This 10-day itinerary combines Spain's three most exciting cities with a nice mix of private tours and free time. Kick-off in Seville where you'll experience the beautiful historic center and up-and-coming Triana district. Next, train to Madrid—with a stop in Córdoba—and stroll through the elegant streets and world-famous Prado Museum. Finish in cosmopolitan Barcelona for Mediterranean beaches and Gaudí highlights.

Highlights

  • Start the fun with an evening tour of Seville's best rooftops and tapas bars
  • Make a train stop in Córdoba to see the multi-arched Mezquita and gardens
  • Explore the capital's museums, squares, and parks like a true Madrileño
  • Let a private guide show you Gaudí’s unfinished masterpiece: La Sagrada Familia
  • Pick up supplies at La Boqueria market and picnic at Barceloneta Beach

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Seville Seville
Day 2 Private River Cruise & Tour of Triana Seville
Day 3 Private Walking Tour of Seville Seville
Day 4 Drive from Seville to Córdoba - Guided Tour - Train to Madrid Madrid
Day 5 Private Tour of Madrid with El Prado Museum Madrid
Day 6 Explore Madrid Madrid
Day 7 Train from Madrid to Barcelona - Evening Food Tour Barcelona
Day 8 Private Tour of Barcelona & La Sagrada Familia Barcelona
Day 9 Explore Barcelona Barcelona
Day 10 Depart Barcelona  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Seville

Seville's beautiful architecture
Seville's beautiful architecture

Welcome to Seville—the capital of Spain's Andalusia region! Upon arrival, you'll be met by a private transfer who will take you to your hotel in the heart of the city's old town. Take a little time to settle in before you start exploring.

This city is famous for its historic and ornate churches, palaces, and Moorish buildings, as well as tapas, food stalls, and flamenco dancing (especially in the down-to-earth Triana neighborhood ), so you'll have plenty of ways to spend your first day. Major landmarks include the Real Alcázar castle complex (a palace with gardens), built during the Moorish Almohad dynasty, and the 18th-century Plaza de Toros de la Maestranza bullring. Meanwhile, the gothic Seville Cathedral is the site of Christopher Columbus’s tomb.

A good place to start is by taking a walk in Santa Cruz, the heart of Seville's historic district. This is easily one of the most beautiful barrios (neighborhoods) in the country and home to many of the aforementioned sites. You can easily spend hours in this neighborhood visiting tapas bars and shopping for local handicrafts and ceramics.

Day 2: Private River Cruise & Tour of Triana

Take a private river cruise
Take a private river cruise

Today, you'll meet your private guide at your hotel for an exciting excursion in Seville. You'll first walk to a dock along the Guadalquivir River and meet your captain who will welcome you aboard a luxury 11-seat cruise boat with comfortable seating and refreshments. Cruising quietly along, you will enjoy views of numerous emblematic landmarks in Seville such as Triana Bridge, the city's bullring, and San Telmo Palace, to name but a few. Along the route, you'll hear all about the city's fascinating history.

After deboarding, you'll begin a walking tour of the Triana neighborhood. Historically, this working-class settlement on the fringe of Seville was often shunned by the main population, left outside the city walls and unprotected against the wrath of the river. Against all adversity, Triana gradually created its own identity eventually becoming a place full of gypsy flamenco, exquisite ceramics, and famous bullfighters. It was also the headquarters of the Spanish Inquisition. 

Your guide will take you through the quiet side streets where you'll step away from the city center monuments and the tourist bustle. Listen to swashbuckling tales from the times of Christopher Columbus, discover the origins of the renowned ceramic tradition, hear humbling stories of the Spanish Inquisition, and meet some of Seville’s most unique characters. 

At the end of the tour, you'll return to your hotel in Seville and enjoy the rest of the evening on your own.

Day 3: Private Walking Tour of Seville

Walk through the gardens at the Alcatraz
Walk through the gardens at the Alcatraz

After breakfast at your hotel, you'll be picked up by a private guide to experience Seville's most emblematic landmarks. Enjoy a long, leisurely stroll through the city to visit a number of sites including the Seville Cathedral (the largest Gothic cathedral in the world), Christopher Columbus' tomb, and the magnificent Alcázar with its many Mudéjar (Neo-Moorish) palaces and beautiful, oasis-like gardens. 

At the end of the tour, your guide will drop you off at a recommended tapas bar for lunch. You'll then have the afternoon to continue exploring Seville at your own pace.

Day 4: Drive from Seville to Córdoba - Guided Tour - Train to Madrid

Gardens in the Alcázar of Christian Monarchs
Gardens in the Alcázar of Christian Monarchs

This morning your driver will collect you at your hotel for the drive to Córdoba. Upon arrival you'll meet up with a local guide where you'll discover the very best of Córdoba's old town. Your driver will also look after your luggage while you are on the tour so you won't have to worry about carrying it around with you!

During the excursion, you'll get a private tour of the breathtaking Mezquita, a pagan temple that was converted into the great mosque of the Ummayad caliphate and later transformed into a Catholic church (yet it retains much of the original mosque). In addition, you'll visit The Alcázar of the Catholic Kings, where Christopher Columbus negotiated and gained approval for his voyage west in search of the Indies, and the winding side streets of the Jewish Quarter.

Your guide will then drop you at a recommended restaurant for a traditional Córdoban lunch and more time to wander before your driver picks you up to take you to Córdoba Train Station to catch a high-speed train to Madrid in less than two hours. With comfortable seating and the option to get up and purchase refreshments from the cafeteria on board, this is truly the best way to travel long distances in Spain.  

Upon arrival in Madrid, a driver will be waiting to take you to your hotel.

Day 5: Private Tour of Madrid with El Prado Museum

Prado Museum southern entrance
Prado Museum southern entrance

Make sure to have a hearty breakfast this morning in order to prepare for a day of exploring Madrid. At the designated time, a private guide will pick you up from your hotel and take you on a four-hour walking tour to discover the city highlights, while sharing interesting anecdotes to bring it all to life. Your guide will adapt to your speed and style, whether it's a leisurely, laid-back stroll or a brisk pace to squeeze in as many sites as possible. He or she will also, of course, do their best to answer all of your questions.

At the end of the tour, you will enter the magnificent El Prado museum with one of the finest collections of European art in the world, including works by Velazquez, El Greco, and Goya. Explore some of these gems with your guide before he/she leaves you to continue exploring on your own. Alternatively, your guide will take you to a nearby restaurant or tapas bar—whichever option suits you best.

Day 6: Explore Madrid

Gran Via at sunset
Gran Via at sunset

Today is a free day to explore areas of the city you haven't seen yet whilst admiring the unique lifestyle enjoyed by Madrileños.

Perhaps you want to shop 'til you drop on popular streets like Calle de Serrano and Gran Via, or—if it's Sunday—El Rastro Market. You can also visit important, yet lesser-known museums like Reina Sofia, Sorolla, and Thyssen Bornemisza, row a boat and take a stroll in El Retiro Park, or simply people watch from a café in the Le Latina or Chamberi districts.

If you fancy having a guide, the following tours are available:

  • Artisan's Tour of Madrid: Visit local producers who are experts in their field.
  • Gourmet Tour of Madrid: Tickle your taste buds with a great insight into Madrid's dining and food scene.
  • Segway Tour of Madrid: This is a fun and easy tour for most ages covering a much greater distance than walking while learning about the city along the way.

Day 7: Train from Madrid to Barcelona - Evening Food Tour

Depart Madrid for another beautiful Spanish city
Depart Madrid for another beautiful Spanish city

After breakfast in Madrid, a driver will pick you up at your hotel for the transfer to Atocha Train Station where you'll connect to your high-speed train to Barcelona—a journey of three hours. With comfortable reclining seats and the ability to get up and buy refreshments from the cafeteria on board if desired, this is an ideal way to travel longer distances in Spain. 

Upon arrival in Barcelona, you'll take a taxi to your hotel in the historic old town. If you're feeling energized, get out and start sightseeing. Otherwise, relax and settle in your accommodations before meeting up with a private guide for an evening food tour. This is your chance to experience Barcelona's culinary scene with a local expert who will show you the city's best off-the-beaten-path favorites!

Day 8: Private Tour of Barcelona & La Sagrada Familia

La Sagrada Familia
La Sagrada Familia

After breakfast, you'll start your day with a private guided walking tour of Barcelona, which includes its greatest monument, La Sagrada Familia, a spectacular Roman Catholic church and UNESCO World Heritage Site designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. During this half-day excursion, you will see some of the city's most emblematic spots and hidden corners while learning about Gaudí and his jaw-dropping masterpiece, which is still under construction.

Your guide will be on hand to answer all your questions including where to go for lunch! In fact, he or she will take you to a recommended tapas bar or restaurant before parting ways leaving you to enjoy the afternoon exploring Barcelona at your own pace.

Day 9: Explore Barcelona

Barceloneta Beach
Barceloneta Beach

Today is a free day to explore Barcelona any way you'd like! This enchanting, creative, and much-loved city offers plenty of options from cultural sightseeing to gastronomy tours. If you haven't experienced them yet, you'll likely want to check out notable attractions such as Park Guëll, Casa Milà, Casa Batllò, the Picasso Museum, Las Ramblas, La Boqueria market, Camp Nou football stadium, the Gothic Quarter, and Tibidabo amusement park.

If you're looking for a nature break, head to Barceloneta Beach situated against the deep blue Mediterranean sea where sun-drenched beaches create a pretty setting for a lazy day on the sand. There are also jogging and biking paths work up a sweat, or you can take a long leisurely stroll followed by a refreshing dip. Vendors on the beach offer kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and a range of sunset cruises options. Alternatively, head to Barcelona's surrounding mountains for a range of hiking and biking trails with spectacular views.

Day 10: Depart Barcelona

Goodbye, Barcelona!
Goodbye, Barcelona!

It's time to say farewell to Barcelona! Depending on the time of your flight or train reservation, squeeze in one more walk through the city, perhaps picking up some last-minute souvenirs. At the designated time you will be picked up at your hotel and transferred to the airport or rail station for your departure onwards. Safe travels!

Map

Map of Seville, Madrid & Barcelona - 10 Days
Map of Seville, Madrid & Barcelona - 10 Days