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Fantastic and very enjoyable trip I and #39;ve ever joined highly recommended to anyone who wants a great time in Madrid
Oh WOW, I don't know where to begin! It's a hectic and nonstop tour but there is down time on the bus, thank goodness. The cities we saw were just amazing! We also stopped in Toledo on our way back to Madrid and I was so amazed by view of the city. It was like a fairy tale! I also have to mention our tour guide, GRACE! She was WONDERFUL! She was definitely a people person and made us laugh and was so knowledgable at the same time. The accommodations were very good and although there were some glitches with the restaurants at the hotels, on the whole we were very pleased. I highly recommend this tour.
I went on this tour with a friend and we absolutely loved it. We recommend going on this with realistic expectations, reading the reviews and getting a travel book to fill in the free time. We covered so many locations in a short time and our tour guide Giuseppe made even the long bus rides enjoyable. We were in a group that was older, around 40-55, which might be more common during off season. I liked how there was free time in just about every location to explore on your own. We went to the optional flamenco show in Seville, which we highly recommend. The main dancer was a world flamenco champion. There is an optional river cruise/cathedral tour in Seville which we skipped, since we wanted to take our time seeing the castle where game of thrones is filmed, the cathedral and climb up the giralda with amazing panoramic views of the city.
There were a few discrepancies between the online itinerary and the actual trip. In Granada, there is an optional tour you can take in the afternoon to walk around the jewish quarter and drink Moroccan tea. If you are able to explore on your own, you can just do this walk on your own, since there wasn't much value added and we couldn't really understand the local guide they provided. We skipped the gypsy flamenco show based on other reviews. In Valencia, the tour was actually included, so if you want to check out the inside of the city of arts and sciences, you should head there the evening you arrive or book a show for that night, since the tour the following morning is only a walk by of the outside. We skipped the tour in Madrid, since it didn't sound too appealing so we can't comment on that. The Barcelona tour gave a good overview of the different sites in Barcelona. Lastly if you are debating between 4 or 3 stars, go 4 stars because the location and amenities alone more than makes up for the price difference. In Barcelona you have a really nice view of the magic fountains from your hotel roof top.
My daughter and I highly recommend the 9 day Best of Spain tour. We went on the tour which left Madrid on 7th September 2015 en route to Barcelona. The co-ordination of the tour, with people starting the tour at different points along the way, went without a hitch. Our tour guide Grace was full of fun and very informative. Nothing was too much trouble for her. She had us in stitches of laughter and spoke fluent English and Spanish to the group which consisted of at least 8 different nationalities. Grace is most knowledgeable and was extremely patient if and when we had to wait for a member of the family who was lagging behind. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and recommend this tour.
Very good tour with excellent tour guide Hugo and driver Merino. Tour is conducted in Madrid by the largest tour company in Spain so you get good hotels. Time in Granada and Toledo is not enough but it gives you a reason to return to Spain to see those 2 amazing places..
Except for the first city trip in Madrid the rest of the tour was excellent. There was no information about the Madrid city tour given after our arrival. The tour ended far away from the Hotel and we had to walk back all the way.
I've recently returned from a 5 day Spain tour beginning in Madrid. The tour guide Josep had a lot of energy and was very entertaining. All the major cities had their own tour guides who were professional and informative. The scenery was magnificent, the hotels were excellent to good the Granada hotel although clean was out of town and away from the city centre. The optional tours were good also. A lot of ground is covered with this tour so there isn't a lot of down time but I was keen to see as much as possible. Toledo was a highlight and Ronda happened to be celebrating a Romantica Festival which meant that the entire town was in celebration mode with costumes, processions and food stalls. I would highly recommend this tour. For some strange reason Spain tends to drop of most people's European itinerary but I don't believe you could find it disappointing.
Most excellent tour! Can't praise more the tour company for working with such wonderful guides like Hugothe main tour guide and Carmenour Madrid guide, our bus driver Jesus, the local guides like Luis in Cordoba, Gloria in Seville, Triny in Granada and Angel in Toledo. And last but not least Mona and Sonia, the two ladies who kept us informed about the tour beforehand. Spotllesly organised from the start to the finish. We had a smaller group, and had plenty of time to visit different places as to have optional tours or rest. The hotels were excellent so as the food. Can't recommend it more.
Great trip. Hugo (Guide) and Paco (Driver) were very nice and informative. Impressed with Paco's driving skills in some of the very narrow streets. Hugo kept us entertained, informed, and on-time (which isn't always the easiest thing to do). The four cities we visited were beautiful and great choices. The local guides were also very good. We enjoyed the afternoon walking tour in Seville but would recommend passing on the boat tour part. I wish we had some free time in Córdoba and a longer lunch break in Toledo. By the time we decided on a place to eat, and time to eat, there wasn't any time to shop or explore. Our only mistake was not planning an extra day for Madrid when we returned. An incredible tour!
For the amount of travel, ease and convenience of travel and the number of places we visited this is a great tour for the price. Like what everyone said, Madrid part is meant to be just for you to get accustomed to Madrid. The panoramic tour was so so. It was so fast that we barely have time to really appreciate Madrid. That was why, I booked us a flight back to Madrid from Barcelona to really tour Madrid and enjoy it on our own. The rest of the tour from Cordoba to Barcelona was wonderful. After touring Italy, Paris and London using train and the hassles of doing it on your own, this is like a walk in the park. I specially loved the walking tours on the important places and the extra time they allowed us on our own. Would recommend it to everyone. Shout out to our tour captains, Carlos and Joseph. Gracias, Amigos!
perfect! Geseppe was a wonderful tour guide. TEN stars!
Madrid guide walked too fast; didn't count people, causing frustration.
Good hotels. Great cities. All guides were good.
This 5 day tour covered a lot of territory and history of Spain. The tour guide on board was excellent, kept track of all the wanderers and provided excellent background information and history of the various cities. We visited Cordoba, Sevilla, Toledo, Costa del Sol and Granada. The onsite specialized guides in place such as the cathedral in Cordoba, Alhambra, the old Jewish quarters were all well informed and made the arduous walks uphill in the heat, on cobblestones in the rain fun. We took an excellent side trip to see traditional flamenco dancing one night and that was spellbinding. All the hotels were comfortable, some more than others with the Hotel Los Angeles in Granada being a real treat. i did not want to leave the hotel but there was so much of interest to see in Granada besides the Alhambra. All breakfasts were great, filling with lots of variety and most of the dinner buffets were the same.
There is a lot of walking and they do prepare you for this in the description of the trip but it is uphill on cobblestone and by the 4th day this can wreak havoc on old bodies. Just be prepared with good shoes. Also if you need a CPAP machine be sure to alert the hotels ahead of time because several hotels on this trip as well as others in Madrid, did not have outlets in the bedrooms. All in all it was an amazing experience and I would highly recommend it epecially if you are pressed for time. There is no way you could do all this on your own. You would also miss the history lessons and not get to share in an opportunity to meet fellow travellers and share their interesting experiences. The bus was comfortable but did not have a washroom. WE could have used more washroom stops along the way.
My parents from Australia acturally did the tour. They indicaed they enjoyed the tour vry mucn indeed and were most impressed with the tour guide and the accomodation hotels they were booked into. The last day was a bit tiring with the distance travelled back to Madrid.
Anne T Australia
Great tour for the time poor! More time could easily be spent in each destination to make the experience less rushed, but I only had 5 days and I was very pleased with the service. I missed the departure and the office in Madrid could not have been more helpful to assure I got onto the fast train to Cordoba and met the group! Enjoyed it thoroughly.
Fantastic trip and would recommend it . We were travelling through Europe for 7 weeks and found this a great way to travel from Madrid to Marbella. The tour operator was amazing and even went out of her way to have the bus detour to drop us off near our hotel in Marbella. The tour of Ronda was fantastic but could have been at least an hour longer. The walking tour of Cordova's streets was beautiful and the mosque absolutely breathtaking. A well organised and well paced tour and due to the small number on the tour, very personal and relaxing. Thank you.
This was a fantastic trip. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to get out of Madrid and see how beautiful southern Spain is. Our bus and driver were wonderful as was our guide. We stayed at the 4 star hotels, but the 3 star hotels were very good as well, according to other people on our tour. This was our second trip with Viator while in Spain and we also used their shuttle services from the airport to our hotel and then back to the airport. Viator was very easy to work with and their business was easy to find being located across the street from the statues of Don Quijote and Sancho Panza at the Plaza de España. When traveling in the future, I will always check Viator’s website to see what they have available wherever I travel.
This was an amazing tour; it went deep into the history of Spain. It really highlights the best of art, history, and architecture. This was a wonderful side trip from Madrid. We loved our knowledgeable, fun, and courteous guide. It was like traveling with longtime friends!
Natasha Shammul K Pakistan
My tour to Cordoba, Seville, Granada, and Toledo actually made my trip to Spain worthwhile. I had gone to Madrid for a conference and was bored. But this tour made my trip absolutely perfect!
Our main guide was phenomenal. The other city guides were fantastic. The sites were exactly the ones I wanted to see. Hotels were great. Even the meals were surprisingly good. The extra side tours were worth it. Even the bus driver was great. My only suggestion was that I would forgo the lunch in Granada on the last day and just head back to Madrid. It made it too long of a day and wasn't necessary. Other than that splendid trip! Well worth it.
The tour was well worth the money. It included everything that the guide books said should be seen or done. Our guide was wonderful, knowledgeable and very connected as to getting good seats, favorable positions, etc. The hotels were clean and convenient. The food, while it could have been better, was still alright and edible. The bus was clean, well maintained, smooth riding and came with an excellent driver.I would recommend this tour and tour operator to anyone going to Madrid.
Alice Y United States of ...
The pick up at -2 floors at the Plaza Oriente wasn't as hard to find as I thought. There were two buses dispatched by Julia Travels that day. The guide I got was Miguel who is not as good as the guide on the other bus. Miguel did not give us a lot of information about the places we were going as we rode on the bus. He did not coordinate well with local guides and hotels as to our arrival time. He didnt know where he was going often times and made us walk more than necessary because of it. He doesn't care whether all his clients are checked in at the hotel before he heads to his own room.
Day 1 we drive to Cordoba, visit the Meszquita and drive to Seville for the evening. The hotel was a lot nicer than I thought and we went with the upgraded hotels.
Day 2 we drive around the world's fair pavilions and stop at Plaza Espana. Then we walk around old town Seville which ends 11:30 in front of Cathedral. Optional walking tour/bus pick-up meets at 14:30 or you can find you way back. We went to the Alcazar and Cathedral. The lines for the tickets were long so if you can get the guide to tell you an exact time for when he leaves you at the cathedral, book your tickets ahead. The optional flamenco show was great but there are plenty of options in Seville if you want to find one yourself.
Day 3 we drive to Granada and got there 11:30. The agency messed up on the Generallife and Alhambra tickets so we had nothing to do until the next morning. The hotel is not as nice as the one in Seville but good. We toured Granada ourselves for the rest of the day.
Day 4 we visit Generalife and the Alhambra, but the Nazaries Palace is not included. Then we head towards Toledo, lunch at rest stop, and arrive at damasquino factory shopping stop that seems unavoidable with tours. Then we went into Toledo where we went to Iglesias de Santo Tomé to see El Grecos Burial of Count Orgaz, a highlight of the trip! Then the white synagogue before heading back to Madrid.
Being my first solo holiday I was very nervous, but I needn't have worried as I had a great time. We visited some lovely places, I especially liked Córdoba and Seville, and I met some great people. The local tour company in Madrid were very professional and the guide who was with us throughout the trip Hugo, and the driver Carlos, were a credit to their company and were very kind, informative and helpful. As were the local guides in various places visited. I would definitely take this sort of trip again and would have no hesitation using Viator or the local tour operator. My one tip is when visiting Granada, wear comfy shoes as you are walking for quite a while, wear a hat, sunscreen and take a bottle of water, my sunburnt nose, cheeks and raging thirst showed I didn't! So be on the safe side take them everywhere you visit!
This tour has two parts. Don't expect to be in one tour group for the entire duration.
Our tour guide Joseph was excellent! He took care of us from Cordoba, Seville and Granada. Loved all the local tour guides. We covered all the important sites. I just wish we were given more time to explore and take in the beauty of the Alhambra. We just went in then out of the place. Too fast.
I found the tour group too BIG on this leg. Also the air-conditioning system of the bus didn't work for a couple of hours. But they were able to address this concern. They should have checked the bus before leaving for a 7 day tour.
We were then transferred to another tour group/bus for Valencia-Barcelona-Zaragoza-Madrid. Our tour guide Hugo, was the opposite of our first tour guide. He was just ok. : Local tour guide for Valencia and Barcelona were good as well.
Hotels for superior hotels were all good except for the one at Barcelona. They should change the beds. So old and used. Pillows were not fluffy as well.
We didn't proceed to Zaragoza-Madrid as we took the train going to France.
Best way to see Spain.
i would recommend it! very well organized tour. we had a fantastic guide. the tour operator should just improve the tour in madrid by bus is not the best choice and the choice of the hotel in sevilla a little bit far from the downtown.
Everything was fine except for the tour guide we had with us from Madrid and back. I don't find her helpful and instructions given be her over the tour were not very clear. Though she tries to look friendly but I find her arrogant and condescending. She somehow left a not so nice taste in the mouth and left a little smudge on the tour experience. Lunch in Toledo was somehow forced onto us....so we had no choice but to eat in the restaurant she brought us to.
The tour itself was great....
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