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Secret Trails of Medieval Spain

from $1,399.00

Discover spectacular scenery following historic pilgrim routes

  • Reviews 10 Reviews
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Guided
  • Activity Level Moderate
    5/8
  • Group Size Small Group
    4 - 16
All about the Secret Trails of Medieval Spain.

The undiscovered lands of Old Castile, one of the historic mediaeval kingdoms of Spain, encompass an incredibly varied landscape where high plains and fertile valleys alternate with rugged hills, dramatic windy ridges and deep wooded gorges. Here, in the heart of the nation’s gone but remembered glory and power, we venture on a fantastic journey during which we walk secret pilgrims’ routes, explore rich mediaeval heritage and enjoy the typical warm Spanish hospitality.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.

* All breakfasts and 7 dinners
* 7 nights in a traditional Spanish family-run hotel
* Airport transfers (at designated times)

Group normally 4 to 16 plus leader. Min age 16 yrs

What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Follow historic pilgrim routes
  • Enjoy impressive gorges and spectacular scenery
  • Stay in a family-run hotel based in a traditional historic village
  • Explore the city of Burgos with its impressive Gothic Cathedral on your free day
  • Attend vespers sung in Gregorian chant by Benedictine monks
  1. Day 1 Start Covarrubias.

    Our trips starts in Covarrubias, a small village and municipality in the province of Burgos located approximately 200km north of Madrid.**

  2. Day 2 Circular walk in the Valles de Ura, home to numerous species of local flora and fauna.

    We set out from Covarrubias and walk by the Arlanza river to the village of Puentedura and then down into a gorge. After lunch we climb out of the gorge and make our way to a hermitage, Ermita de Redonda, and then back to Covarrubias.

  3. Day 3 Full-day circular walk: ascend the Sierra de las Mamblas and circle the distinctive Muela mountain.

    We climb out of Covarrubias to another hermitage, Ermita de Nuestra Señora de Mamblas, followed by lunch on the ridge looking north. After lunch we complete the circuit of Muela and return to Covarrubias down a wooded valley.

  4. Day 4 Beautiful walk from Rio Arlanza to Santo Domingo de Silos; visit the beautiful Benedictine monastery.

    We take hired transport along the Arlanza river and then climb gently onto the plateau for a break at the Tenadas de Valcarcel with a second break at Tenadas del Campo and lunch on the top of the ridge facing the spectacular mountain of San Carlos. We descend to Silos with time to visit the Cloister museum (optional) before being collected by our private transport for the return journey to Covarrubias, taking in a short visit to La Yecla gorge on the way back.

  5. Day 5 Walk through vineyards and beautiful valleys to the 'The Three Villages', three remote and primitive settlements.

    We leave Covarrubias by the Arlanza river and climb through vineyards on the way to the first village of Retuerta. We then climb over the ridge and descend to the second village of Castroceniza. Lunch will be taken in this beautiful valley on the way to the third village of Ura. Another climb out of the valley takes us through forest and farmland to a highpoint overlooking Covarrubias, before descending back to the hotel.

  6. Day 6 Free day to relax or visit cathedral city of Burgos and its many sights.

    A suggested day is to take the 9:00 public bus to the cathedral city Burgos and its many sights. Return on 13:00 bus to Covarrubias for tapas lunch at our hotel. The choice of a siesta or short afternoon walk before an optional evening visit to Silos for vespers is possible before dinner.**

  7. Day 7 Walk along the crest of the Sierra de las Mamblas for stunning panoramic views.

    Another steady climb out of Covarrubias brings us through the dense forest to a limestone edge. After lunch we continue along the edge with wonderful views to the Sierra de la Demanda, before descending back to Covarrubias. An optional visit to a bodega (winery) is possible before dinner.

  8. Day 8 End Covarrubias.

    Out trip ends today in Covarrubias after breakfast.

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Where you stay

Hotel Rey Chindasvinto

This is a centre-based tour, spending 7 nights in the 3-star family-run Hotel Rural Rey Chindasvinto based in the picturesque village of Covarrubias.

The hotel is an elegant conversion of a traditional village house, set in a quiet square within the town walls. The hotel offers comfortable accommodation whilst retaining a mediaeval feel, with each of the rooms named after a local king or queen. Twin bedded and single rooms have a shower and WC, TV and telephone. Free Wi-Fi is also available in the hotel. The excellent dinners are accompanied by complimentary wine and include a good choice of regional and vegetarian dishes.

There are a limited number of single rooms which can be requested at the time of booking. Single supplements are subject to availability.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 7 dinners are included.

The excellent home cooked dinners are accompanied by complimentary wine. Please note that mealtimes in Spain are later than in many other countries; dinner is usually taken between 20:00hrs and 21.30hrs. The hotel offers a picnic lunch each day for a charge of EUR 5 or there are local shops to purchase your own lunch items from.

Vegetarians are catered for given prior notice, and most other dietary requirements can also be accommodated as long as you let us know in advance (at the time of booking). Please note that food choices may be limited.

Activity Level 3 (Moderate)

This is a moderate walking holiday with 5 days walking and 1 free day. The walks follow historic pilgrim routes, mule tracks and trails through the rural countryside of the Spanish heartland, as well as allowing free time to explore the cathedral city of Burgos.

The tracks are mostly well marked but some of the terrain under foot can be a little rough. All walks take around 5-6 hours and require a moderate level of fitness. Walking is on a variety of dirt tracks, gravel and some tarmac. There are some rocky sections that may require some scrambling and in less visited areas be aware paths may be overgrown and rougher underfoot, therefore walking boots are recommended. A few steep ascents and descents should be expected. Walking hours stated in the itinerary are given as approximates only. Timings stated include lunch and photo stops and will vary depending on the pace of your group.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 12/12/2019
5/5

the Secret Trails of Medieval Spain

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Each day was unique, with lovely wildflowers and birds (notably vultures, perched on the very edges of cliffs and storks nesting on high points of buildings) Dinner (with wine included). Eloy, proprietor of the hotel, cooked all our food and made sure that each day we sampled different Spanish dishes - his cooking is outstanding. With good food and wine the efforts of the day were celebrated and the highlights re-visited. The hotel rooms all have their unique character and a medieval feel. Eloy closed his bar to the locals in the evening in order to concentrate on looking after us.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Chris is knowledgeable, enthusiastic and part of the group, whilst still being able to lead it. He obviously loves the area and the people who are ready with their welcome when they see him.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes. The walks, although not really difficult, (a couple of steep places but they are short) are long and we walked four days in a row as the bus to Burgos did not run on a Wednesday. We walked 5/6 hours on each walking day, with breaks for coffee and lunch etc. I found that walking poles helped a lot and the knowledge that I could walk at least 10 miles a day.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I'm looking for another trip in Spain - it was that good

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

A great trip led by a great leader!

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A great ridge walk on our final day that allowed some of the best views of the trip. The daily dinners provided by the local hotel - some true spanish home cooking - surpassing all expectations in both quality and quantity!
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Emily was absolutely fantastic - a real asset to Exodus. So knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and handled difficult situations with sensitivity.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring lots of layers! The weather was unpredictable when we were there in June - going from 27c to 17c in a single week.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

A Great Trip!

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Highlights were - panoramic views from ridges or mountain tops, fields of wildflowers, isolated villages, Burgos cathedral.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Emily, was great - very friendly, knowledgeable and with relaxed leadership. She paced the walks very well.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Watch out for the stairs in the hotel. A few of our group missed their footing coming down where the stairs turn - the dark wood stain makes the edges hard to see, even with the light on.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Very enjoyable walking in interesting part of Spain

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    As a keen naturalist, the bird life was a real bonus - hearing and seeing nightingales regularly, swifts, martins and swallows filling the skies above the town, huge flocks of griffon vultures, as well as many other less easily spotted species. We were a bit early for the wildflowers due to a late Spring, but still saw lots of lovely orchids. Also plenty of good photo opportunities in the landscape and villages.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Xavier was very helpful, cheerful and friendly. His knowledge of local history was very good and he is an expert ornithologist with good local plant knowledge as well. At times there was a bit of a language barrier but we usually managed to understand each other!
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We found the weather surprisingly cold - there was snow on nearby mountains and the winds were really chilly - so travel with plenty of layers even in mid May! It wasn't an expensive holiday - nearly all meals provided and the opportunity to make your own picnics. The hotel catered pretty well for a non-meat eater who prefers to avoid wheat - if you eat fish and eggs you'll be OK, though complete veggies or vegans might not be so happy.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A relaxing holiday with plenty of exercise and fresh air!

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

walking in rural reas of northern Spain

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching the eagles and vultures flying over the hills and admiring the views from the high points.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent ( see above )
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If travelling at the beginning or end of the season to take some warm clothes in case the weather is inclement.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The holiday gave a good impression of typical Spanish rural life, a world away from the Costas ! I would recommend this trip to any walkers who like to experience the traditional ways of life. in a pleasant climate.

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Package Confirmed Dates Trip Status Trip Status Price (PP) Excluding Flights Price (PP) Including Flights  
October 3, 2020
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$1,479.00
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October 10, 2020
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