A new cruise offering from Smithsonian Journeys and PONANT

Follow the Iberian coast from Lisbon along the southern shores of Spain, exploring captivating cities and World Heritage-listed architecture in Seville, Granada, Palma de Mallorca, and Valencia. 

Starting at: $4,280 Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The Alhambra of Granada  The Plaza de Espana, Seville  A courtyard in the Alcazar, or Royal Palace, in Seville  The immense Gothic cathedral of Seville  The evocative garden area of the Generalife at the Alhambra, Granada  Intricate architectural design at the Alhambra, Granada  Cathedral in Palma de Mallorca  Port of Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands

Cruising Southern Spain and Portugal

From Lisbon to Barcelona

8 days from $4,280

A new cruise offering from Smithsonian Journeys and PONANT

Follow the Iberian coast from Lisbon along the southern shores of Spain, exploring captivating cities and World Heritage-listed architecture in Seville, Granada, Palma de Mallorca, and Valencia. 

or Call 855-330-1542

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active

Ocean-going cruise that may pull into a pier for embarkation and shore excursions and may use tenders at some ports. Excursions will be at a moderately active pace during mornings and/or afternoons and some days will require early morning departures (8:00 or 8:30 a.m.). Daily activities of three to nine hours each day. Some standing and walking for periods of time (up to two or more hours) during outdoor activities and tours, city tours, and museum visits. Walking two to three miles will be over sometimes uneven terrain, such as cobblestones in town. The longest coach transfer will range be approximately two hours.  

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, lead active lives, are comfortable participating in long days of activities, and expect some physical exertion. 

May 2022 Tour Extensions

Pre-Cruise Program2 Days, 1 Night

Lisbon, which in the 15th- and 16th-centuries led the way in Europe's discovery of sub-Saharan Africa, India, and East Asia, remains an important European capital and a fascinating place to visit. This specially designed program will introduce you to the cultural monuments that celebrate Portugal's glorious past.

Day 1 – Lisbon, Portugal

Arrive in Lisbon, where you will be met and transferred to the Hotel Altis Avenida. Check-in time is 3:00PM. A local representative will be present at the hospitality desk in the afternoon to welcome you and to offer suggestions for dining and independent exploration. Join fellow travelers this evening for a welcome reception at the hotel. Dinner is on your own.

Hotel Altis Avenida

Day 2 – Lisbon

After breakfast at the hotel and check-out, your tour of Lisbon begins with a panoramic overview of the city, including the Monument of Discoveries, commemorating Portugal's crucial role in the Age of Discovery, and historic Belém Tower, the point from which many Portuguese explorers, including Vasco da Gama, set sail. Visit the imposing Jeronimos Monastery, where da Gama spent his last night before embarking on his voyage to India, and the finest extant example of the Portuguese architectural style known as Manueline. Enjoy some time at leisure in the Belém Quarter before a lunch including cod fish—a staple of Portuguese cuisine—and perhaps sample the famous custard tart, Pasteis de Belém. Following lunch, you will tour Lisbon's National Tiles Museum, exhibiting five centuries of Portuguese tile making, before ending at the pier to embark your ship in late afternoon.

Your hotel:

The Hotel Altis Avenida is a charming boutique hotel, with an extraordinary location in the center of Lisbon, in Praça dos Restauradores. The architecture and decoration are inspired by the 1940s and draw on the concept of "urban chic," where the past and the future meet, creating an atmosphere of charm and glamor. The hotel has 123 rooms, a Lobby Bar, and a fine dining restaurant on the top floor of the hotel that features the cuisine of chef João Rodrigues.

Your program includes:

  • 1 night at the Hotel Altis Avenida (or similar)
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the airport to the hotel on the scheduled program arrival day
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the hotel to the ship on embarkation day
  • Welcome cocktail reception on Day 1
  • Breakfast and lunch on Day 2
  • Sightseeing and programming as noted in the itinerary
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • Gratuities for the drivers and local guides

Your program does not include:

  • Transfer from the airport to the hotel on any day other than the scheduled program arrival day
  • Personal expenses and other services and meals not mentioned as included in the program

Please note:

  • It is imperative that your flight arrival details are communicated at least 30 days prior to the beginning of your cruise in order to secure your transfer from the airport to the hotel.
  • Early check-in and/or late check-out are available depending on availability and at a supplement. An additional night is possible, upon request and depending on hotel availability. Please, contact reservations or your travel agent for further details.
  • The official currency is the Euro. Credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, shops, and restaurants.
  • This pre-cruise program is offered as a package. There will be no refunds for unused accommodations, meals, or excursions.
  • Program is offered on a space available basis.
  • Program is subject to change without notice.

Post-Cruise Program3 Days, 2 Nights 

Catalonia enjoys one of the richest cultural heritages in Spain. This specially designed program introduces you to two very different elements of that heritage: the 12th-century Benedictine monastery on Montserrat and the modernist city of Barcelona.

Day 1 – Disembark | Barcelona, Spain

After breakfast aboard, join an excursion to the monuments and neighborhoods that define the extraordinary personality and vitality of Barcelona. Begin in the heart of the city with a visit to Antoni Gaudí's iconic Sagrada Familia. Begun in 1884 and still unfinished, this monument of spirituality awes and inspires visitors from around the world. Your guided tour will introduce you to Gaudí's vision and to the ongoing effort to achieve it. A short drive brings you to Casa Mila, another icon of modernist Barcelona, where you will enjoy lunch at a restaurant on the ground floor of this Gaudí-designed residence. After lunch, a leisurely stroll along elegant Passeig de Gràcia and past the Block of Discord brings you to Barrio Gótico, the oldest part of the city. Explore this enchanting neighborhood of narrow streets, home to Barcelona's great 14th-century Cathedral and Plaça Sant Jaume, before transferring to the Hotel Almanac Barcelona, your home for the next two nights. The balance of the day is at leisure with dinner on your own.

Hotel Almanac Barcelona

Day 2 – Barcelona | Montserrat

After breakfast, meet your guide for an excursion to the astonishing Monastery of Montserrat. A scenic drive through the countryside north of Barcelona brings you to a chain of serrated limestone mountains, where you board a cog railway for the steep climb up the mountain to the Benedictine monastery on a terrace near the summit. Your guided tour includes the ornate basilica, whose highlight is a wooden statue of the Virgin that has attracted pilgrims since the 12th century. You will also visit the museum, displaying pieces of art collected in the last century and containing important works of Monet, Rusiñol, Casas, and Picasso. Lunch will be served in the restaurant located in what were once the monastery's stables before you return to the hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure with time for independent exploration. Dinner is on your own.

Hotel Almanac Barcelona

Day 3 – Barcelona

After breakfast at the hotel and check out, transfer to the airport for flights homeward.

Your hotel:

Hotel Almanac Barcelona, located on Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, is a new (opened in 2018) boutique hotel in Barcelona’s city center, featuring 91 rooms and suites. It is only a few steps from Passeig de Gràcia, where you can find stylish shopping, restaurants, bars, and museums. The hotel itself houses a restaurant and a rooftop bar, a wellness and fitness center, and a rooftop pool.

Your program includes:

  • 2 nights at the Hotel Almanac Barcelona (or similar)
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the ship to the hotel on disembarkation day
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the hotel to the airport on Day 3
  • Breakfast on Days 2 and 3
  • Lunch on Days 1 and 2
  • Sightseeing and programming as noted in the itinerary
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • Gratuities for the drivers and local guides

Your program does not include:

  • Transfer from the hotel to the airport on any day other than the scheduled program departure day
  • Personal expenses and other services and meals not mentioned as included in the program

Please note:

  • It is imperative that your flight departure details are communicated at least 30 days prior to the beginning of your cruise in order to secure your transfer from the hotel to the airport.
  • Early check-in and/or late check-out are available depending on availability and at a supplement. An additional night is possible, upon request and depending on hotel availability. Please, contact reservations or your travel agent for further details.
  • The official currency is the Euro. Credit cards are largely accepted in hotels, shops, and restaurants.
  • This post-cruise program is offered as a package. There will be no refunds for unused accommodations, meals, or excursions.
  • Program is offered on a space available basis.
  • Program is subject to change without notice.
October 2022 Tour Extensions

Pre-Cruise Program — 3 Days, 2 Nights

Catalonia enjoys one of the richest cultural heritages in Spain. This specially designed program introduces you to two very different elements of that heritage: the 12th-century Benedictine monastery on Montserrat and the modernist city of Barcelona.

Day 1 – Barcelona, Spain

Arrive in Barcelona, where you will be met and transferred to the Hotel Almanac Barcelona. Check-in time is 3:00PM. A local representative will be present at the hospitality desk in the afternoon to welcome you and to offer suggestions for dining and independent exploration. Join fellow travelers this evening for a welcome reception at the hotel. Dinner is on your own.

Day 2 – Barcelona | Montserrat

After breakfast, meet your guide for an excursion to the astonishing Monastery of Montserrat. A scenic drive through the countryside north of Barcelona brings you to a chain of serrated limestone mountains, where you board a cog railway for the steep climb up the mountain to the Benedictine monastery on a terrace near the summit. Your guided tour includes the ornate basilica, whose highlight is a wooden statue of the Virgin that has attracted pilgrims since the 12th century. You will also visit the museum, displaying pieces of art collected in the last century and containing important works of Monet, Rusiñol, Casas, and Picasso. Lunch will be served in the restaurant located in what were once the monastery's stables before you return to the hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure with time for independent exploration. Dinner is on your own.

Day 3 – Barcelona, Spain | Embark

After breakfast at the hotel, join an excursion to the monuments and neighborhoods that define the extraordinary personality and vitality of Barcelona. Begin in the heart of the city with a visit to Antoni Gaudí's iconic Sagrada Familia. Begun in 1884 and still unfinished, this monument of spirituality awes and inspires visitors from around the world. Your guided tour will introduce you to Gaudí's vision and to the ongoing effort to achieve it. A short drive brings you to the Block of Discord to view Gaudí’s Casa Batlló and Puig i Cadafalch’s Casa Amatller, icons of modernist Barcelona.  After enjoying lunch, a leisurely stroll along elegant Passeig de Gràcia brings you to Barrio Gótico, the oldest part of the city. Explore this enchanting neighborhood of narrow streets, home to Barcelona's great 14th-century Cathedral and Plaça Sant Jaume. End at the pier to embark your ship in the late afternoon.

Your hotel:

Hotel Almanac Barcelona, located on Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, is a new (opened in 2018) boutique hotel in Barcelona’s city center, featuring 91 rooms and suites. It is only a few steps from Passeig de Gràcia, where you can find stylish shopping, restaurants, bars, and museums. The hotel itself houses a restaurant and a rooftop bar, a wellness and fitness center, and a rooftop pool.

Your program includes:

  • 2 nights at the Hotel Almanac Barcelona (or similar).
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the airport to the hotel on the scheduled program arrival  day.
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the hotel to the ship on Day 3.
  • Welcome cocktail reception on Day 1.
  • Breakfast on Days 2 and 3.
  • Lunch on Days 2 and 3.
  • Sightseeing and programming as noted in the itinerary.
  • Local English-speaking guide.
  • Gratuities for the drivers and local guides.

Your program does not include:

  • Transfer from the airport to the hotel on any day other than the scheduled program arrival day
  • Personal expenses and other services and meals not mentioned as included in the program

Please note:

  • It is imperative that your flight arrival details are communicated at least 30 days prior to the beginning of your cruise in order to secure your transfer from the airport to the hotel.
  • Early check-in and/or late check-out are available depending on availability and at a supplement. An additional night is possible, upon request and depending on hotel availability. Please, contact reservations or your travel agent for further details.
  • The official currency is the Euro. Credit cards are largely accepted in hotels, shops, and restaurants.
  • This pre-cruise program is offered as a package. There will be no refunds for unused accommodations, meals, or excursions.
  • Program is offered on a space available basis.
  • Program is subject to change without notice.

Hotel contact information:

Hotel Almanac Barcelona
Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes 619-621
08007 Barcelona
Spain
Telephone: +34 93 018 7000

Post-Cruise Program — 2 Days, 1 Night

Lisbon, which in the 15th- and 16th-centuries led the way in Europe's discovery of sub-Saharan Africa, India, and East Asia, remains an important European capital and a fascinating place to visit. This specially designed program will introduce you to the cultural monuments that celebrate Portugal's glorious past.

Day 1 – Disembark | Lisbon, Portugal

After breakfast aboard and disembarkation, your tour of Lisbon begins with a visit to the Gulbenkian Museum, housing a unique private collection of art and objects from various cultures and historical periods. Enjoy a lunch including cod fish—a staple of Portuguese cuisine—and perhaps sample the famous custard tart, Pasteis de Belém. Following lunch, you will visit the imposing Jeronimos Monastery, where da Gama spent his last night before embarking on his voyage to India, and the finest extant example of the Portuguese architectural style known as Manueline. Enjoy some time at leisure in the Belém Quarter before a panoramic overview of the city, including the Monument of Discoveries, commemorating Portugal's crucial role in the Age of Discovery, and historic Belém Tower, the point from which many Portuguese explorers, including Vasco da Gama, set sail. End at your home for the tonight, the Hotel Altis Avenida. The balance of the day is at leisure with dinner on your own.

Day 2 – Lisbon

After breakfast at the hotel and check out, transfer to the airport for flights homeward.

Your hotel:

The Hotel Altis Avenida is a charming boutique hotel, with an extraordinary location in the center of Lisbon, in Praça dos Restauradores. The architecture and decoration are inspired by the 1940s and draw on the concept of "urban chic," where the past and the future meet, creating an atmosphere of charm and glamor. The hotel has 123 rooms, a Lobby Bar, and a fine dining restaurant on the top floor of the hotel that features the cuisine of chef João Rodrigues.

Your program includes:

  • 1 night at the Hotel Altis Avenida (or similar).
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the pier to the hotel on the scheduled program arrival day.
  • Transfer and luggage handling from the hotel to the airport on Day 2.
  • Lunch on Day 1 and breakfast on Day 2.
  • Sightseeing and programming as noted in the itinerary.
  • Local English-speaking guide.
  • Gratuities for the drivers and local guides.

Your program does not include:

  • Transfer from the hotel to the airport on any day other than the scheduled program departure day.
  • Personal expenses and other services and meals not mentioned as included in the program.

Please note:

  • It is imperative that your flight departure details are communicated at least 30 days prior to the beginning of your cruise in order to secure your transfer from the hotel to the airport.
  • Early check-in and/or late check-out are available depending on availability and at a supplement. An additional night is possible, upon request and depending on hotel availability. Please, contact reservations or your travel agent for further details.
  • The official currency is the Euro. Credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, shops, and restaurants.
  • This post-cruise program is offered as a package. There will be no refunds for unused accommodations, meals, or excursions.
  • Program is offered on a space available basis.
  • Program is subject to change without notice.

Hotel contact information:

Hotel Altis Avenida
Rua 1⁰ Dezembro, 120
1200-360 Lisbon
Portugal
Telephone: +351 210 440 000

Ship

Le Champlain

Launched in 2018, Le Champlain is among a new fleet of luxury expedition ships launched by PONANT. These ships combine revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury.

Spacious, Ocean-view Suites and Staterooms
Each of the 92 elegant suites and staterooms features a private balcony, while Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. The deluxe, air-conditioned staterooms and suites (up to 484 square feet) have two twin beds that convert to one queen-size bed. Each cabin has a private bathroom with shower (bathtub in limited number of staterooms) and the luxurious amenities of a fine hotel, including individual climate control, satellite flat screen television, wireless Internet access, safe, minibar, full-length closet, writing desk/dressing table, and plush robes.

Chic and Casual Dining
International and regional cuisine are served in the stylish, spacious indoor-outdoor restaurant in a single, unassigned seating; at the casual pool deck grill; or from 24-hour room service. Continental and buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and a four-course dinner are served daily. Wine is served at your table during lunch and dinner and complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included throughout the cruise.

Spacious Public Areas, Intimate Atmosphere, and World-Class Service
The warm and inviting public areas accommodate all passengers comfortably. Enjoy sweeping views from the Observation Lounge and Main Lounge, both of which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state-of-the-art theater. For your convenience, complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the ship.

The ship also features the first luxury underwater observatory, the Blue Eye, a multisensory underwater observation lounge that incorporates decor and technology to immerse you in the beauty of the ocean's ecosystem. Here, you can observe fascinating marine life through the large subaquatic windows while digital screens and the specially designed global listening system relay the sights and sound beneath the ocean surface. 

Other amenities aboard ship are a Sun Deck, swimming pool, beauty salon, spa and sauna, fitness room, and two elevators. In addition, there is a three-level marina platform with complimentary kayaking and snorkeling equipment, as well as 10 easily accessible Zodiacs. 

The highly trained, English-speaking international crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has an infirmary staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Respect for the Environment
The newest additions to a fleet that has been awarded the prestigious "Clean Ship" designation, a rarity among ocean-cruising vessels, these expedition ships are designed with energy efficient, advanced eco-friendly features that protect fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage. 

Le Bougainville

Launched in 2019, Le Bougainville is among a new fleet of luxury expedition ships launched by PONANT, along with sister ship Le Dumont d'Urville. These ships combine revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury.

Spacious, Ocean-view Suites and Staterooms
Each of the 92 elegant suites and staterooms features a private balcony, while Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. The deluxe, air-conditioned staterooms and suites (up to 484 square feet) have two twin beds that convert to one queen-size bed. Each cabin has a private bathroom with shower (bathtub in a limited number of staterooms) and the luxurious amenities of a fine hotel, including individual climate control, satellite flat-screen television, wireless Internet access, safe, minibar, full-length closet, writing desk/dressing table, and plush robes.

Chic and Casual Dining
International and regional cuisine is served in the stylish, spacious indoor-outdoor restaurant in a single, unassigned seating; at the casual pool deck grill; or from 24-hour room service. Continental and buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and a four-course dinner are served daily. Wine is served at your table during lunch and dinner and complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included throughout the cruise.

Spacious Public Areas, Intimate Atmosphere, and World-Class Service
The warm and inviting public areas accommodate all passengers comfortably. Enjoy sweeping views from the Observation Lounge and Main Lounge, both of which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state-of-the-art theater. For your convenience, Wi-Fi is available throughout the ship.

The ship also features the first luxury underwater observatory, the Blue Eye, a multisensory underwater observation lounge that incorporates decor and technology to immerse you in the beauty of the ocean's ecosystem. Here, you can observe fascinating marine life through the large subaquatic windows while digital screens and the specially designed global listening system relay the sights and sounds beneath the ocean surface. 

Other amenities aboard ship are a Sun Deck, swimming pool, beauty salon, spa and sauna, fitness room, and two elevators. In addition, there is a three-level marina platform with complimentary kayaking and snorkeling equipment, as well as 10 easily accessible Zodiacs. 

The highly trained, English-speaking international crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has an infirmary staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Respect for the Environment
The newest additions to a fleet that has been awarded the prestigious "Clean Ship" designation, a rarity among ocean-cruising vessels, these expedition ships are designed with energy efficient, advanced eco-friendly features that protect fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage. 

Le Champlain

Launched in 2018, Le Champlain is among a new fleet of luxury expedition ships launched by PONANT. These ships combine revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury.

Spacious, Ocean-view Suites and Staterooms
Each of the 92 elegant suites and staterooms features a private balcony, while Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. The deluxe, air-conditioned staterooms and suites (up to 484 square feet) have two twin beds that convert to one queen-size bed. Each cabin has a private bathroom with shower (bathtub in limited number of staterooms) and the luxurious amenities of a fine hotel, including individual climate control, satellite flat screen television, wireless Internet access, safe, minibar, full-length closet, writing desk/dressing table, and plush robes.

Chic and Casual Dining
International and regional cuisine are served in the stylish, spacious indoor-outdoor restaurant in a single, unassigned seating; at the casual pool deck grill; or from 24-hour room service. Continental and buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and a four-course dinner are served daily. Wine is served at your table during lunch and dinner and complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included throughout the cruise.

Spacious Public Areas, Intimate Atmosphere, and World-Class Service
The warm and inviting public areas accommodate all passengers comfortably. Enjoy sweeping views from the Observation Lounge and Main Lounge, both of which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state-of-the-art theater. For your convenience, complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the ship.

The ship also features the first luxury underwater observatory, the Blue Eye, a multisensory underwater observation lounge that incorporates decor and technology to immerse you in the beauty of the ocean's ecosystem. Here, you can observe fascinating marine life through the large subaquatic windows while digital screens and the specially designed global listening system relay the sights and sound beneath the ocean surface. 

Other amenities aboard ship are a Sun Deck, swimming pool, beauty salon, spa and sauna, fitness room, and two elevators. In addition, there is a three-level marina platform with complimentary kayaking and snorkeling equipment, as well as 10 easily accessible Zodiacs. 

The highly trained, English-speaking international crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has an infirmary staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Respect for the Environment
The newest additions to a fleet that has been awarded the prestigious "Clean Ship" designation, a rarity among ocean-cruising vessels, these expedition ships are designed with energy efficient, advanced eco-friendly features that protect fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage. 

Le Bougainville

Launched in 2019, Le Bougainville is among a new fleet of luxury expedition ships launched by PONANT, along with sister ship Le Dumont d'Urville. These ships combine revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury.

Spacious, Ocean-view Suites and Staterooms
Each of the 92 elegant suites and staterooms features a private balcony, while Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. The deluxe, air-conditioned staterooms and suites (up to 484 square feet) have two twin beds that convert to one queen-size bed. Each cabin has a private bathroom with shower (bathtub in a limited number of staterooms) and the luxurious amenities of a fine hotel, including individual climate control, satellite flat-screen television, wireless Internet access, safe, minibar, full-length closet, writing desk/dressing table, and plush robes.

Chic and Casual Dining
International and regional cuisine is served in the stylish, spacious indoor-outdoor restaurant in a single, unassigned seating; at the casual pool deck grill; or from 24-hour room service. Continental and buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and a four-course dinner are served daily. Wine is served at your table during lunch and dinner and complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included throughout the cruise.

Spacious Public Areas, Intimate Atmosphere, and World-Class Service
The warm and inviting public areas accommodate all passengers comfortably. Enjoy sweeping views from the Observation Lounge and Main Lounge, both of which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state-of-the-art theater. For your convenience, Wi-Fi is available throughout the ship.

The ship also features the first luxury underwater observatory, the Blue Eye, a multisensory underwater observation lounge that incorporates decor and technology to immerse you in the beauty of the ocean's ecosystem. Here, you can observe fascinating marine life through the large subaquatic windows while digital screens and the specially designed global listening system relay the sights and sounds beneath the ocean surface. 

Other amenities aboard ship are a Sun Deck, swimming pool, beauty salon, spa and sauna, fitness room, and two elevators. In addition, there is a three-level marina platform with complimentary kayaking and snorkeling equipment, as well as 10 easily accessible Zodiacs. 

The highly trained, English-speaking international crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has an infirmary staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Respect for the Environment
The newest additions to a fleet that has been awarded the prestigious "Clean Ship" designation, a rarity among ocean-cruising vessels, these expedition ships are designed with energy efficient, advanced eco-friendly features that protect fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage. 

Reading List

Highly Recommended

Ghosts of Spain: Travels Through Spain and Its Silent Past
By: Giles Tremlett
“Part modern social history, part travelogue, Ghosts of Spain is held together by elegant first-person prose…an invaluable book…[that] has become something of a bible for those of us extranjeros who have chosen to live in Spain. A country finally facing its past could scarcely hope for a better, or more enamored, chronicler of its present.”—Sarah Wildman, New York Times Book Review The appearance, more than sixty years after the Spanish Civil War ended, of mass graves containing victims of Francisco Franco’s death squads finally broke what Spaniards call “the pact of forgetting”—the unwritten understanding that their recent, painful past was best left unexplored. At this charged moment, Giles Tremlett embarked on a journey around the country and through its history to discover why some of Europe’s most voluble people have kept silent so long. In elegant and passionate prose, Tremlett unveils the tinderbox of disagreements that mark the country today. Ghosts of Spain is a revelatory book about one of Europe’s most exciting countries.
Driving Over Lemons: An Optimist in Spain
By: Chris Stewart
  No sooner had Chris Stewart set eyes on El Valero than he handed over a check.  Now all he had to do was explain to Ana, his wife that they were the proud owners of an isolated sheep farm in the Alpujarra Mountains in Southern Spain.  That was the easy part.Lush with olive, lemon, and almond groves, the farm lacks a few essentials—running water, electricity, an access road.  And then there's the problem of rapacious Pedro Romero, the previous owner who refuses to leave.  A perpetual optimist, whose skill as a sheepshearer provides an ideal entrée into his new community, Stewart also possesses an unflappable spirit that, we soon learn, nothing can diminish.  Wholly enchanted by the rugged terrain of the hillside and the people they meet along the way—among them farmers, including the ever-resourceful Domingo, other expatriates and artists—Chris and Ana Stewart build an enviable life, complete with a child and dogs, in a country far from home.
Iberia
By: James A. Michener
Spain is an immemorial land like no other one that James A Michener the Pulitzer Prize winning author and celebrated citizen of the world came to love as his own Iberia is Michener s enduring nonfiction tribute to his cherished second home In the fresh and vivid prose that is his trademark he not only reveals the celebrated history of bullfighters and warrior kings painters and processions cathedrals and olive orchards he also shares the intimate often hidden country he came to know where the congeniality of living souls is thrust against the dark weight of history Wild contradictory passionately beautiful this is Spain as experienced by a master writer Praise for Iberia From the glories of the Prado to the loneliest stone villages here is Spain castle of old dreams and new realities The New York Times Massive beautiful unquestionably some of the best writing on Spain and the best that Mr Michener has ever done on any subject The Wall Street Journal A dazzling panorama one of the richest and most satisfying books about Spain in living memory Saturday Review Kaleidoscopic This book will make you fall in love with Spain The Houston Post From the Paperback edition
DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Spain
By: DK Eyewitness
DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Spain is your indispensable guide to this beautiful part of the world. The fully updated guide includes unique cutaways, floor plans, and reconstructions of the must-see sights, along with street-by-street maps of key cities and towns. The uniquely visual DK Eyewitness Travel Guide will help you to discover everything region-by-region, from local festivals and markets to day trips around the countryside. Detailed listings will guide you to the best hotels, restaurants, bars, and shops for all budgets. Detailed transportation and other practical information will help you to get around easily by train, bus, or car. What's new in DK Eyewitness Travel Guides: New itineraries based on length of stay, regional destinations, and themes. Brand-new hotel and restaurants listings including DK's Choice recommendations. Restaurant locations plotted on redrawn area maps and listed with sights. Redesigned and refreshed interiors make the guides even easier to read. With hundreds of full-color photographs, hand-drawn illustrations, and custom maps that illuminate every page, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Spain truly shows you this destination as no one else can.

Also Recommended

Spain - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By: Aguado Viguer, Bélen, Meaney, Marian
A Traveller's History of Spain
By: Juan Lalaguna
During its "golden age," Spain was a political giant whose influence spanned the world from Germany to the Western Pacific. Rich on American gold and silver, Spain was able to send the Armada against England, defeat the Turks and challenge France for the hegemony of Europe. This book will unlock the secrets of Spain's vibrant and colorful past, its people and culture for the interested traveller. It takes the reader on a journey from the earliest settlements on the Iberian Peninsula, through the influences of the Romans, the Goths and the Muslims, the traumas of expansion and the end of the Empire, right up to the present.
Lonely Planet Spanish Phrasebook & Dictionary
By: Lopez, Marta, Lonely Planet, Montero, Cristina Hernandez
For Whom the Bell Tolls
By: Hemingway, Ernest
The Alhambra (Wonders of the World)
By: Robert Irwin
Read the Bldg Blog interview with Mary Beard about the Wonders of the World series(Part I and Part II)The Alhambra has long been a byword for exotic and melancholy beauty. In his absorbing new book, Robert Irwin, Arabist and novelist, examines its history and allure.The Alhambra is the only Muslim palace to have survived since the Middle Ages. Built by a threatened dynasty of Muslim Spain, it was preserved as a monument to the triumph of Christianity. Every day thousands of tourists enter this magnificent site to be awestruck by its towers and courts, its fountained gardens, its honeycombed ceilings and intricate tile work. It is a complex full of mysteries--even its purpose is unclear. Its sophisticated ornamentation is not indiscriminate but full of hidden meaning. Its most impressive buildings were designed not by architects, but by philosophers and poets. The Alhambra, which resembles a fairy-tale palace, was constructed by slave labor in an era of economic decline, plague, and political violence. Its sumptuously appointed halls have lain witness to murder and mayhem. Yet its influence on art and on literature--including Orientalist painting and the architecture of cinemas, Washington Irving and Jorge Luis Borges--has been lasting and significant. As our guide to this architectural masterpiece, Robert Irwin allows us to fully understand the impact of the Alhambra.
Lonely Planet Mallorca (Regional Guide)
By: McNaughtan, Hugh, Lonely Planet, Harper, Damian
Spain: The Root and the Flower: An Interpretation of Spain and the Spanish People
By: John A. Crow
This is the late John A. Crow's classic study of the cultural history of Spain and its people, which he last updated in 1985 but which seems as fresh and pertinent as when he first wrote it. Crow devoted a lifetime to Hispanic studies and here provides a historical interpretation of Spanish civilization from its earliest beginnings to the present. The scope of this study is remarkable and includes chapters on Roman Spain, the Jews in Spain, the Moors, life in medieval towns, and the Golden Age of Spain, plus a view of Franco's legacy.
The Ornament of the World: How Muslims, Jews and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain
By: Maria Rosa Menocal
Widely hailed as a revelation of a "lost" golden age, this history brings to vivid life the rich and thriving culture of medieval Spain where, for more than seven centuries, Muslims, Jews, and Christians lived together in an atmosphere of tolerance, and literature, science, and the arts flourished. of photos. 3 maps.
Journey to Portugal: In Pursuit of Portugal's History and Culture
By: José Saramago
When José Saramago decided to write a book about Portugal, his only desire was that it be unlike all other books on the subject, and in this he has certainly succeeded. Recording the events and observations of a journey across the length and breadth of the country he loves dearly, Saramago brings Portugal to life as only a writer of his brilliance can. Forfeiting the usual sources such as tourist guides and road maps, he scours the country with the eyes and ears of an observer fascinated by the ancient myths and history of his people. Whether it be an inaccessible medieval fortress set on a cliff, a wayside chapel thick with cobwebs, or a grand mansion in the city, the extraordinary places of this land come alive.Always meticulously attentive to those elements of ancient Portugal that persist today, he examines the country in its current period of rapid transition and growth. Journey to Portugal is an ode to a country and its rich traditions.
Small Memories
By: José Saramago
“Small Memories is a . . . nourishing last gift from a great writer.”—Washington PostShifting back and forth between childhood and his teenage years, between Azinhaga and Lisbon, this is a mosaic of memories, a simply told, affecting look into the author’s boyhood: the tragic death of his older brother at the age of four; his mother pawning the family’s blankets every spring and buying them back in time for winter; his beloved grandparents bringing the weaker piglets into their bed on cold nights; and Saramago’s early encounters with literature, from teaching himself to read by deciphering articles in the daily newspaper, to poring over an entertaining dialogue in a Portuguese-French conversation guide, not realizing that he was in fact reading a play by Molière.Written with Saramago’s characteristic wit and honesty, Small Memories traces the formation of an artist fascinated by words and stories from an early age who emerged, against all odds, as one of the world’s most respected writers.“Like a nostalgic progenitor bestowing his wealth of life experience upon a younger generation, Saramago digs deep into his peasant roots to sketch a rough outline of the little boy who would become one of the greatest Portuguese-language writers”—Portland Oregonian
Conquerors: How Portugal Forged the First Global Empire
By: Roger Crowley
In Empires of the Sea and City of Fortune, New York Times bestselling author Roger Crowley established himself as our generation’s preeminent historian of the great European seafaring empires, and the go-to author for post-Crusade clashes of East and West. Now, in Conquerors, Crowley gives us the epic story of the emergence of Portugal, a small, poor nation that enjoyed a century of maritime supremacy thanks to the daring and navigational skill of its explorers—a tactical advantage no other country could match. Portugal’s discovery of a sea route to India, campaign of imperial conquest over Muslim rulers, and domination of the spice trade would forever disrupt the Mediterranean and build the first global economy. Crowley relies on letters and eyewitness testimony to tell the story of tiny Portugal’s rapid and breathtaking rise to power. Conquerors reveals the Império Português in all of its splendor and ferocity, bringing to life the personalities of the enterprising and fanatical house of Aviz. Figures such as King Manuel “the Fortunate,” João II “the Perfect Prince,” marauding governor Afonso de Albuquerque, and explorer Vasco da Gama juggled their private ambitions and the public aims of the empire, often suffering astonishing losses in pursuit of a global fortune. Also central to the story of Portugal’s ascent was its drive to eradicate Islamic culture and establish a Christian empire in the Indian Ocean. Portuguese explorers pushed deep into the African continent in search of the mythical Christian king Prester John, and they ruthlessly besieged Indian port cities in their attempts to monopolize trade. The discovery of a route to India around the horn of Africa was not only a brilliant breakthrough in navigation but heralded a complete upset of the world order. For the next century, no European empire was more ambitious, no rulers more rapacious than the kings of Portugal. In the process they created the first long-range maritime empire and set in motion the forces of globalization that now shape our world. At Crowley’s hand, the complete story of the Portuguese empire and the human cost of its ambition can finally be told.Praise for Conquerors “Excellent . . . Crowley’s interpretations are nuanced and fair.”—The Christian Science Monitor “In a riveting narrative, Crowley chronicles Portugal's horrifically violent trajectory from ‘impoverished, marginal’ nation to European power, vying with Spain and Venice to dominate the spice trade.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review) “Brings to life the Portuguese explorers . . . perfect for anyone who likes a high seas tale.”—Publishers Weekly “Readers of Crowley’s previous books will not be disappointed by this exciting tale of sea battles, land campaigns and shipwrecks. . . . Crowley makes a good case for reclaiming Portugal’s significance as forger of the first global empire.”—The Daily Telegraph “Crowley has shown a rare gift for combining compelling narrative with lightly worn academic thoroughness as well as for balancing the human with the geopolitical—qualities on display here. The story he has to tell may be a thrilling one but not every historian could tell it so thrillingly.”—Michael Prodger, Financial Times “A fast-moving and highly readable narrative . . . [Crowley’s] detailed reconstruction of events is based on a close reading of the works of the chroniclers, notably Barros and Correa, whose accounts were written in the tradition of the chronicles of chivalry.”—History Today
DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Lisbon
By: DK Eyewitness
Your journey starts here. We've reimagined and updated our iconic DK Eyewitness travel guides. This brand new Lisbon guide, now in a lightweight format, has been expertly curated with all new photography plus DK's much-loved illustrations and maps.Explore the maze of narrow lanes in historic Alfama, soak up views of the city from the Castelo de São Jorge, or admire spectacular palaces and scenery in Sintra: everything you need to know is clearly laid out within color-coded chapters. Discover the best of Lisbon with this indispensable travel guide.Inside DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Lisbon:  •  Gorgeous, all-new color photography so you can imagine yourself there   •  Reasons to love Lisbon: picture-perfect views, quirky museums and iconic pastries - what will yours be?   •  See Lisbon from a different angle: 12 pages of fresh ideas for exploring this spectacular city   •  A year-long calendar of events in Lisbon gives a selection of local events and festivals for all seasons   •  Expert advice covers the practical stuff: get ready, get around and stay safe   •  Detailed, color maps help you navigate the country with ease   •  Expert tips to make memories that last - where to snap and share the perfect photo, take in stunning views and escape the crowds   •  The most authentic places to stay, eat, drink and shop  •  Easy-to-follow walks and itineraries take you on a tour of each area, with plenty of food and drink stops en route   •  Hand-drawn illustrations show the inside of the must-see attractions, including the spectacular Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, tile-filled Museu Nacional do Azulejo and Sintra's Palácio Nacional da Pena   •  Covers Alfama, Baixa and Avenida, Bairro Alto and Estrela, Belém, Beyond the Center and the Lisbon Coast DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Lisbon is a detailed, easy-to-use guide designed to help you create your own unique trip. Want to explore beyond Lisbon? Try our DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Portugal.About DK Eyewitness Travel: For 25 years, DK's beautifully practical Eyewitness guides have been combining inspiring ideas and expert advice with easy-to-read maps and vivid photography to inform and enrich your holiday. Now they have a stunning new look that you will love even more. DK is the world's leading illustrated reference publisher, producing beautifully designed books for adults and children in over 120 countries.
DK Eyewitness Barcelona and Catalonia (Travel Guide)
By: DK Eyewitness
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Laminated)