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Portugal’s capital is an 18th-century city - elegant, open to the sea and carefully planned. Most places of interest are within easy walking distance. Rossio Square, the heart of Lisbon since medieval times, is an ideal place to start exploring. Many rebuilt houses with original façades provide stores and restaurants with modern interiors. High above Baixa is Bairro Alto - with its teeming nightlife. There are many monuments and museums, such as San Jeronimos Monastery, Royal Coach Museum and Gulbenkian Museum. Two well-known landmarks are the Monument to the Discoveries and the Tower of Belem. A statue of Christ looms above Europe’s longest suspension bridge. Madragoa, Bica and Bairro Alto, Lisbon’s older sections, offer a variety of sights: the Church of Sao Roque, with its beautiful tiles; St. George Castle, which offers a splendid view from its location above the Alfama quarter; the botanical gardens, featuring an unusual, cold greenhouse; and the cathedral, stunning with its Moorish design. Renowned Gulbenkian Museum is the cultural center of Portugal.
Porto (Oporto), Portugal's second largest city, is full of interest, and the district it heads offers the visitor plenty to see. Along the coast, there are resorts like the cosmopolitan beach of Espinho, busy ports like Matosinhos, with splendid seafood, or traditional fishing towns like Póvoa de Varzim, and there is also an animated casino. Charming Amarante has 17th century mansions overlooking the river and is famous for a sweet egg pastries called "papos de anjo" (angel bellies). In Vila Nova de Gaia, there are lodges where Port wine is blended and aged and where tasting are offered, or visitors may take a river cruise along the Douro. The whole district is filled with prosperous towns, but there are also many calm roads with wonderful views over the river and a rugged and still unspoilt coastline.
The pleasant port and resort of Villagarcia de Arosa lies in Spain's north-west corner, within a short journey of Santiago de Compostela, the country's holiest shrine and a focus of Christian pilgrimage down the centuries. Within the magnificent Gothic cathedral lies the body of St. James, Spain's patron saint, while the city itself is a living monument to the proud history and traditions of Galicia.
Santiago de Compostela is now considered by UNESCO to be a World Heritage Site and attracts visitors from all over the world thanks to its fantastic monuments. The town is named after the Apostle Saint James ("Santiago"), who is buried here. In 2000 Santiago de Compostela was given the title of European Cultural Capital. Santiago is certainly one of Spain's most monumental towns, with a particular architectonical style all of its own. But it is as well a town plenty of life, with one of the most famous Universities and a large number of students who guarantee youthful ambience inbetween the historical walls. The region's cuisine is of great reputation, and it is said that nowhere has better seafood than Santiago.
La Coruna is the largest city in Spain's Galicia region and among the country's busiest ports. Today the city's significant expansion is evident in its three distinct quarters: the Ciudad (City), and town center located along the isthmus; the business and commercial center with wide avenues and shopping streets; and the Ensanche to the South, built up with industry. La Coruna's beautiful main square, Plaza Maria Pita, has many buildings in the old section which feature characteristic glazed facades, which have earned La Coruna the name City of Crystals. Santiago de Compostela is located only 37 miles from La Coruna. The City is the original town with narrow, cobbled streets and quaint squares. Avenida de la Marina, running parallel to the waterfront, is lined by typical tall houses with glazed balconies at every floor. Mendez Nunez Gardens lie between the harbor and Los Cantones in a bustling quarter of the city. Once used as a prison, San Anton Castle now houses the Military and Archaeological Museum. The Roman lighthouse Hercules Tower is said to be the oldest in Europe.
Bilbao, the capital of Vizcaya Province, lies seven miles from the sea and has a coastline featuring rocks and steep cliffs, creeks and small estuaries; small fishing villages nestle in the inlets below green hills. The port of Bilbao is the largest in Spain and is built against the mountains. The city's fine museums include Fine Arts Museum and Guggenheim Museum. The Guggenheim Bilbao Museum is devoted to American and European art of the 20th century. The Fine Arts Museum specializes in paintings by Spanish masters. Our Lady of Begona Church is a 16th-century church on a hill with a good view of the city and valley. Diocesan Museum of Sacred Art is located in an old convent of Dominican nuns, a 16th-century, L-shaped cloister housing this fine museum with an outstanding exhibit of silversmiths' crafts that is one of the best collections in Spain. The Bullfighting Museum shows interesting bullfighting paraphernalia, such as costumes, photographs of famous toreros and a collection of posters. Visitors can try their gambling luck at Gran Casino Nervion.
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A popular seaside resort and active fishing port just above the Spanish border, Saint Jean de Luz is a lively and cosmopolitan town. The lovely medieval town centre has been influenced by Spain and the Moors and has a mix of architecture among the narrow streets. Around the main square are some of the best seafood restaurants in the region, as well as other bars and terraces from which to see and enjoy the regular musical events in the square - including a Basque Choir every Sunday morning (summer months only). The newer, more commercial end of town is littered with chic shops and boutiques and a casino.
The famous aristocratic beach resort of great reputation during last century still conserves its exclusive and cosmopolitan ambience. Its beautiful buildings and excellent beaches still today make it a privileged holiday destination.
Surrounding Bordeaux are world-renowned vineyards and châteaux. Visitors from all over the globe come here to learn about the winemaking process - from growing grapes to harvesting, fermenting and bottling these top-quality wines. Here in the wine region the title of château can mean anything from a palatial residence to a basic winery. There are thousands of châteaux that rank from very modest family establishments to large famous properties where grapes are raised, fermented and then matured to produce the area’s famous wines. Visit Rue Ste. Cathérine - a half-mile-long pedestrian street leading through the Old Town’s major shopping area and marking the beginning of the elegant 18th-century city. - and Musée des Beaux Arts -- a museum with a large collection of 17th-century paintings by Flemish, Dutch and Italian masters as well as works by Delacroix.
Itinerary subject to change without notice. Please confirm itinerary at time of booking.
Prices are per person and include cabin fare, taxes, fees, excursions and all meals while onboard. Airfare is available at an additional charge unless otherwise stated.
Price is per person, double occupancy.
Cost Includes: All accommodations aboard ships or in hotels per itinerary or similar, all meals and nonalcoholic beverages aboard ship, meals on land as indicated, air transportation whe
All prices per person and in USD unless otherwise stated.
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4801 Woodway Suite 145-West
Houston, TX 77056
4801 Woodway Suite 145-West Houston, TX 77056
Monday - Friday: 9:00 am - 6:00pm (CST)
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