This tailor-made Spanish rail holiday is the ideal way to travel to and around Andalucia. Begin your rail holiday by flying into Madrid, where you spend your first night. From here, travel by train to the southern region of Andalucia and journey by rail between three of its great cities – Seville, Cordoba and Granada. These cities in Andalucia are home to stunning medieval Islamic architecture, delicious tapas, heart-stopping bullfighting and sensual flamenco. Train travel between the cities is fast and comfortable allowing you to make the most of your time and enjoy the view in the process. We include a number of excursions to help you get the best out of your visit to this exciting region.Click here to download a pdf with full details of some of our rail holidays to Spain, or click here to download a pdf with details about this touring holiday.DAY BY DAY ITINERARYDay oneFly from London to Madrid where you have most of the day to explore the city with its many attractive plaza and museums. You spend one night at the Hospes Puerta de Alcala in the city centre. We include a combined ticket which allows you one entry to the permanent exhibitions of the Museo del Prado, Museo Thyssen and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia.Day twoLeave Madrid at 9am for Andalucia , travelling in first class by Altaria train and arriving to Granada nestled at the edge of the mountains of the Sierra Nevada around 1.30pm. Spend two nights in the Hospes Palacio de los Patos in Granada. Granada is one of Spain’s most fascinating cities. The Sierra Nevada and its wooded slopes form a beautiful backdrop, but the Alhambra palace is the key attraction. Originally constructed as a 9th century fortress, it has been changed and added to over successive centuries expanding the complex to include palaces, churches and mosques. It is now a UNESCO world heritage site.Day threeA shared tour of the Alhambra is included with your holiday, this includes visits to the Royal Palaces, Gardens and Carlos V’s Palace. You have the rest of the day at leisure to explore Granada, perhaps strolling around its old quarter and trying the selection of tapas that are served free with drinks in Granada. An Authentic Andalusian Flamenco show is included this evening.Day fourLeaving Granada at 9am and take the train to Cordoba arriving just over two hours later.Cordoba is set on the Guadalquivir river at the heart of rural Andalucia, and you spend two nights here at the Hospes Palacio del Bailio. The city has beautiful winding lanes, many historical attractions, restaurants and nightlife. From mid April to mid June the city is full of flowers as local residents open their gardens to the public for the Fiesta de los Patios.Day fiveA shared tour is included to Cordoba’s mosque – the largest Islamic structure in Western Europe and a UNESCO protected site. The remainder of the day is at leisure to explore Cordoba, and in the evening a romantic “Caliphal” dinner is included - served in the intimate ambiance of the Senzone restaurant.Starters: an exclusive selection of Tapas. Main Course: a tasting menu of typical Andalusian dishes. Dessert, coffee and mineral water included. Wine and other alcoholic beverages are not included.Day sixTravel by high speed train from Cordoba – leaving mid morning and arriving into Seville 45 minutes later. You spend two nights here at the Hospes Las Casas del Rey de Baeza. Seville is the capital of Andalucia and Spain’s fourth largest city. The centre is formed of a maze of narrow lanes and hidden plazas. Key attractions of Sevilla are its art and architecture which includes Roman, Islamic, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque influences. Flamenco music and dance are at the heart of this city and it is not uncommon to hear people clapping the rhythm as you walk down the street, but even more popular are the sevillanas – the city’s own musical heritage.Day sevenA two and a half hour shared guided tour of Seville is included, which visits the main sights of the Barrio de Santa Cruz. The remainder of the day is at leisure to explore Seville, during which you can look around the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, climb up the Giralda tower to see a panoramic view of the entire city, and visit Triana – the city’s historic gypsy courter on the other side of the river. An introductory presentation on Iberian ham and ham cutting is also included.Day eightFly from Seville back to London (other airports are also possible).Alternatively, it is possible to return to the UK by train – please ask for details.PRICESLow season: Jan, Feb, Jul, Aug, Nov, DecFrom £1,485 per person for first class rail travel.From £1,390 per person for second class rail travel.High season: Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Sept, OctFrom £1,635 per person for first class rail travel.From £1,540 per person for second class rail travel.Prices based on two sharing a double or twin room.What’s included?First or second class rail travel (as above) on all trainsBritish Airways flights (London Gatwick – Madrid, Seville to London Gatwick)At the hotels:Standard double or twin rooms with private bathroom and breakfast included.1 night’s bed and breakfast at Hospes Madrid2 nights’ bed and breakfast at Hospes Palacio de los Patos in Granada2 nights’ bed and breakfast at Hospes Palacio del Bailio in Cordoba2 nights’ bed and breakfast at Hospes Las Casas del Rey de Baeza in SevilleExtras: A combined ticket allowing one visit to the permanent exhibitions of the Museo del Prado, the Museo Thyssen and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia.1 Caliphal dinner in Cordoba (or on request this can be in Granada or Seville) A romantic “Caliphal” dinner for two served in the intimate ambiance of the Senzone restaurant. Starters: an exclusive selection of Tapas; Main Course: a tasting menu of typical Andalusian dishes. Dessert, coffee and mineral water included. Wine and other alcoholic beverages are not included.1 Tablao Flamenco show in Granada: Authentic Andalusian Flamenco show (or on request this can be in Seville or Cordoba).1 Iberian Ham Cutting presentation in Seville. An introductory presentation to Iberian Ham and ham cutting.Excursions:Granada – a shared tour of the AlhambraCordoba – a shared tour of the mosqueSeville – a shared walking tour, 2.5 hoursWhat’s not included?Early check-in or late check-out at any hotels (though we can arrange this on request at additional cost).Any other services not mentioned above, such as transfers and meals except breakfast at hotels and one Caliphal dinner.DatesThis holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Timings can vary depending on the month and day of the week.For more information on rail travel in Spain, please see our train guide.
Below is some information regarding each of the hotels featured in this touring itinerary.Hospes Puerta de Alcala – 5 star - MadridThis boutique hotel of 42 rooms is located right in the centre of Madrid on the north-western corner of the Retiro park next to Puerta de Alcala. The hotel building is a former royal mansion dating from 1883 whose facilities include a spa with hydrotherapy pool, gym and library. The Independencia Restaurant serves award winning food and tapas and is open to both the public and hotel guests. The hotel also features a charming Chill-Out Patio area, where guests can relax and enjoy a cocktail or glass of their favourite wine.See more detail on Hospes Puerta de Alcala.Hospes Palacio de los Patos – 5 star - GranadaThe Palacio de los Patos is a luxurious and elegant property in the centre of Granada, just a 10 minute walk from the spectacular Cathedral complex. The twin buildings of this hotel are a 19th century palace, with classical and industrial architecture, and a strikingly modern wing which offer together some 42 guestrooms, all furnished simply but stylishly. Hotel facilities include a spa with Turkish bath, sauna and a small pool, a DVD library and wifi throughout the hotel.See more detail on Hospes Palacio de los Patos.Hospes Palacio del Bailio – 5 star - CordobaIn the historical heart of Cordoba, the Palacio del Bailio is set inside an old manor which is made up of several buildings which surround its five patios. On the spectacular main patio, the traditional paving has been replaced by a dramatic glass floor which gives a view to the roman ruins that lie below it. Inside the rooms, original frescoes from the 17th Century have been carefully restored to conserve the historical character of this property. The Arbequina restaurant offers delicious gastronomic delights using fresh, local produce to create traditional dishes. There is also a small swimming pool set amongst the orange trees.See more detail on Hospes Palacio del Bailio.Hospes Las Casas del Rey de Baeza – 4 star - SevilleThis traditional white washed terracotta tiled townhouse is set among the cobbled courtyards of central Seville, has been lovingly restored to preserve features from its 18th Century origins. There are just 41 guestrooms, decorated with columns, ceramics, seagrass and stone as well as traditional works of art and colonial style furniture. The Azahar Restaurant, named after the orange blossom which fills the city with sweet perfume, offers guests the chance to sample the traditional flavours of Andalucia, whilst the swimming pool-solarium on the roof has stunning views of the Giralda tower and the historic centre of Seville.See more detail on Hospes Las Casas del Rey de Baeza.
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