• Convento do Espinheiro

    Stay at This Luxury Portuguese Resort Hotel Created from a Monastery

    <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Évora, Portugal</a> is an ancient walled Portuguese city listed as a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">UNESCO World Heritage site</a> for its ancient Roman temple and volume of historical white-washed Baroque churches. After a day of delving into the past and wandering the winding cobblestone lanes inside the 14th-century walls, retreating back to a relaxing and comfortable accommodation is a must. Enter the<a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"> Convento do Espinheiro</a>, a new 92 room resort hotel that was created from an 1834 monastery just on the outskirts of town. Pairing a cultural discovery and luxurious holiday, you can enjoy a huge outdoor pool, tennis court, indoor salt-water pool, jacuzzi, and full spa after a day of discovering all Évora and the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/blog/tag/portugal/" target="_blank">Alentejo region</a> has to offer. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXN5" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>The excitement of staying the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Convento do Espinheiro</a> lies in not only the five-star amenities but also the intriguing history of the hotel. The property was originally built in the 1400s by monks in honor of the Virgin Mary after she was reputed to have appeared there years earlier. Since then, the convent has been visited by Portuguese monarchs, spiritual groups on pilgrimages, several foreign kings and queens and now, yourself! Starwood Luxury Collection purchased the unused property and converted it into the culturally rich and luxurious five-star resort experience guests can enjoy today. The impressive property was even named one of the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/resort-hotels-in-spain-portugal" target="_blank">Top 3 Spain and Portugal Resort Hotels in 2019</a> by <i>Travel + Leisure</i> Magazine. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNj" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNP" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>The resort hotel has 92 rooms, including 5 suites, that are divided between &quot;heritage&quot; rooms in the old monastery and newer rooms located in the newer spa building. The &quot;heritage&quot; rooms are created from old monk&#39;s cells and are furnished with dark-wood furniture, oil paintings, and the luxuries that mirror those the Portuguese Royal Family experienced during their stays at the property. The rooms maintain a luxurious and historical feel in conjunction with its surroundings while also incorporating modern glamour design. The rooms maintain a lovely historical charm, garden views, and easy access to the property&#39;s chapel dating back to 1801. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNZ" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>The hotel offers a few dining options including <a href="https://www.conventodoespinheiro.com/en/" target="_blank">Restaurant Divinus</a>, which serves classic Alentejo cuisine using simple ingredients as well as indigenous products—creating meals in which the pleasure of eating simultaneously feels like a cultural act. A crowd favorite is also the hotel&#39;s <a href="https://www.conventodoespinheiro.com/en/" target="_blank">Cisterna Wine Bar</a> which is located in an ancient gothic water deposit from the 15th century, where you can sit in candlelight and enjoy nightly tastings of the region&#39;s superior wines. Excellent dining options paired with friendly and accommodating staff makes for a lovely Portuguese culinary experience. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNF" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNU" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>During the day, enjoy a nature walk along<a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"> Aqueduct de l&#39;Agua de Prata,</a> visit a cork factory and savor local wine and a picnic under cork wood trees. On the grounds of Convento do Espinheiro, explore their sweeping gardens, take a dip in one of the pools, and maybe indulge in a treatment at the hotel spa. The gorgeous town of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Évora</a> and the charms of the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/blog/tag/portugal/" target="_blank">Alentejo region</a> is brought to the next level with a stay at the Convento do Espinheiro—the cultural significance, luxurious treatment, and attentive service are unparalleled. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000001vxz5&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000zXNA" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>For a chance to stay at the top-rated Convento do Espinheiro, take a look at our <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Portugal Culture + Walking tour</a>, or give <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys</a> a call at 833.387.1210 to hear more about opportunities to travel to the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Alentejo region of Portugal</a> and indulge in the luxury of this property. 

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  • Avignon France

    River Cruising, Reimagined

    What happens when the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Danube</a>, the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Rhône </a>or the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Douro </a>runs like a rich thread through the heart of your vacation?<br><br>Standing in the clifftop castle of a lost kingdom you feel the ebb and flow of time. When you walk the path through a near-vertical vineyard you can’t help but appreciate the infinite ingenuity of man (while you build a suitable thirst). As you shop a village market or sit down to lunch in a private home tucked away in the surrounding countryside, you have the rare chance to soak up the tempo and tastes of everyday life like few travelers ever do.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><img alt="Woman in a French Market, Provence" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATPg&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f89s" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/river-cruising/" target="_blank">Europe’s great rivers</a> don’t just connect mountains to seas. They link prehistoric past to the bustling present – and when you explore them with Classic Journeys you’ll experience it all in deeply personal, once-in-a-lifetime ways. Every inch of the way, your fulltime local guide will introduce you to friends and favorite places that give you the insights that you crave as a traveler. You’ll meet the likes of artisans, farmers and schoolchildren, not to mention vintners happy to pour tastes from their premier barrels. And, of course, you can count on chefs to prepare traditional cuisine for you in some of the region’s finest cafes and restaurants.<br><br>Welcome to river cruising the Classic Journeys’ way. Your home base throughout your visit will be a five-star river cruise ship. It’s a real pleasure to unpack a single time in a stateroom where expansive floor-to-ceiling windows mean the views are always with you. In addition, you’ll have unlimited access to all of the ship’s luxury amenities – gourmet restaurants, concierge service, fitness facility and spa, and a top deck where you can settle into a chaise to watch the world slide by or grab a nap.<br><br>Every day, you have the option of choosing your own adventure. Because your Classic Journeys’ guide is with you full time, they’ll lead you on expeditions handcrafted exclusively for your small group of no more than 18 guests. Thanks to your group’s small footprint, you’ll have opportunities that the ship’s other passengers can only dream of. If you or a traveling companion decides instead to take a “day off” to lounge on board or set off for an on-your-own stroll, go for it. The choice is all yours. After all, it’s your vacation.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><img alt="Kayaking under the Pont du Gard, Provence, France" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATPg&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f89i" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>If the idea of a vacation that blends rich cultural experiences with wonderful logistical ease floats your boat, you’ll love these river-based Classic Journeys. Please join us as we launch our inaugural itineraries this fall in the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Rhône</a>, <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Douro </a>and <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Danube </a>river valleys.<br><br><b>GO WITH THE FLOW!</b><br><br>Choose from three new river-based itineraries that blend our award-winning approach to handcrafted trips of a lifetime with the ease of riverboat cruising.<br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank">THE DOURO</a></b><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Porto to Salamanca</a><br>Through a gentle series of locks, you ascend from <a href="http://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank">coastal Porto</a> up to a scenic land of olive groves, vineyards and medieval hilltop villages. At the highest reaches of the valley, you explore Salamanca and the glorious Spanish countryside.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/douro-luxury-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><img alt="View from a River Cruise Boat" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATPg&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f89T" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><b>THE DANUBE</b></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Vienna to Budapest</a><br>The Hapsburg Empire still reigns supreme along the <a href="http://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank">banks of the Danube</a> as you’ll discover on your exclusive activities that reveal the Austrian countryside, as well as Vienna, the Slovakian capital of Bratislava and gorgeous Budapest.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/danube-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><img alt="Exterior of River Cruise Boat on the Danube" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATPg&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f89d" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">THE RH</a><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Ô</a><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">NE</a><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank"> </a></b><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">Burgundy &amp; Provence</a><br>Discover the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank">France of Cézanne</a> and gastronomic thrills. On an itinerary that ranges from the wine capital of Beaune to the Pont du Gard and Avignon, you’ll walk the legendary countryside, meet olive growers, and dine in a Michelin-starred restaurant.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/rhone-river-cruise/" target="_blank"><img alt="Room and View on a Rhone River Cruise" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATPg&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f89Y" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a>

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  • Village on Cliffs in Spain

    5 Best Overseas Adventures: Southern Europe

    Picking an overseas travel adventure can prove to be quite a challenge... especially if you&#39;re looking to explore Southern Europe. There are so many wonderful locations to choose from! So, to make things easier for you, we&#39;ve rounded up our top five <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/europe/" target="_blank">Southern European destinations</a>. Yet, no matter where you choose—whether it be the lavender fields of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/provence-tours/" target="_blank">Provence</a>, the vineyards of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/tuscany-tours/" target="_blank">Tuscany</a>, or <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/croatia-tours/" target="_blank">Croatia&#39;s </a>cinematic Dalmatian Coast—you&#39;re guaranteed to have a trip of a lifetime with Classic Journeys.<br><br><b>TOP 5 TRIPS IN SOUTHERN  EUROPE:</b><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/spain/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ehpt&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015r3I" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/spain/" target="_blank"><b>SPAIN</b></a><br>Passionate flamenco vs. the cooling splash of the Alhambra’s pools. The gleaming simplicity of white-washed mountain villages vs. the gaudy Gaudî masterpieces of Barcelona. Vast plains studded with gnarled olive trees vs. the soft, decadent beaches of the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/barcelona/" target="_blank"><u>Costa Brava</u></a>. Spain is an intense and exciting land full of contrast. Our <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/southernspain/" target="_blank"><u>Culture + Walking</u></a> and <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/barcelonafamily/" target="_blank"><u>Family</u></a> adventures introduce you to the people of Spain and immerse you in their diverse lives. From the intricacy of Moorish palaces to stylish cosmopolitan promenades, you’ll get an unforgettable look at a country where a thousand years of fierce history and easy-going 21st style blend perfectly in culture, architecture and truly remarkable food.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/france/" target="_blank"><img alt="France" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ehpt&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015r3N" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/france/" target="_blank"><b>FRANCE</b></a><br>The seductive power of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/france/" target="_blank">France </a>is irresistible. You can try to wave off the lunchtime splash of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/bordeaux/" target="_blank">Bordeaux</a>, but the glass always seems to find your lips. When a maman leans out her window on folded arms and cocks her head in that come-here-and-tell-me-who-you-are way, what can you say but, “Of course.” If a breeze heavy with lavender tugs at your senses, it’s almost impossible not to give in. Our Culture + Walking, Culinary and Family trips go happily with the French flow, whether we’re on a lazy low-tide walk at <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/normandy/" target="_blank">Mont-Saint-Michel</a> or catching the rays on the ramparts of a clifftop castle overlooking the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/bordeaux/" target="_blank">Dordogne River</a>. The cuisine is remarkable, the hotels are magnifique... and with your local guide, you’ll slip easily into la vie française.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/italy/" target="_blank"><img alt="Italy" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ehpt&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015r3S" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/italy/" target="_blank"><b>ITALY</b></a><br>Visit <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/italy/" target="_blank">Italy </a>every year forever, and you’d never have to repeat yourself. Each region—sometimes it seems like each village—is its own unique and totally irresistible destination. From the alpine breezes that cool the villas on Lake Como to sun-warmed <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/sicily/" target="_blank">Sicily</a></u>, the culture, climate and terrain couldn’t be more different. For something more rustic and off-the-beaten-path, head for <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/apulia/" target="_blank">Apulia</a></u> in the heel of Italy’s boot. For the flip side of Italian sophistication, our Family trip to <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/italyfamily/" target="_blank">Venice, Florence and Rome</a></u> is a wonderful introduction to the best of the best. Or hobnob with rural shepherds—and the yacht set—on a visit to <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/sardinia/" target="_blank">Sardinia</a></u> that also includes the nearby French island of Corsica. Your options also include our best-selling trips to <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/tuscany-tours/" target="_blank">Tuscany</a></u> and the <u><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/amalfi-tours/" target="_blank">Amalfi Coast</a></u>.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><img alt="Portugal" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ehpt&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015r3X" style="height: 354px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank"><b>PORTUGAL</b></a><br>This is how it feels to be royalty. Funded by centuries of discovery and empire, <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Portugal </a>has more regal grandeur than any other country we know. Of course, the great cities of Lisbon and Porto are rich with imperial landmarks. Our hotels here are distinctive and very gracious. But Portugal also has more hours of sunshine a year than any other European country, perfect for exploring. So we taste the country’s treasured port wines on walks in the mountainous vineyards where they’re born. On a glorious coastal trail, you’ll face the churning surf that Henry the Navigator conquered to explore Africa and the New World. And we’ll come face to face with the Portuguese people from salt-panners to winemakers. When you join Classic Journeys on a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/portugal/" target="_blank">Portugal walking tour</a>, you’ll get a true feel for the unique tempo and personality of this kingdom by the sea.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/croatia-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="Croatia" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ehpt&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015r3c" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/croatia-tours/" target="_blank"><b>CROATIA</b></a><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/croatia-tours/" target="_blank">Croatia </a>is the country where we would live if we could live anywhere. Beautiful doesn’t begin to describe Dalmatia’s Adriatic coastline or Istrian vineyards that Napa should envy. Think cinematic Dubrovnik (aka King’s Landing on “Game of Thrones”), Rovinj perched on the tip of a peninsula, and harbor-side Hvar. This is a country where you can do an artisanal olive-oil tasting lesson, take a country walk a million miles from anywhere, and rest up afterward at your 5-star hotel by the sea, all in the same day. The Croatians are warm hosts and—from vintners to truffle hunters—just about the most engaging people ever.

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