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Jordan


~ Andalusia (Al Andalus) Southern Spain ~

~ All-inclusive 4 Nights/ 5 Day Tour
~

Our Fully-Escorted 4 night historical tour takes you to Andalusia, the land of olive groves and green rolling Valleys, of Orange Trees and homeland of Islam for 800 years. Our tour will offer you an incredible medley of sights, sounds, tastes and scents. But most importantly it gives you a glimpse into the peak of civilisation achieved by Muslims in Europe, when it was the Intellectual & Scientific heartland, from where the Nations of Europe came to acquire knowledge.

All Inclusive-Return Flights, Airport transfers 2/3* Hotels, Train-fares between cities, Professional English Speaking Tour Leader & Guides.

Price
Only £395 / *£375


Dates
Weekly Depatures

Book NOW!

(* Full time students only)

Tour Itinerary
Day 1  

Madrid - Seville

We take the early morning Flight from London to Madrid. Connecting to Fast-Express train to Seville, the Capital of Andalusia known from early Roman times as Hispalis. Hotel Check-in and lunch. Seville-Ishbilliyah is heir to a rich Islamic legacy, and prospered as a trading portwith the Americas. We spend a leisurely afternoon visiting the Cathedral built upon the Almohad Masjid, one of the largest cathedrals in the World.

Attached to the cathedral is the Giralda, a beautifully crafted immense tower that once served as the minaret for the Masjid. You can climb a series of interior ramps to the top of the tower where for centuries the Adhaan (call to Prayer) was made by the Muezzin who would take a horse to the top. Early next morning we visit the Alcázar Palace (Al Qasr), Casa de Pilatos, Archive of the Indies (Historical records of the American continent), we go the Guadalquivir River and Torre del Oro, built by the Almohad dynasty as a watchtower / defensive barrier on the river. A huge iron chain was strung through the water from the base of the tower to prevent christian boats from traveling into the river port. We also visit the Royal Fortresses and the Patio de los Naranjos (the Courtyard of the Oranges). Dinner in an Arab Restaurant.

Day 2  

Cordoba

After Fajr in Seville, Fast-Express train to Cordoba and Lunch-time Hotel Check-in.    The Ornament of the World’, the intellectual and scientific centre of Medieval Europe. Described as such by a German nun visiting in the10th century, she marvelled at the street lighting, hundreds of Masjids, libraries & hamams. Called (قرطبة Qurţuba) in Arabic, in medieval times Cordoba was the most advanced city in the whole of Europe, a centre of culture & learning where Muslims, Christians and Jews lived together in a thriving society. Once the Ummayad capital of Al Andalus and Morocco (World Heritage Site) upon the banks of the fading beauty of the ‘Wadi al Kabir’- Guadalquivir River in Spanish. Cordoba was the birthplace of four famous philosophers: in Roman times the stoic Seneca, in Islamic times Ibn Rushd-Averroes, Abu 'Abdullah Al-Qurtubi and the Jewish scholar Maimonides.

We will spend our day walking around the old quarter, which gives the impression that little has changed since the 9th century. We visit the Masjid, which at its conception was the largest Masjid in the World. Built between 786-788.ad by Caliph Abd ar-Rahman its row and row of columns appear like a maze, and its beautiful Quranic inscriptions are dazzling. After the Christian conquest it was converted into a Cathedral in 1236, a hybrid monstrosity which ruined the aesthetic design. In the Late afternoon we visit Al-Qasr’complex, gardens & Roman walls. We will pray with a tiny community of Revert Spanish Muslims and enjoy a traditional Andalusian halal dinner with them. Cordoba is serene at night, and a short walk to the restored Roman Bridge is a must.

Day 3  

Cordoba

After Fajr, we visit the hidden Romantic Palace-city of Madinat al-Zahra (مدينة الزهراء) located about 8kms from the centre of Cordoba. The ruins were discovered about 90 years ago, only about 10 percent of the hill-top cascading palace has been excavated. There is still substantial gardens, courtyards & rooms to imagine the sheer opulence, grandeur and awe-inspiring magnificence of this Palace built by Abd ar-Rahman III between 936-940. He proclaimed himself Caliph of the Islamic world west of Egypt in 929, establishing the independent Umayyad Caliphate in the west. He decided to show the Abbasids his power by building a palace-city.

The largest known city built from scratch in Western Europe, Madinat al-Zahra was the forgotten Versailles of the middle ages. It would be described by travellers as a dazzling series of palaces full of treasures, like a huge mercury bowl built to reflect light. Around 1010, Madinat al-Zahra was sacked during the civil war that led to the dissolution of the Caliphate of Cordoba. The raid effectively wiped the city off the map for a millennium.

Day 4  

Cordoba - Granada - The Alhambra

Granada, the capital of Islamic Spain under the Nazarid dynasty from 1238 until 1492. The Alhambra palace that overlooks Granada from the top of the hill, was built between 1333-391, this World Heritage Site represents the culmination of Islamic art and architecture in Spain, perhaps the world. It is a jewel of architecture, comprised of wood and plaster carvings enclosed by pools and sensuous gardens all created by Andalusian & Moroccan craftsmen.
Breath-taking are the views of the Alhambra against the backdrop of the snowy mountains of the Sierra Nevada.

The poet Federico García Lorca was born in Granada and had a life-long love affair with this city. Nowadays our appreciation of the beauty and character of Granada is deeply influenced by the writings of Lorca. The Alhambra Palace and the Generalife Gardens. A reading of Washington Irving’s Tales of the Alhambra, who lived and wrote in Granada in the 19th century, is a good introduction to the spirit of these palaces and gardens. We have tea in the main citadel square and proceed to The Cathedral and the Royal Chapel.
Late afternoon visit to the Albaicín quarter. Coffee in San Nicholas square. We walk along the Carrera del Darro and visit the Arab baths and the tea houses-teterias under the view of the Alhambra towers.Evening trip to see Sacromonte: the hills across the Alhambra, famous for the cave-dwelling gypsies and flamenco.

Day 5  

Granada - Sierra Nevada

*Optional morning Tour for those who want a mountain trek, with stunning views in the Sierra Nevada mountain range just 20 kms from Granada, its one of the most popular ski resorts in Spain. Trip to Alpujarras valley, traditional Andalusian village visit of Capileira and Bubion with stunning views of Sierra Nevada.
Late afternoon return Flight to London.

 

 


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Tel: 07788 50 50 83

 

 

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