Trade Routes of Coastal Iberia

Discover the Coastal jewels of the Iberian Peninsula from October 13 - 21, 2019 on a special cruise from Barcelona to Lisbon. 


Admire four UNESCO World Heritage sites, and experience Portugal’s lesser-traveled Algarve region. Call on the enchanting Balearic Island of Mallorca and visit its vibrant capital city, Palma de Mallorca. Explore the colorful, historic city of Valencia and walk through its spectacular La Lonja de la Seda, the city’s UNESCO World Heritage-designated 15th-century former Silk Exchange.

Visit the regal city of Granada and tour the magnificent Alhambra Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Stand on Gibraltar’s “Top of the Rock” to see the Pillars of Hercules spanning the scenic Strait of Gibraltar. Experience the spectacular sights that inspired works of art by Gaudí and Picasso, and enjoy the lively beat of flamenco. Onboard lectures will enhance your journey with the history, legends, and contemporary life in these beautiful cities and villages.

The specially chartered Le Lyrial exemplifies the advantages of Five-Star, small-ship cruising: elegant accommodations, an exclusive itinerary carefully crafted with a specially arranged excursion in each port, the ability to dock in small ports of call inaccessible to larger vessels, and no long lines for tenders and touring. This  state-of-the-art small ship features only 110 suites and staterooms with distinctive French sophistication, so you can travel in style during the unique opportunity to cruise into the heart of Seville on Spain’s legendary Guadalquivir River.

Shared with participants from cosponsoring associations, this comprehensive travel offering includes five-star accommodations, a specially arranged shore excursion in each port and all meals. Please contact the Travel Study Program office to reserve your place while choice accommodations and early booking savings are available.

Dates and Prices:

Trip Dates: October 13 - 21, 2018

Prices: from $TBA  per person based upon double occupancy. Taxes and port fees are an additional $TBA per person (subject to change).

Please inquire directly about single occupancy rates or request to be matched with a roommate.


Day 1: Depart the U.S. for Barcelona, Spain

Day 2: Barcelona, Spain
We will arrive in the lively metropolis of Barcelona, filled with the artistic treasures of Antoni Gaudí, Pablo Picasso, and Salvador Dalí. The city center has the greatest concentration of Gothic architecture in Europe and proudly displays its heritage and roots as a Roman trading port. Here, we will embark the m.s. Le Lyrial and attend the Captain’s welcome reception and dinner this evening.

Day 3: Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands
This morning, we will drive through the hills, past the almond groves emblematic of Palma, en route to the village of Valldemossa. Here, we will visit the famous Carthusian Monastery, the former residence of composer Frédéric Chopin. We will attend a recital of Chopin’s masterpieces on his own piano, performed by a local musician. Later, we will experience the panoramic view of  Bellver Castle, rising high above Palma. We will also see the magnificent sandstone Palma Cathedral, which was constructed over 300 years and represents the heights of the Catalan Gothic architecture.

Day 4: Valencia, Spain
Founded as a Roman colony amidst a plain of orange groves, Valencia is today known as the “City of Arts and Sciences” for its many museums, impressive architecture, and colorful cultural abundance. Our visit includes a stop at the UNESCO World Heritage-designated La Lonja de la Seda (the silk exchange), a masterpiece of Gothic architecture built as a commodities exchange in the 15th century.

Day 5: Almería for Granada, Spain/Motril
Granada is located atop three hills, framed by the dramatic backdrop of the snow-clad Sierra Nevada Mountains. From here, monarchs of the Nasrid Dynasty ruled over the last Moorish kingdom in Spain, leaving a priceless architectural legacy—the magnificent Alhambra, a UNESCO World Heritage site. We will walk through its outer precincts, view the work of medieval Moorish craftsmen within, and stroll through the beautifully landscaped gardens. Lunch will be at a local restaurant.

Day 6: Gibraltar, British Crown Colony
The southernmost tip of the Iberian Peninsula, Gibraltar was considered by the Greeks and Romans to be one of the two Pillars of Hercules that marked the boundary of the known world. We will drive to the “Top of the Rock,” the limestone promontory guarding the Strait of Gibraltar, which separates Europe and Africa. At Europa Point we will have an impressive view. We will visit the Great Siege Tunnels, excavated by British army engineers in the late 18th century to provide for the defense of the colony. We will see up close the amusing antics of Barbary macaques, the only colony of wild monkeys in Europe, and the impressive geological wonders in St. Michael’s Cave. The afternoon is at leisure to independently explore Casemates Square in Gibraltar’s city center.

Day 7: Cruise the Guadalquivir River into Seville, Spain (Andalusia)
Today, we will cruise into the heart of extraordinary Seville on the Guadalquivir River. We will drive through the historic center to see the neoclassical Maestranza Bullring (the largest in Spain) and the Golden Tower, a remnant of Seville’s Moorish fortifications. We will stroll through Maria Luisa Park and the impressive Plaza de España, built for the Ibero-American Exposition of 1929. We will walk through Santa Cruz, the old Jewish quarter, a maze of white houses, flower filled patios, and orange trees lining the stone streets.

Later, we will explore Alcázar, a UNESCO World Heritage site featuring the distinctive Mudéjar-style former residence of Seville’s Moroccan and Spanish rulers. The city’s magnificent Cathedral, a classic example of late Gothic architecture, is Europe’s second largest house of worship after St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. Inside, we will view the imposing monument to Christopher Columbus, whose remains it is said were transported to Cuba. We will also see the extraordinary altarpiece carved by Flemish craftsman Pierre Dancart. This evening, we will attend a traditional flamenco dance performance on board the ship.

Day 8: Portimão, Portugal (the Algarve)
On Portugal’s sun-washed southern coast, in the historic province of Algarve, lies Portimão. Settled by the Phoenicians and Romans, the Algarve was later ruled by the Moors, and today its Moorish heritage survives in its architecture and cuisine. Today, we will stroll through the nearby town of Silves, a medieval center of art, poetry, and learning. For picturesque views of the town, we will walk along the ramparts of its Moorish castle. We will visit the cathedral, a fusion of Romanesque, Gothic, and Baroque architecture, before heading to the scenic port of Lagos, once the center of trade between Moorish Portugal and Africa. Here, we will visit the Baroque Church of St. Anthony, with its stunning interior, and use free time to independently explore this former Algarve capital. We will meet for the Captain’s farewell reception this evening.

Day 9: Lisbon/U.S.
We will disembark the ship in Lisbon and continue on the Post-Cruise Option or transfer to the airport for our flight home to the U.S


  • Seven-night cruise from Barcelona, Spain, to Lisbon, Portugal, with port calls at Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands, and Valencia,  Almería for Granada, Motril and Seville (Andalusia), Spain; Gibraltar, British Crown Colony; and Portimão (Algarve), Portugal.
  • Spacious, Five-Star, ocean-view Suite and Stateroom accommodations, each with a private bathroom.
  • Captain's Welcome and Farewell Receptions.
  • All meals-continental breakfast, buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon tea and dinner- throughout the cruise, featuring fine international and regional cuisine, served at single, unassigned seatings.
  • Complimentary wine and beer are served with lunch and dinner.
  • Complimentary Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are available throughout the cruise.
  • Excursion to the Carthusian Monastery in Valldemossa, the former residence of composer Frédéric Chopin, including a classical music piano recital.
  • Half-day tour of the historic Spanish and Balearic Island port of Palma de Mallorca, featuring its medieval Old City.
  • Half-day tour of Valencia, “City of Arts and Sciences,” including a visit to La Lonja de la Seda (the silk exchange), a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Full-day excursion to Granada, featuring a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage sites of the Alhambra Palace and the lush Generalife Gardens, with lunch.
  • Visit to the British Crown Colony of Gibraltar, featuring the “Top of the Rock” and St. Michael’s Cave.
  • Unique scenic cruise into the heart of extraordinary Seville on Spain’s legendary Guadalquivir River, “the great river.”
  • Tour of Seville, highlighted by the rich historical monuments and UNESCO World Heritage sites of Giralda Tower, the lavishly decorated Cathedral and the Moorish Alcázar.
  • Visit to the former Moorish capital of Silves to see the best-preserved castle in Portugal’s magnificent Algarve provine.
  • Excursion to the scenic port town of Lagos in Portugal’s magnificent Algarve province, featuring the Baroque Church of St. Anthony.
  • Transfers and luggage handling abroad for participants whose arrival(s)/departure(s) coincide with the scheduled group transfer(s).
  • All excursions and visits, as outlined above, with experienced local guides.
  • Gratuities to local guides and drivers on included excursions and transfers.
  • Hospitality desk aboard ship.
  • The services of professional Program Directors throughout the program.
  • Complimentary use of a state-of-the-art audio headset for each participant during guided excursions.
  • Travel document wallet, name badge and pre-departure information.

Not included:
Airfare; Taxes; passport fees; visas and fees for obtaining visas; personal expenses such as laundry and telephone calls; accident/sickness, trip cancellation, and baggage insurance; gratuities to ship and hotel personnel; optional sightseeing excursions; excess baggage charges on aircraft; local departure air taxes; airfare and associated local taxes*, airport facility taxes and federal inspection fees not listed int he "included features" section of the program brochure; transfers and baggage handling to/from airport/hotel on day(s) of arrival and/or departure if you are arriving earlier or later and/or departing earlier or later that scheduled group transfer(s); meals and and alcoholic beverages not listed in the "Included Features" section of the program brochure; and all other services not specifically mentioned in the "Included Features" section of the program brochure.

Please call us toll-free at (866) 325-8664 or email us at for more details.