World Heritage Encounter

World Heritage Encounter

UNESCO is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. Among its many functions, UNESCO works to promote understanding and appreciation for the value of each civilisation and culture. The World Heritage List is a list of sites forming part of the cultural and natural heritage which the World Heritage Committee considers as having outstanding universal value, of which Spain has 40.  This itinerary visits a selection of these significant sites, including the old town of Avila, the old city of Salamanca, the old city of Caceres, the archaeological ensemble of Merida and the historic centre of Cordoba.

Day 1 Madrid

Arrival in Madrid where you will make your way to your hotel in the heart of the city centre. Madrid's main attractions include three internationally famous art galleries, a royal palace, grand public squares and many museums filled with the treasures of Spain's history. Overnight Madrid.

Day 2 Madrid - Ávila - Salamanca

Breakfast. Pick up your hire car and drive westward out of Madrid in the direction of Salamanca. On the way be sure to visit Son Lorenzo de El Escorial, the imposing Palace / Monastery built by Philip II. Stop for lunch at the Parador just inside the walled city of Avila, then a leisurely run in to Salamanca. Overnight Salamanca.

Day 3 Salamanca

Breakfast. This morning you have a half day tour of historical Salamanca with an official local guide. Salamanca is a wonderful University town, with great traditions and a magnificent old quarter. Overnight Salamanca.

Day 4 Salamanca - Caceres

Breakfast. Drive south from Salamanca to historic Caceres passing some interesting medieval towns on the way. Your journey takes you via Bejar and Hervas, both worth a visit, then on to Plasencia and perhaps lunch at the Parador. Caceres has a superb, historic old quarter incorporating many noble houses of the 16th century and winding cobbled streets. The city has been declared Patrimony of Mankind by UNESCO. Overnight Caceres.

Day 5 Caceres

Breakfast. A full day at leisure for sightseeing. Perhaps visit the Church of Santa Maria which faces the Palacio Episcopal. This Gothic - Renaissance church has a beautiful cedarwood reredos and a 15th century crucifix - the Black Christ 'Cristo Negro'. Overnight Caceres.

Day 6 Caceres - Mérida

Breakfast. Departure for Merida. This interesting town founded by the Romans has impressive ruins located in its centre which are well worth seeing. The Roman ruins include a large Amphitheatre and many interesting mosaic floors of the original houses of the settlement. Dinner in the dining room of the Parador, to sample local specialties such as truffles and gazpachos. Overnight Merida.

Day 7 Mérida - Zafra - Córdoba

Breakfast. Head south towards pretty Zafra, capital of Tierra de Barros and an important agricultural centre. Continue on your journey southeast towards Cordoba. On arrival, drop off your hire car and taxi to your hotel. You will spend the next two nights enjoying this historic city. Overnight Cordoba.

Day 8 Córdoba

Breakfast. This morning you have a Fully Escorted tour of Cordoba, including the Alcazar the los Reyes Cristianos, the palace - fortress of the Catholic Monarchs built in the 14th century. Your tour will also include the city’s great Mosque and a stroll through the atmospheric Jewish quarter. Free afternoon. Overnight Cordoba.

Day 9 Córdoba - Madrid

Breakfast. Take a taxi to the train station to board the AVE high speed train north to Madrid, a journey of just 1.5hrs. Arrival and head to your hotel for a final night in the capital. Overnight Madrid.

Day 10 Madrid

Breakfast.  Farewell the city as you check-out of your hotel and depart Madrid for your next destination….