Day 1 Madrid-San Lorenzo de El Escorial-Toledo-Madrid(248 km)
Guests will be picked up in Madrid in the morning. The scheduled departure time is 8:45am, and guests are asked to please arrive at least ten minutes early. We will proceed just north of the Spanish capital to El Escorial, the historic royal palace of the Spanish monarchy. We will tour this massive complex, from its monastery and basilica to the Pantheon of the royal family. Afterward, we will take a short drive to the Valley of the Fallen, nestled in the mountains of Guadarrama, a memorial for those who died during the Spanish Civil War. Once we are done here, we will continue on our journey to Toledo, where we will first take a panoramic walking tour, exploring the Cathedral, the Jewish Quarter, the Church of Santo Tome which houses a famous painting by El Greco, the city's Alcazar, the Synagogue of El Transito, and much more. Our stops after this tour will also include a visit to the Museo Victorio Macho and a factory that makes the handcrafts typically associated with Toledo. At the end of the day, guests will be returned to Madrid and this tour will end.
The town of San Lorenzo de El Escorial is located just outside of the capital of Madrid, and is notable as the location of the former royal palace of the Spanish monarchy.
The Royal Site of El Escorial is the former residency of the Spanish monarchy, a huge palace complex built in the 16th-century, filled with artworks and gardens, as well as a large basilica onsite.
The Valley of the Fallen is a Catholic war memorial commemorating those who died during Spain's Civil War, built under the order of vicious former dictator Francisco Franco. The site now features a Benedictine abbey and an underground crypt and basilica.
Toledo is known as the "Imperial City" for having been the main venue of the court of Charles I, and as the "City of the Three Cultures", having been influenced by a historical co-existence of Christians, Muslims and Jews.
One of the prime examples of Spanish-Gothic architecture, Toledo's Cathedral was built as part of a highly concentrated effort to cover up all non-Christian religious buildings and symbols, as Toledo has a large historical population of Jews and Muslims.
Toledo's historic Jewish Quarter was a bustling urban center prior to the Spanish Inquisition during the Renaissance. It's narrow streets and winding passageways create a labyrinth within Toledo.
This church in Toledo was built during the period of the Spanish Reconquest over an old mosque, and visitors can still see the arabesque designs on the exterior of the church's tower, which was the mosques old minaret.
The Alcazar of Toledo is a large palace and fort complex atop the highest point in the city. It was originally a 3rd-century C.E. Roman palace, but was restored in the 16th-century.
This historic building served as a place of worship for the Toledo's Jewish population until a 1492 decree that all Jews be expelled from the Castille and Aragon regions of Spain. It features intricate interior designs reminiscent the Alhambra palaces.
Victorio Macho was a famous local sculptor, who built his house overlooking the river Tajo in Toledo, which is now home to a museum showcasing his phenomenal body of work and the Royal Foundation of Toledo.
*Return time is an estimate and varies based on traffic and weather conditions.
Inclusions & Exclusions
Entrance to the Valley and the Basilica
Professional English- and Spanish-speaking guide
Transport in comfortable, air conditioned bus
Any private expenses.
Gratuities to guides, driver, and tour manager.
All purchases are subject to re-confirmation within 2-3 business days after booking. Please do not book the airline tickets until you received the confirmation.
Complete operator information, including local telephone numbers at your destination, are included on your e-ticket. You must print and bring e-ticket(s) on your trip, as they serve as proof of purchase.
Terms & Condition
PLEASE READ CAREFULLY: The purchase of any travel services represents your acceptance Terms & Conditions set out herein. Please ensure that you read carefully and understand these Terms & Conditions prior to booking.
Tour Accommodations: The Tour Operator reserves the right, if necessary, to substitute other similar hotels for hotels listed. Such substitutions may be made at any time and without prior notice. The Tour Operator cannot be held responsible for hotel over-bookings; should such occur, the Tour Operator will undertake to find similar accommodations in the same area.
Passport and visas: A valid passport is required for United States citizens. Citizens of other countries require a valid passport and may require additional documents. Such persons should contact consulates of countries to be visited and obtain proper documents before departure. The possession of required and valid passport and visas is the sole responsibility of the traveler. The Tour Operator assumes no liability for lack of proper documents.
Cancellation: Once a partial or full payment has been made, cancellations will only be accepted in writing. Cancellation terms will be applied based on the date that the written cancellation is received and based on the following dates prior to departure.
Cancellations received more than 14 days prior to departure - 10% of total purchase amount.
Cancellations received within 14 days - No refund.
No refund will be made for abandonment of services. No refunds will be made for transfers, city tours or any other services (including meals, accommodations or transportation) voluntarily not taken.
There is 6% handling fee add-on to the above penalties.
Responsibility: The Tour Operator holds itself free of any responsibility for any cause, in all matters connected with hotels, accommodations, sightseeing tours and transportation, whether by air, rail, bus, motorcar, boat or any other means. The Tour Operator and/or its agents will not be responsible for the loss or damage of any of the traveler's belongings. The Tour Operator reserves the right to accept or retain any person as a member of a tour at any time. Baggage and personal effects are at the owner's risk throughout the tour unless insured.
Limitations of Liability: The Tour Operator and its agents act only as agents for the traveler's hotels, restaurants, sightseeing and transportation (such as railroad, aircraft, boat, motor coach, automobile, or any conveyance). The Tour Operator and its agents shall not be responsible or liable for any injury, loss or damage, delay or inconvenience arising out of or in connection with any defect in any vehicle or any act, omission, neglect, accident, error or default of any company or person engaged in providing such hotel, restaurant, sightseeing, transportation or other services of the tour. The Tour Operator and its agents shall not be responsible or liable for alterations of the tour itinerary or arrangement, if such alterations become advisable or necessary for the comfort or well being of any passenger, or for any reason whatsoever. The right is reserved to withdraw any or all tours or portions thereof. The sole and exclusive responsibility and liability of the airline shall be in accordance with and as limited by the contract of carriage in the passenger's ticket, the applicable tariffs, and provisions of the Warsaw Convention, if applicable.
Prices may vary and are subject to availability by season, weekend, and/or holiday.
While we will make every effort to maintain a regular operation, we reserve the right to cancel a scheduled trip and issue a full refund to affected customers under special circumstances.
We reserve the right to modify the tour arrangements for smooth operation of the tour.