When the nightlife never ends and siestas are a daily ritual (because even grown-ups need naps), something is clearly going right. Experience how Western Europe gets their priorities straight starting in Lisbon, the colorful and cultural capital of Portugal. Then, it's on to Madrid and Barcelona—two staple cities for a proper Spanish fiesta. If you like classic architecture, laid-back locals, sunshine, good food, great beaches, and the best dancing you ever did see, this is the escape for you.
What are the top highlights?
- Gaze upon ocean views and hilltop castles in Lisbon
- Dance the night away at beachside nightclubs in Barcelona
- Visit world-class galleries at The Prado, Reina Sofia and Picasso Museum
- Taste-test tapas and wash them down with a glass of cava
- Experience architecture from medieval to modern in Madrid
Your trip includes
- Round-trip flights & airport transfers
- Multilingual Tour Director & local guides
- Private deluxe motorcoach
- 10 nights in hand-picked accommodations
- Welcome Mixer with appetizers & drinks
- Daily breakfast & three-course Farewell Dinner
- Metro passes in each major city
- Entrance to select attractions
You’ll stay at accommodations hand-picked by our team of local experts, in rooms only for EF Ultimate Break travelers. Each property is located in a safe, convenient area. You’ll receive your exact accommodations 30 days before your trip departs.
Click **here **for examples of where you'll stay.
Admit it, booking flights is the worst. Here's why you should let us do it for you:
- Flight costs are included in your monthly payment plan, so you can pay over time
- Airport transfers are included, so we’ll be waiting, sign in hand
- Flights are booked with major airlines
- 24/7 support no matter what time zone you’re in
- One checked bag included on most flights
- Option to make changes to your trip up to 99 days before departure
Booking with a friend? Let us know and we’ll do our best to make sure you’re on the same flight. Still want to book your own flights? That’s cool, simply select ‘No flights included’ instead of your departure city in the ‘Flights from’ dropdown.
Day 1: Overnight Flight
Board your overnight flight, bound for Lisbon! You’re headed to The City of Seven Hills, which are historically inaccurate and miscounted. Let us know how many you find.
Day 2: Arrival in Lisbon
Welcome to Lisbon! Get ready to work those glutes, because you're in "The City of Seven Hills". This colorful Portuguese capital is home to classic European charm, urban innovation, and breathtaking vistas from just about anywhere you stand.
- Meet an EF representative at the airport.
- Transfer to your accommodation and check in.
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
- Meet the other travelers as they arrive.
- Walk through the Barrio Alto and Chiado neighborhoods, Lisbon’s nightlife mecca.
In the evening, it’s time for our Welcome Mixer. Enjoy appetizers and drinks with fellow travelers at an authentic local spot. Afterwards, take the party elsewhere.
Day 3: Discover Lisbon
With San Francisco-like inclines, cobbled European streets, and a comfy coastal climate, Lisbon is the best of all worlds. As the oldest city in Western Europe, it's inscribed with millennia of stories that uniquely shaped the vibe today. Want to hear them? We have you covered.
- Meet a local guide for an in-depth tour of Lisbon (and story time, obviously).
- Traverse the labyrinthian streets of Alfama, the oldest district of Lisbon.
- Go medieval at Castelo de São Jorge (Saint George Castle), a massive fortress overlooking the city below.
- Enjoy the rest of the afternoon and evening free to explore on your own.
Day 4: Free Day in Lisbon + Optional Sintra & Portuguese Riviera Excursion
Join the group for an excursion to picturesque Sintra, or have the day free to do your thing.
Free Time Suggestions
Elevator Pitch: Originally steampowered, the Elevador de Santa Justa is the handiwork of Gustave Eiffel’s apprentice (so it might look a little familiar). A ride up gives you awesome views of the city skyline.
Portu-gas: Take a gastronomic world tour at Mercado Fusão, a food market, where kiosks serve up everything from Brazilian cakes to sushi to chamuças (don’t miss the famous ones at Kebab Ali House).
Sintra & Portuguese Riviera(extra cost)
Live a day like the royalty that you are in Sintra: Portugal's crown jewel. Crest the Sintra Mountains for a visit to the regal Palácio da Pena: a gorgeous Romanticist-style palace sitting pretty above the city (transportation, entrance, and tour included). Enjoy some time afterwards to explore the cute boutiques (cute-iques, for short) and colorful villas of the city of Sintra itself. Then, take the long way back to Lisbon, basking in the magnificent coastline of the Portuguese Riviera, and stopping along the way for lunch and a little meandering in the seaside fishing village of Cascais.
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
Day 5: Travel to Madrid
Say "Tchau!" to Portugal and "Hola" to neighboring Spain—you're headed to Madrid! Rich in Spanish tradition, Madrid mixes old with new like sangria mixes booze with fruit salad. And it works just as well.
- Hop on your flight from Lisbon to Madrid.
- Arrive in Madrid and check out your accommodation.
- Take a brief orientation walk with your Tour Director to familiarize yourself with the area.
- Stroll through Parque del Buen Retiro, the largest park in the city.
Free Time Suggestions
Exit Through the Gift Shop: Chueca and Malasaña neighborhoods have vintage fashion, inexpensive tapas bars, and street art from the famous Banksy.
Get Cultured: The Golden Triangle features The Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza, and The Reina Sofia museums.
Day 6: Sightseeing Tour of Madrid + Optional Royal Palace & Rooftops Excursion
A nearly endless amounts of tapas, sangria, and Spanish Golden Age architecture will greet you in this city located at the very center of Spain. Discover many of the most popular destinations before getting cultured at one of the world’s leading art museums. And remember, there’s always room for more tapas.
- Journey to the very heart of Madrid at the Puerta del Sol, aka the “Gate of the Sun.”
- Shop, walk, and enjoy the outdoors and a bronze statue of King Phillip III at Plaza Mayor (Main Square).
- Check out the Picassos and Dalís at the Reina Sofia, or see the works of the old Rennaisance masters at the Prado.
Free Time Suggestions
El Retiro Park: Once belonging to the Spanish Monarchy, this now public park contains a variety of statues and museums, the famed Rosaleda rose garden, the Palacio de Cristal, and Retiro Pond—a great spot for watching people and street performers alike.
Malasaña Park: This happening area is known for a large student population and streets filled with coffee shops, bakeries, and vintage clothing stores. Then at night, edgy dance and rock clubs come to life so you can dance the night away.
Royal Palace & Rooftops(extra cost)
The Royal Family of Spain will see you now. Keep an eye out for a duke or duchess as you stroll the Palacio Real at your own leisure. Once you’ve had your fill of grand, gilded, and gorgeous in the palace, indulge your appetite with included tapas and a drink at an authentic nearby spot. Save room for #views though—the final stop on this magical evening in Madrid is a rooftop bar. We got you covered on your entrance fee and your next drink, but it’s up to you to take the most awe-inducing panoramic pics of the city skyline yourself.
Day 7: Free Day in Madrid
Enjoy a free day to explore Spain's capital city on your own.
Free Time Suggestions
Pro Pre-Game: Head to Plaza de Santa Ana in the evening for tapas. This square is slightly off the beaten path, and a hotspot for locals beginning their nights.
¡GOOOOOOOOOL! Tour Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, home to Madrid’s futból team, Real Madrid. Sit in the players’ seats, see trophies up close, and feel the luxury of the presidential box.
Day 8: Travel to Barcelona
Catch your morning bus to Barcelona, a city of endless parties, wacky architecture and premium beaches.
- Travel by private motorcoach from Madrid to Barcelona.
- Take an introductory walk of Barcelona with your Tour Director.
- Stroll Las Ramblas, the main pedestrian thoroughfare lined with bars, cafes, shops and street performers.
- Stop in Plaça de Catalunya, the city center where old meets new.
- Enjoy the rest of the evening to explore on your own.
Day 9: Tour Barcelona + Optional Sagrada Família Tour & Sangria
Experience Barcelona’s unique architecture and atmosphere with a local guide by coach and foot.
- Explore the Old Port with your guide.
- Visit one of Antoni Gaudí’s greatest works of modernist art, Parque Güell. This colorful park is adorned with tilework, dreamlike structures and not a straight line anywhere.
- See the 1992 Olympic Park which lines the Mediterranean Sea.
- Check out the unfinished Sagrada Familia cathedral, where construction started over 100 years ago by Gaudí.
After your tour, enjoy the rest of the day to revisit any of the sights, hit the beach or explore on your own.
Sagrada Família & Sangria(extra cost)
You ever just start something so ambitious it takes you 140 years to finish? That’s the story of Antoni Gaudí’s yet-to-be-completed Sagrada Família Basilica. Maybe the world’s most unbelievable church—it has been under construction since 1882, and won’t be finished until 2026 at the earliest. You'll go on a guided tour inside the breathtaking basilica, learn about Gaudí’s big plans, and see firsthand that slow and steady wins the race. After, enjoy an included glass of Sangria and snacks.
Please note: This excursion must be booked at least 30 days prior to tour departure.
Day 10: Free Day in Barcelona + Farewell Dinner
The day is yours to experience the best of Barcelona. In the evening, share one last memory with your group in the included, three-course Farewell Dinner.
Free Time Suggestions
Market Down: Visit La Boqueria, the famous market just off of Las Ramblas, with everything from fresh fruits to meats, flowers and sweets.
Playa Long: Barcelona’s coast is lined with beaches, each with its own personality. Try party-centric Barceloneta, tranquil Caldetes or water sports at Mar Bella.
Comer Little Closer: From paella, a traditional rice dish, to Basque-style tapas, Barcelona has gastronomy locked down.
Day 11: Fly Home
Translation: Goodbye, friends. Your next destination awaits—home. Before you head to the airport, enjoy your last few moments together. Take one more group photo. Grab that final drink. (Fine, maybe a couple of drinks.) But this isn’t goodbye. It’s “See you later.” The only question is, where?
EXTEND YOUR TRIP 2 WAYS
1. Double the fun
A lot of our trips line up back to back! Give us a call—we can help you add another and save big while you're at it.
2. Go ahead or stay behind
Extending your trip is easy! During checkout, you'll have the option to fly to (or from) the gateway of your choice for an additional fee. We'll adjust your flights accordingly, but you'll be responsible to take care of your transportation, hotels, and other logistics outside of tour.
Note: Depending on your desired gateways, additional fees may apply.
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