The image of Spain is one of color, romance, passion, and the lone figure of the matador in the bull ring, cape and sword in hand beneath the burning afternoon sun. The Sights and Soul's journey through Spain explores the many aspects of this enchanted and diverse land. It incorporates an in-depth exploration of Malaga and Costa del Sol in southern Andalucia, tours of Madrid and Toledo in central Castilla-La Mancha, as well as the incomparable Barcelona in eastern Catalonia.
Andalucia is about as close to paradise as it's possible to get. Blessed with achingly beautiful countryside, majestic mountains and a long Mediterranean coastline, it's a quintessentially Spanish portal into our Iberian imagination. The powerful images of flamenco, tapas, fiestas, bullfighting and raw passion inspired Carmen and Don Juan, Andalucia gave birth to Pablo Picasso and Diego Velasquez, and it held an enduring fascination for Ernest Hemingway. It's also a unique place where east meets west in an exotic melting pot of Jewish, Roma, Moorish and Christian cultures.
Madrid in the center of Spain, is also its heart. The city historic district teems with sights from Museo del Prado to Palacio Real, from elegant Plaza Mayor to historic, bohemian La Latina, serving some of Spain's best tapas and wines. Toledo in La Mancha, the land of Don Quixote, is a glorious treasure of a city, with one of the world's most beautifully preserved medieval quarters on the spot that used to be Europe's most cultured and sophisticated city, where Christians, Jews and Moors were contributing equally to its wealth and fame.
Sitting on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona, the most cosmopolitan Spanish city, isvibrant, vivacious and visionary. The city's brooding jungle of medieval lanes were home to Gaudi who built the world's most whimsical structures here, including La Sagrada Familia, and where Picasso spent his youth. Barcelona has excellent seafood, and meals here are often turned into art.