The departure point was quite chaotic with little information given out until a woman with a soft voice called for this groups departure. Had I not been standing next to her, I would never have heard her. This woman turned out to be our guide. While on the bus and using a microphone one could hear her. I loved the fact that she gave her tour in Spanish and English. However she speaks with a soft voice and a heavy Spanish lisp with more Spanish than English. When she spoke in English first it made it easier to understand her Spanish. When we departed the bus in Avila she advised a pick up point somewhere on the "other side....." of something and we were unable to hear. Didn't think this would become an issue as we were a group and not likely to become separated. Plus we had the distinction of having the very tallest person in the group. Rather difficult to lose him. Alas, we were. After much angst and thanks to some employees of businesses in Avila we were reunited with the tour. While in Segovia we were given enough time to "look" at the aqueducts and move on. There was a tour group in front of ours With a guide who gave better information. Many in our group moved ahead of our guide to listen to her.
Overall, Avila and Segovia are stunning. I am thrilled we were able to go to each of these cities and would recommend going to each. From my understanding this local tour operator is in general wonderful and I would be willing to use them again. I would not however under any circumstances take another tour with the female guide that we had. The beauty and history was marred by the stress and unpleasantness of this guide.
The Tapas tour was a highlight of our stay in Madrid. Our guide Danny was knowledgable. articulate, entertaining, and just a great guy to be around. He created a social atmosphere where everyone on the tour became acquainted and all were part of the group. Almost as if we had planned to go out together. The Tapas restaurants we went to were wonderful. This was such a fun evening, I would take the tour again and highly recommend this to everyone.
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