LOURDES, GARABANDAL, AND FATIMA
Day 1: USA/TOULOUSE FRANCE
Departure from US gateways with possible connections! Dinner and breakfast typically provided on all gateway flights to Europe.
Day 2: TOULOUSE/LOURDES
Arrival to Toulouse, France. Meeting with the guide and transfer by coach for a scenic drive to Lourdes. Check-in at Hotel Alba. Free time for rest then we will attend holy mass at the Grotto where Our Lady appeared to Saint Bernadette. We return to the hotel for our first dinner in Lourdes. After dinner we can return to the Sanctuary to join in the candlelight procession while praying the rosary. Overnight at Hotel Alba.
Day 3: LOURDES
After a delicious breakfast in the hotel we will begin with an orientation walking tour of the Sanctuary grounds. We will learn about the Apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary to Saint Bernadette Soubirous. Above the grotto, three superimposed churches were built: The Crypt, the Basilica of the Rosary, and the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, making for an amazing and beautiful site. We will celebrate mass today in one of the chapels here. The afternoon and evening will be at leisure for your own private prayer and activities. Dinner at the hotel and then attend the candlelight procession at the Sanctuary while praying the rosary. Overnight at Hotel Alba.
Day 4: LOURDES
Today after breakfast we will attend the International Mass together with pilgrims from all over the world at the Basilica of St Pius X, also known as the underground Basilica. After this amazing morning we will enjoy lunch and then prayerfully walk in the footsteps of Saint Bernadette. We will see Boly Mill, the birthplace of St. Bernadette, and the “Cachot” an abandoned prison where Bernadette’s
impoverished family lived. We then return to the hotel for rest and free time before dinner. We return to the Sanctuary after dinner to join the candlelight procession and pray the rosary. Overnight at Hotel Alba.
Day 5: LOURDES
Today after breakfast we will return to the Sanctuary to pray the “Life Size” Stations of the Cross that overlook the Grotto of Massabielle. This moving experience will bring us back to the three basilicas where we will celebrate holy mass in one of the chapels. Free time for lunch then a visit to the baths near the grotto. Here we can be submerged in the healing water from the miraculous spring brought forth by Our Lady. This special experience is unlike any other. Free time for shopping. After dinner, we return to the Sanctuary for our last candlelight procession in Lourdes. Overnight at Hotel Alba.
Day 6: LOURDES/LOYOLA/BILBAO/PUENTA VIESGO
This morning early breakfast and check out. We begin our journey from France into Spain stopping first at Loyola, the birthplace of St. Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit order. In Loyola you will see the 17th century Basilica that is dedicated to this remarkable Saint who wrote the famous “Spiritual Exercises”. Here we will celebrate holy mass. The Basilica is part of a series of buildings that surround the “Holy House”, the birthplace of St Ignatius. When you visit these Holy places, you can also pray at the most venerated room, where St. Ignatius prayed and began his conversion. Our next stop will be Bilbao, in the Basque country, where the world-famous Guggenheim museum is located. We can enjoy here some of the delicious pintxos, Basque version of Spanish tapa. We continue to the surroundings of Santander and check in to Gran Hotel Balneario in Puente Viesgo for dinner and overnight.
Day 7: PUENTO VIESGO/SAN SEBASTIAN DEL GARABANDAL/BURGOS
This morning early breakfast and check out. We journey to San Sebastian del Garabandal. Little has changed in this rural town since June 18, 1961 when four children had an apparition first of an Angel, sent to prepare the children for a visit from the Blessed Virgin. From July 2, 1961 to November 13, 1965
the Blessed Virgin visited them, guiding and confiding secrets of future events. The children reported a promised miracle at the grove of pine trees on a bluff overlooking the village of Garabandal. It will be on the feast day of a little-known martyr of the Eucharist and coincide with an event in the Church. We will celebrate holy mass here in Garabandal. We will pray in the grove of pines and at the Chapel of the Angel before departing for Burgos. Dinner and overnight at Hotel Puerta in Burgos.
Day 8: BURGOS/AVILA/ALBA TORMES/SALAMANCA
This morning early breakfast then check out. We visit the Cathedral of St Mary of Burgos. This is a pilgrimage Cathedral on the Camino de Santiago. We will celebrate holy mass in one of the side chapels of the Cathedral. We proceed next to Avila. The conservation of architecture in this city, to which St. Teresa was born, deems its shrines, convents and churches necessary to visit on any Catholic pilgrimage. The Cathedral of Avila and the Basilica of Saint Vincent of Avila where St Vincent was martyred are magnificent. We will visit the Incarnation Convent, where St Theresa became a nun. We will continue our walk with St Teresa as we proceed to Alba de Tormes, where the Great Saint, and Doctor of the Church founded the Carmelite Monastery in 1571. Her tomb is directly under the main altar in the Monastery. We will visit the museum dedicated to St Teresa of Avila, which holds her incorrupt heart and left arm. We will finish our day when we arrive in the beautiful city of Salamanca also called the “Golden City”. Dinner and overnight at Hotel Artheus Carmelitas
Day 9: SALAMANCA/FATIMA
This morning after breakfast and check out we have a walking tour of Salamanca, located on the banks of the Tormes River. Salamanca is famous for its culture and its student atmosphere. The University of Salamanca is the third oldest university in Europe founded in 1218. We will pass by the grand Plaza Mayor; an iconic square filled with food, shopping and city events, La Clerecia; a church and college of the Jesuit Order constructed in the Seventeenth century, La Casade las Conchas; currently a public library but also, a monument noted and decorated by shells, which symbolizes the ever famous pilgrimage to Santiago on the Camino, La Iglesias de San Marcos; contains breath-taking paintings that portray many scenes of Our Lady’s life, La Iglesia de San Martin; a church dedicated to Saint Martin de Porres. Visit the inside of two joint Salamanca Cathedrals (old and new), one Romanesque and the other Gothic. We will celebrate holy mass while in Salamanca. We now depart Spain for Portugal, where we will arrive in Fatima, another of the most important Catholic Shrines in the world. Every year Fatima welcomes millions of pilgrims from all over the world. Check in to Hotel Santa Maria for dinner and overnight. If time permits, we can join in the evening rosary and candlelight procession.
Day 10: FATIMA
Today after a full breakfast we will begin with a visit to the Little Chapel of the Apparitions (Capelinha). This simple yet modern chapel is the site where the Virgin Mary first appeared to the three young visionaries on May 13, 1917. We continue with a visit to the beautiful neoclassical church, the Basilica of Or Lady of the Rosary. This sacred space contains the tombs of Saint Francisco, Saint Jacinta, and Sister Lucia. View the monument that commemorates the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in the square. The Basilica features fifteen altars dedicated to the 15 mysteries of the Rosary. We will now cross the huge square to visit the Basilica of the Holy Trinity. We will celebrate holy mass in one of the chapels at the Sanctuary. We will have free time for lunch and then the afternoon will be at leisure for private prayer and personal activities. We will enjoy a lovely dinner at the hotel and then participate in the evening rosary at the Chapel of Apparitions followed by the candlelight procession. Overnight at Hotel Santa Maria.
Day 11: FATIMA
Today will be a special day. After breakfast we will participate in the anniversary celebration of Our Lady’s first apparition to the three children on May 13, 1917. We will join in the international mass commemorating the 103rd anniversary. Lunch will follow.
After lunch we will begin the Stations of the Cross along the Via Sacra. The “sacred Way” marks the path taken by the shepherd children of Fatima to their first apparition with Our Lady. It is composed of fifteen small chapels in commemoration of the Passion of Our Lord. The 15th station, The Resurrection, can be found close to the Chapel of Calvary, dedicated to St Stephen, King of Hungary. We will then visit Valinhos, the site of Our Lady’s August 1917 apparition and the first and third apparition of the Angel. We will continue close by to visit Aljustrel, the hamlet that includes the original homes of the visionaries as well as the Parish church where the visionaries were baptized. Return to the hotel for a lovely dinner followed by the continuation of anniversary celebrations with the rosary and candlelight procession requested by Our Lady in 1917. Overnight at Hotel Santa Maria.
Day 12: FATIMA
Today after breakfast we will celebrate holy mass at a chapel at the Sanctuary. The remainder of the day will be free for you to revisit the areas of the shrine that you wish for private prayer, adoration, or just to enjoy the city of Fatima. We suggest visiting the exhibition “Fatima- Light and Peace” (entrance not included), a permanent exhibition that has a unique estate made of offerings from pilgrims, dignitaries, Civil Society to Our Lady of Fatima, and the Church itself. Tonight, we will enjoy our last dinner in Fatima at the hotel followed by the participation of the rosary and our last candle light procession. Overnight at Hotel Santa Maria.
Day 13: FATIMA/SANTAREM/LISBON
This morning we enjoy breakfast and check out. We journey from Fatima to Santarem, one of the oldest cities in the world. Walk through its narrow streets to the Church of Saint Stephen, containing the oldest recorded Eucharistic Miracle. This miracle has been on continuous display since 1269 A.D. Here we will celebrate holy mass. We then continue to Lisbon and enjoy a panoramic tour of the capitol of Portugal. Lisbon is a city of pastel colours and cobblestone streets, vistas and monuments. Among our visits today include the Belem Quarter, where we find many of the most important monuments of the city. We will visit the church of Jeronimo’s Monastery and Belem Tower both good examples of the 16th century Manueline style, the Monument to the Discoveries, and finally St Anthony’s Church. St Anthony of Padua was born on this very site and baptized here in Lisbon. Dinner and overnight in Hotel Marques de Pombal.
Day 14: DEPARTURE FROM LISBON TO USA
After an early breakfast and checkout, we depart for Lisbon Airport for our flight back to the USA!