Spain: Gaudi to Garnacha
Go Learn



Spain: Gaudi to Garnacha


October 23-November 02, 2024
Double Occupancy: $6625 per person
Single Occupancy: $7595 per person
Airfare is not included.

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Tour Highlights


Spain is a country that is more often visited than understood. Join Go Learn, on our much-anticipated trip to Spain, which takes a look behind the tourism and into the vibrant country which boasts two of the world’s most impactful rises and falls in international prestige and power. Led by Dr. Anne Innis, historian, Spanish culture immersion expert, and lifelong student, this trip will ask travelers to consider not just what Spain has to offer its tourists, but also how Spain’s unique history supports a country and economy based on tourism, while simultaneously working to keep separatist groups and an indignados movement from dividing the country to pieces. This trip begins in Madrid, with a welcome lunch at the world’s oldest restaurant; it concludes in the orange groves and vineyards of Valencia. From beginning to end, Anne will lead a trip that drives travelers to consider life and history in Spain from a Spanish perspective, in all of its tumultuous and resilient glory.

This trip includes multiple walking tours of various cities and towns. We may average 5 miles of walking per day, some with a significant incline. All group travel is by public transportation (included in the trip price), and participants should be able to board the Metro, trains, and buses independently (with luggage).

Tour Highlights Include:

  • Start the tour at the world's oldest restaurant with authentic Castilian cuisine
  • Trace the path of the Spanish rise to global power in the early 1500s by visiting its conception in Segovia including time exploring the Alcázar de Segovia, one of the most famous medieval castles in the world
  • Visit La Sagrada Familia, the world’s largest unfinished Catholic church; construction began in 1882 and continues to this day!
  • View the post-dictatorship cultural renaissance of Barcelona
  • Pick the oranges that are a part of Spain's modern global economic balancing act
  • Daily lectures and discussions on the history, food, culture, and 4 official languages spoken by a vastly diverse populaton
  • Experience Spain as you’ve never experienced it before
Santa Maria Cathedral

Daily Itinerary

Wednesday October 23, 2024 - Day 1: ¡Bienviendo! (Madrid)

Welcome to Spain! Today is arrival day. You will make your way to the hotel where the group will assemble. After dropping our bags at the hotel, we will spend some time today getting to know each other, the city, and discussing the all-important question: tapas or dinner? A welcome walk around the neighborhood will help get you acclimated to our location and a tour of the Palacio Real will begin our immersion in to the Spanish culture. On this first day, we’ll show you how to get around, where the hotel is, and important places nearby that you should know. A welcome lunch at the world’s oldest restaurant, Botín, will allow us all to relax after our day of travel before an early night—because jet lag.

Hotel: Room Mate Alba
Meal: L
Activity Level: Moderate


Thursday October 24, 2024 - Day 2: Plazas y Paella: An Introduction (Madrid)

Plaza Mayor

We’ll begin our day with breakfast at the hotel followed by a walking Tour of Madrid. We’ll start at our hotel, and find our way to Puerta del Sol. Here we will pause to find Kilómetro Cero, which is the point in Spain from which all roads are measured. From here, we will wind our way to the Plaza Mayor, which opened in 1620. Continuously operational since then, the Plaza Mayor has hosted executions, bullfights, soccer matches, seasonal festivals, and some fantastic eateries. From here we will continue to wind our way through small streets and plazas, until we find our way to El Arroyo, a restaurant famous for paella, and the best place in Madrid to get it. After a hearty lunch and lively chat, the rest of the day is yours to explore! We recommend spending more time in Plaza Mayor soaking up the night life and enjoying some wine and tapas!

Hotel: Room Mate Alba
Meals: B, L
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Friday October 25, 2024 - Day 3: Alcázar y Acueducto: Exploring Segovia (Madrid)

We will breakfast early at the hotel and discuss the small town of Segovia. Segovia boasts one of the largest still standing Roman Acueductos in the world, a quintessential Plaza Mayor, of course, El Alcázar. El Alcázar de Segovia is one of the most famous medieval castles in the world. After our discussion, we’re off to the train station for a day trip to Segovia. Once in Segovia, you’ll have the day to explore on your own. Suggestions: DO NOT miss the Alcázar, Walt Disney didn’t when he modeled the Disneyland Castle after it! A breathtaking medieval cathedral, the burial shroud of Isabelle and Ferdinand (which incidentally, they do not occupy). We also recommend eating lunch in the Plaza Mayor where traditional Castilian cuisine is on every menu. Save some time to walk or climb the acueducto at the base of the town (also a great spot to sample the local tapas and have a glass of wine!) Your leader will be in the plaza for questions and suggestions as you explore this beautiful and historical city. In the late afternoon, we’ll meet at the base of the acueducto before we return to Madrid and our hotel as a group. The rest of the evening is yours to pick your own place for a late dinner and then call it a night.

Hotel: Room Mate Alba
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Segovia Aqueduct

Saturday October 26, 2024 - Day 4: El Ocio: History, Culture, and Leisure Time (Madrid)

Seafood paella

As we breakfast at the hotel, we’ll discuss leisure and food in Spain. We will examine our surroundings and interrogate the question: why is no one carrying a to go coffee cup? In fact, everyone is sitting down at a table to have their coffee. After breakfast, we’ll take a group walk to one of the largest parks in the city of Madrid, El Retiro, and explore the park and neighborhood. Then the afternoon is all yours to explore, but we’ll be perfectly situated between El Prado and La Reina Sofia, and we recommend an art museum tour for those interested. Your tour leader is happy to point which of the most famous paintings and time periods are housed in each museum.

This is our final night in Madrid! Dinner will be on your own and then it’s back to the hotel for a good night’s sleep before traveling to Barcelona tomorrow. What will your tour leader be up to? If she hasn’t had a chance already, she’ll be making her way to a side street, very close the Plaza Mayor, to the one spot she visits every time she’s in Madrid. Ask her where!

Hotel: Room Mate Alba
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Sunday October 27, 2024 - Day 5: Por Tren: High Speed to Catalonia (Barcelona)

We’ll have our last breakfast in Madrid before heading to Ave station to catch the high-speed train to Barcelona. We will talk about the high-speed train system in Spain, and how and why it became such a staple of the country. Our train trip will be about 2.5 hours, which will give us time to discuss what awaits us in this jaw dropping city. In the afternoon, we will check in to our hotel located on La Rambla and then the rest of the day is yours to get settled in and explore our new location. La Rambla is one of the most famous streets in Barcelona; closed to traffic, pedestrians rule the day, and can find themselves walking from the fountains on one end all the way to the Mediterranean on the other end.

Hotel: Yurbban Ramblas
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Monday October 28, 2024 - Day 6: Rambla (Catalan)=Ramble (English): A Walking Tour of Barcelona (Barcelona)

While we breakfast at the hotel, we will discuss the diversity of language all around us. Spain has 4 official languages. In Madrid, we heard Castilian, but for the remainder of our trip we will hear a mix of Castilian and Catalan. One thing we will chat about is how words might translate directly from Castilian to Catalan, but the cultural meaning is different. In other words, a Plaza is not exactly a Placa. After breakfast we’ll take a walking tour to explore Barcelona that will include visits to the Palau Güell (our first Gaudí sighting!) and Placa de Catalunya. Afterwards, the afternoon is yours to see the sites of the city and experience the amazing food and drink it has to offer. Your tour leader is well equipped with tips on where to go, as Barcelona is known for keeping its best cafes and cultural sights small.

Hotel: Yurbban Ramblas
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Park Guell

Tuesday October 29, 2024 - Day 7: Día de Gaudí: Two Architectural Masterworks (Barcelona)

La Sagrada Familia

We’ll breakfast at hotel, where we’ll talk about the linguistic difference between a parque and a parc. Then we will prepare ourselves for a day of architectural awe and overwhelm as we travel to Park Güell. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site, Park Güell’s historical, architectural, and artistic uniqueness is unmatched. Here we will spend the morning enjoying the enormous gardens and the architectural elements. During a group lunch we will discuss the Park’s original purpose: to be a luxury community. We will speculate as to why that didn’t work out. After lunch we’ll visit La Sagrada Familia—the largest unfinished Catholic church in the world. Construction began in 1882 and continues to this day. We will talk about Gaudí’s masterworks and compare this cathedral to the one we saw in Segovia. The evening you will be on your own to have dinner and to continue to explore this unique and historic city.

Hotel: Yurbban Ramblas
Meals: B, L
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Wednesday October 30, 2024 - Day 8: Gaudí a Granacha: High-Speed Train to Valencia (Valencia)

We’ll have a leisurely breakfast and discussion at the hotel, then prepare for departure! We’ll be traveling via train to beautiful Valencia, often called the Orange Capital of Spain. During our 2 hour and 40 mins journey into the heart of the Orange Blossom Coast, we will discuss the history of the region as it is the home of Spain’s most famous oranges and vineyards. Upon our arrival, we will check into our hotel on the Mediterranean Sea. You’ll have the late afternoon and evening to explore our spot on the coast. Take care with your Spanish/English translations as you seek out a spot for tapas. Valencia is famous for a drink called Agua De Valencia, but there is no H20 in this cocktail! Created in 1959, and made with a base of freshly squeezed orange juice, Agua de Valencia is one of the many, many orange themed culinary and beverage options to consider.

Hotel: Neptuno Hotel
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate


Streets of Valencia

Thursday October 31, 2024 - Day 9: Zumo: Naranja y Bebidas (Valencia)

We’ll breakfast at the hotel before taking in the sights of Valencia. Most of our day will be spent on a tour of Valencia’s famous orange groves. With several varieties of oranges in season, we will be able to compare the different varieties of oranges and sample some of the orange-based products that are made locally. In the evening, Anne will show you the proper way to enjoy tapas and small plates as you move from café to café, before sending you out on your own to explore some of the best cuisine the country of Spain has to offer! The evening is yours to enjoy.

Hotel: Neptuno Hotel
Meal: B
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Friday November 1, 2024 - Day 10: Vieja, Moderna, Ahora: Bringing It All Together (Valencia)

St Mary cathedral in Valencia

Over breakfast at the hotel, we’ll discuss our journey through the history and architecture of every major historical period of invasions in Spain from the Visigoths to the rule of dictator Francisco Franco. We will consider how a pattern of invasion and an authoritarian rule creates the culture we’ve experienced throughout our trip. Cultural geography and human history intersect in all the experiences and places we’ve encountered on our trip, and fully inform what it means to live in Spain today. After our discussion, we will spend some time exploring Valencia’s Old Town on foot, followed by an afternoon at the beach.


We will end our day with a farewell dinner overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, and exploring any lingering questions from our time together.

Hotel: Neptuno Hotel
Meals: B, D
Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous


Saturday November 2, 2024 - Day 11: Departure

After breakfast at the hotel, it’s time to say good-bye. When you are ready, you can depart Valencia by air or by train. Both will get you directly to Madrid or Barcelona, which have a variety of flights to return to the US. We will part with a “¡Nos vemos pronto!” and look forward to a reunion visit after we’ve settled back into Salt Lake City.

Meal: B


Anne Innis

Anne InnisAnne comes to Go Learn with nearly 20 years’ experience in education. Currently, Anne is the Senior Director of Academic and Professional Programs at University Connected Learning, the University of Utah. Anne holds a PhD in Education, Culture, and Society and has taught a variety of university classes, including Rhetoric of Social Protest; Race, Gender, and Curriculum; and Multicultural Education. Anne’s passion lies at the intersection of cultural geography and historically informed human experience. This passion was deeply shaped by Anne’s experience living in Spain and several states around the U.S. This, paired with her love of tapas, wine, and good conversation drive the itinerary and learning experiences that are Spain: Gaudí to Granacha.


Best tour book for Spain

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Breakfast in Spain



Unique Things We'll Do!



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Excited about Segovia



Details and What to Expect

Dragon statue at Parc GuellPre-Departure
Like all Go Learn journeys, the adventure begins at home. We'll make sure you have all the information you need before you arrive in Spain—we'll answer questions about what to pack, how to get around, and our daily itinerary. We want you to arrive in Spain ready to learn!

Post-Departure
A trip reunion about a month after returning will be the perfect conclusion to our journey. We’ll exchange pictures and stories while remembering the highlights of our tour. Go Learn expeditions are designed to be small, boutique experiences where one returns with a group of friends for life. Good food, drink, and company await us at this reunion.

Weather

October is one of the best times to visit Spain for perfect weather. In central Spain and on the Mediterranean coast, the autumn is marked by sunlit days and pleasant weather perfect for strolling and outdoor dining in Terrazas, with temperatures cooling down by nightfall. You should expect highs in the mid to low 70s during the day and lows in the 60s at night.

Activity levels and restrictions
This trip includes multiple walking tours of various cities and towns. We may average 5 miles of walking per day, some with a significant incline. All group travel is by public transportation (included in the trip price), and participants should be able to board the Metro, trains, and buses independently (with luggage).
Our exciting itinerary and daily learning adventures will keep you happily exhausted. This is an Activity Level 2 trip. Learn More about our here.

Dates

October 23-November 2, 2024

Size

Group Size is limited to 20 participants

Cost

Double Occupancy: $6625
Single Occupancy: $7595
Payment options are available upon request. Contact golearn@utah.edu for information.
Spanish paella and wine See for payment and cancellation details.

Included
  • Hotel accommodations in the heart of the cities
  • High speed train tickets to Barcelona, Valencia, and Segovia
  • All breakfasts, a welcome lunch, and a farewell dinner
  • Valencia orange tour
  • Entrance to historic and cultural sites noted in itinerary
  • Comprehensive trip insurance, including sick and emergency evacuation insurance
Not Included
  • Airfare to and from Spain
  • Meals that are not specifically noted in itinerary
  • Museums and historical sites not noted in itinerary
  • Cancellation and lost luggage insurance
  • Any costs outside of the itinerary