New Year 2021 in the heart of Andalusia
Christmas and New Year weeks based in our favourite hotels
All the local celebrations
Delicious local gastronomy and imaginative tapas
Special Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve dinner and evening
Theatre, history and nature - central Andalusia - small international guided group
New Year's Eve at Villanueva del Rey in the Guadiato valley, with a fabulous dinner (formal dress not required). At Lucena in the Campiña, for the Epiphany, the 'Cabalgata de la Ilusión', a splendid procession of the Three Kings.
Villanueva del Rey is a picturesque village in the upper Guadiato valley, a rural area of oak forest, rolling fields and pastureland.
Lucena is a lively town, with pleasant squares and several historical monuments. It has a famous past as Eliossana or 'La Perla del Sefarad', the only Jewish city in Moslem al-Andalus. Lucena is surrounded by the Campiña, low rolling hills of olives and vines, with the limestone summits of the Subbética Cordobesa as a backdrop. Unusual features of the area are inland salt-pans and various small lakes, both fresh and salty, which are the last refuge in Europe of the malvasía (white-headed duck). Several of the hills are crowned with castles, watchtowers or ermitas (processionary chapels) with ample panoramas.
ONE WEEK Activities: 5 days with walks of 1h15-3h30 in fairly easy terrain (denivellation max. +150m) and varied historical/natural visits as outlined below. Group 10 maximum.
FULL BOARD EXCEPT 2 MEALS in rooms for 2 with private bathrooms and buffet breakfast, in two comfortable hotels: three nights in the modern rural hotel of Villanueva del Rey, and four in the historical centre of Lucena, in a former convent with the rooms distributed round a magnificent cloister. Excellent food including fish, game, lamb, pata negra pork, retinta beef... Tapas evening in Lucena.
New Year 2020-21 30 December-6 January.
PRICE 1075 euros per person; single supplement 205 euros.
RENDEZVOUS Málaga, in the afternoon choose a flight arriving before 14.00.
DISPERSAL Málaga, in the morning choose a flight departing after 14.00.
Location of this programme:
WEDNESDAY: Transfer to Villanueva del Rey
THURSDAY: The elegant modernist-neoMudéjar palace of Fuente Obejuna, a town known all over the world thanks to the play Fuenteovejuna by Lope de Vega (1619). Walk of La Granjuela, where we hope to observe great bustards and cranes.
FRIDAY: Walk in the surroundings of Villanueva. The former coal-mining town of Peñarroya Pueblonuevo: monumental centre, French engineers' quarter and industrial area.
SATURDAY: El Vacar: one of Spain's oldest castles, it also served as a caravanserai. Arrival at Lucena: Castle, Palace and Mudéjar-gothic architecture. Panoramic views from the Ermita de Araceli.
SUNDAY: A former mosque, now a processionary chapel, on the summit overlooking Archidona, with its octogonal main square. The walled citadel and dolmens (UNESCO World Heritage) of Antequera, as well as a walk in the famous limestone formations of the Torcal.
MONDAY: The Roman remains of Monturque. A bodega of Moriles wine. Aguilar de la Frontera, also with an octogonal main square. Birdlife of the Laguna de Zóñar.
TUESDAY: A sumptuous Roman farm-villa with exceptional mosaics. The Laguna Amarga, a salt lake. Cabra, twin town of Lucena, in the steps of the writer and diplomat Juan Valera (1824-1905) who originated from Cabra and situated his best-known novel "Pepita Jiménez" in it. Three Kings procession in Lucena and last tapas evening.
WEDNESDAY: Transfer to Málaga.
Xmas at Cordoba
Bienal Flamenco Seville / Jerez Flamenco Festival / Mar y Sierra Zambombas (festive Jerez-Cordoba)
Almagro Theatre Festival / Ciudad Rodrigo Festival / Semana Santa at Granada / historical journeys
walking: Andalusia / Sanabria / Rioja / Albarracín-Cuenca-Teruel / north Spain / Mar y Sierra Cantabria
Discovery: The land of lakes and storks / Berlanga-Soria / Candás-Costa Verde / Liérganes-Santander
Ruta del Oro / Almería / Huelva, land of mariners / Extremadura: Trujillo / Zafra / nature rambles
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