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Southern Spain: A journey from Andalusia to Madrid
Explore the Alhambra Palace, dance the flamenco in Seville and master the basics of Spanish cuisine in Madrid
About your trip
Feel the passion of flamenco, sample the tapas of Granada and revel in Andalusia’s Moorish legacy on this eight-day Spanish escapade.
Located at the old frontier between Europe and the Arab world, Andalusia is steeped in Islamic history. Bring the past to life in Granada, as you explore the medieval Alhambra Palace and the labyrinthine (tapas-filled) streets of the Albaicin. Embrace the folkloric traditions of flamenco in Seville, itself a blend of Moorish and Gypsy influences. Then it’s onto Madrid, where you’ll enjoy an al fresco feast in one of the city’s parks.
Spain’s cities are not to be underestimated, and this eight-day adventure will show you just how diverse and culturally rich they are.
- Local transport
- Max 14 travellers per group
- Atol protected
Remember, flights aren't included. We're happy to help you find the best ones for you.
Day 01 Hola, Malaga
Welcome to Malaga. After meeting your guide and fellow travellers at the hotel, you’ll head out together on a walking tour of the city. Malaga may conjure images of package holidays and beach escapes, but the truth is far more complex. This port city (the hometown of Picasso) is one of the oldest in Europe, dating back to the Phoenicians, the Romans and the Moors. The city’s architecture attests to its storied past, as does its cuisine. Pause along your route to sample a few local flavours, before dining in a traditional restaurant in the city centre.
Day 02 Hike the Caminito del Rey
This morning, you’ll hike the Caminito del Rey, ‘the King’s Little Path’ – but you’ll see that there’s nothing ‘little’ about this path. A narrow walkway pegged along the cliffs of cavernous gorge, this is possibly Spain’s most epic walk, with spectacular (if somewhat dizzying) views of the valley below. From here, you’ll head onto Antequera, a true Andalusian city complete with a Moorish fortress and white-washed houses. Wander through its atmospheric streets, with lunch in the town centre. Then, it’s onto Granada. The final stronghold of the Moorish caliphate, which fell to the Catholics in 1492, nowhere captures the sense of Andalusia’s Nasrid past like Granada. Upon arrival, the afternoon is yours to explore this beautiful city at your own leisure. Your guide will find a restaurant in the area for dinner.
Day 03 Explore the Alhambra Palace
This morning will see you explore one of Spain’s most iconic sights: the Alhambra Palace. This 14th-century fortress is one of the finest examples of Islamic architecture in Europe, with its walls adorned with vibrant tiles and calligraphy. Spend the morning exploring its courtyards and hallways, seeing how the Moors achieved their vision of paradise through the principles of beauty and symmetry. This afternoon, you’ll dive straight into the Albaicin – the city’s medieval Arab Quarter – exploring its winding, white-washed streets, lined with cafes and tapas bars. Head to a bar near the Mirador de San Nicolas, a small square frequented by flamenco guitarists, with spectacular views of the Alhambra against the backdrop of the Sierra Nevada.
Day 04 Cultural sights in Seville
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel, then you’re off to Seville. En route, you’ll stop in Carmona, a typical and picturesque Andalusian town, for a brief wander and coffee break. Then, you’ll arrive in Seville: Andalusia’s biggest and most famous city. The wealth of culture here is remarkable, from the Real Alcazar to the Catedral de Sevilla. You’ll explore the sights of Seville on an introductory cycling tour, delving into its backstreets and uncovering some lesser-known spots. The rest of the afternoon is all yours to relax at the hotel or explore the city at your own pace. As evening falls, your guide will take you out to the bohemian Alameda neighbourhood for dinner and drinks.
Day 05 Kayak the Guadalquivir River
Today, you’ll explore Seville from a different perspective, kayaking down the Guadalquivir River that runs through the city. You’ll pass many of Seville’s landmarks, including the iconic Moorish tower, the Torre del Oro. For lunch, your guide will take you to the Mercado Triana, an indoor market which is all yours to explore. You’ll have a few hours of free time to spend as you choose, before gathering in the late afternoon for a local wine tasting, enjoyed alongside regional cheeses and meats. Then, embrace the spirit of duende with an evening flamenco class, learning the steps of this deeply folkloric tradition.
Day 06 From Seville to Madrid
Leave Andalusia behind as you catch a train north to Madrid. Spain’s capital, whilst often overlooked in favour of Barcelona, boasts a rich artistic heritage and is home to some of the world’s finest art galleries – as well as a thriving gastronomic culture, which you’ll dive straight into upon arrival. Your guide will take you to Mercado San Miguel, where you’ll have a vast array of food stalls to choose from. Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring the city’s most famous sights, from the Plaza Mayor to the Royal Palace, before taking a rooftop tour with sweeping views over Madrid. You’ll then head to La Latina, a charming neighbourhood lined with tapas bars and cantinas, for a typically Madrileñan dinner.
Day 07 Park picnic in El Retiro
Savour a free morning today to explore Madrid at your own leisure, then you’ll head to El Retiro Park for a relaxing park picnic. With drinks and games to see you through the afternoon, take the opportunity to unwind after the week’s activities. Then, in the evening, enjoy sundown drinks overlooking the Madrileñan cityscape, before a final-night feast in a traditional taberna.
Day 08 Hasta la proxima, España
After breakfast, your Spanish adventure has come to an end. It’s now over to you to make your way to the airport – your guide can help you arrange a transfer. If you’re interested in extending your European adventure, we’d recommend our popular Best of France adventure.
Our Favourite Hotels
Browse a selection of our favourite hotels, for a flavour of where you may stay on this trip.
Palacio de Santa Ines, Granada
16th-century posada near the Rio Darro
This traditional Spanish house is located just a stone’s throw from the river, with some rooms boasting views of the Alhambra.
Why we stay here
The location is fantastic, with the labyrinthine streets of the Albaicin at your doorstep. And the beautiful Spanish courtyard is a peaceful spot to relax after a day of sightseeing.
Hotel Emperador, Madrid
Grand historical hotel in the heart of Madrid
Laying claim to one of Madrid’s largest rooftop pools, the hotel terrace has an air of exclusivity that you’d be hard-pressed to find elsewhere.
Why we stay here
An opulent rooftop cocktail bar; comfortable, spacious rooms; a decadent pool with sweeping views over the city: all good reasons why we’ve chosen this hotel for you.
Fly into Malaga Airport (AGP) and depart from Madrid Airport (MAD). Please arrive by 3pm on day 1, and depart at your own leisure on day 8.
Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. These changes can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control – but we’ll always do our best to ensure it has little impact on your experience. From time to time, we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh and exciting.
We take safety very seriously on Flash Pack adventures – learn more here.
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