The trip was the best tour we have ever taken!We are a 70 year old married couple, that took a ground escorted group tour (37 pax) to Spain and Portugal and added a pre-trip of 4 additional nights in Barcelona.
Antonio Fuentes was our tour director, and was simply THE best we have ever experienced. GCT has perfected the home-visit concept in which about 6-8 of us met and dined with a local native family to experience first-hand how a middle-class local lives, works, and enjoys life given their individual circumstances. We saw all the main tourist sites, but so much more! At every major venue we had local guides that were knowledgeable, interesting, humorous, and spoke excellent English.
Tips for the local guides were included. Our bus driver was extremely professional, and very pleasant in the performance of the significant "bag drags." We enjoyed excellent breakfasts everyday, and most lunches and dinners. I do not recall any complaints about the quality or quantity of food; and wine and beer were served with lunch and dinner. the bonus were the "discoveries" that Antonio would pre-plan but surprise us with, which added a real education and historical perspective of the region we were in.
Highlights: THE most spectacular church in the world--Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, DO NOT miss it!; additional Gaudi-designed buildings; LaRambla in Barcelona; Barri Gotic (mideval Barcelona area); Plaza de Major, Royal Palace, El Escorial, Cordoba, Toledo, El Alcazar, all near Madrid; Granada; Alhambra; and Torremolinas; Costa del Sol; Malaga; Ronda; Flemenco show; Seville, and the Alcazar; horse and bull breeding/training farm; Lisbon; Sintra; and Cascais.On a 1 to10-scale, this trip earned a 9.5 and I'm a tough grader!
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