2025 Strath Haven Spain Cultural Journey

Dear Families, Friends, and Travelers – Welcome to the 2025 Strath Haven Spain Cultural Journey! We have created two webpages dedicated to this exciting program so that travelers are as informed as possible throughout the process. The first page, Pre-Enrollment, is meant to share exciting details, highlights and pertinent info that participants will want to know before enrolling. Once enrolled, the Post-Enrollment page, is meant to prepare travelers for participation on the adventure ahead. Please be sure to review the information on the appropriate page thoroughly and we can't wait to start our enriching adventure!
Travel Dates: June 18, 2025 - June 27, 2025
Group Organizer(s):
WTT Contact:
Program Tuition: $3,490 USD
Airfare not included in program tuition
Estimated Airfare: $1,000

What to Expect

Please read through all of the information below. More details will be added as your departure draws closer.

Itinerary

We do everything possible to run safe, engaging, and immersive programs for our travelers and given the unpredictable nature of international travel we must remain flexible in our planning. Changes to a schedule are uncommon but, we reserve the right to adjust programming in the best interest of the group. 

DayLocationDescriptionLodging
June 18USA - BarcelonaToday the group will travel from the USA to Barcelona, Spain, arriving the next day.Airplane
June 19BarcelonaAfter arriving to Barcelona and settling into our rooms, we'll do a bit of exploring and get our first glimpse of Barceloneta, where we'll have dinner. Afterwards, we'll hold an orientation meeting to discuss the details of the days ahead.Barcelona Hotel
June 20BarcelonaToday we encounter the Sagrada Familia, a basilica without equal and one of the most unique works of architecture known to man. Designed by Gaudi, this 19th-century church, which is still under construction, is an architectural marvel and a UNESCO World Heritage site. We'll visit with a local guide to make the most of our time. After lunch, we'll take in the sights, sounds, and human statues of Las Ramblas before having dinner at La Boquería, Barcelona's famous food market.Barcelona Hotel
June 21Barcelona - San SebastianAfter breakfast we will travel by bus to San Sebastian and enjoy time on the beach as well as sea kayaking. In the evening, we will sample the famous "pintxos" of the Basque Country.San Sebastian Hotel
June 22San Sebastian & HondarribiaToday we will take a bus to Hondarribia and learn about the unique history and seafaring traditions of the Basque Country. We will visit "barrio de La Marina" with its fishermen's houses and boats anchored in the estuary of the Txingudi River, which invites you to enjoy seafood taverns where we will probably enjoy a delicious lunch. At the afternoon we come back and explore the San Sebastian city on a bike tour! and in addition to a visit to some of the smaller outlying towns along the coast.Hondarribia Hotel
June 23San Sebastian - BilbaoAfter breakfast we check out and drive to Bilbao but first we will do a route the most beautifill towns from the Basque Country on the way. Along with out local guide we will first stop at Getaria where we will get depp into the Basque Country as almost 90% of their citizents speak Basque (their native language). Then we will make another stop for lunch at Lekeitio. To finish the day in Mundaka another fishing villageThe town presides over the mouth of an estuary that creates one of the treasures of this protected area: its marshes. We continue to Bilbao we check in and rest for another incredible day.Bilbao Hotel
June 24Bilbao - SantanderWe will have a relaxing morning in the old quarter of Bilbao and take a classic cable car up to Mount Artxanda to have lunch, take in some impressive views of the city and bid farewell to Bilbao before boarding an mid-afternoon drive to Santander.Santander Hotel
June 25Santander - MadridAfter breakfast we will visit the Capital of Cantabria along with our guide. Before leaving to Madrid we will stop at Dunas de Liencres, and with a stunning view of its dunes. Drive to Madrid, and check in.Madrid Hotel
June 26MadridOn our last full day we explore with our friendly local guide the Prado Museum, which boasts one of the most renowned collections of art in the world. In the afternoon we will visit Parque del Retiro, once the king's private hunting grounds. In the afternoon, we will spend our last few hours doing some last minute shopping and strolling around the city to check some other interesting neighborhoods like Mercado San Miguel. We end our day with a celebratory final dinner before heading back to our hotel to prepare for out international departure tomorrow.Madrid Hotel
June 27Madrid - USAHasta luego! Today we will head to the airport to take our flight back to the US.Your own bed

Fundraising

Need to Raise Money? We Have You Covered.

Walking Tree Travel is proud to team up with Equal Exchange, a worker-owned cooperative that distributes organic coffee, tea, sugar, bananas, avocados, cocoa, chocolate bars, and more.  There is no limit to the amount you can earn, so the sooner you can start, the better!

Learn more here.

WTT coffee

Accommodations

In order to provide a safe and memorable experience, we follow strict guidelines when choosing program accommodations. Walking Tree partners with hotels and guest houses which are centrally located, clean and safe.  We vet and inspect the accommodations to ensure they uphold the ethos of our programs, are great values for our travelers and nice places to rest after enriching days of travel.  

Below are the accommodations we anticipate using on your trip, subject to availability. 
St. Jordi Sagrada Familia

Centrally located in Barcelona, this hostel has a skateboard-theme and is great for young adults.  This facility has air conditioning, free wifi, guest computers and security lockers. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

TOC Hotel Madrid

TOC is a spacious and hip hotel located in the heart of Madrid, just minutes away from the metro and major tourist attractions. This is a modern and hi-tech hotel with a friendly staff and a great breakfast! Travelers will have their own beds, distributed between double, triple and quadruple rooms. 

 

 

Urban House

Urban House is a 4-star hotel with modern amenities. The property is minutes away from the beach, local restaurants and San Sebastián’s old town. The rooms can comfortably sleep up to 4 students with access to ensuite and shared bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

 

Ganbara Hostel

This location is perfect for anyone who wants to walk through the Old Town district of Bilbao or venture further into Northern Spain.  This hostel has free wifi throughout the property and access to a communal kitchen. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

Group Flight

Once your flight has been confirmed, the itinerary will appear here.

Walking Tree will secure a seat on the group flight for each participant unless otherwise instructed.

Travelers are responsible for checked baggage fees. Please visit the airline’s baggage webpage to learn if you should expect to pay anything.

We will provide a group manifest – complete with reservation codes and ticket numbers – to the Group Organizer/s before departure, and travelers will need to check in at the airport in order to receive their boarding pass and have documents verified. We recommend arriving no later than three hours prior to the scheduled departure, but contact your Group Organizer for specific details on exactly where and when to meet on the day of departure.

FLIGHT INTERRUPTION, DELAY OR CANCELLATION 
Air travel can be unpredictable.  Regardless of proper planning, there may still be instances when a flight is delayed or cancelled due to staffing shortages, weather, mechanical problems, etc.  Please note that in such an event, Walking Tree Travel (WTT) is not financially responsible for unanticipated costs incurred by travelers en route.  Our programs officially begin and end in the destination country, and because our staff doesn’t fly with the group, Group Organizers (the traveling faculty member/s) become the front-line advocate for the group in the event of a delay. In most cases of cancellations or delays, the airline will be the one who re-books travel or possibly arranges a hotel and food the night.  Our primary role will be to  keep families updated and provide support to the Group Organizer to reach a  quick and effective resolution.

Host Community and Project Details

Packing List

What follows is a sample packing list but you know yourself better than we do so please adjust accordingly. We recommend you bring a larger piece of luggage like a roller, duffel bag, or backpack, as well as a smaller backpack that you can bring on daily outings, weekend excursions and shorter activities.

“Less is more” is a packing tip we encourage for all our travelers. The list below should cover everything you would need, but know yourself and what you are comfortable traveling with.  We suggest bringing only as much as you would be able to carry on your own.

Finally, we recommend consulting a weather forecast for your destination. 

Most importantly, be sure to remember your PASSPORT!

CLOTHES (quantities depend on your trip length) :

  • Underwear
  • Socks (a mixture of good active socks and casual socks)
  • T-shirts (some quick dry)
  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Sweaters or sweatshirts
  • Warmer jacket
  • Warm hat
  • Scarf and Warm gloves (optional)
  • Rain jacket
  • Travel/athletic shorts that are breathable and light
  • Comfortable, everyday pants
  • Nice shirt/top to be worn to more formal dinners (girls might want a skirt or something a little nicer for such occasions)
  • Durable athletic/walking shoes
  • Sandals (optional)
  • Hat

TOILETRIES: BRING THE BASIC TOILETRIES YOU NEED PLUS:

  • Sunscreen (you will use a lot)
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Band Aids and Neosporin
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Medication in properly marked original container

MISCELLANEOUS:

  • Sunglasses
  • Journal and pen
  • Book
  • Camera (digital, disposable, waterproof)
  • Power Converter
  • Alarm Clock and watch
  • Debit card/US Dollars (we recommend about $50-$150, depending on amount of desired souvenirs, extra items etc.)
  • Durable water bottle
  • 1 quick-dry towel
  • Flashlight/headlamp
  • Batteries
  • Deck of cards or other portable games
  • STUDENT ID
  • Spanish/English Dictionary

Support Team

At a minimum, one experienced Program Leader will travel on every trip. In addition to this full time leadership presence, Walking Tree has additional support staff in all destinations and 24/7 support from our headquarters in Denver, Colorado. Below you’ll find a list of the team members involved in the planning, organizing, and leadership of your program.

Hillary Mora
Hillary Mora
Spain Country Director


Hillary was born in Sarapiqui, a small but pretty town on the Caribbean slope in Costa Rica, one of the most biologically intense places in the country.  She grew up climbing trees, going hiking around rivers, swinging on vines and everything you can imagine in the forest. She is truly a nature lover.  When she finished high school, she thought she wanted to study business administration, but eventually figured out that was not her passion. She began studying English and started working on the airport which opened her eyes to the world of tourism. She soon found out that nature and education are her passions. She began working in Tirimbina Biological Reserve, where she fell in love with the forest once again.  Hillary is  focusing her career on environmental education, where she coordinates a project called the Leaf Cutter Project which helps students get in contact with and learn about conservation, interpretation and everything about nature. She has traveled to Europe, Belize, and Panama. Hillary loves traveling and learning about other cultures, but what she loves the most is helping others.

Group Roster

Below is a list of the travelers enrolled on the program.

Blog and Communication

During travel we will work hard to keep families updated as frequently as possible with blogs and photos, giving you peace of mind that your traveler is safe and thriving on their program.  Students regularly contribute to these posts, giving parents a great way to vicariously track the progress of the trip. You will receive an email notification when the first blog is posted, after which we recommend you check in regularly via the black “Program Blog” button at the top of this page.

Beyond this proactive approach to communication during the trip, most destinations are wired enough to allow participants semi-regular access to WiFi so you can also expect to communicate with your traveler directly. Ask your Walking Tree representative about the degree of connectivity on your program.

 

GLC Curriculum

Walking Tree has developed a curriculum of activities meant to help travelers get the most out of their trip before departure, during travel and after they return home. These simple and engaging activities are meant to spark discussion, frame experiences, and prepare participants to travel ethically and effectively both on this trip and on future adventures.

For more information about student learning objectives and the format of the curriculum, click on the ‘learn more’ button below.

Learn More About the GLC

To view and complete the Pre-Program Activities, visit our online portal at the button below.

Pre-Program Activity Portal

Standards of Behavior

In order to run a safe and successful program, it is important that we create an environment of trust, security and respect. All individuals participating in our programs are required to take responsibility for their actions and adhere to a high standard of behavioral conduct.

ABSOLUTE DISMISSAL

  1.  Possessing, consuming or distributing alcohol or illegal drugs.
  2. Associating with participants while they are in possession of, or are consuming, or distributing alcohol or illegal drugs.
  3. Behaving in a way that consistently damages the group dynamic or jeopardizes personal or group safety.
  4. This includes consistently displaying a negative attitude, intimidating or excluding other participants, sneaking out, disobeying group leaders, and any other behavior that is not conducive to an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect.

GROUNDS FOR DISMISSAL OR IN-COUNTRY CONSEQUENCE

  1. Getting a piercing or tattoo.
  2. Stealing, or deliberately damaging or defacing any personal property, buildings or materials.
  3. Threatening physical or emotional harm, or brandishing a weapon.
  4. Possessing, consuming, or distributing tobacco or nicotine, including vape pens.
  5. Riding mopeds, motorcycles, or any other type of unauthorized vehicle.
  6. Being out of designated area or accommodations after curfew.
  7. Breaking group rules.

These standards of behavior are essential for the successful completion of your program. Please take the time to review these as a family and make sure everyone understands and agrees to them.

Health and Safety

Insurance

While we work hard to ensure the safest experience possible for our travelers on program, experience teaches that travel is never without risk. For this reason, we recommend that all travelers consider a travel insurance policy with  two additional provisions: Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) and Bed Rest. Detailed explanations of both provisions can be found on the link below.

To provide families with a quality option, Walking Tree has partnered with Travel Insured International, one of the most respected providers in the industry.  Begin by getting a quote here.

IMPORTANT NOTE: in order to secure coverage with CFAR included, you must purchase the plan within 21 days of your deposit/first payment. You must also insure 100% of your trip cost, so program tuition + flight.

Top