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This listing has one of the 10 most popular offers available in Spain
Explore the world of wine in La Rioja, the tiny but huge wine region by the shores of the Ebro River, surrounded by majestic mountains. La Rioja is a place where history blends with new modern architecture and signature wines. Walk the vineyards, the mountains, and the Rioja forests. Visit wineries, wine harvest, and try true winemaking. Cook traditional and modern fine-dining on this signature wine tour. This trip is a true holiday for wine lovers! There will also be opportunities to see how wine was made yesterday in comparison with modern techniques of authors or garage styled modern wines.
On the first, sixth, and seventh days, you will stay at a hotel in Bilbao. From day 2 to 5, you will stay at a modern family hotel in the beautiful village of San Vicente de la Sonsierra, right on the golden mile of Rioja Alta. With a special micro-climate and a terroir just perfect for the Riojan grape varieties, San Vicente is well known for wineries like El Contador of Benjamín Romeo, the Eguren Brothers, or Bodegas Abel Mendoza. Hotel Villa Sonsierra is a traditional family hotel turned into a modern design hotel some five years ago now. A better base camp is hard to find and the host couple, Pedro and Irene, will make you feel just like home.
Double room and single rooms at selected three and four-star hotels or similar are available.
Arrival at your hotel in downtown Bilbao. A welcome drink during the presentation of the week, followed by a pintxos tour closes day 1.
Bus transfer to the start of the walking. Walk through a magical beech forest and get a spectacular view over the Rioja valley from the majestic Sierra del Toloño. You visit a small modern bodega, taste their garage wines with lunch, and try some real bodega work. After that, a short walk to your hotel in San Vicente de la Sonsierra, where you check in, rest, and have a tapas cooking evening.
A light leisure walk to the village of Briones, where you will visit the world-wide known wine museum Museo del Vino Bodegas Dinastía Vivanco. After the walk and the museum, it is time for a modern style Rioja lunch. Siesta and then visit to another charming Rioja Alavesa bodega. Tasting and dinner.
The day begins with an interesting art walk around Labastida and a visit and tasting at the highly ranked Bodegas Remelluri. After this, you will have some ancient wine labor making, such as wine pressing by foot in prehistoric wine pools caved in the rock. If the weather permits so, lunch will be an open-air picnic with a tasting of local young wines.
When the night falls, you will be participating in some active creative modern Spanish cooking. You will prepare a gourmet dinner with season products, such as wild mushrooms. On the way to the restaurant, a photo safari is proposed to get a glimpse of the modern architecture of the Baigorri, Ysios, and Marqués de Riscal wineries.
You ascend the mountains of Sierra de Toloño, where you might find some mushrooms on the search for the ancient natural freezers used by monks in the mountain chapels. After a short visit to modern Bodegas Miguel Merino, you continue to Ezcaray for lunch at your comfortable family hotel. In the afternoon, you can enjoy optional walking routes around Ezcaray. At night, you prepare a tasting menu with your hotel chef. A brilliant farewell dinner!
You visit and leisure walk towards Santo Domingo, visit the cathedral and move on to some tapas hopping on your own in Haro. Transfer to Bilbao, check in, and farewell to your guides.
Free day in Bilbao to stroll around, shop or visit the Guggenheim Museum. If you already have been to Bilbao, a day tour to San Sebastian is suggested (one hour by bus). Lunch and dinner on your own.
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to airport or ferries.
You will enjoy walks that always are optional on this tour - if you a have a sore knee, you will be picked up to meet the group at the next scheduled point. As you have prepared written detailed itineraries and maps, you will be able to complete each route at your own pace. And if you still need an extra challenge, Bonito Norte Viajes SL can provide you with some alternative extra kilometers to complete the physical activity of each day.
Recommended walking accessories: walking poles, gore-tex walking shoes / low ankle boots, light ruck-sack for daily necessities.
The cooking sessions are meant to be learning and inspiring. Three cooking hands-on cooking sessions will make you understand that food and wine go together in the region.
Visits to four wineries with tastings. There will be opportunities to see how wine was made yesterday in comparison with modern techniques of authors or garage styled modern wines. You also do your own wine harvest one day - supervised by local wine experts where you get a feel for this hard work!
All minibus transfers in Spain included. Mostly short transfers 30 minutes to an hour. Longest transfer Ezcaray-Bilbao 1.5 hours.
During this wine and walking tour, you will explore La Rioja and visit cities like Bilbao, San Vicente de la Sonsierra, Briones, Labastida, Ezcaray, Santo Domingo, and Haro.
Seven breakfasts, four lunches, and five dinners (two of them gourmet) are included. There will be wine with all meals. On this tour, you will enjoy solid buffet breakfasts with bread, cereals, juice, coffee and tea, ham, eggs, and cheese, as well as local sweets to get ready for a day of walking. On the roads and always in hand-picked sceneries, you will taste and enjoy local products on charming country picnic lunches, where there will often be fresh products purchased on the visits you make.
Late October is mushroom season and this is very present in the restaurants, among the people, and even in local festivities. The dinners will be the delicious results of your cooking sessions as well as winery dinners! Tradition and fine-dining in a nice blend.
La Rioja is a diverse and fun place to eat. All places where wine is a fundamental part of the location's identity results in a culture of accompanying food with wine. If Spain's, or La Rioja's, food culture should only be defined in one word, that word would be "ingredients."
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