DAY 1 BARCELONA
On arrival at Barcelona Airport our Chauffeur will be awaiting you with a luxury vehicle ready to transfer you to your 4* boutique hotel, ideally located in the Barcelona Gothic Quarter, nearby to all major sights, but at the same time on the seafront. The rooftop terrace bar and pool provide an astonishing view of the city as well as the port, and your lovely room looks out onto the harbor. Formerly, your hotel was the residence of a wealthy Duke in the city and is deep-seated in history.
A representative of Gourmand Breaks will meet you at your hotel for a welcome drink and together you will discuss your personalized itinerary for the rest of your private cultural, food and wine tour. Apart from having available your Online Personal Travel Webpage, you will be handed your Personal Travel Journals containing all your itinerary details and plenty of suggestions for restaurants and free time activities.
On this first evening in Barcelona you might want to relax and unwind after your journey and settle into your lovely hotel. We have several dinner recommendations for fine restaurants, as well as informal tapas places nearby.
In a Nutshell: Luxury Private Airport Transfer from Barcelona Airport, Overnight in a 4* luxury palace hotel overlooking the port in Barcelona
DAY 2 BARCELONA
This morning, after a delicious breakfast, your Gourmand Breaks Officially Licensed Guide will await you at your hotel. Together you will beat the queues as you enjoy a private guided visit to the incredible La Sagrada Familia, a work on a grand scale which began in 1882. At the end of 1883 Gaudi, the most internationally renowned and emblematic architect of the city, was commissioned to carry on the works, a task which he did not abandon until his death in 1926. Since then different architects have continued the work after his original idea, but it remains unfinished.
You will then continue on your journey, now focused on the authentic gourmet foods in Spain, starting with a guided visit to La Boqueria market, Spains largest marketplace. La Boqueria is like a museum of the brightest and most delectable foods in Spain. Our expert culinary guide will lead you around the best booths and you will taste some of the most delicious local seasonal produce at one famous La Boqueria bar, frequented by celebrities. A glass of a fine brut nature cava will surely go down a treat with a tapa of Chantrelle mushrooms, or fresh cockles, squid or maybe even scrambled eggs with wild asparagus.
Continuing your private walking tour through the Gothic quarter of Barcelona you will see a few architectural feats: the famous Barcelona Cathedral, Sant Jaume Square and the amazing Santa Maria del Mar Church, which is a beautiful and important 14th-century church and considered the finest and most complete example of Catalan Gothic architecture anywhere. You will, of course, enjoy a wander through Las Ramblas, the colorful must-see pedestrian area. Our guide is a real specialist in local history and will amuse you with fascinating local stories and funny anecdotes. Following this, your tour will take the path of Picasso on the famous Avignon Street. You will pass the Picasso museum (your guide will be able purchase tickets if you wish to visit this afternoon).
Now you will taste some of the best natural artisan Spanish cheeses at a charming local cheese shop. The knowledgeable owner will divulge the secrets of the best Spanish cheeses while you taste some of the delicious specialties paired with some excellent Priorat wine. For something sweet, your tour will stop at the oldest venue in Barcelona for dried nuts and fruits, homemade nougats and chocolates. This quaint and local store, specializing in roasting coffee beans and nuts for over 150 years, is still decorated with its original furniture and old wood-burning stove.
Your luxury private tour will be rounded off with a light lunch of exquisite delicatessen produce which will include Spains best Iberic bellota ham - Joselito, fine cold meats and sausages, some of the finest local preserves of wild tuna, anchovies,or clams from Galicia, a selection of the best Spanish olive oils, etc., all enjoyed at one of the best delicatessens in the city. In addition there are English speaking sommeliers on hand to guide you through more than 6000 wines. Your guide will leave you at the finale of your tour when you are settled safely into this amazing delicatessen enjoying your meal. The rest of your afternoon will be free to enjoy as you wish. Prior to leaving you, your guide will be happy to provide a lot of suggestions for really good places to eat, cafes, shops, etc.
In a Nutshell: Private guided tour of La Sagrada Familia and the Gothic Quarter and Born Areas of Barcelona with gourmet food and wine tastings, Overnight Barcelona
DAY 3 EMPORDA
This morning, after a delicious leisurely breakfast, you will have the morning to have a last stroll along the front or up the Ramblas or maybe you may like to head to the Passeig de Gracia area, to visit another famous work of Gaudi: his famous Casa Batllo or La Pedrera, which was built between 1906 and 1910 for the Mila family. This is one of the main Gaudi residential buildings and one of the most imaginative houses of the history of the architecture, this building is more a sculpture than a building.
At around midday your chauffeur will be waiting or, if you wish to self-drive, a representative from the rental car firm will be waiting for you with your Premium Luxury vehicle with Automatic transmission and GPS.
You will now drive to the beautiful and serene countryside of Emporda. Your new home for the next 4 nights is an authentic Spanish medieval castle, an architectural jewel that was built eight centuries ago, now converted into a 4* luxury hotel.
Take the time to get acquainted with the grounds of your fairytale residence and stroll in the grounds or take a dip in the gorgeous swimming pool before, maybe, a peaceful dinner by candlelight.
In a Nutshell: Chauffeured pick-up or Luxury Rental Car collection, Overnight in a Romantic Medieval Castle, converted into a luxury hotel in the Emporda countryside
DAY 4 EMPORDA
This morning after breakfast at your castle hotel, you will visit a unique and very special winery, hidden away high up in the hills, not far from the fishing port of Palamos. This recently designed and constructed winery is unlike anything you have seen before, to say it is dramatic is inadequate for it is an amazing edifice, designed by a Catalan architect from the definitive guidelines of the owner. The grape vines growing in the fields surrounding the area are cultivated organically and with special attention to the particular characteristics of the grapes to ensure that they have been planted in the best possible locations for perfect growth and maturity. Harvesting is done entirely by hand and following this procedure there is a further exhaustive selection process to ensure that each and every grape is of the highest quality to produce the finest of wines. Following the wine making process, storage is in the labyrinth of isolated, cool, dark cellars beneath, ensuring that the wines finally acquire their distinct and exquisite flavour. You will have a full private tour, with a resident wine expert, of the facilities at this awe-inspiring winery, followed by a tasting of their very best wines, in the company of their in house wine specialist.
You will enjoy a fantastic lunch at the winery with their own country fare produce, local meats and sausages, cheeses and breads, and of course some great wine.
After lunch, you are free to spend your time just as you wish. We suggest a visit to the nearby, and the most chic of coastal towns on the Costa Brava, Calella de Palafrugell and Llafranc. Starting first at a light house near a quaint Mediterranean seaside inn with a sunny outdoor terrace, you could enjoy an aperitif aswell as the view and sea breeze. There are plenty of scenic walks to explore the area and picturesque ocean front spots to see as well.
Or, maybe you would prefer to visit the local well preserved Medieval villages of Pals and Peratallada. Here, you will step back in time as you wander the narrow cobblestone streets and peruse the artisan shops retailing crafts of Olde Worlde days.
In a Nutshell: Private Guided tour of Emporda Winery with wine tasting; Visits to medieval villages;Overnight in the Emporda region
DAY 5 BESALU & GIRONA
This morning after breakfast at your hotel, you will be visiting the bewitching town of Besalu and the romantic city of Girona.
You will meet with your Officially Licensed Guide in Besalu and commence a private guided tour of this very fascinating medieval village, renowned for its beauty and 11th century Roman bridge that once was necessary to adjoin this small village to land. The local public gardens await you where villagers grow herbs for their well-known and traditional homemade wine, ratafia. The different families of Besalu have variations of this sweet wine and use their own secret combination of aromatic herbs to flavor this digestive liquor. You will certainly discover your own favorite ratafia! There will also be time to visit the ruins of the Jewish quarter of Besalu, dating back to the 9th century and the well-preserved Jewish baths, traditionally used for purification, dating back to the 12th century.
Next, together with your chauffeur and private guide, you will head to the city of Girona to enjoy a private guided tour of this enchanting city. Your private guide will show off its stretches of cobblestone streets, the old Jewish Quarter and Jewish History Museum and its luscious gardens, the Arab baths and the magnificent Girona Cathedral affording a great view of the area. You will wind through the narrow streets and stoned walls of the old Gothic Quarter and encounter little shops, cafes and medieval homes that families have passed down through the generations. Girona is a Little City with a Big Heart and you will soon feel at home in its inviting embrace.
Girona is a Little City with a Big Heart and you will soon feel at home in its inviting embrace. Your excellent local guide will escort ou to a fantastic restaurant in Girona where you are booked for a romantic and delicious lunch with wine. First class service, innovative takes on traditional recipes and an elegant atmosphere will provide the perfectly romantic end to your visit in Girona. You may, however, like to peruse the artisan shops before heading back to your retreat.
Your OPTIONAL lunch reservation today could be at an exquisite 3-star Michelin restaurant owned by three local Catalan brothers - El Celler de Can Roca. Local recipes are the inspiration for the exquisite dishes served here, from delectable parfaits to the most appreciated wild mushroom souffle. The enthusiasm and creativity of Chef Joan in his cooking is only matched by sommelier Josep and his expertise at pairing the perfect wines with your dinner. Both of them are also complemented by their third brother, Jordi, for delightful desserts. From the aperitif to the dessert, you will remember this dining experience for years to come!
Before heading back to your hotel you will have free time to ramble through the streets of Girona to visit the quaint shops and artisan retailers.
The rest of your day is free and a great opportunity if you so wish to take a hike in the area of your hotel. For dinner tonight we suggest dining at the hotel restaurant.
In a Nutshell: Private guided tour of Girona and Besalu, Overnight in the Emporda countryside
DAY 6 EMPORDA
After breakfast at your lovely Mediterranean retreat, you will leave to visit one of the best-preserved medieval villages in all of Spain. As you walk through the narrow village streets of Pals, next to the city walls, towers and churches, you will feel as though you have stepped back in time. The stone archways, cobblestone streets and wrought balconies adorned with flowers create a welcoming feel in this Romanesque village.
To continue, you will visit Ullastret, a totally unspoiled Medieval hideaway, where you will have an opportunity to visit a tiny producer of local goats cheese. Just as the locals do, you will try some fresh goat cheese with honey and chat to the owner about how her famous Recuit is produced. To continue your Medieval morning, you will visit Peretallada and stroll along its cobbled streets - it is truly a very special village and one you will surely enjoy. Your medieval journey continues to another close (and of course medieval!) village, where you will enjoy a lunch of delicious local Catalan country fare with Emporda wine, in an excellent old-style farmhouse restaurant. After such a delicious lunch you may wish to embrace the concept of the Spanish siesta and return to your hotel.
Alternatively, may we suggest you treat yourself to an OPTIONAL morning of sailing with our very own experienced skipper. Soak up the sun and the sea on this Romantic Spain trip around the coast of the Costa Brava, acclaimed as the most beautiful coast in Spain!
The rest of the day is free for you to do as you please, relax at your hotel or visit the coastal villages for a stroll along the promenade and coastal paths, or maybe visit the botanical Cap Roig Gardens. Later, in the early evening, why not take a drive to the lighthouse in Llafranc and enjoy a glass of wine on the terrace as you take in the magnificent views. We have many suggestions for dinner this evening whether a casual light bite overlooking the Mediterranean Sea or Michelin starred dining.
In a Nutshell: Guided tour of Medieval Spanish Villages of Pals and Peratallada, OPTIONAL Sailing Trip on the Costa Brava of Spain, Overnight in the Emporda countryside
DAY 7 CADAQUES
Today, following breakfast, your Chauffeur will be waiting to take you to Cadaques. The town is known for its breathtaking beauty and its history of famous Bohemian artists, including the master of surrealism, Salvador Dali. You will notice the laid-back and creative atmosphere lingering in this town from the long influence of artists.
You will visit the summer seaside home of Dali, complete with his works and arrangement of rooms, where you can have a glimpse into his life. Next, you will follow in his footsteps, as you enjoy a delightful lunch in one of the small charming local seaside haunts of the artist. You will experience the atmosphere of this town in an authentic way as you try a few of the locals favorite seafood dishes.
After lunch, you will cross through the natural park of Cap de Creus to a lighthouse on the edge of a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean. This point is the first place in Spain where the sun's rays shine every morning. But rather than waking up at dawn to see this, we will visit Cap de Creus for the impressive and romantic views of the Mediterranean. Your chauffeur will now drive you to the mountains overlooking Port de la Selva where the view to the sea will take your breath away with its magnificence. You will see the imposing Sant Pere de Rodes Benedictine Monastry, constructed on the hillside below the ruins of the castle of Sant de Verdera that gave protection to the monastery. Dating from the 10th century AD, it is a prime example of the Catalan-Roman era.
After your busy day, you will surely enjoy a relaxing evening at your hotel and perhaps dinner in the hotel restaurant or at one of the local restaurants.
In a Nutshell: Day in Cadaques, Visit to Salvador Dali Seaside Home, Visit to Sant Pere de Rodes Benedictine Monastry, Overnight Emporda
DAY 8 BARCELONA
This morning, after breakfast you will check out of your hotel and return to Barcelona to your charming hotel in the Gothic Quarter. If you are self-driving you will first drop your rental car off at the city center office. You will then be free to spend the rest of the day as you wish. Maybe you would like to take advantage of the fantastic retail options this city offers and have a city shopping spree, or maybe just relax with a stroll along the beachfront of Barceloneta or even, return to the old Gothic Quarter, the choices are yours! Your Romantic Spain Customized Travel Journal will have many suggestions for you to really enjoy your final day in Barcelona, including ideas for a delicious final farewell dinner.
In a Nutshell: Return to Barcelona, Overnight in a 4* Luxury Hotel in Barcelona
DAY 9 DEPARTURE
Your tour concludes with a lovely breakfast at your hotel, followed by a chauffeured transfer to Barcelona airport for your onward journey home.
We very much hope you will join us for this unforgettable wine, food and cultural adventure!
In a Nutshell:Chauffeured transfer to Barcelona Airport
Your tour includes:
Accommodation for three (3) nights in a boutique 4* palace hotel in the Barcelona Gothic Quarter, at the seafront (port view room, double occupancy)
Accommodation for five (5) nights in a luxurious,authentic 4* medieval stone castle hotel in Emporda countryside (castle room, double occupancy)
Eight (8) full buffet breakfasts
Chauffeured transfers in a luxury vehicle, as indicated in the itinerary
Services of a bilingual Officially Licensed Guide, additionally specialized in food and wine, where stated in the itinerary
All the private guided tours, cultural visits,tastings and meals as indicated in the itinerary
Online Personal Travel Webpage including daily itinerary, general local information, details of places of interest, suggestions for restaurant reservations, and your free time, etc.
Handy elegant Personal Travel Journal, which includes the extended information from your Personal Travel Website, that you can take with you as you go and keep as a souvenir to look back on.
24/7 Back Office Assistance
Your tour does not include:
Meals and drinks not stated in the itinerary
Personal expenses such as telephone, minibar, etc.
Tips and gratuities at restaurants etc. at your discretion, NOT obligatory
Travel Insurance may be included in your quotation on request. We strongly recommend you to take out separate cancellation insurance.
Please note our tours are available for PRIVATE GROUPS ONLY and are not scheduled mixed group tours. Price is available upon request and varies depending on the number of guests and time of year. Feel free to contact us for your personal quote