Spanish Kings and Saints, Cathedrals and Castles:
Connect with Higher Consciousness of Ancient Spain & Portugal

Not scheduled at this time.

Leaders Nayaswami Krishnadas and Nayaswami Mantradevi

Pilgrimage to Spain & Portugal Itinerary

Spain: Madrid, Toledo, Cordoba, Seville, Avila, Segovia, El Escorial, Alba de Tormes, Salamanca.

Portugal: Fatima, Lisbon.  

Depending on hotel facilities, many mornings will begin with an optional group meditation. More meditation, inward contemplation and prayer opportunities will happen in the cathedrals and churches that we visit.

DAY 1: MADRID

Almudena Cathedral looking over to Royal Palace Madrid-Spain

Arrive, Rest & Orient
With incredible cathedrals, churches, art galleries, restaurants, and shopping to offer, Madrid is truly a fascinating, world-class city. Arrive at the Hotel with time to check in and have dinner on your own. Meet in the hotel lobby at 7:30pm and we will go together to our designated meeting room for Orientation.

 DAY 2 / 3: MADRID

Pilgrims at the Prado Museum, Madrid-Spain

Our Sightseeing starts with a stroll through Sabatini Gardens, filled with Statues of kings and heroes throughout history, then on to the nearby Royal Palace, the largest in Europe. A visit to The Convent of the Royal Barefoot Nuns demonstrates a combination of discipline and opulence, You'll get to explore the world famous Del Prado Museum, and afterward, on the way to a delicious lunch, pass by the Biblioteca Nacional with statues of famous people in history. Near to our hotel is the Plaza Mayor, Madrid's main square, for you to explore and be entertained.


 DAY 4 / 5: TOLEDO

Toledo.jpg

Toledo was founded as the Roman city Toletum, in 192 B.C. These ancient winding streets, delightfully confusing, are a joy to walk through. The Catedral Primada de Toledo is absolutely stunning, inside and out, beginning with its ornate white limestone façade. It houses a magnificent collection of works by artists including Goya, Raphael, and local hero El Greco. You can view the city from high up in the Church of San Ildefonso and relive history in the Alcazar Fortress. Shops, including the famous Jewish quarter, are a delight to browse in.

 

 DAY 6: 1/2 DAY IN CORDOBA

Cordoba

In the center of this long-standing city is The Great Mosque of Cordoba. It is magnificent and history filled, one of the oldest structures still standing from the time Muslims ruled. San Ferdinand III of Castile lived there after he conquered and took back the city from the Moors. He built, inside this huge mosque, a magnificent Cathedral, that both religions would share the same space together.

 

DAY 6,7,8: SEVILLE

Seville Sorbisch Santa-Maria-de-la-Sede inner views

Ah, the beautiful Andalucian city of Seville. We'll tour the Cathedral of Seville, the largest Gothic cathedral, and third-largest church in the world. Paramhansa Yogananda said that in a former life he was a Spanish king, famous for driving the Moors out of Spain. San Ferdinand III was that king and his body lies here, incorrupt since 1252. We'll visit his tomb on the one day of the year they open it to the public, with a special ceremony. The Giralda Tower of the cathedral houses 24 bells and has a bird's eye view of the city.

Seville Alcazar exquisite interior

Another amazing site is the famous Alcazar (castle) of Seville, originally a Moorish fort, and the oldest royal palace still in use in Europe. You'll also have time to wander the interesting streets of Seville, enjoy the fine restaurants, browse shops and see an excellent flamenco performance. The “Fiesta Flamenca” takes place in a unique theatre, with views of the central patio of a 16th century palatial home.


DAY 9: SEVILLE TO AVILA
This is a travel day from Seville to Avila. We'll have lunch in the ancient Roman town of Merida, seeing some Roman ruins, and dining delectably at the aptly named restaurant, Shangri-la.

 

DAY 10: AVILA

St.Teresa

The birthplace of Saint Teresa of Avila. This awe-inspiring medieval city, constructed in 1090, is one of the oldest and most beautiful cities in Spain. We'll visit the Monastery of St. Joseph, the first convent she founded; the Monastery of the Incarnation where St. Teresa lived for most of 40 years; and the Convent of St. Teresa, built in the 17th-century, over the house where she was born. Enjoy the experience of simple but comfortable quarters in Casa Diocesana de Ejercicios, a convent turned retreat center.

 

 DAY 11: SEGOVIA

Segovia Palace from air

This charming old town features St. John of the Cross, saint and close friend of St. Teresa of Avila. There, in La Fuencisia Church is his mausoleum, an inspiring place to meditate. A short walk away is La Vera Cruz Church, a very old, unusual church built by the Templars, that he attended and preached at. An optional walk to Old Town Segovia features beautiful views of the rolling countryside hills. In town we'll expore the Alcazar de Segovia (Segovia Castle), have a scrumptious lunch at our favorite Segovia restaurant and then have time to shop and explore this beautiful small city. We’ll meet back at Plaza Meyor by the impressive 2,000 years old Roman aqueduct.


DAY 12: EL ESCORIAL / AVILA

El-Escorial-palace-and-gardens


One of the most fascinating places in Spain is The Royal Monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial. In this huge edifice you can explore the Architecture Museum; Painting Museum that exhibits a splendid collection of works from the Italian schools; Palace of Felipe II; Gallery of Battles; Palace of the Bourbons; Royal Pantheon, the burial mausoleum for the royal families: Courtyard of the Evangelists with 62 frescoes and paintings; and the extraordinary Regia Laurentina Library, one of the most important historic libraries in the world, with 45,000 printed works from the 15th and 16th centuries. Lunch will be in El Escorial and the rest of the day free to do more exploring in Avila.

El Escorial Avila Institute of Spain.jpg


 

DAY 13: ALBA DE TORMES / SALAMANCA

Krishnadas meditating in Salamncar

Teresa died from illness, in 1582, on a journey from Burgos to the scenic country town of Alba de Tormes. Her incorrupt body is entombed in the Convent of the Annunciation. There is an extensive museum in front, with a window level to her tomb that sits high above the altar in the Church below. Another smaller museum has original manuscripts of her books and the room where she died. Very inspiring place.

Salamanca is a university town, energetic and youthful feeling. The University of Salamanca was founded by influence of King San Fernando III. Some options here are to explore the university; see a very old unusual planetarium; roam through the large Gothic style San Esteban Church, where St. Teresa lived and had visions of Christ; stroll the streets; hang out in the main Plaza, and eat lots of delicious food.

Leon Catedral

 

PORTUGAL

DAY 14 / 15: FATIMA

Original statue of Our lady of Fatima

In 1917, in a small village, the Virgin Mary appeared thrice to three shepherd children. It is now a holy site, inspiring pilgrims from all over the world. Visitors gather in Cova de Iria, an enormous plaza where a little chapel was built on the spot the Virgin Mary appeared. On the far side of the plaza rises the great Basilica of Our Lady of Fatima, built in neo-classical style, with a central tower 65 meters high. Large torch-light evening processions, often led by cardinals and bishops, are particularly impressive. This is a wonderful place to tune into Divine Mother's presence.



DAY 16: LISBON

Lisbon farewell

Lisbon, Portugal’s vibrant capital. Upon arrival we’ll go to the colorful Alfama neighborhood, a picturesque Lisbon district with steep cobblestone lanes and a sea of terracotta roofs, ride the famous historic Tram 28 up the hill to the Miradouro da Graca, then walk down the cobblestone streets, stopping to admire the views from the Portas do Sol viewpoint, and browse the stalls at the Feira da Ladra flea market.
This is the ending city of our pilgrimage. We’ll soon be saying good-bye to each other, no doubt with lots of hugs and well wishes. Our time together has bonded us in Spirit, with many wonderful memories, and new, life-time friends, along with deep spiritual insights gained along the way.
In the evening we will have our final gathering to exchange stories of pilgrimage highlights and bid farewell to each other, until we meet again.

DAY 17: LISBON


Depart Portugal
The final day of the pilgrimage. After a sumptuous breakfast, everyone will depart according to your individual departure times. We’ll help make arrangements to get you to the Lisbon Airport, which is 25 minutes from our hotel.

Buen viaje, dear friends, go with love and joyful blessings!

 


Krishnadas LoCicero

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