(In both locations) We will enjoy well balanced day trips comprising visits of general and Jewish interest, minimizing bus transport and using fun alternatives where possible, like bicycles and segways (with more traditional options for those who prefer!!)
Our 5* accommodation in the center of the amazing city of Barcelona at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel - http://www.mandarinoriental.com
Dali, Picasso, Miro and Gaudi are among the artists featured in Barcelona and the Catalonia region. We'll be introduced to their works by a specialist guide and be surrounded by them in the streets!!
Barcelona and Modernity: Gaudí to Dalí — the first comprehensive exhibition of its type ever mounted in America — explores the diverse and innovative work of Barcelona's artists, architects, and designers in the years between the Barcelona Universal Exposition of 1888 and the imposition of the Fascist regime of Francisco Franco in 1939. Barcelona and Modernity offers new insights into the art movements that advanced the city's quest for modernity and confirmed it as the primary center of radical intellectual, political, and cultural activities in Spain. Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, and Antoni Gaudí are among the internationally renowned artists who contributed to the creative vitality of Barcelona and the flourishing of Catalan culture.
We'll understand more of the Jewish history of Barcelona with a specialist guide, and we'll take a day trip to Girona to see the former home town of Nachmanides (Ramban) and hear the Jewish story there.
From Barcelona to Basque Country / Pays Basque staying in gorgeous San Sebastian.
another delicious destination with which to fall in love.
In Bilbao, we'll visit both inside and outside the famous Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank Gehry and then walk onto the equally famous bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava, one of whose bridges now adorns the entrance to our own Jerusalem תובב"א.
The Old City of Bilbao will round off our visit to this city before we set off to our luxurious home away from home in San Sebastian.
Our 5* accommodation is at the heart of beautiful San Sebastian at the "Maria Cristina", a Luxury Collection Hotel and a Starwood property - www.hotel-mariacristina.com
San Sebastian is famous, inter alia, for having the greatest concentration in the world of Michelin-star restaurants.
That doesn't do us much good EXCEPT that the standard of the food in the Maria Cristina Hotel has to be really amazing for them to survive – and their chefs are cooking our kosher food in a separate kitchen in the hotel!!
But don't worry – we'll do local culinary stuff too, such as eating freshly-grilled fish in a specialist restaurant in a fishing village nearby.
And tapas – as often as we can and as much as you can eat!!
Our time in San Sebastian on Shabbat will be well spent. Of course we'll daven, eat and rest, but in between times we'll walk with our guide in the beautiful old town, and along the beachfront.
One of the days we'll venture over the border to Bayonne in France to see the beautiful synagogue and hear about the Jewish contribution to the region, most especially the introduction of ..... wait for it .... CHOCOLATE!!
So guess what else we'll be doing in Bayonne!!
We'll have some adrenalin fun that same day with an ATV adventure.
We'll also be watching (and for those who wish) taking part in the world's fastest-moving ball game Jai-Alai, a sport that originates in the Basque Country. Click here to watch a video!!
Departure from San Sebastian on the 13.55 flight to Madrid (for immediate connections to NY & LON, evening flight to TLV)