Cantabria is one of the four Provinces that make up “Green Spain”and our destination is the small resort of Isla about 25 miles east of Santander. This scenic Province boasts golden beaches interspersed by rocky crags and behind the coastline is a land of meadows and rolling hills which ascend to the Picos de Europa mountains. Fishing, dairy farming and tourism are the main staples of the local economy.
Our hotel, the 4* Olimpo, sits on a small cliff overlooking the bay, has pleasant gardens, a small outdoor swimming pool and tennis courts. Good food, and plenty of it, is a feature of this friendly hotel. As we are fond of telling folks who complain about the quantity of food on offer - you don’t have to eat it all!!
We sail from Plymouth on Sunday and a cabin is provided. The ship has many diversions to keep you occupied such as live entertainment, swimming pool, cinema amongst others and fine dining or self-service restaurants.
Arriving in Santander on Monday we leave town and travel eastwards about 25 miles to Isla and the Hotel Olimpo . After check in you’ll have plenty of time to explore this pleasant coastal village.
The hotel faces a large sandy beach and assuming that the weather is favourable the rest of the day is free to enjoy that beach. There is a small outdoor swimming pool at the hotel. There is also a tennis court and gardens leading down to the beach. We stay for three nights with breakfast and dinner with wine included. The Band plays after dinner for listening and dancing.
Tuesday - Today we’re travelling eastwards to the charming fishing port and popular resort of Castro Urdiales. We spend the morning here and then return to Isla for lunch. The afternoon is free to explore Isla or just take it easy. Dinner is at 2030 followed by the Band.
Wednesday _This morning we head off for the foothills of the Picos de Europa mountain range. Our drive takes us along the Pas Valley to Reinosa, a small town at the entrance to the ski slopes.After a short sightseeing stop we now drive along the side of the Ebro Dam to the Escudo Pass where we begin a stunning descent down the Besaya Valley. We’ll pause at the pleasant spa village of Puente Viesgo for sightseeing and refreshment. We recommend a little walk along the river bank. Then it’s back to Isla and the hotel. Dinner is at 2030 followed by the Band.
On Thursday morning we drive to Santander stopping at the Hypermarket en route to pick up essential supplies . Then it’s time for sightseeing in Santander before we board the “Pont Aven” for the sailing to England at 1545.
We arrive in Plymouth at 1045 on Friday morning and after disembarkation the coach returns to the original pick up points.
The cost includes: all travel by executive coach; ferry crossing with cabin; three nights half-board at the 4* hotel; excursions; Tour Guide. Entertainment by the Band on three nights.
Single supplement- £125 4-berth cabin(for two) £90 4-berth outside Cabin £140 (NB There are no 2-berth outside cabins)
Pick up points : Bath-Bristol-Taunton-Exeter-Newton Abbot-Plymouth. This hotel was the destination for our first tour with the Panama Jazz Band in 1993. It is fitting that the last our is to the same destination