Foundation
                                        Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

                                        The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:

                                        http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

                                        Was this page helpful?