Trace the cultural highlights of Iberia's historic trade routes along the southern shores of Portugal and Spain. As you cruise from Lisbon to Barcelona explore the lesser-traveled ports of Portugal's Algarve region and Palma de Mallorca, in addition to excursions to beautiful Seville and Granada's dramatic Alhambra. 

Starting at: $5,695 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 Rock of Gibraltar  Rock of Gibraltar with Barbary macaque  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

A Cruise of Spain and Portugal

From Lisbon to Barcelona

9 days from $5,695

Trace the cultural highlights of Iberia's historic trade routes along the southern shores of Portugal and Spain. As you cruise from Lisbon to Barcelona explore the lesser-traveled ports of Portugal's Algarve region and Palma de Mallorca, in addition to excursions to beautiful Seville and Granada's dramatic Alhambra. 

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

The Smithsonian opens doors to sites that you could not see on your own and to travel with a Smithsonian Journeys expert brings life to the history and romance of the experience.

- Barbara C.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active


Expectations: 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 or afternoons and some days will require early morning departures (8:00 or 8:30 a.m.). Daily activities of two to three hours each day. Some standing and walking for periods of time (up to two 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 from 30-45 minutes.  

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

Tour Extensions

Lisbon Pre-Cruise Option — 3 Days, 2 Nights

Enchanting travelers with its shoreline along the Atlantic Ocean, Lisbon’s dramatic cityscape of white limestone buildings and its well‑preserved medieval monuments. Visit Jerónimos Monastery, part of a World Heritage site, which honors the discoveries of Vasco da Gama, and see Belém Tower and the grandiose Monument to Discoveries. Enjoy a tour of the charming village of Sintra, another  World Heritage site, to explore the former royal palace of Queluz, known as the Portuguese Versailles. Accommodations for two nights are in the ideally located, deluxe Dom Pedro Palace Hotel

Barcelona Post-Program Option — 3 Days, 2 Nights

Explore the heart of Barcelona, the capital city of Catalonia, a former Roman trading port originally named Barcino. Enjoy a city tour featuring the original Old Town, the Gothic Quarter. Discover the UNESCO‑inscribed modernista marvels of Antoni Gaudí, including the revered Basílica de la Sagrada Família—the architect’s magnum opus—the mosaic‑encrusted Casa Batlló and the undulating stonework of Casa Milà. Just outside the city, visit the grotto‑like Crypt of Colònia Güell, the canvas for Gaudí’s iconoclast visions. Accommodations are for two nights in the five-star Hotel Majestic Barcelona.

Pre- and Post-Program Options are available at additional cost. Details will be provided with your reservation confirmation.

Please Note: The extensions may vary depending on which direction your departure is running. Please see itinerary for more details. 

Ship

Le Jacques Cartier

Le Jacques Cartier, launching in 2020, ushers in a new generation of five-star small ships, combining revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury for unparalleled cruising. Dock in smaller ports inaccessible to larger ships and where authentic cultural experiences and majestic scenery await you.

Respect for the Environment

The newest addition to the Ponant “clean ship” fleet, a prestigious certification among ocean‑cruising vessels, Le Jacques Cartier is energy efficient and eco‑friendly, protecting fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage.

Chic and Casual Dining

Dine indoors or alfresco on international and regional cuisine served in the stylish, spacious indoor‑outdoor restaurant, at the casual pool deck grill or from 24‑hour room service. Daily meals include continental and buffet breakfasts, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and four‑course dinner.

92 Elegant Suites and Staterooms, 100% with Private Balconies

Each five‑star stateroom and suite (up to 484 square feet) features a private balcony. Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. Accommodations offer two twin beds or one queen bed, private bathroom with shower, individual climate control, and luxurious hotel amenities.

Life on Board

Enjoy sweeping views from the lounges, which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state‑of‑the‑art theater. Relax in the spa and sauna or the Sun Deck’s infinity‑style swimming pool. There is a beauty salon, fitness room, and three elevators. Complimentary Wi‑Fi is available throughout the ship.

World-Class Service

The highly trained, English‑speaking crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has a medical center staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Le Jacques Cartier

Le Jacques Cartier, launching in 2020, ushers in a new generation of five-star small ships, combining revolutionary design and a new standard of luxury for unparalleled cruising. Dock in smaller ports inaccessible to larger ships and where authentic cultural experiences and majestic scenery await you.

Respect for the Environment

The newest addition to the Ponant “clean ship” fleet, a prestigious certification among ocean‑cruising vessels, Le Jacques Cartier is energy efficient and eco‑friendly, protecting fragile marine ecosystems while providing a safe and comfortable voyage.

Chic and Casual Dining

Dine indoors or alfresco on international and regional cuisine served in the stylish, spacious indoor‑outdoor restaurant, at the casual pool deck grill or from 24‑hour room service. Daily meals include continental and buffet breakfasts, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, and four‑course dinner.

92 Elegant Suites and Staterooms, 100% with Private Balconies

Each five‑star stateroom and suite (up to 484 square feet) features a private balcony. Grand Deluxe Suites have a bay window and spacious private terrace. Accommodations offer two twin beds or one queen bed, private bathroom with shower, individual climate control, and luxurious hotel amenities.

Life on Board

Enjoy sweeping views from the lounges, which open to the outdoors, and lectures, cultural performances, or film screenings in the state‑of‑the‑art theater. Relax in the spa and sauna or the Sun Deck’s infinity‑style swimming pool. There is a beauty salon, fitness room, and three elevators. Complimentary Wi‑Fi is available throughout the ship.

World-Class Service

The highly trained, English‑speaking crew are personable and attentive, and the ship has a medical center staffed with a doctor and nurse.

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

The Smithsonian opens doors to sites that you could not see on your own and to travel with a Smithsonian Journeys expert brings life to the history and romance of the experience.

- Barbara C.
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
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 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.
For Whom the Bell Tolls
By: Ernest Hemingway
In 1937 Ernest Hemingway traveled to Spain to cover the civil war there for the North American Newspaper Alliance. Three years later he completed the greatest novel to emerge from "the good fight," For Whom the Bell Tolls.
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.
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
Spain: A Traveler's Literary Companion (Traveler's Literary Companions)
By: Peter Bush, Lisa Dillman
Explore Spain's rich literary landscape with some of the country's best contemporary writers. Arranged geographically, these thirty stories — many of which appear in English for the first time — transport the reader through Spain's many enchanting regions: experience a bull-run with Juan Goytisolo in Albacete, join Bernardo Atxaga in a Basque village, travel to the misty woods of Galicia with Manuel Rivas, and reminisce nostalgically with Julio Llamazares over black-and-white photos of his childhood Spain. Contributors include Nuria Amat, Bernardo Atxaga, Julián Ayesta, Carlos Blanco, Antón Castro, Agustín Cerezales, Rosa Chacel, Dulce Chacón, Rafael Chirbes, Miguel Delibes, Lucía Etxebarria, José Ferrer Bermejo, Laura Freixas, Amaia Gabantxo, Federico García Lorca, Juan Goytisolo, Julio Llamazares, José Jiménez Lozano, Javier Marías, Juan Marsé, Quim Monzó, Javier Puebla, Fernando Quiñones, Carme Riera, Manuel Rivas, Germán Sierra, Nivaria Tejera, and Angela Vallvey.
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.
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24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Laminated)
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Travel Guard provides an on-tour Insurance Plan. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details.

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.