NARCISSI OF WESTERN IBERIA
A TOUR FOR THE ALPINE GARDEN SOCIETY
This tour takes us to the Narcissus hotspot of Iberia, the centre of evolution and diversity of these wonderful flowers. We’ll explore the most important locales for the early-flowering species, starting in Andalucia where we’ll encounter Narcissus assoanus and endemic Narcissus cuatrecasasii. Narcissus hispanicus is plentiful in Spanish Fir forests and in the Sierra de Alcaparain is ghostly Narcissus cantabricus.
Narcissus bulbocodium, Narcissus cordubensis and Narcissus jonquilla adorn meadows dotted with cork oaks. Based in one of Andalucia's most beautiful 'white villages', peaceful Benaojan, we’ll also find plentiful Orchids, Fritillaries and Linarias in rich limestone turf, while cliffs hold a plethora of charming saxifrages and elegant Ornithogalum reverchonii. Next we explore Central Portugal where drifts of Narcissus asturiensis and Crocus carpetanus colour the mountains of the Serra da Estrela. Narcissus calcicola and Narcissus obesus prefer the rugged limestone of the Serra de Porto de Mos while the in the coastal Serra da Arrabida, Narcissus bulbocodium is abundant amongst Tulipa sylvestris, Two-leaved Gennaria, Arisarum simmorhinum and Anemone palmata. Distinctive Narcissus triandrus (and some fine hybrids with the rare Narcissus scaberulus) and sweetly-scented Narcissus papyraceus enjoy loamy banks in the Tejo drainage, an area home to several early flowering orchids.
With such beauty and elegance on offer on the floral front it seems somehow fitting that this tour has us staying at some very fine hotels where we can also enjoy some excellent cuisine during our visit to the home of the daffodil.
Flowers, particularly Narcissus species. Also Landscapes.
We will be ambling no more than two or three miles in any one day, and always at a slow pace, ideally suited to flower photography.
Included in the Price
All flights. All transport, accommodation and meals in Spain and Portugal. Tips. Services of your leaders. Please note: drinks, and items of a personal nature including insurance, are not included.
One leader for a group of up to 6, two leaders up to the maximum group size of 12.
We start with three nights at the Hotel Rural Quinta da Geia. 'Quinta da Geia' is ancient Portuguese for a farm 'with so much land that it cannot be ploughed with an ox in one day'. The hotel is an eighteenth century, granite-built collection of buildings amidst 7 hectares teeming with fruit trees and grapevines. The quinta has been restored as a cosy hotel featuring all mod-cons. Next we’ve two nights at the Hotel Club Azetaio situated right by the Serra da Arrabida, surrounded by lovely woodlands and with nice swimming pool. We finish with five nights at delightful Cortijo las Piletas. This lovely little hotel is 12km from Ronda and in the Grazelema National Park and has a beautiful setting in a secluded valley with cork oak woodlands and sunflower fields. The accommodation throughout this tour is of a particularly high standard and all rooms have en suite facilities.
Outbound UK direct flights to Porto are available from some UK airports, return flights from Malaga are available from almost all UK regional airports*.
*These routes may incur a supplement but most don’t.
Generally settled, sunny and warm, but not hot. Atlantic depressions often bring rain and cooler weather, especially to Portugal, where the weather can be decidedly damp.
How to Book
Contact us to check there is availability for the number of places you require. Download a booking form or contact us and we will send one to you. Complete and send to us. You will receive confirmation of your place and then a detailed information pack will be dispatched to you about twelve weeks before departure. Flower, bird and butterfly checklists are available.