Castellon de la Plana, Spain

Introduction to Castellon de la Plana

One of the most relaxing and sought after tourist attractions in Spain.

The medieval part of Castellón is an absolute delight, with fine houses, elegant squares and the air suffused with the smell of the oranges that grow all over this part of Spain. The municipal museum is known as the Museo de la Naranja – the Orange Museum – telling the story of the fruit and its cultivation from the 17th century onwards. The Castellón Fine Arts Museum has several fine collections, including over a thousand ceramic pieces. The Cathedral of Santa María de la Asunción dates from 1939, a replacement for one destroyed in the Civil War, although the octagonal bell-tower, separate from the main body, was built in the 16th century.

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TOUR A - PANORAMIC VALENCIA

Valencia is the main city in the province of Valencia, located in the centre of the Spanish Mediterranean coastline. Upon arrival here, we begin our panoramic drive of the city, taking in both the historical centre and the modern part of Valencia.

Panoramic Coach Tour
Price£45.00 - £55.00
DurationApprox. 4.5 hours
Walking level 1 - minimal or no walkingMinimal or no walking
Free time includedFree time included

Departing from the quayside at Castellon, we shall drive along the coastline, where we can view from our coach the beaches of Costa Azahar ('Orange Blossom Coast'), so-called due to nearby fields containing numerous orange trees. During our drive, we shall also be able to see in the distance the Castle of Sagunto - the walls of which stretch nearly one kilometre (half a mile) long.

Valencia is the main city in the province of Valencia, located in the centre of the Spanish Mediterranean coastline. Upon arrival here, we begin our panoramic drive of the city, taking in both the historical centre and the modern part of Valencia. Some of the sights we shall see during our tour are the North Station (a modernist building designed by architect Demetrio Ribes), the central market and the Lonja (Silk Exchange), a World Heritage Site considered to be one of the best examples of civic Gothic architecture. Following our tour of the historical city centre, we can enjoy some free time here to explore independently, prior to continuing our drive.

Located in the modern part of Valencia is the City of Arts and Sciences, the largest cultural-educational complex in Europe, which combines science and learning in an entertaining way for people of all ages. The modern complex was designed by Santiago Calatrava, and covers an area of 350,000 square metres. It comprises five different buildings, including the Oceanographic Park – an underwater city planned by the late Felix Candela – which is the largest marine park in Europe. We will have a photo stop outside the City of Arts and Sciences prior to the return to Castellon de la Plana.

TOUR NOTES: This is primarily a coach tour, which is suitable for guests with limited mobility (providing individuals can board the coach unaided). There will be approximately 30 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, toilet facilities are available at bars and restaurants in Valencia during the period of free time.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This is primarily a coach tour, which is suitable for guests with limited mobility (providing individuals can board the coach unaided). There will be approximately 30 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, toilet facilities are available at bars and restaurants in Valencia during the period of free time.


TOUR B - MORELLA

Located in the northernmost province of Valencia, Morella is a small town built on a rock, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at a height of just over 1,000 metres above sea level. The town is surrounded by an ancient wall and crowned by an impressive castle.

Price£75.00 - £85.00
DurationApprox. 8 hours
Walking level 2 - moderate walkingModerate walking
Snack includedSnack included

Located in the northernmost province of Valencia, Morella is a small town built on a rock, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at a height of just over 1,000 metres above sea level. The town is surrounded by an ancient wall and crowned by an impressive castle.

Departing the quayside, we travel through the typical landscape of the Maestrazgo region, with almond, carob and olive trees. Our first stop will be in Ares del Maestre, a village perched on top of a rocky mountain, which offers impressive views. Here we will have a brief guided visit.

We continue our drive to Morella, where upon arrival we shall enter the walled town through Saint Miguel's Gate. We will walk along the Blasco de Alagón, Morella's main street, towards the Arciprestal Church of Santa Maria. Here we can admire the unique organ and altarpiece, as well as browse the Ecclesiastical Museum in the sacristy.

Following our guided tour, we can enjoy some free time to explore the area independently, or to browse the shops selling typical Morellan produce. For those of us who are feeling particularly energetic, we may like to walk the steep climb up to the castle and admire the impressive view from here, the site of numerous battles over the years.

We shall then stop for lunch prior to the return to Castellon de la Plana and our awaiting ship.

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves approximately 30 minutes of compulsory walking at Ares del Maestre and one and a quarter hours at Morella, some of which will be over uphill terrain. There are some steps to negotiate at each of the stops, therefore this tour is not recommended for guests with limited mobility or wheelchair users. There will be approximately 45 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, the drive from the quayside to Ares del Maestra takes around one and a quarter hours, and the drive from Morella back to our ship takes approximately two hours – a comfort stop will NOT be made en route. Please note that during our visit to the church, all guests must have their shoulders and knees covered (i.e. no shorts, mini skirts or vests).

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves approximately 30 minutes of compulsory walking at Ares del Maestre and one and a quarter hours at Morella, some of which will be over uphill terrain. There are some steps to negotiate at each of the stops, therefore this tour is not recommended for guests with limited mobility or wheelchair users. There will be approximately 45 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, the drive from the quayside to Ares del Maestra takes around one and a quarter hours, and the drive from Morella back to our ship takes approximately two hours – a comfort stop will NOT be made en route. Please note that during our visit to the church, all guests must have their shoulders and knees covered (i.e. no shorts, mini skirts or vests).


TOUR C - PEÑISCOLA

The hospitable town of Peñiscola has been the crossroads of all Mediterranean civilisations, including Carthaginians, Romans, Byzantines and Arabs, who were all aware of its advantageous location. The old city, which is crowned by a 14th century castle, stands atop of an impressive rocky crag rising 64 metres above sea level. A sandy isthmus joins it to the mainland, which in the past was swept by waves during storms, turning the city into an ephemeral island.

Activity Tour
Price£50.00 - £60.00
DurationApprox. 4.5 hours
Walking level 3 - extensive walkingExtensive walking
Free time includedFree time included

The hospitable town of Peñiscola has been the crossroads of all Mediterranean civilisations, including Carthaginians, Romans, Byzantines and Arabs, who were all aware of its advantageous location. The old city, which is crowned by a 14th century castle, stands atop of an impressive rocky crag rising 64 metres above sea level. A sandy isthmus joins it to the mainland, which in the past was swept by waves during storms, turning the city into an ephemeral island.

Departing the quayside, we drive via the motorway to Peñiscola Harbour, where we begin our walking tour of the walled town. We will enter through Saint Peter's Gate (Portal de Sant Pere), which provided access to the fortress from the sea once the water reached the foot of the city walls. During our tour, we shall pass by the Bufador (a wide gap between the rocks through which the sea rises on stormy days), the Sea Museum and the Virgen del Socorro Parish Church, which has examples of Gothic tracery dating from the 15th century, and a collection of historical and artistic value. We shall also see the Mare de Deu del la Ermitana Hermitage, which was built in the 17th century and houses the image of the town's patron saint.

The Castle of Peñiscola, which is a national listed building, is a fortress set into the highest point of the promontory. Built by the Templar Knights between 1294 and 1307, the Castle was once a refuge for Pope Luna, Benedict XIII. Today it is currently the second most visited monument in Spain, following the Alhambra in Granada.

Following approximately 30 minutes of free time, where we can explore Peñiscola at leisure, we shall walk through the Fosc Gate and back to our tour coach, before the return journey to the quayside and our awaiting ship.

TOUR NOTES: This is primarily a walking tour, which involves approximately two hours of compulsory walking at Peñiscola over uneven and uphill ground. There are around 30 steps to negotiate during our walking tour, and 20 steps at the Castle, therefore this tour is unfortunately not suitable for guests with limited mobility and wheelchair users. There is approximately 30 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, the journey from the quayside to Peñiscola takes approximately one hour each way.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This is primarily a walking tour, which involves approximately two hours of compulsory walking at Peñiscola over uneven and uphill ground. There are around 30 steps to negotiate during our walking tour, and 20 steps at the Castle, therefore this tour is unfortunately not suitable for guests with limited mobility and wheelchair users. There is approximately 30 minutes of free time, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. For reference, the journey from the quayside to Peñiscola takes approximately one hour each way.


TOUR D - SAINT JOSEPH'S CAVES

On our tour today we can enjoy an unforgettable experience on the calm waters of Europe's longest navigable underground river, and admire the beautiful natural formations found here.

Price£50.00 - £60.00
DurationApprox. 4.75 hours
LimitationLimited capacity
Walking level 2 - moderate walkingModerate walking

On our tour today we can enjoy an unforgettable experience on the calm waters of Europe's longest navigable underground river, and admire the beautiful natural formations found here.

Departing the quayside at Castellon, we shall travel along the coastline, where we can enjoy a panoramic view of the beaches at Benicassim. We continue to the liqueur distillery of the Carmelite monks, where we shall stop and taste the various beverages, which are made according to the monks' ancient recipe.

We continue our drive to Vall d'Uixo, located at the foot of the Espadán Mountains. Upon arrival here, we shall have approximately 30 minutes of free time to explore the area independently, before we travel towards Saint Joseph's Caves, situated in the Sierra de Espadán Nature Park. The caves are home to the longest navigable underground river in Europe. We shall board a boat for an approximate 45-minute journey around the caves, where we can admire the variety of rock formations found here, including the 'jellyfish', 'flower waterfall' and the 'glens'.

Following our visit here, we re-board our tour coach for the return journey to Castellon.

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves approximately ten minutes of walking at Saint Joseph's Caves, over uneven and possibly slippery ground, therefore flat, comfortable shoes with good grip should be worn. There are around ten steps to negotiate at the distillery, and five steps at the caves, therefore this tour is not suitable for wheelchair users. Guests with limited mobility must be able to board the coach and the boat unaided. There will be around 30 minutes of free time in Vall d'Uixo, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. Guests should exercise due care and attention when negotiating the boat, as it may be slippery. Boats fit up to ten guests each. Please note that the depth of the water is around one and a half metres maximum, therefore life jackets will not be used. For reference, the rower of each boat only speaks Spanish; therefore our guide will give us an introduction to the Caves in English before we begin our journey through them.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2012 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves approximately ten minutes of walking at Saint Joseph's Caves, over uneven and possibly slippery ground, therefore flat, comfortable shoes with good grip should be worn. There are around ten steps to negotiate at the distillery, and five steps at the caves, therefore this tour is not suitable for wheelchair users. Guests with limited mobility must be able to board the coach and the boat unaided. There will be around 30 minutes of free time in Vall d'Uixo, where walking is at the discretion of the individual. Guests should exercise due care and attention when negotiating the boat, as it may be slippery. Boats fit up to ten guests each. Please note that the depth of the water is around one and a half metres maximum, therefore life jackets will not be used. For reference, the rower of each boat only speaks Spanish; therefore our guide will give us an introduction to the Caves in English before we begin our journey through them.


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