A regional capital packed with architectural treasures. Pretty, white-washed towns nestled between bright blue sea and lush green mountains. There’s a lot to draw you to Catalonia, and lots to draw you back. Enjoying several boat rides, we explore this fiercely proud region of Spain, including peaceful Lake Banyoles and beautiful Besalú. And since it’s so close, we hop over the border to France to cruise the impressively engineered Canal du Midi.
7 nights in hotel (accommodation as specified or similar)
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home for your flight to Barcelona. On arrival we transfer to the Costa Brava, where we stay at Hotel Monterrey Roses (4T), a very short walk away from the town’s long, wide sandy beach.
This morning we board a boat for a cruise along the coast to Cadaqués. The hour-long journey takes us alongside spectacular cliffs speckled with caves and vegetation. On reaching Cadaqués, a guide will take us on a tour. This small, white-chalked fishing town, flanked by mountains, was the birthplace of the famous surrealist artist Salvador Dalí, who has been remembered around the city with reproductions of his paintings and a bronze statue on the seashore. Many other artists have been drawn here by its bohemian chic and wonderful landscape, including Picasso and Henri Matisse; and many art galleries and workshops fill the streets today. We have a little time at leisure in Cadaqués before we make the return trip to Roses for an afternoon at leisure.
France is little more than 30 miles from our base in Roses, so today we take this opportunity to cross the border and continue to Béziers, one of Europe’s oldest towns. Our guide will offer an insight into this quiet gem as we explore, and take a boat along the popular Canal du Midi. This waterway was a major engineering achievement at the time of its creation, during the French Revolution. As you enjoy lunch on board, you can also enjoy views of medieval bridges, delightful villages and lovely countryside.
Enjoy a day at leisure, or join an optional excursion to Figueres with entrance to Dali’s museum (may operate on day 7).
Banyoles - Besalú
We spend today exploring historic Catalonia with a guide. Our first stop is Banyoles, a town full of history and culture, but best known for its lakeside location. Here, we take a gentle boat trip to appreciate this beautiful spot then explore its famed historic centre.
In the afternoon we have a guided visit of exceptionally beautiful Besalú. This carefully preserved medieval gem has so much character, shaped by narrow cobbled streets, old stone façades and an impressive fortified bridge. Its Jewish heritage has been slowly rediscovered in recent decades; remnants of a 13th century synagogue and a rare 12th century miqvé (ritual bath) have been unearthed.
Medes Islands and Roca Foradada - Pals
We’ll board an underwater Nautilus boat this morning and sail through the Medes Islands Nature Reserve and along the Montgri Massif Coast to Roca Foradada. The ship’s large submerged windows allow you to see the islands and the seabed from a very different perspective. In the afternoon we’ll visit the quaint medieval town of Pals.
Please note: 2019 departures will make a visit to Barcelona today (instead of the boat cruise and Pals). You’ll drive to Barcelona harbour, to embark on a cruise along the city’s coastline, and then there’ll be free time to explore this fascinating city.
Spend your last day in Roses at your leisure. Wander the historic centre, take a walk along the promenade, or find a boat to take you to one of the many quiet coves along the coast.
Day 8 Roses - Barcelona - UK
Transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK. Upon arrival, your Titan vehicle will be waiting for the journey home.