Travel to Spain
Depart for Barcelona, where you will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. Your guide will provide lots of tips and information to help get your great holiday under way.
Panoramic Tour of Barcelona
You will start your holiday with a panoramic tour of Barcelona to get your bearings in this stunning city. As you drive through the streets your guide will point out incredible pieces of art & architecture in the style of Antoni Gaudi and other Catalan Modernist Artists.
Your first stop is Montjuïc Viewing Point so you can see the entire city laid out before you. Next you move on to visit two of Gaudi’s most famous works, La Sagrada Família Church and Park Güell.
After lunch you will embark on a walking tour of Barcelona’s iconic Gothic Quarter. The Gothic Quarter or Barri Gòtic is the centre of the old city of Barcelona and many of the buildings date from medieval times, some from as far back as the Roman settlement. The area is made up of a labyrinth of small streets running off the famous Las Ramblas, many of which open up to squares, which contain churches and basilicas. You will have free time for some Christmas shopping before returning to your hotel.
Cava Tasting & Montserrat
Today your guide will take you to the mountain top location of Montserrat, just under an hour away from your hotel. Along the way you will stop in the wine region of Penedès, to take a tour of the winery and cellars of the famous Cava producers Codorníu, followed by a tasting of their range of sparkling wines.
Afterwards you will travel on up into the impressive peaks of Montserrat. Once there you will visit the beautiful Benedictine Abbey, Santa Maria de Montserrat. The Abbey acted as a sanctuary for many scholars, artists and politicians during Franco’s rule and from the 1940’s was seen as a symbol of Catalan nationalism.
The Basilica is notable for enshrining the famous statue of the Virgin of Montserrat. This is one of the black Madonnas of Europe and although it is believed by some to have been carved in Jerusalem in the early days of the church, it is more likely a Romanesque sculpture from the late 12th century. The school choir sing daily at midday in the Basilica.
You will have the afternoon to explore Montserrat at your own pace. You might like to visit the gallery housing art from many famous artists or take the funicular to the top of one of the highest peaks for breathtaking views of Barcelona and the coast.
You will have Christmas Eve to spend at your leisure. Take a short walk to the centre of Calella and watch the last minute preparations for Christmas. Friends and neighbours stroll through the streets wishing each other Merry Christmas before they settle in for their traditional Christmas Dinner.
It is customary in Spain to hold the main holiday festivities on Christmas Eve. This evening you will celebrate with a gala dinner and drinks. There will be a midnight mass in a local church for anyone who is interested in attending.
Christmas Day is free to enjoy at your own pace. Enjoy Christmas lunch and drinks, followed by entertainment at your hotel.
Barcelona Christmas Lights & Magic Fountain
This afternoon you will have a guided trip to Barcelona. You will have free time to explore the city before viewing the spectacular Magic Fountains; a beautiful combination of water, colour and music, created for the World Exhibition in 1929.
Today is free to spend at your leisure. You might like to travel back into Barcelona, which is approx. an hour away on the train from your hotel. In Barcelona you might like to revisit some of the places you saw during your city tour. You can return to La Sagrada Família to enter the church and take time to explore the interior. Another option is to take the cable car to the top of Montjuïc and spend more time enjoying the views and walks. Take a trip to one of the many markets or museums in the city and stop for some refreshments in one of the many bars & restaurants by the port or at La Boqueria, the famous food market off Las Ramblas.
You may prefer to stay and relax at your hotel or explore the pretty seaside town of Calella.
Time to head for home, with some wonderful holiday memories. Transfer from your hotel to Barcelona airport for your flight home, with guide assistance.