• La Pedrera in Barcelona
  • Plaza Mayor in Madrid
  • Toledo
  • La Mancha
  • Granada
  • Bullring in Ronda
  • Flamenco Dancer in Sevilla

Tour Questions? Call 425-608-4217

My Way® Spain in 11 Days Tour

Beginning in beautiful Barcelona and ending in sensual Sevilla — with the cultural delights of Madrid, Toledo, Ronda and Granada laced together in between — Rick Steves' money-saving "My Way" tour gives you the freedom to decide your own daily sightseeing priorities and pace. We cut the stress by providing comfortable rooms in centrally-located hotels, private bus transportation from city to city, and a travel-savvy escort to help advise you along the way. Join us for My Way: Spain in 11 Days!

What's Included

  • This is an "un-guided" tour — giving you the freedom (and responsibility) to manage your daily sightseeing schedule and meals
  • A small, friendly group of 24-28 people will share our big, comfy bus during the trip, but not do organized sightseeing together
  • A Rick Steves escort will manage the group's transportation and hotel arrangements, and provide advice for sightseeing, meals, etc.
  • All group transportation from Barcelona to Sevilla
  • 10 nights accommodations in memorable, centrally-located hotels
  • All breakfasts are included
  • All tips for escort and driver
  • Free Audio Europe™ app for Apple and Android (or get free podcast/mp3 files) featuring Rick's radio interviews with experts on destinations covered in this itinerary
  • Free stuff including Rick Steves' Spain guidebook; Europe Through the Back Door travel skills handbook (one per household); Spanish phrase book; moneybelt; and earplugs
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2014
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer, or cancel/interrupt your tour
  • Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions Agreement for important details regarding everything listed above

Itinerary

Sightseeing notes

(r) = reserve a time before you leave the USA

Day 1: Welcome to Spain

Welcome to Barcelona, one of Europe's most dynamic and diverse cities. Depending on when you arrive, today is a great day to wander through the maze-like Gothic Quarter, medieval cathedral, and refurbished harbor area. We'll rendezvous at our Barcelona hotel at 5 p.m. for a group get-together. Your escort will give an overview of the days ahead, answer your questions, and offer a quick orientation to our neighborhood and Barcelona's public transportation system. Then you're free for dinner on your own, and maybe an evening stroll up and down the Ramblas. Sleep in Barcelona (2 nights). No bus today.

Day 2: Lively, Artistic Barcelona

You have the entire day and evening free to explore this remarkable city. Armed with your guidebook, you could hop the subway to see Gaudí's towering, dizzying Sagrada Família church and his colorful, playful Parc Güell. Closer to the center, you can check out the Modernisme-themed Avenue of Discord, and a museum dedicated to another artistic visionary: Pablo Picasso (r). No bus today.

Day 3: A Speedy Train to Madrid

All aboard! After breakfast we'll take one of Europe's speediest trains (the AVE) to Madrid. By mid-afternoon you'll be settled in your Madrid hotel, and free for the rest of the afternoon and evening, maybe to explore the lively streets around the Puerta del Sol and Plaza Mayor, or the majestic Retiro Gardens. Sleep in Madrid (2 nights). Train: 3 hrs. Bus: 2 hrs.

Day 4: Masterpieces of Madrid

Today and this evening are entirely free to cover the best of Madrid. For many, that means the masterpiece-packed Prado — featuring paintings by Velázquez, Goya, El Greco and others. The Royal Palace is another great place to wander and soak up the opulence of Spain's capital city. Tonight, use your guidebook to put together a tapas crawl, and use your phrase book to connect with the locals (and to figure out what you're eating)! No bus today.

Day 5: Historic Toledo

It's a short bus ride to Spain's old capital city of Toledo (and back in time about 500 years), then the rest of your day and evening are free. Be sure to see Toledo's magnificent cathedral, the Synagogue Santa Maria la Blanca and El Greco's The Burial of the Count of Orgaz at the Santo Tomé Chapel. Outside, enjoy Toledo's winding streets, varied sights, and some of Spain's best shopping. Sleep in Toledo (1 night). Bus: 1 hr.

Day 6: La Mancha and Granada

Today we'll drive through windswept "Don Quixote country," stopping to sniff the saffron and admire a whitewashed windmill or two. At about 5 p.m. we'll reach our destination of Granada. Once you've checked into the hotel, you might head up the Albayzín hill, find an interesting place for dinner, and enjoy a sunset view of tomorrow's treat — the Alhambra. Sleep in Granada (2 nights). Bus: 5 hrs.

Day 7: Moorish Treasures of Granada

Your entire day and evening are on your own, and there's no better way to start than with a visit to the sprawling palace and garden complex of the Alhambra (r) — the last and greatest of Europe's Moorish palaces. Afterward, you might explore the colorful streets and alleyways of Granada's Old Town, and ponder the course of history at the ornate tombs of world-changing Ferdinand and Isabella, who reigned over a new age of religious zeal at home and exploration of the "new" Americas. No bus today.

Day 8: Ronda

This morning we'll drive to the hill town of Ronda, home to Spain's oldest bullring and its most breathtaking gorge. The afternoon and evening are yours to explore Ronda's Moorish and Mercadillo Quarters, linked together by the famous gravity-defying stone bridge (towering over the rubble of an earlier one that wasn't). Sleep in or near Ronda (1 night). Bus: 3 hrs.

Day 9: Sevilla's Barrio Santa Cruz

Today we'll wind our way between olive groves and pueblos blancos on our way to the flamboyant and atmospheric city of Sevilla. Our hotel's central location makes it easy to spend this afternoon and evening marveling at the world's largest Gothic cathedral — and window-shopping along the narrow whitewashed lanes of Sevilla's Barrio Santa Cruz. Tonight, you might look for a performance of sultry, swirling flamenco. Sleep in Sevilla (2 nights). Bus: 3 hrs.

Day 10: Sevilla's Royal Alcazar

Your entire day and evening are free to do as you please. You could start with a visit to the beautifully Moorish-style Alcazar palace, the Sevilla home of the Spanish Royal Family for the past 500 years. Afterward, you can walk in the footsteps of Carmen and Don Juan, linger in Sevilla's charming squares, or stroll along the romantic Guadalquivir River. This evening, consider capping off your My Way: Spain adventure with a carriage ride through the streets of Sevilla. Salud! No bus today.

Day 11: Tour Over After Breakfast

Sevilla's airport is a bus or taxi ride away with easy connections throughout Europe. Alternately there is an AVE train to Madrid to continue your Iberian adventures on your own. Hasta luego!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Activity Level

Our tours are physically active! It’s an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our My Way: Spain in 11 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily...

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (several blocks possible) and up stairways to reach your hotel; then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  3. Be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.
  4. Be responsible for your own daily sightseeing, admissions, meals (except breakfasts) and non-group transportation.
  5. Travel on a bus without a toilet (rest stops every two hours).

Reviews

Stephen

Okatie, SC

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was everything I expected and more. The transportation and logistics provided through the tour were invaluable in maximizing the time spent at all the planned destinations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Would have to say Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. Pictures or video do not even scratch the visual impact of this architectural masterpiece."

Roberta

Corona, CA

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

When we first started talking about going to Spain, we had no idea about how to go about choosing hotels, transportation between cities, and what cities we wanted to visit. Then we had several people tell us about Rick Steves'. We didn't really want a tour group, but we checked it out and that's when we discovered the My Way tours. The My Way tour made everything perfect! We didn't have to worry about rooms or the transportation between cities, and we were able to tour the way we wanted.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We of course loved Barcelona, but our wow moments would have to be Toledo and Ronda. I don't know if we would of chosen to go there if they hadn't been included in the tour. But we really enjoyed both of the small cities."

Patricia

Everett, WA

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "My Way" tour exceeded my expectations. I really liked the connection and bonding we made on a previous full RS tour to Italy so I wasn't sure we would have thatagain However, we did make a connection with other tour members on the "My Way" and that is a big part of the enjoyment for me. There was more anxiety in preparing for this trip since we had to make our own advance reservations. After arriving in each city, Robert was very helpful in advising alternate ways to get to our venues.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Even though I knew what to expect at the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona...it was still a "wow" when I first entered. Having said that, I really think the Alhambra was the highlight. Although...I am now recalling the phenomenal Flamenco show in Seville. The performance was a definite "WOW"!"

Helen E

Sedona, AZ

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Spain Your Way Trip, overall, was the best trip I have ever taken. The historic sites, the transportation, the accommodations were very satisfying. This trip has inspired me to travel to other parts of Spain which were not covered on this trip. I am very pleased with the Rick Steves travel experience and will encourage all my traveler friends to sign up for future trips.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trip was one big wow moment. Probably, the Gaudi sites, especially the Sagrata Familia. Then again, I am an art lover."

Paul

Forest Grove, OR

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "My Way" format worked very well for us. The standard tours seem to be a lot of churches and museums, we like more gardens and markets. So we could do our own thing. The travel "escort" could not have been better, just the right touch in providing orientation and tips for each stop, and good availability for needed directions or assistance, but not intrusive or dictatorial in his direction. We would really like to to a "My Way" type tour of Portugal with Robert.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Robert put together a group meal at a culinary school, Taberna Alabardero, very nice touch on his part. Allowed us to say good-by to each other without any fuss or extra planning. Alcazar in Sevilla, Conception's walking tour assisted by Robert on an impromptu basis was also really nice. Sagrada Familia was special, much more impressive than its photographs."

Eugene M

Sedona, AZ

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I usually plan our trips to Europe but this was our first tour. I felt relieved that I just had to plan our daily activities (the part of planning I like best) and not worry about lodging and transportation. With the information from R.S.'s Spain, the Spain DVD and the information and suggestions from our escort, Robert Wright, we had a fantastic trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to pick just one "wow" moment on a trip with so many "wow"s. The Sagrada Familia was up there as a jaw dropper. The Prado provided an exceptional art experience. We actually returned a second time on our way home from Madrid. The real show stopper for a retired Social Studies teacher, was the newly completed National Archaelogical Museum MAN in Madrid. It gives a visitor a real sense of the history of Spain. I would give it more than one triangle in the guide."

Carol

La Mesa, CA

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our trip went so smoothly with Robert guiding us through the uncertainties of navigating the transportation in a foreign country and locating our hotels after arriving in a new city. He was always available to help us with plans for sightseeing or meals, and offered a great overview of each city we visited before we arrived. All his little insights into the places and people enhanced our journey and helped us make the most of all our free time. A perfect guide for this trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was overwhelmed by the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. I looked forward to seeing it, but had no idea the building itself and the concept behind it would be so stunning. It is a soaring monument to humanity."

Jan

Everett, WA

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My wife and I had a wonderful time on our Spain "My Way" Tour. Accommodations and travel arrangements were very top notch. Seeing six cities was great, but not enough time in each city to see all we wanted to see was disappointing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two "WOW" moments for me - The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona and the flamenco dance night in Sevilla. Lots of other moments could easily make the list as well."

Susan

Gales Creek, OR

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Robert did a great job as our escort. This was our first tour ever and we were very happy with the My Way format. We had fun with the other tour group members, but we could also do our own thing. We enjoyed the Spanish people and culture. We had a great trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. The Flamenco show in Sevilla. The walk with Concepcion in Sevilla. The dinner at Taberna Alaberdero (?) that Robert arranged for the group the last night in Sevilla."

Pat

Austin, TX

Tour: 10/09/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My visit to Spain was a long time in coming and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There are not enough adjectives to describe the experience. The tour was meticulously planned and executed. There was not one city or site that I did not enjoy. My one disappointment was that there were not more solo travelers and that I could not coordinate with them prior to the tour. That and I didn't want it to end.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The first city on the tour was Barcelona. I arrived late afternoon and planned to walk some, eat, and have an early night. Just strolling along I came across Gaudi's Casa Battlo-WOW. The line was short so in I went. The first of many wow's on the trip."

Katherine

San Diego, CA

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was really happy with the "My Way" experience and would use it again. I have travelled in Europe both independently and on fully guided tours and this was the best of both arrangements. I had the independence I like, but I didn't have to hassle with booking the hotels or any of the transportation. In addition our escort/guide saved additional prep work in that he provided helpful information on safety, customs, and how to use the public transportation. The hotels were all excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pick one. I really enjoyed the people on the tour (great NPR crowd) and our guide William. I loved the little towns, Toledo and Ronda the best."

Patricia

Savannah, GA

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was well organized and flowed smoothly. We were blessed with a most congenial group. My only regret was that my two favorite places were Toledo and Ronda, and we only spent one night in each. I recognized that this is an individual preference and may not be one shared by the majority of travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was amazed at the opulence of the Palace in Madrid and seeing the Alhambra at night was awe inspiring. But then there was the Sagrada Familia! I guess I had a few "wow" moments."

Richard

Savannah, GA

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It's was a great way to see Spain without the stress and hassle of having to arrange accommodations and in-country travel. It was a perfect blend of group and private travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra is a site everyone should see at least once."

Michael

Macon, GA

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our trip through Spain was great in every way. This was my first Rick Steves adventure, but it certainly won't be my last. The "My Way" option allowed us to tour at our own pace without feeling the need to "keep up" or "slow down" for others.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sitting across the valley having dinner and watching the Alhambra in Granada come to life as the sun set and the illumination was turned on was just amazing."

Darlene

Avon Lake, OH

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As a first time Rick Steves traveler, I did not know what to expect. Spain is a beautiful country and should be on more of you PBS shows. I found the tour to be outstanding and very educational as far as learning about the country and it's people. The "my way" tour really worked to my favor, as I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and need to be on my own schedule. Thankfully I did really well in Spain. This is the first trip I've been on and didn't not say "I am ready to go home".

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can not give you one "wow" moment. My eyes were open to so much that I did not know. So, I guess "wow" moment would be the whole 11 days."

Roger

Rochester, NY

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The concept of "my way" is perfect for us. The travel arrangements and hotels took the guesswork out of organizing the trip and left us with flexible time for our touring desires. The hotels were located in perfect locations and areas. Having a tour arranger with us worked great! The places you picked in Spain were great. We added time in the front end and back end and that was also great. This was our 5th trip overseas and ranks high on the list.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sorry - there were several. Opening the door to our hotel room in Ronda - WOW! Our experience with the restaurant (Arrayanes) and its owner (Mostafa) was memorable (he spent much time with us and bought us tea and tapas) - WOW! Being able to visit the La Mancha windmills WOW! The Cordoba Mestique (from our estended trip) WOW! The Alhambra, Sagrada Famalia, and Cathedrals (we attended services at two of them which enhanced the experience) - WOW!"

Jean

Port Townsend, WA

Tour: 10/02/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first tour, I was very pleased with the option of a My Way Tour. I hope and encourage you to do more tours My Way especially to Turkey. I truly am not interested in "regular" tours for I do not like the "herding" aspect, of those types of tours, Our guide William was exceptional!!!! He was knowledgeable, caring, funny, very organized, and just an overall nice person. He is a keeper and I am afraid has spoiled me for any other "tour guide" experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Viewing the Alhambra all lit up at night with a Full moon! Worth the climb up the hill and very fun!!!"

Toni

Minneapolis, MN

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We loved the trip[INVALID]the cities and the major sites. While we liked Spain, it turns out that we probably won't visit it again[INVALID]unlike our trips to Italy and France. Spain is, overall, rule-laden[INVALID]for everything. You can't go anywhere without a ticket and a specific time. And it seems to be too much[INVALID]there were hardly crowds anywhere, including the Alhambra and at the El Greco exhibit at the Santa Cruz museum where they gave us a hassle and made us buy additional tickets.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra and Sagrada Famiglia."

Thomas

Oakland, CA

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Saw all the cities [INVALID]- right from the center of historic areas! Great!

Candie

Fort Myers, FL

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was in Spain (Barcelona, Baleric Is.) 40 years ago so I don't remember much about that trip. I did notice that I wasn't met in the airport by men with machine guns on this trip. My husband is an artist, interested in drawing city scapes & the Gaudi architecture was a big "draw" for him. I loved all the tile work & use of broken dishes on many of the Gaudi works. I am an art quilter & got a lot of inspiration for new quilts from the mosaics & from the many olive trees dotting the hills.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was truly spellbound when I entered the Sagrada Familia for the first time. I had seen the outside 40 years ago and there has been so much done to it since then. The light glowed pink then blue then green with the changing of the sun shining through the stained glass. I loved discovering all the little shops in the old sections of all the towns we visited."

Rodney

Indianapolis, IN

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I thought the MyWay Spain tour was absolutely fantastic! First off, the "My Way" approach to travel was a perfect balance for us as it eliminated the "stressful" part of traveling in a strange place (such as driving, choosing a nice and well located hotel, navigating public transportation, etc) but allowed us complete freedom once we arrived at our destination to be independent travelers. As far as Spain...need I say more...it is a wonderful place to explore!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is so hard to answer as there were so many unexpected surprises. However, in general I would say that Rick Steves placed us in centrally located hotels that gave us ready access to so many wonderful sites and hidden treasures. I just felt like we got dropped in the middle of the action at all of our destinations which made exploring, discovering, and experiencing the culture so much easier."

Jane

Toronto, ON

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

We have done three independent trips using Rick Steves' guidebooks and three fully guided RS trips. This was our first 'my way'. Spain is an easy country to visit independently which makes it a good candidate for the 'my way' experience. The one negative to fully guided tours is the inconsistent level of hotel accommodation. By choosing a 'my way' I ended up with that same one negative. Should have thought of that! Our escort Robert was knowledgeable, personable and organized.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gaudi...all things Gaudi"

Jospeh

Indianapolis, IN

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The My Way experience is a great way to travel. You took care of all the hotel's which were located in the heart of each city. And the transportation was excellent taking the worry out of it. Our tour guide Robert Wright was very in formative and very friendly! Fun to be around!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trip as a whole was wow, meeting the locals and others in our group."

Victor

Fort Myers, FL

Tour: 09/25/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour provided just the right balance between guidance and total freedom. Bed, breakfast, bus, and daily access to our guide was just right. This allowed us to explore on our own, with helpful advice from the guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Discovering the back streets and alleys of Barcelona. We spent 3 extra days there (post-tour) and would have been happy to spend the whole two weeks just getting lost in those alleyways!"

Barbara

Woodbury, MN

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the flexibility of "My Way" tour. Had lots of fun with the tour group and our guide! We didn't expect to spend so much time with many of our group. An unexpected and nice surprise! We did all of our "must see" sights and still had time to relax and enjoy our surroundings.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"View from St. Nicholas area of the Alhumbra at sunset. A close second was a tapas crawl with tour group members!"

Maria

Stockton, CA

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was my first "My Way" tour (4th Rick Steves tour). Decided to try something different this time and was not disappointed. I enjoyed the independence(I travel alone) and the savings on a supplemental fee for single room is certainly attractive. I did; however, miss the deeper connection to other tour members - that you definitely experience when you're on a full tour. The tour was quite exhausting, but I did go into it with a bout of bronchitis and that certainly didn't help.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was the Prado. It was my favorite venue to see and I couldn't be more thrilled that I had that opportunity. I also thoroughly enjoyed the street performers - musicians and flamenco dancers who were supremely talented and a joy to behold."

Martin

Burns, TN

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was very well prepared as a result of reading the Travel Skills book. The guide Robert was superior & really knew his "stuff". The size of the tour was 28 people and was easily organizable. All transportation was perfect, the hotels were very nice, not glamorous, very clean and well appointed, and run by very friendly people who spoke English and were great at providing directions and advice if we needed something. Most amazingly, we simply had no moans, it was all good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose, but Sagrada Familia and the friendly Spanish people, and for me, Guernica and Ronda."

Becky

Glendive, MT

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Because this was our first trip with a group everything was new and interesting. My husband and I really liked the format of mainly being on our own or being able to choose to go out with others. Our group was great. We met many interesting people and we would like to take another "My way "trip next year. Robert was a great host; we all loved him. the choices of cities were each unique in their own way and 11 days seemed about right for the length of time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sagrada Familia was the most interesting sight of the entire trip. What an amazing structure. We also like to experience new foods and new people. Spain was a very friendly country."

Melvin

North Brunswick, NJ

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Spain My Way - Robert was "leader". He was always available at breakfast fro questions about local stuff. Posted bus and hotel sched. every day, so we never felt totally "alone". Would have liked one more night in Ronda, but can't see cutting anything else out, so why not make it 11 nights instead of 10?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Views in Ronda"

Margaret

Tampa, FL

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was absolutely phenomenal. The transportation to each destination was first class especially the AVE. Our tour guide, Robert, was very helpful and an extremely nice man. All the hotel accommodations were exceptional especially the hotel in Ronda. The staff was very courteous and the hotel was absolutely beautiful. The one night stays were a little rough but overall everything was first class. Can't wait to take another RS tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was Ronda. What a beautiful and peaceful little city. The scenery was absolutely breath taking and gorgeous. The people in Ronda were very nice and accommodating. Everyone I encountered were very helpful and always had a smile on their faces. I will definitely be returning to Ronda in the near future."

Thomas

Madison, WI

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We love the 'My Way' tour. It is, nonetheless, exhausting trying to see all we wanted to see with little down-time. We could have used a 2nd night in Ronda, the Hotel San Gabriel is so nice. Even a second night in Toledo might have provided a breather before plunging into Granada. Differences in the styles of our consulting guides and the inherent differences between dining styles in Spain (versus Italy, 2012) left less time to get to know other members of the tour group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The interior of the Sacrada Familia is breathtaking. The Alhambra is all I expected it to be. The Alcazar of Sevilla was a surprise Wow; I wasn't prepared for the Mujadar decor."

Susan

Manalapan, NJ

Tour: 09/11/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our MY WAY SPAIN experience was absolutely fabulous. The concept of a "my way" tour is brilliant....we loved NOT having to plan for our hotels and transportation. We did what we wanted to and when, but still had the connection that we appreciated with our wonderful tour leader, Robert. The itinerary was perfect. We did, however, arrive in Barcelona a full two and a half days early, which we really appreciated, giving us time to get over the jet lag, and time to see more in Barcelona.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was enthralled with the town of Ronda! We actually would have loved TWO FULL days and nights in that town. The hotel there was a GEM,Hotel San Gabriel, which we didn't fully appreciate given the short time that we spent there. The walking opportunities in Ronda seemed limitless, and every turn was a picture taking moment! We loved seeing the bullring in Ronda, and learning some of its history."

Andrea

Hagerstown, MD

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time and really got a good feel of the country. She loves art, especially more contemporary art Gaudi, Picasso, and the Reina Sofia in one trip was great. We returned to Barcelona at the end of the tour and then traveled to Figueres. The town isn't impressive but we loved the Dali museum! She did say that she would prefer to do a guided tour next time because she felt like she learned so much from the guides on our Family Tour (2012)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Alhambra at sunset and we really enjoyed the old town of Toledo. But the wow must be the number of gold covered alters we saw! The cathedrals in Spain are amazing!"

Sally

Portland, OR

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved every single thing. The trip was made great by Robert. He was so knowledgeable, gave info at the right amount and time. Very pleasant fellow. His suggestions in each town were spot on. Bus was clean, on time and confortable/ I am glad Robert has us rotate front seats to see. We should try to bunch up on the train... The 3 hour bachelor party in the middle of us was SO obnoxious on the long ride... The hotels were fine ( LOVED the one in Ronda), Loved that there was a market close

Favorite "WOW" moment

"walking in the Sagrada Familia!! and tourin the Gaudi homes. Each town had at least 2 WOW places.. well picked my friends! WE are glad we spent a week in Barcelona -so much to see and enjoy."

Susan

Poinciana, FL

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were so pleased with our first visit to Spain! Our escort, Robert, was so knowledgeable, friendly, engaging and fun to be with. The hotels were fine, the weather was perfect (how did you folks manage that?!) and we enjoyed seeing some spectacular museums and cathedrals, and eating our first tapas.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think that the Sagrada Familia most touched me, particularly the Passion Façade. Although it was stark and simple, it was also deeply moving, beautiful and engaging."

Veronica

Kewadin, MI

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The overall tour experience was fantastic. We were on a My Way Tour which allowed us to explore Spain our own way. We had the independence that we wanted to do without being involved in a bigger tour group. Our transportation and housing was also outstanding in that the hotels were located in the center of each city. Being in the center allowed all sites to be in walking distance or close to metros. Our tour guide was knowledgeable but understood that this particular tour was not fully guided.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Being with my husband and seeing the Alhambra in Granada at sunset while drinking wine and eating local Tapist (in Rick Steves recommended restaurant) across the gorge. Another moment was wondering the streets of Madrid at 12:00pm and having a night cap on the top of the Madrid post office. Each city we visited was just as WOW as the next. I can highly recommend visiting Spain and it's people, what a wonderful way to be immersed in a different culture."

Susan

Berkeley, CA

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We liked the hotels very much. All quite central and perfectly nice. And breakfast at the hotels was good and convenient. The transportation made it easy for us. And we really enjoyed the overall of the city that Robert gave us when we were entering a new place. We loved Spain. A great visit, in general.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra! And the Gaudi buildings and park in Barcelona. And Guernica in the Reina Sofia in Madrid."

Sandra

Albany, CA

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was so pleased I chose the my way tour. Robert was an excellent guide. Everything proceeded as planned. He gave us comprehensive overviews to help us become orientated to each location. This was especially helpful for me as I was traveling solo. Robert set a good tone which helped us coalesce as a group. The potluck at Toledo was an excellent addition. I also enjoyed our gourmet meal in Sevilla. I definitely will do this again and recommend Rick Steves' tours to my friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"San Gabriel B and B at Ronda. They were gracious hosts and the setting was beautiful. What a setting! I was so impressed with all locations and lodging."

Michael

Torrance, CA

Tour: 06/26/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Robert gave just the right amount of guidance. He also knew when to interject his personal experience as well as knowledge that wasn't written in any guide book. The relief of knowing that all the Hotel and Travel arrangements were taken care of allowed our family to concentrate on enjoying our vacation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The realization that the World has to be experienced personally to receive it's full effect! People, places, things have to be seen, touched, heard or smelled to make a lasting impact on our souls. Go forward and save you Soul."

Raymond

Rahway, NJ

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great. Accomodations and transportation were excellent. Robert was a great guide and outlined points of interest for us the night before and was available at breakfast if we had any questions. His commentaries on the bus were to the point and not unnecessarily too long. The availability to do what you wanted, when you wanted at your own pace was fantastic. I would highly recommend a My Way tour to friends and family. Thanks for putting a tour like this together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into our room of the hotel in Ronda, and looking out the window seeing the gorge and bridge....Awesome!"

Marilyn

San Jose, CA

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the tour! Well paced. Each stop offered unique and interesting sights and experiences. As always, a good group of traveling companions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Strolling the gardens of the Alcazar in Sevilla in the early evening. I'm a tile freak, and loved the old Spanish tiles and Moorish architecture. Enjoying a late night snack at an outdoor cafe in a lovely Spanish plaza. St Nicholas viewpoint in Granada, and walking back down through the narrow streets. Exploring the back streets, and catching the views, in Ronda and Toledo, especially in the evening."

Joyce

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Robert was such a huge assistance in helping us find locations, details on timing, and best places to eat, etc. We felt so connected to Spain because of his attachment to it. Because we needed to leave the tour early, we were even more grateful to Robert for the professional assistance he provided in calmly helping us find the best options for getting home as needed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It would have been our planned tour of the Alhambra with Gabriela from TourByLocals. Our travel companions thought she was outstanding in every way. Our companions also told us their dinner at Las Tomasas in Granada's Albiacin was perfection with a terrace view of the sunseting colors on Alhambra. Nice! We lived vicariously! Personally I was extremely appreciative for the unexpected bus tour of Madrid. The ride gave us an opportunity to see all that I would have wanted to see on foot."

Joe

Lake Forest, CA

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first tour with RS. It was outstanding. I liked the fact that RS booked the hotels and arranged for the transportation, but we were free to do our on thing during the day. Our guide, Robert, arranged for a several social functions with the other tour members so we could learn to know them better. Robert also made several good recommendations as to things to see during our stops in a new location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra would certainly rate a "wow" moment. However, Ronda provided another "wow" moment. The location and quality of Hotel Montelirio in Ronda was very, very nice. It was a good stop, as it allowed the group to rest and rejuvenate before moving on. Also enjoyed seeing the Treaty of Tordesillas (division of South America by the Pope) at the Archivo de Indias in Sevilla."

Linda

Lake Forest, CA

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our overall tour experience was really good. It was fun traveling with a group yet still do our own thing. We really appreciated our guide. His orientation in each city and his suggestions enhanced our own extensive planning.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra in Granada! We spent most of a day touring there and the Albaicin quarter - and the evening having dinner at a beautiful restaurant where we could see the Alhambra during the sunset hours and into darkness with it illuminated with such beautiful lighting - very memorable day and evening."

Thomas

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, we were very pleased with our first Rick Steves and first "My Way" tour. Having the hotels prearranged and the transportation between cities also handled by someone else was a huge positive for this "My Way" tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. Pictures and videos don't begin to show how imaginative Gaudi's masterpiece is in person. (Or the view from San Nicolas of the Ahlambra in Granada.) (or the respite that came in the visit to charming Ronda.)"

Diane

New City, NY

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our first My Way Tour, and I loved it! Very nice hotels, especially in Ronda. Our guide was great, and more involved than I thought one would be on this kind of trip ... so knowledgeable and interested in us. As always, never enough time in any place, especially Barcelona and Madrid. In Madrid had only enough time to see the three major museums. We arrived early to Barcelona because there was so much to do, and extended our trip to Cordoba, which I think should have been included on this trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many wow moments for us .... The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, the spectacular Ronda and our hotel, to name just two."

Dan

Granite Bay, CA

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We truly enjoyed our first "My Way" experience. Having traveled about Europe previously (but not Spain)by using our own self-guided itinerary, we felt very comfortable with the My Way travel arrangements. The transportation and hotel accommodations were spot on, and we liked the idea of not conforming to a daily group schedule. Our escort, Robert, did a super job of shepherding us, and to top it off, we had great weather-sunny days and pleasant evenings.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our "wow" moment was simply the "paseo" in the evening. Watching, walking with people, joining them for tapas and wine was an experience we won't forget."

Raymond

Aurora, CO

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Spain My Way was perfect for us. The logistics of finding hotels & inter-city transportation were taken care of by the tour, yet we were able to totally customize what we did in each location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Impossible to single out any one moment because there were so many. The walking tour of Jewish Barcelona. Relaxing at outdoor restaurants in Madrid. El Escorial. The magnificent Alhambra...& dinner with our new tour friends with a view of the Alhambra. All of it was good."

Douglas

Annandale, NJ

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The "my Way" tour is very good - especially if you have a leader who promotes group interaction. Our leader did with a pot luck supper, last night meal and general encouragement. Also,the leader was not afraid to point out the interesting sights near our hotel as we arrived in the city. The was of great benefit for it made it easier to get around in new environments. The 5 hr. bus ride to Grenada from Toledo is too long. Take a high speed train instead. The tour itinerary was very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Barcelona sights Alhambra the hotel in Ronda"

Beth

Annandale, NJ

Tour: 06/05/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the "My Way" concept which gave lots of time to see what was important to me personally, while also not having to worry about reservations for hotels and transportation. Rick Steeves book was always with us every step of the way to assist in points of interest and directions! The high speed train was great as well as most of the shorter bus trips. I do believe however that a 5 hour bus ride was a bit much and time could have been spent more wisely if we could have taken a train.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments were everywhere, especially the Familia Sagrata and the El Hombre."

Debra

San Diego, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first Rick Steve's tour and was mostly what I expected. I enjoyed having extra space on the bus and thought my fellow travelers were all very nice. I'm sure I will stay in touch with some of them. I liked the "my way" concept a lot. The tour took me places that would have been difficult to reach on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Street performers in every city were fantastic. Especially loved the flamenco performers in the public squares of Granada."

Nancy

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I think your part of the tour[INVALID]-the organization, itinerary, guide, hotels were all excellent. We have now done both two fully guided tours and this one, and I have mixed feelings about this type of tour. I liked having the freedom to do what we wanted to do and not be herded around in a group all the time, but I missed the guide narratives about the history and culture of the people and the areas we visited. This tour didn't leave me with the same depth of understanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"THe Alhambra. How could anyone not be wowed by such a spectacular place?"

John

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed the cities we went, great scheduling, very good hotels. The guide, Robert, handled things well. Good balance of other people on the tour. The combination of the book, Robert, and couple guides we hired separately (ALhambra and in Sevilla) gave a very good over view of the country. A good first time in Spain experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Enjoyed the bullet train and watching the landscape pass by at bullet train speed."

Emilou

Denver, CO

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As a solo traveler, I really enjoyed having the transportation and hotels arranged for. I was able to plan my days as I wanted, but always knew that Robert was there if I needed him. Robert is so knowledgable and charming. What a great host. The hotels were wonderful, centrally located. The other tour members were seasoned travelers, friendly and supportive. The only thing I would change is to end the tour in Madrid. I wanted more time there and did go back after the tour ended.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona. The architecture, the stained glass windows."

Diana

Spokane, WA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My Way tours are the perfect experience for those that are willing to engage in each varied location- meet new people and explore culture, art, history. This was a lovely trip, with a safety net of an experienced guide and Rick Steve's plan for each city.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We not only saw new places, we traveled with like-minded people. We met each day at breakfast and spent our days meeting and touring with a very small number of people in our group. Often we were on our own and then meeting later to compare experiences."

Mardi

Encinitas, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great itinerary, great escort, great hotels, great group. Easy (I dislike booking hotels and transportation), relaxed, just enough information and orientation for each city we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the initiation ceremony of a new musician into a "tuna universitaria" in a small plaza in the Barrio Santa Cruz in Sevilla"

Susan

Vacaville, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I went ona My Way tour to Spain. My favorite parts were the Alhambra in Granada, the cathedral in Toledo and Park Guell in Barcelona."

Richard

Glendale, CA

Tour: 05/22/14

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

the My Way tour was perfect for us. We enjoyed having the freedom to do what we wanted when we wanted to do it. Also, the tour guide provided excellent suggestions and of course the people on the tour were great company.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alhambra is truly unique and fantastic, but I had lots of wow moments eating the wonderful tapas of Spain. Wow."

Weather

Spain / Barcelona

Barcelona Weather


Spain / Madrid

Madrid Weather


Spain / Sevilla

Sevilla Weather

Pre-Tour

We've put together some specific information on what you should know about this tour before you go. You'll also find more general information about "Getting Ready for Your Tour" on our Tour FAQ.

Sightseeing On Your Own

If you arrive in Barcelona before your tour begins, use Rick Steves' Spain guidebook to get oriented. Ride the public transportation, try out a few words of Spanish and get over your jet lag with lots of fresh air and exercise. Check your guidebook for museum hours (some are closed one day per week; some stay open late one day per week).

Remember, you will be in charge of your own sightseeing for ALL destinations on this trip. We strongly suggest you begin planning well before you fly to Spain! To guarantee entrance, make reservations at the Alhambra in Granada in advance from home. You might also consider reserving the Prado in advance as well. See your Rick Steves' Spain guidebook for details on how to reserve.

If you are interested in attending zarzuela, the Spanish light opera in Madrid, you may want to check the schedule and buy tickets before leaving home. More information can be found in Rick Steves' Spain guidebook; schedules and booking information are at http://teatrodelazarzuela.mcu.es.

Transportation

Most tour members arrive a day or two before the tour begins — and those who don't, wish they had. This allows you ample time to get over jet lag and make the most of the first few days of the tour.

There is more than one way to get to and from your tour. We recommend talking to your travel agent about "open jaw" airline tickets (flying into and out of different cities). Barcelona and Sevilla both offer good transportation options, making additional travel before or after your tour quite easy.

The most direct option is to fly into Barcelona and home from Sevilla (which may require an overnight in Madrid or elsewhere within Europe). If you have extra time and flexibility, you might want to consider a round trip flight into and out of Madrid or Barcelona. This option will require either a train journey or low-cost flight from Sevilla and an additional overnight in the original city.

For information about flying within Europe, ask your travel agent or check Rick's list of European budget airlines

Read Rick's train travel and rail pass tips and decide if your travel plans merit a rail pass.

Prior to your tour departure, you will receive detailed directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel, as well as contact information for your first and last hotels in case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations.

If you are continuing on after your tour (especially to Portugal), we strongly suggest you research and consider booking your transportation before leaving home as last minute bus and air fares can vary greatly in price. If you do not book your post-tour hotels or transportation in advance, be sure to make time at the start of the tour to determine all your post-tour travel needs.

If you need more information about additional European travel or for specific questions about your tour, contact the Tour Department at 425/608-4217 or email tour@ricksteves.com. Thinking you could use some expert, in-depth help to plan your sightseeing days? Tour members enjoy a 50 percent discount on Rick's Trip Consulting services!

Trip Resources

Learn more about Spain: Check out a collection of Rick's TV shows, radio interviews and articles, plus find a list of recommended books and movies.

Packing

We recommend that you consider bringing a smart phone, tablet or other device to assist in planning your activities, and to access Rick's Audio Europe app.

For ideas on what to pack, check Rick's Packing List and our Women's Packing List.