day 1 Philipsburg, St. Maarten
Pastel-colored buildings and shops filled with tempting souvenirs herald your arrival to bustling Philipsburg. Situated near the harbor on the Dutch side of St. Maarten, Philipsburg owes its discovery to Christopher Columbus in 1493. Today, celebrated Front Street is home to a number of local Creole restaurants as well as jewelry stores, stylish boutiques, and lively casinos for visitors seeking an upbeat island experience.
8:00 AM TO 6:00 PM
day 11 Ponta Delgada, Sao Miguel, Azores, Portugal
Ponta Delgada is the capital of São Miguel Island, gateway to the crater lakes and volcano of Sete Cidades and to the Azores Archipelago of Portugal. There is much to do here including horseback riding, golfing, and inviting beaches with volcanic sand, tidal pools and inviting surfing or body boarding. Sites to see include the impressive, 3-arched city gates and the Gothic-style Church of St. Sebastian near the harbor, the Hermitage of Our Lady of Peace Temple, the quirky street art and the Carlos Machado Museum with a variety of artifacts of the Azorean culture.
8:00 AM TO 5:00 PM
The rhythm of Lisbon invites you to join its captivating dance. This splendid capital city on the banks of the Rio Teja offers a warm welcome and an unparalleled blend of architectural styles. Elegant outdoor cafés line the cobbled sidewalks. Turn-of-the-century funiculars climb the scenic hills. Find the UNESCO sites of the Tower of Belem and the Monastery of the Hieronymites. And, everywhere, the city engages you with its easy style and remarkable charm.
8:00 AM TO 6:00 PM
day 17 Gibraltar, British Territory
It’s an odd bit of Britain here at the toe of Spain, with Barbary apes and miles of tunnels as well as traditional red phone boxes. Legend says Gibraltar was one of the two pillars erected by Hercules to mark the edge of the world. Take the cable car to the top to see if you can see it from here. No, that’s not it. That’s just Africa. What a view.
Cádiz is the most southern province of the Iberian Peninsula. It is extremely rich in natural beauty and some of the most important Natural Parks of Spain and Europe are found here including Sierra de Grazalema and los Alcornocales. Both are rich in flora and fauna, including species under threat of extinction. Many birds find their resting and feeding place here just after or before making the jump from or to Africa.
9:00 AM TO 8:00 PM
Here, on the shores of Costa del Sol, the Andalusian spirit thrives. Be sure to include an optional visit to see the brilliant and comprehensive collection of Picasso’s work at Museo Picasso Málaga, a tribute to this artistic genius in the city of his birth. Or you may choose to opt for a visit to the beautiful village of Mijas, where picturesque Andalusian country life creates some of the world’s best wines.
7:00 AM TO 6:00 PM
day 20 Almeria (Granada), Spain
Enjoy a walking tour of this ancient city. If you prefer, opt for a beautiful drive through the Andalusian countryside to Granada and the magnificent UNESCO site, the Alhambra Palace. Built in the 14th century, this breathtaking example of Moorish architecture combines intricate mosaics and stone-cast latticework in a tapestry of grace and sophistication unparalleled in western civilization. Or take an optional excursion into nature at one of three UNESCO Biosphere Reserves.
7:00 AM TO 12:00 PM
The walled town of Cartagena is a popular seaport with a large naval shipyard. The seashore offers a wide range of activities from windsurfing to good snorkeling to sailing. From Cartagena you can easily explore the ancient city of Murcia, the coastal resorts of Mazarrón, Cala Cortina, and Cabo de Palos or a little further north, the world famous resort of Mar Menor.
9:00 AM TO 5:00 PM
Palma de Mallorca
day 22 Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Mallorca is steep, green, and fringed with enticing coves and more than 200 lush beaches. But all that natural beauty is just the beginning. Stroll along the tree-shaded Paseo de Born in search of tapas. Shop for a Siurell; a traditional red, green, and white clay whistle dating back to the time of the Moors. Watch the street performers on the piazza around the church, or cross the island to beautiful Sóller. Not to be missed is the cultural landscape of the Serra de Tramuntana, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The old meets the new in this sunny Catalan metropolis, where narrow alleyways contrast with grand boulevards, trendy cuisine meets homemade tapas, and everywhere you’re greeted by the warm, welcoming smiles of the fashionable locals. Don’t miss UNESCO sites like the mind-boggling architecture of Antoni Gaudí or La Sagrada Familia Cathedral, with its eight decorative spires soaring hundreds of feet into the sky.
*Rates shown are per person, based on double occupancy, reflect all discounts and include non-discountable amounts. Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses are additional.