Travelers to Spain and Portugal typically spend a few days in Madrid and Lisbon, two capital cities with distinctive styles and personalities.
It is the rare traveler, though, who decides to discover what lies in between.
The reward for such a decision is 500 km of wonderful surprises!
Our journey across Iberia begins with the impressive Baroque palaces and gardens of Aranjuez, before moving on to charming Toledo, where the great painter El Greco lived and worked for decades.
After an overnight stay in the so-called “Imperial City”, we will drive to the UNESCO World Heritage City of Cáceres, full of surprises waiting to be uncovered behind its defensive wall.
We will then immerse ourselves in ancient history by walking the amazing ruins of Mérida, capital of Roman Lusitania.
The transition from one country to the next will be gradual; as we leave Spain behind and head towards the wonders of Portuguese Alentejo, similarities give way to subtle nuances in architecture, landscape, and language.
We will stop over to enjoy the beauty of Monsaraz, a medieval town perched atop high cliffs.
Later, we will visit a princely palace in Villaviçosa and then the spectacular marble quarries in the vicinity.
We will also sample fine wines at a local vineyard, where contemporary architecture has been successfully integrated into a bucolic setting.
To make our experience in the heart of Alentejo truly memorable, we will be hosted for a few nights by a Portuguese family that has owned the land for eight generations.
Experience pure bliss as you go to sleep each night surrounded by orange groves and grain fields.
The Portuguese leg of our journey takes us closer to the Atlantic, as we visit the exquisite gardens and palace of Queluz, where the characteristic Portuguese azulejo tiles predominate.
Finally, now almost at the end of our journey, we will be welcomed by the elegant town resorts of Sintra and Cascais, set along a beautiful coastline of sandy beaches and rocky headlands.