Day 1 :
Depart from North America
- Enjoy your overnight flight to Madrid.:
Day 2 :
Welcome to Madrid!
- Arrive in Madrid:
Begin exploring the vibrant capital of Spain.
- Plaza Mayor:
Spend time in Madrids most famous square. Throughout its long history the square has hosted markets, bullfights, soccer games, public executions, and the Spanish Inquisition. It is now ringed by shops and cafs, and often filled with artists and musicians.
- Puerta del Sol:
Explore one of Madrids busiest and most historic squares. While here we will view the Kilometre Zero marker, from which all distances in Spain are measured, and Madrids symbol, the Madrono.
Day 3 :
- Parque del Retiro:
Enjoy the relaxing atmosphere in the Parque del Retiro, once the grounds of Felipe IVs royalpalace complex. Our visit gives us the opportunity to interact with the locals, and perhaps visit the vendors or listen to the musicians that always seem to be present. Hire Row Boats, if we choose, and paddle around the parks shallow lake.
- Parque de Atracciones:
Visit one of the largest theme parks in Europe. The park is unique in that it has six distinct adventure zones filled with exciting adventures and activities. Discover the Nature zone, Automation zone, Tranquility zone, Grand Avenue zone, and the Virtual World zone.
LEAP Activity | El Caudillo’s Conquest
Nationalist? Republican? Argue ideology in a revolutionary role-play that delves into the causes of the Spanish Civil War!
Day 4 :
The historic city of Toledo, capital of La Mancha, is a cultural fusion of Christian, Arab, and Jewish traditions from the Middle Ages. With numerous churches, museums, mosques, synagogues, and artistic treasures, the city has definitely earned its World Heritage Sitedesignation.
- Walking Tour:
Enjoy a Walking Tour of central Toledo, with streets barely wide enough for a man and his donkey. During our walk, there will be the opportunity to visit spectacular shops that produceand sell Damascene gold jewelry, as well as medieval swords. There will also be some time to relax in the Plaza de Zocodover, a bustling triangular square in the heart of Toledo.
- Damascene Workshop:
Learn about this unique art form that has become a trademark of Toledo, and see it performed by master craftsmen.
- Iglesia de Santo Tom:
Make a brief visit to view El Grecos masterpiece, The Burial of the Count of Orgaz.
- Toledo Cathedral:
Visit one of the greatest Gothic structures in Spain. The cathedral actually reflects several architectural styles, and features many art treasures, including: the Transparente, a Last Supper in alabaster, El Grecos Twelve Apostles and Spoliation of Christ, Goyas Arrest of Christ on the Mount of Olives, and works by Juan de Borgona. The Treasure Room features a 500-pound, 15th-century gilded monstrance, allegedly made with gold brought back from the New World by Columbus, which is still carried through the streets of Toledo during the feast of Corpus Christi.
Day 5 :
- Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas:
Explore Madrid's spectacular bullring, built in 1931 to accomodate 25,000 spectators.
- Royal Tapestry Factory:
Tour the Royal Tapestry Factory, where skilled artisans continue the age-old process of makingexquisite tapestries. Nearly every tapestry created today is based on a cartoon by Goya, who was the factory's most famous employee.
- Flamenco Dance Lessons:
Day 6 :
Spend time today in a beautiful and romantic city that has inspired the work of artists and architects over the centuries. Roman, medieval, and Renaissance influences can be seen throughout the city, and its relaxed way of life makes it difficult to leave.
- Walking Tour:
Enjoy a walking tour through Segovias beautiful city center. The highlight of our walk is the impressive Roman Aqueduct, an architectural marvel built by the Romans nearly 2,000 years ago.
- Segovia Cathedral:
View the last Gothic church built in Spain. It stands on the Plaza Mayor at the spot where Isabella I was proclaimed queen of Castile, and is often referred to as la dama de las catedrales.
- Alczar de Segovia:
Discover this fairy-tale castle dating from the 12th century. Royal romance is associated with the Alczar; it was here that Isabella first met Ferdinand, and Philip II married his fourth wife, Anne of Austria. Our visit is highlighted by the replicas of Isabellas and Ferdinands thrones, the battlements of the once-impregnable castle, and the tower, originally built by Isabella's father as a prison. Those who choose may ascend the tower for breathtaking views over the city and surrounding countryside.
- El Escorial:
Journey to El Escorial, a massive monastery-palace commissioned by Philip II. During our visit, we will explore the Royal Apartments, many decorated with fine tapestries; the Pantheon ofthe Kings, which contains the mortal remains of all the Spanish monarchs from the time of Emperor Charles V; the Art Gallery, featuring works by Bosch, Titian, and El Greco; the Basilica; and the spectacular Library, with over 40,000 original books from the time of Philip II and a ceiling by Tibaldi.
Day 7 :
- Plaza de Espaa:
In the center of the square we will see the monument to Cervantes, which depicts characters from his most famous work, Don Quixote. We will also see a monument to Columbus.
- Palacio Real:
Visit the Palacio Real, a huge palace begun in 1738 on the site of the Madrid Alczar, which burned to the ground in 1734. Our tour will take us through some of the palaces 2,000 roomsthat the enlightened despot Charles III called home. Although the palace is no longer home to the royal family, it is still full of art treasures and antiques, including Tiepolo ceilings and paintings by Goya. Highlights of our visit include the Reception Room and State Apartments; the Throne Room; the Banquet Room, where receptions for heads of state are still held; and the Royal Chapel.
- Templo de Debod:
See this Egyptian temple that once stood in the Valley of the Nile near Aswan. When the new dam threatened the temple, the Egyptian government dismantled it andpresented it to Spain.
- Stroll down the Gran Via:
Explore Madrids lively signature boulevard featuring magnificent shopping and cafs
- Centro de Arte Reina Sofia:
Explore the Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, which houses the greatest repository of 20th centuryart in Spain. The museum places special emphasis on the great artists of 20th century Spain: Juan Gris, Salvador Dal, Joan Mir, and Pablo Picasso. A highlight of our visit will be Picassos masterpiece, Guernica, which immortalizes the tragic blanket bombing of the Basque town by the German Luftwaffe fighting for Franco during the Spanish Civil War.
- Flamenco Show:
This evening, experience the power and passion of a Flamenco Show.
LEAP Activity | Spirit of Spain
Immerse yourself in the art that defines the passion of Spain. Explore the meaning and compare the techniques of artists from El Greco to Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso. Enrich your knowledge of art history as you debate how these and other artists defined and shaped Spanish culture.
Day 8 :
- Depart from Spain:
Board your flight home.