Join the Fulbright Insight Trip to Spain and Portugal!

Fulbright alumni and Friends of Fulbright are no ordinary travelers: they are global citizens who are interested in deep interaction with the world. The Fulbright Association offers several different types of trips to appeal to varied interests. No matter where you travel with us, you’ll always enjoy cultural insights, stimulating conversations within your group, and a meaningful international experience. 

Join us for this enlightening trip to Spain and Portugal, where you will take in both charming cities and sprawling countryside. Explore medieval towers, enjoy heavenly strolls through ancient cities, and even cutting edge contemporary art.

Take a look below through our exciting itinerary. We hope you will join us in May!

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Arrival to Lisbon on May 15th. Participants can expect complimentary pick up at the airport with transfer to the hotel in Lisbon. After check-in, take some time to enjoy the beautiful Lisbon city center.

As the sun sets on the first day, experience a welcome dinner with fado singers, a mournful sounding solo singer accompanied by a classical Portuguese guitar.

Stay overnight Lisbon. 

Meals included: lunch, dinner


After breakfast, enjoy a full-day walking tour of Lisbon. Begin with the São Jorge Castle (Castelo de São Jorge), one of Lisbon’s most emblematic landmarks. The silhouette of the Castle stands out both by day and when illuminated at night, located on the summit of São Jorge hill, the highest in Lisbon. The hillside also houses two of the city’s neighbourhoods called Alfama and Castelo. Next, explore the Jerónimos Monastery, a National Monument classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. King Manuel I built a large monastery near the location where the Infante D. Henrique ordered a church to be built in the mid-15th century by invocation of St. Mary of Belém. Afterwards, visit the Belém Tower (Torre de Belém), built between 1514 and 1520 in a Manuelino style by the Portuguese architect and sculptor Francisco de Arruda. It was also classified as a World Herit

age Site in 1983 by UNESCO. Constructed on the northern bank of the Tagus River, this tower was used to defend the city. Praça do Comércio, the Commerce Square of the city, is Lisbon’s main square. It was built on the site where the old Royal Palace used to exist before it was destroyed by the earthquake of 1755. The southern end of the plaza is open and looks out onto the Tagus River. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Santa Justa Lift with its stunning observation deck at the top offering magnificent views over Baixa. Since it was opened to the public, it has become one of the most popular viewpoints in Lisbon. Curiously, this lift can carry 20 people upwards, but can only take 15 people down. Finally, explore the main Lisbon Cathedral. The cathedral is a Latin cross building with three aisles, a transept and a main chapel surrounded by an ambulatory. The church is connected with a cloister on the Eastern side. The main façade of the cathedral looks like a fortress, with two towers flanking the entrance and crenellations over the walls.

Stay overnight in Lisbon.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Sintra and Cabo da Roca

Enjoy a day trip to Sintra, charming Portuguese town situated within the cooling hills of the Serra de Sintra. Hidden among its majestic pine forest, you will discover whimsical palaces, extravagant villas and the ruins of a 10th-century Moorish castle. Here, visit Pena Palace, a Romanticist castle completed in 1854. It is situated on a top of a hill above the town of Sintra and can be easily spotted from Lisbon on a clear day. The national monument known for its architectural features and vast forested park welcomes thousands of visitors every year. Then, drive to the westernmost point of Europe, Cabo da Roca, often referred to as “the edge of the world”. It is a rugged coastline adorned with rocky cliffs overlooking the roaring Atlantic Ocean; and one of the best views in Portugal. Enjoy a visit to the fishing villages of Cascais and Estoril.

Return to Lisbon and overnight.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Continue in Lisbon and on to Oviedo

In the morning, visit Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga. This museum is housed in a 17th-century palace and in a building that stands on the site of a 16th-century Carmelite convent, of which all that now remains is a Baroque chapel. It is one of the most important Portuguese museums and has a magnificent garden overlooking the River Tagus.

Afterwards, transfer to the airport and fly to Oviedo via Madrid

Dinner and overnight stay in Oviedo. 

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Oviedo and Gijon

Begin the day with a stunning walking tour of Oviedo, visiting the Santa Maria de Naranco. Built as a recreational palace, it is situated on the southern side of Mount Naranco facing the city, and was originally part of a series of royal buildings located in the outskirts. Its character as a civil building changed in the 12th century when it was converted into a church dedicated to St. Mary. Then, visit St. Michael of Lillo (Spanish: San Miguel de Lillo, Asturian: Samiguel de Lliño) is a Roman Catholic church built on the Naranco mount, near the Church of Santa María del Naranco in Asturias. It was completed in 842 and it was consecrated by Ramiro I of Asturias and his wife Paterna in the year 848. 

After lunch, continue the Asturias day in the beautiful Old city of Gijon to explore and enjoy dinner.

Return and stay overnight in Oviedo. 

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Cave Altamira and Santillana de Mar

In the morning, take a walk of Lastres on the way to the prehistoric paintings in the Cave Altamira. The cave is approximately 1,000 m (3,300 ft) long and consists of a series of twisting passages and chambers. The main passage varies from two to six meters in height. The cave was formed through collapses following early karst phenomena in the calcareous rock of Mount Vispieres. Afterwards, take an afternoon stroll on the streets of Santillana de Mar.

Drive to your overnight stay in Comillas. 

Meals included: breakfast, lunch


After breakfast, discover Comillas, especially Marqués de Comillas’ fabulous neo-Gothic palace with elements of Antonio Gaudi. Then, dive into the charming city of Santander, exploring their new culture center, Botín. The center is composed of sprawling exhibition halls (2,500 meters in total) and characterized by large windows that open to views of the surroundings, as well as a commercial area on the ground floor, an information point, a restaurant and a cafe in a glazed space.  Afterwards, continue towards Bilbao for an overnight stay.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Bilbao and San Sebastian

Begin a beautiful day in Bilbao with a walk the Casco Viejo, the city’s medieval old quarter and a lively riverside district of narrow alleys lined with modern shops and traditional taverns. Next, visit the famed Guggenheim Museum. It is a museum of modern and contemporary art designed by Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry. The museum was inaugurated on 18 October 1997 by King Juan Carlos I of Spain, with an exhibition of 250 contemporary works of art. Then, travel to San Sebastian to see the Buen Pastor Cathedral, the biggest religious building in San Sebastián occupying a prominent complex in the centre of the city together with the Koldo Mitxelena Cultural Centre and the post office. Its 75-metre high tower rises in the shape of a needle that can be seen from almost every part of the city. Also enjoy a visit to the Plaza de la Constitucion, Monte Urgull, and more. Stay overnight in San Sebastian. 

Meals included: breakfast, lunch

Burgos and Madrid

In the morning, drive to Burgos and visit the burial place of El Cid Campeador, the Spanish hero of the Middle Ages. Drive further to the capital Madrid, taking in the gorgeous Spanish countryside along the way. Enjoy a delicious flamenco dinner, before staying overnight in Madrid.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner

On your final morning, enjoy a final breakfast in your Madrid hotel. If you plan on departing this day, there will be complimentary transfer to the airport for individual departures. If you are so inclined, feel free to remain a few days beyond the length of our structured tour in the Spanish capital.


What's Included

  • Meals as specified in itinerary above
  • Transportation by private, air-conditioned van, as well as group transfers as appropriate
  • English speaking guide(s) through the whole trip period
  • All activities, sightseeing, and entry fees listed in the itinerary
  • Comprehensive tailor-made info-pack

What's Not Included

  • Travel to Lisbon and from Madrid
  • Personal expenses (laundry, souvenirs, room service, etc.)
  • Passport application fees
  • Transportation of luggage in excess of weight allowance
  • International medical and travel insurance
  • Food and beverage other than specified in itinerary above
  • Costs associated with trip interruption or modification due to weather, travel conditions, political/civil disputes, medical emergencies or other causes beyond our control

Spots will be first-come, first-served. Click below to pay your deposit, complete the necessary forms, and secure your place.

If you have any questions about registration, please contact our office at or by phone at (202) 775-0725.

Membership Requirements

You must be a current member of the Fulbright Association in order to join the tour. If you are not a member, you can click here to join, or if you are a lapsed member, please click here to renew your annual membership. Not a Fulbright alumn? No problem! The Fulbright Association welcomes all supporters of the mission of the Fulbright Program to join as Friends of Fulbright. Tour registrants may also bring one non-member guest. Please indicate who your guest is in your registration materials.

For your safety as well as that our your fellow travelers, an FDA-authorized vaccine or vaccine authorized by emergency use by the World Health Organization against COVID-19 is a requirement for this trip.


What if this trips gets cancelled?

These are obviously still uncertain times. We feel comfortable moving ahead with this trip, but will of course be paying close attention to conditions in the coming weeks. Your safety is our primary concern on these trips. If by any chance the situation gets out of control and traveling would be too risky, all participants will get 100% of their money refunded, so absolutely no risk of losing their money.

How difficult is this trip physically?

Our trips are rated on a scale of 1-3, with this trip being estimated at a level 2. We consider this to be fairly standard. Here is a bit more information as what we consider to be “level 2 difficulty”: active pace: 5-7 activities each day including meals and tours; walking 1-2+ miles throughout the day on paths, trails, roads, villages, towns, walking tours, hikes; standing in lines/wait time for tours; long days with early breakfast and later dinners; elevation gain from 0 to 1,000 ft to 5,000 ft (seaside, cities, alps); endurance for 5+ activities each day ( churches, castles, hikes, winery tours, cave, museums, wineries); accessibility issues ( steps, cobblestones, stairs, few elevators); active sightseeing (walks, tours,); transportation (vans, boats rides, cable cars), and; moderate energy level for multiple activities each day.

What about COVID?

Current conditions in Spain and Portugal make it safe for travelers to experience all that the beautiful country has to offer. As a matter of protocol, the Fulbright Association requires that all travelers are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by an FDA-authorized vaccine or a vaccine authorized by emergency use by the World Health Organization. Those considered “fully vaccinated” have received two shots of Pfizer-BioNTech/Moderna or a single dose of Janssen/J&J (or the equivalent as stipulated here).

Proof of vaccination is required upon registration.

How can I check if I am a current member of the Fulbright Association?

To check your membership status, please email us at or call our office at (202) 775-0725. We will be happy to check your membership status.

Do I have to have completed a Fulbright Grant to join the Fulbright Association?

We here at the Fulbright Association welcome all supporters of the Fulbright Program, regardless of grant status!

I am not sure I can join for the entire length of the trip. Is there an option to join for a few days?

We ask that all travelers make their best effort to be present for the entire duration of the trip. You will certainly get the best experience that way. For special cases, please email us at

Are flights included in the listed price?

As travelers join us from all over the globe for these trips, flights are not included in the above cost. Participants are individually responsible for coordinating, financing, and insuring their flights.

Should I purchase travel insurance?

We strongly recommend that each traveler purchase insurance for their trip.

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Questions? Feel free to contact our office with any concerns.


Phone: (202) 775-0725

Please read all the information in our registration packet for terms on cancellations, refunds, and other policies.