Castles, Convents And Palaces With Wexas Travel
Wexas Travel offers an alternative and authentic way to experience Europe’s most beautiful regions
As travellers continue to search for authentic experiences whilst on holiday, the popularity of historical hotels is on the rise. From converted palaces and castles to former monasteries and convents, Wexas Travel has handpicked five itineraries which offers guests the chance to stay in impressive historic hotels, providing an alternative and authentic way to experience some of the most beautiful regions in Europe.
Spain | Madrid & the Castle Route – Best for Medieval Castles
After a day exploring the buzzing capital, swap the city glitz for historic charm, staying in some of the region’s finest converted Parador hotels. Beginning in Ciudad Rodrigo, a 14th century castle awaits which boasts stunning views of the Agueda River. From there head to Parador Jarandilla de la Vera, once home to Emperor Charles V and famed for its fortified turrets, medieval parade ground and scented orange groves. The trip will come to an end with an overnight stay at Oropesa, the former ancestral home of the ruling Alvarez de Toledo family. Highlights along the way include visiting the Prado, Reina Sofia and Thyssen-Bornemisza museums in Madrid; exploring the Cathedral of Santa Maria; walking, cycling or horse-riding in the countryside of Jarandilla and seeing several medieval treasures in Oropesa.
Denmark | Royal Denmark – Best for a Road Trip
Travellers looking for an adventure at leisure will love this eight-day self-drive holiday which begins in the capital Copenhagen, home to world class shopping, the famous Tivoli Gardens and the historic Nyhavn district. From there, embark on a journey through the heart of Denmark’s beautiful countryside, picturesque towns and local villages visiting impressive castles, Gothic cathedrals and ancient Viking ruins along the way. In Middlefart, guests will have the chance to sleep like a royal, staying at Hindsgavl – a renovated 13-century castle set among landscaped gardens.
Italy | Castello Banfi il Borgo, Tuscany – Best for a Rural Retreat
This stone hamlet, surrounded by olive groves and manicured gardens in the Tuscan countryside is perfect for those looking for a rural retreat. Born in the 1700s around a 13th century castle this is the ideal base from which to explore one of Italy’s favourite regions. Here, guests can tour vineyards and visit the onsite bottle and Glass Museum which showcases every era of glass production from fifth century Roman pieces to Picasso’s famous Water Girl. When it comes to banqueting, guests will dine in style during a complimentary five-course dinner paired with six Castello Banfi wines.
Portugal | Pousadas of Portugal – The Algarve – Best for an off-the-beaten track adventure
Travellers looking to discover an alternative side of the Algarve, away from the crowds and large holiday resorts, will love this seven-day self-drive adventure. Along the way guests will stay in the famous Pousadas, a series of converted historical buildings including a former 16th century monastery, a restored 13thcentury convent and a 19th century palace. Highlights also include enjoying the delicious seafood in the fishing town of Tavira; visiting Beja castle and the basilica of Santo Amaro; exploring the deserted beaches in Sagres and seeing the Roman ruins of Milreu.
Portugal | Lisbon, Porto & Madeira – Best for Wine Tasting
For those looking for a mix of city, beaches, history and wine can experience it all on this 11-day adventure through Lisbon, Porto and Madeira. Beginning in Lisbon, guests will spend the first three nights at the 19th century Pestana Palace, the perfect base to explore the buzzing capital and the local area including Sintra – a popular summer residence of the Portuguese kings for more than 500 years. Next head north to Porto to soak up the culture and try the delicious wine in the nearby Duoro Valley. The adventure will come to an end in Madeira where travellers can relax and unwind in the island’s year-round sun whilst relaxing by the pool at Belmond’s Reid palace, a favourite amongst the likes of Winston Churchill and George Bernard Shaw.