Ciudad Rodrigo & Arribes del Duero NEW

Walking, history and nature - small international guided group - western Spain
Parador accommodation for 3 nights

This discovery holiday begins at Toro, a charming little town perched on bluffs above the River Duero, and famous for its red wines and chocolate(!). From here we go southwest into the Arribes del Duero, a natural park with deep, wild gorges, on the border between Castile and Portugal. This area shows many signs of early human occupation, such as Paleolithic engravings and the fortresses and enigmatic verraco statues left behind by the Vettons.
We continue to Ciudad Rodrigo. The walls of this micro-city enclose a maze of alleys and tiny squares, with splendid historical buildings. It is sur-rounded by the gentle scenery typical of the
dehesas of holm oaks of the Salamancan Campo Charro, in which much livestock is pastured, with to the south the summits of the Sierras of Gata, Hurdes and Francia.

7 DAYS (6 NIGHTS) Activities: 4 walks of 1-3 hours; a boat excursion on the Duero; varied visits. Group 10 maximum.

EXCEPT 3 BREAKFASTS AND 2 DINNERS, in rooms for 2 with private bathrooms, at the Parador of Ciudad Rodrigo, formerly the C14 castle of Enrique II (3 nights), at a charming posada in the village of Saucelle in the Arribes del Duero (2 nights), and the first night at Toro, in a well-known hotel on the square of the Colegiata, overlooking the Duero. Delicious local gastronomy featuring the pata negra pigs and cordero lechal of the Campo Charro dehesas, excellent sea-food and original tapas and pinchos.

DATES (Tuesday-Monday)
2017 16-22 May. FULLY BOOKED.

PRICE 845 euros per person; single supplement 165 euros.

16.35 at Zamora station; choose a flight arriving at Madrid by 13.00.*
DISPERSAL before 11.00, at Salamanca bus station, for departure of the direct bus to Madrid airport (arr 13.30 [T4]/ 13.45 [T1]).*
* We can book your tickets in advance and send them to you. Salamanca is also well connected by bus/train with central Madrid, Valladolid and other cities. Ask us for further information.

Location of this programme:


TUESDAY: Transfer from Zamora to the nearby historical centre of Toro, a town with its own denominación de origen for wine. Romanesque and mudéjar monuments. Tapas evening and first night.

WEDNESDAY: Wine museum and bodega. The Visigothic church of San Pedro de la Nave; we continue to the Arribes del Duero Natural Park and Saucelle village (2 nights).

THURSDAY: The spectacular Duero gorge by boat, 4WD and on foot.

FRIDAY: Wanderings in the steps of the Vettons: Castro Saldeana and Las Merchanas. The mediaeval citadel of San Felices de los Gallegos. Arrival at Ciudad Rodrigo: frontier city of Extremadura and Castile, which englobes the charms of both: the Extremaduran sense of welcome, elegant Castilian architecture, and a cuisine inspired by both regions. Its walls, cathedral, palaces and plaza Mayor take us back to the Middle Ages.

SATURDAY: Typical Campo Charro landscapes of the Dehesa de Espeja: black pigs and merino sheep, azure-winged magpies, ponds with terrapins and plovers. The Siega Verde: well-conserved paleolithic engravings on rocks on the bank of the River Águeda.

SUNDAY: The río de la Vega, a new walk in the Sierra de Gata. San Martín de Trevejo, with a dialect shared by only 3 villages. Modern exploitations of pine resin. Extremaduran tapas and wild mushrooms on the plaza mayor of delightful Gata.

MONDAY: Morning transfer to Salamanca.

Ciudad Rodrigo Theatre Festival for mini-groups / Xmas 2017 at Cordoba / New Year 17-18 at Trujillo
Discovery weeks: Almagro-La Mancha-Toledo / Berlanga-Soria / Uncastillo-pre-Pyrenees / Jaén
Candás-Costa Verde / Liérganes-Santander / Almagro Theatre Festival / nature rambles
Two centre discovery: Ruta del Oro / Extremaduran Kaleidoscope
Bienal Flamenco Seville / Jerez Flamenco Festival / Summer/autumn flamenco nights (Granada & Jerez)
Walking: Andalusia / Extremadura / La Rioja / Old Castile / Albarracín-Cuenca-Teruel / e-mail us
for families or friends / historical journeys / Holiday index+calendar / Introduction in English / How to book