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My Way Tour breakfast/meeting time

Can anyone share what time the daily breakfast/group meeting is on the My Way Tour?
I've been studying the Spain local habits of eating/sleeping and they are miles away from what we are used to. While we are very glad to accommodate these changes for our trip, getting a plan in our head seems wise.
What I read in the Spain book for meals was a breadish light breakfast (is this what the My Way Tour breakfast is?), a late morning sandwich, mid afternoon larger meal, late late at night dinner.
I would be glad of peoples advice and/or experiences in Spain.

Also, are any of the very popular tourist sites closing for "siesta" (maybe that's not the right term) time, approx 1-3pm? Is it hard to get a meal during this time in the major cities?
Thx much!

Posted by
16588 posts

The most popular tourist sights in Barcelona tend to be open throughout the day, and some don't close until 8 PM or so. I don't remember a mid-day closing at the Prado in Madrid, either. When you get down to Andalucía, you may well encounter afternoon closures, but I think hours vary seasonally. You can check the websites of individual museums and sights to see what they say--assuming they still display their regular hours rather than listing "Closed" for every day of the week.

Your guidebook should include visiting hours for all the most-visited sights, though again you have to pay attention to the time of the year.

Posted by
413 posts

My Way is just that. Your way. The hotels will have breakfast hours- eat when you want within them. Different hotels will vary- you’ll find out when you get there but 7-9 will be in the ballpark, give or take 30 min. Most tourist attractions open at 10am. Read your guide book for specifics. Lunch and dinner, on your own as you see fit.

Posted by
72 posts

Breakfast is quite normal, I mean, it may be a toast with marmalade, cereals and coffee, or maybe a croissant or a tortilla (Spanish, not the Mexican thing) pincho and a cofffee in a bar, but in any case something you would expect. Our lunch time is around 2pm, and it´s the largest meal of the day, consisting normally of a first, plus a second (meat, fish) and a dessert (quite often, fruit), and we take it easy (what you call "siesta" is one of the myths about Spain...we love our siestas in weekends, though). Some family run business close from 0130pm to maybe 4pm or even later, for a hearty lunch and some rest afterwards, but chain shops will remain open. 1 to 3 pm is the right time (well, maybe 1pm is too early yet in many places) for lunch and to relax, Spaniards like to take it easy during those times and if not at work, people like to stay home for the main news (3pm) and a siesta (if you´re aged and retired, it´s the best thing to do), but the rest go back to work. Dinner at homes ranges between 9pm to 10pm in most households, and in "normal" cities (I mean, those outside the tourist paths) restaurants start serving at 9pm (in some, the very earliest and you´ll only find foreigners there, is 8pm). Dinner is normally very light (either a soup, or an omelette, or some fish, or a salad) and takes less time than lunch. In any case, hard to see somebody with a sandwich on the street almost anywhere, we take lunch seriously. And dinner! The best option for lunch is the Menú del Día, Mo-Fr for lunch, for an unbeatable price you´ll have a first, a second, dessert, plus water, bread and wine.

Posted by
10 posts

Wow! So helpful! Thank you everybody!

Pat, my trip isn't until October so I'm hopeful things will be closer to normal by then.

The MY WAY tour group MEETS for breakfast at the hotel each morning and everyone plans their adventures with the tour advisor so I wondered what time that would be. Since people stay up so late perhaps 8-8:30 or even 9 would be likely? And since the hotel is arranged by RS likely we will have more than a croissant/coffee or such?

Posted by
72 posts

Well, what you call "late" it´s quite normal for us, we believe you have dinner and you go to bed way too early! :):)

We have breakfast at standard times, we start working in offices around 0830am, some earlier, so breakfast time at homes is around 0730-0800am, nothing too different from other parts of the world. I´d imagine that being on vacation, you will not have breakfast earlier than 0830...most attractions don´t open until 10am! The vast majority of hotels offer a complete buffet breakfast, I would not worry the least about this.

Posted by
357 posts

I did the MyWay Italy last year and the tour manager would put on the agenda the times he was available during breakfast. It was not a formal meeting, if you had question he was there to answer them or help. Most people knew what they were going to be doing so I very few met with him. I only met with him once regarding train tickets to Milan from Lake Como and he helped me get them . Most breakfasts were from 7:30 to 9:30, but it depended on the hotel.

Posted by
11152 posts

"Is it hard to get a meal during this time in the major cities?"

That depends on your definitions.

Sit-down restaurants largely close between lunch and dinner. However, there are all kinds of food places open during this time, if you can handle a lighter meal (tapas, sandwich, burger, etc). If you really want a sit-down restaurant experience, you'll have to adjust to Spanish hours. That means they open for lunch at 1-2 PM (going at 1:30 PM means you beat the 2 PM rush - yes really) and for dinner at about 9-9:30 PM (going when they open means you beat the 10 PM rush - again, yes really). As Mike said, in more touristed places, some restaurants will be open before 9 PM, but only for tourists.

And the 10 PM rush is a real issue. Since restaurants don't usually do more than one seating a night, if you get there much after about 10:30 PM, you may find no tables open.

Posted by
784 posts

The MY WAY tour group MEETS for breakfast at the hotel each morning and everyone plans their adventures with the tour advisor

I've done two MyWay tours. This is not accurate, unless they've changed recently. You can eat any time during the hotel's posted breakfast hours. You may see others in your group, or you may not. If you want to speak to your tour manager, you'll have to look for his/her "office hours". I rarely saw the manager during breakfast.

We just last week returned from Spain - Barcelona, Toledo and Madrid. You could probably find somewhere for lunch open earlier (directed at tourists), but the places we wanted to go were not usually open until at least after 1, more likely 2-ish. When we showed up for dinner at 8 (the earliest available reservation), we were the only people in the restaurant, but no one cared. They served us graciously. More often than not, we went from place to place having tapas for dinner.

Tourist sites will all be open during the day and into the evening. Shops are open into the evening but may indeed close for a long lunch. Go have a vermut and wait for them to reopen. :)

Posted by
16743 posts

Leslie’s experience is the typical plan. Your tour manager is available but not everyone chooses to check in. He or she will have already oriented you to options, usually on the bus before arrival to a new city. And some sightseeing you probably will have reserved from home (such as for the Alhambra in Granada and others suggested on the tour itinerary). That’s different from the first night’s meeting, which is a real, scheduled meeting with all present.

Posted by
72 posts

Funny how what we see as very normal lunch and dinner hours, it´s late for many others...definitely, "Spain is different" (this was a motto in the 60s to attract tourism to Spain, when we were discovering what was outside our frontiers. Well, I wasn´t born yet, but under Franco things were quite different.

Posted by
10 posts

I hope I didn't convey the sentiment that I felt there was anything wrong about times in Spain. Only that it was different than what I was used to. I START work at 6AM, therefore rising at 4:30AM. I would hope to be asleep by 10 in order to cope with life rather than just sitting down to dinner. It's just different that's all. We will definitely join in the different hours when we are on holiday. And hopefully we will still be able to make this holiday happen since it's in October. Fingers crossed!

Posted by
10 posts

Also....

Thank you to the MY WAY posters. I understand how it works now. I will do my best to research as much as possible before going. Just knowing myself...I ask a lot of questions so will likely be seeking out the advisor to ask them! I can also ask the people running the hotels, I'm sure.

Thank you to those who shared details about food and restaurants. That was very helpful. Here's my plan...
Breakfast at hotel
Sightseeing
Late morning coffee
Sightseeing until 1-2PM
Lunch and relaxing
Sightseeing until 8PM
Tapas or Dinner
Possible late night events when available

Have I missed anything?

Does anybody have any restaurants they love that we should try to go to? We will be eating out quite a bit.
Our places for sightseeing include:
Barcelona,
Madrid,
Cordoba,
Toledo,
Sevilla,
Ronda,
Granada

Any other suggestions welcome as well! This has been very helpful to me so THANK YOU to all of you!
J

Posted by
784 posts

Watch videos by James Blick on YouTube. Spain Revealed is the channel name. James co-founded Devour Tours and is a wealth of information about Spain. He is a transplanted New Zealander married to a Madrid native and has lived in Spain for 9 years or so. We did not do a Devour Tour when we were in Spain (although they come highly recommended and we ran into a couple groups when we were out and about), but we did do a private Flamenco tour with James' wife, Yoly (theflamencoguide.com). She takes you out for a tapa to a great local place, tells you the history of Flamenco, takes you to a guitar shop where they build guitars for flamenco, to a shoe store where they make shoes for flamenco, then to a show. It was very enlightening and she is a delight! It was about the same price as the group tour with Devour would have been.

Posted by
72 posts

No, no, nothing wrong at all, it´s just that we have a different pace here, that´s all!! Your plan sound good, you´re going to love the lively atmosphere of Spanish cities, so busy and with so many places to enjoy really good food!

Posted by
10 posts

I have no doubt of that! I have butterflies just thinking about traveling to a far off place and learning all about it...experiencing new things. We did New Zealand 4 years ago and it was a blast.

Posted by
5545 posts

I love your attitude and willingness to go by local norms. It happens in the US too with different areas of the country eating dinner at vastly different hours.