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Have you ever been on holiday and felt you didn't get to experience the real essence of the country? You spent so much time on organized trips to the main tourist hotspots that the authentic culture passed you by? Eat Northern Spain changes that. Crafted from the finest ingredients (exceptional lodgings, incomparable insider access, stellar food, and wine), Eat Northern Spain trips combine foodie experiences with unparalleled cultural immersion in one of Spain's greatest destinations. On top of that, it's private just for you and your loved ones!
Situated at the heart of Ribera del Duero, the hotel Castilla Termal Monastery of Valbuena – the first spa with 5 stars status in Castilla y León – is located in one the best preserved Cistercian monastery of the 12th century in Europe. Become in an exclusive touristic complex, in the Golden Mile (Milla de Oro) of the Ribera del Duero, the Monastery of Santa María de Valbuena provides 79 rooms, all of them of high quality and has more than 18,000 square meters constructed.
The particular properties of the waters of this establishment, together with its unique architecture and the culture, history, and charm of its spaces make it into something different to offer the tourist. In addition, its special location also offers the possibility of multiple activities in the surroundings.rent to offer the tourist. In addition, its special location also offers the possibility of multiple activities in the surroundings.
The original 18th-century structure of the hotel was once a military building. Today the traditional façade houses a modern interior with stylish décor, creating a captivating blend of ancient and modern design. Stepping from the Castilian square into the eclectic, elegant lobby of the hotel, you will feel at one with the spirit of León, past and present.
Many of the hotel’s 51 rooms look out over the Plaza Mayor, so you can throw open your windows and absorb the atmosphere of a traditional Castilian square. Each air-conditioned room is furnished in a neutral contemporary style, with elegant touches like real hardwood floors and premium bath linen.
Villa Rosario Hotel, is a newly-constructed building with a modern architecture. Its large Windows stand out where the marvelous Villa Rosario Mansion. It shares all services with Villa Rosario mansion like its gardens, direct access to the beach and a cafeteria-restaurant where customers will enjoy beautiful evenings or having appetizers in our terrace looking at the Cantabrian Sea.
The Gran Hotel Domine is the only 5-star hotel in front of the Guggenheim. Having been completely newly renovated in 2018, luxury can now be found in its spacious ambiance, its extraordinary service, the passion for art and design, as well as an elegant and cosmopolitan style.
Upon arrival at Madrid airport, you will be welcomed by your guide and escorted to a private vehicle. Then you will enjoy a scenic drive to the Spanish countryside across Spain’s world-famous wine region Ribera del Duero.
At the heart of Ribera del Duero in the Golden Mile of this wine region where some of the best wines in the world are produced, you will sleep in one the best-preserved Cistercian monasteries of the 12th century in Europe. The whole property is a Spanish dream with clean stone walls, French oak floors and Berber rugs throughout, the effect is warm and inviting despite the scale of the property.
Enjoy the rest of the evening at your own leisure. For dinner, you will savor local specialties at the hotel's à-la-carte restaurant.
After a full delicious breakfast, your guide and driver will pick you up from the hotel for the day of exploring Ribera del Duero.
Enjoy breath-taking views as you drive through the vineyards of Ribera del Duero, discover its world-famous wineries along the "Golden Mile" of this wine region where some of the best wines in the world are produced.
You will visit Abadia Retuerta, a hidden gem for a wine lover among the string of exclusive wine estates found along the Duero river that crosses Northern Spain.
A visit to Abadía Retuerta is more than just a winery tour: you’ll immediately realize that you are in a very special place: an estate steeped in history, a unique terroir, which has been carefully cherished over the years. You will go for a 4×4 private tour of the estate and the vineyards. After a lovely ride through the vines, you will learn how wines are produced inside the winery followed by a guided wine tasting of Abadia Retuerta's famous wines.
After the visit, you will be driven to Peñafiel, the heart of this wine region. You will visit Peñafiel’s castle, at the top of a hill and with commanding views over the vineyards, is a must when visiting this region. Your gastronomic journey begins with an opportunity to sample the signature dish of the Ribera del Duero region, roast lamb slow-cooked using a centuries-old technique, the local name is “Lechazo”. A selection of a-la-carte starters of local specialties will complement this fantastic meal. Of course, your meal would not be complete with an accompanying red wine from the region.
After lunch, you will be driven back to the hotel to relax for the rest of the day. For dinner, you will indulge yourself at the hotel à-la-carte restaurant.
After a sumptuous breakfast, it’s time to say goodbye to Ribera del Duero, your guide will help you with the hotel’s checking out and your luggage will be loaded to your private vehicle.
Enjoy a scenic drive through the Spanish countryside. We will stop for a visit to traditional cheese-maker where you will learn how cheeses are made in the Spanish traditional way. These artisan cheese-makers have been making world-acclaimed cheeses for decades. You will enjoy a cheese tasting guided by the artisan cheesemaker.
After that, you will be driven to a hidden gem, a traditional restaurant in a small village on the back roads of Spain where you will enjoy traditional food at its best. With a 3-course a-la-carte menu you will be delighted by authentic slow food.
After the meal, an after a short drive, you will arrive at your next stop, León, Spain’s Gastronomy Capital 2018, a lively historic town and an important milestone along the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.
You will check for two nights in a stylish boutique hotel at León’s Main Square just meters away from Gaudí’s “Casa Botines” and León’s spectacular Gothic Cathedral, one of the greatest Cathedrals in Europe.
For dinner, you will be part of a unique and highly personal experience: a Jamón Ibérico private tasting hand carved by a knife in front of you by a Master Ham Carver.
You will learn how to distinguish all the different types of Hams in Spain and you will taste Jamon Ibérico directly from the knife of a qualified professional. Every paper-thin slice of this delicacy has a unique flavor you will have the chance to enjoy as they melt in your mouth.
Today, you will enjoy a relaxing stroll around Leon’s city center and a guided tour of Leon’s Gothic Cathedral, a masterpiece dated from the 13th century that will take your breath away. You’ll be transported back in time inside a magical place where you will be touched by the beauty of the sunlight crashing through one of the finest stained-glass windows in the world.
Enjoy this spectacular display of light and colors with the company of hundreds of pilgrims that arrive at this place every day after walking along the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.
The world-famous architect Antoni Gaudí designed one of the few works he made outside Barcelona in this town, the impressive palace called “Casa Botines”, an architectural masterpiece at the center of this charming town in Northern Spain.
León is probably the best Spanish town to enjoy a tapas bar crawl.
For lunch, you will dive into this amazing town in Northern Spain to discover the biggest concentration of bars in the country where you will enjoy creative and delicious tapas paired with Spanish wines from Rioja and Ribera del Duero world leading wine regions.
Brush shoulders with the locals to find the best bites in town for a culinary adventure you will treasure forever. We will visit small and lively bars that serve everything from crispy-on-the-outside-fluffy-on-the-inside patatas bravas, to perfect ham and cheese croquettes, to the most flavorsome chorizo you’ve ever tasted.
You will enjoy the rest of the evening at your leisure. For dinner, you will be escorted to a traditional family-run restaurant in the "Barrio Húmedo", León's lively old town.
After a sumptuous breakfast, your guide and driver will pick you up to drive you to your next destination. Your journey will start with a trip along a beautiful stretch of land in North-western Spain in a small village called Jimenez de Jamuz.
Your next stop will be Bodega El Capricho, a family-run farmhouse and grill restaurant acclaimed by the international press like Time, the Guardian, Stern or New York Times be the best place in the world to eat the perfect steak.
The film Steak Revolution proclaimed the “Galician Blond” steak from Bodega El Capricho as the best in the world. This will be the most intense meat experience of your life in a remote village on the back roads of Northern Spain
El Capricho’s owner José Gordón raises his own oxen from different Iberian native breeds in a piece of land where you can touch these enormous animals with up to seven feet tall, 1.400 kgs and up to 15 years old. Then the meat is dry-aged in temperature-controlled refrigerators to enhance its flavors up to 180 days.
After a visit to the farm to admire the oxen, you will immerse yourself into an unforgettable experience of intense flavors at the restaurant, placed in a cave used hundreds of years ago as a wine cellar.
After the feast, you can take a Spanish “siesta” while you will be driving north to Asturias, your home for the next five days.
You will check in a unique hotel in the Spanish coast, situated in the middle of the seafront with views to the Cantabrian sea, with direct access to Santa Marina beach and surrounded by the breath-taking sea and mountain landscapes.
For dinner, you will enjoy a feast for your senses at the hotel's gastronomic restaurant where tradition meets innovation at every bite with the freshest seafood in the region.
After a reinvigorating sleep, a delicious breakfast will be waiting for you to recharge your batteries. You will probably be in a mood to enjoy an early morning stroll on the beach before surfers arrive in this stunning town.
After that, you will start the day with a drive through a scenic road from the beach up to the mountains to "Covadonga Lakes", one of the most beautiful spots in "Picos de Europa". The road ascending to the lakes is a popular climb in professional road bicycle racing, and the most important climb in the Spanish multi-stage bicycle race "La Vuelta".
You will enjoy jaw-dropping views along the way. The "Covadonga Lakes" is a postcard-perfect valley with two glacial lakes. Goats, sheep, and cows roam freely around the lakes.
The view from this point is probably one of the most outstanding views of a mountain range in the world, dusted with snow on their peaks.
With such a beautiful backdrop, you will enjoy a gourmet picnic with ham, cheese, homemade bread and wine surrounded by magnificent mountains. An unforgettable experience for a nature lover.
You will descend down into the valley in search of ‘Pitu de Caleya’, free-range chicken. But this isn’t just any free-range chicken; it is the most delicious in Northern Spain. Far from prying eyes is a restaurant that few outsiders know about. Here you will sample its mouth-watering signature dish, free-range chicken rice as well as some local specialties.
After lunch, and after a short drive, you will visit an artisan cheesemaker who produces the best blue cheese in Spain, “Cabrales”. You will learn how cheese is produced in this region of Spain and you will enjoy a cheese guided tasting.
You will be driven back to the hotel to relax for the rest of the evening. For dinner, you will be escorted to one of the best restaurants in town, a place specialized in making probably the most delicious "Paella" (Spain's iconic dish) in the region.
After a delicious breakfast and an early morning drive into the sea, you will be driven to one of the most picturesque coastal villages in Spain, Lastres.
Perched by the cliffs you will discover Lastres’ postcard-perfect lighthouse. Waiting quayside at Lastres’ fishing port, you will meet the fishermen as they arrive with their catch of the day.
You will learn how fishermen live in this region bringing the best fish and seafood to the local restaurants. You will have the opportunity to sample this sparkling-fresh produce in a local restaurant in this picturesque village.
After lunch, you will be driven into the green landscapes of this region and you will visit another type of traditional village.
Cider is the traditional drink of Asturias in Northern Spain, and it is an important part of social life. You will visit a cider house to learn how cider is produced in this region. A walk through the corners that give life to the best cider, you will get lost under the foundations of the family house, the stone and old wood, the smell of apples and ferments will accompany you on a journey into the past to discover the traditional elaboration of natural cider.
You will finish the visit with a small course of exploration and a tasting of cider from the barrel accompanied by a selection of Asturian cheeses.
You will learn how to pour it like the locals do from a great height to allow the cider to breathe. A three-course á-la-carte dinner with local tapas will be the cherry on the cake for a full day of gastronomic experiences.
It’s time to say goodbye to Ribadesella and after your breakfast, your guide and driver will help you check out the hotel.
You will be transferred to Bilbao, the heart of the Basque Country. A vibrant city where traditions and cutting-edge architecture live in perfect harmony.
You will enjoy a driving tour of the city as we arrive at the city center. From there, you will enjoy a walking tour of the historic center as you sample the traditional “pintxos” in a “pintxos bar crawl”. “Pintxos” is the Basque version of the Spanish Tapas.
You will enjoy a bar crawl to the most unique local bars to sample these delicacies. After lunch, you will be transferred to your hotel, an impressive design hotel just in front of Bilbao’s landmark: the Guggenheim Museum.
After checking in and with some time to relax in your room, you will be guided to the Guggenheim Museum for a visit to this spectacular exhibition center.
For dinner, you will enjoy a traditional a-la-carte Basque restaurant where you can sample one of the Basque specialties: the Txuletón or “grilled steak”. You will sample another local food like croquettes or cod Basque style.\
After a sumptuous breakfast with views over the Guggenheim museum, your driver and your guide will pick you up from the hotel to drive you to San Sebastian.
San Sebastian is the pearl of the Cantabrian sea, an elegant coastal town with influences of the French Riviera. You will enjoy a walking tour of the most interesting spots starting with the central farmers market where you can feel the freshness of the produce they sell in a lively market where locals gather every day to buy local food. This is slow food at its best.
For lunch, you will be guided to the most interesting spots to sample “pintxos” during a pintxos bar crawl. You will taste innovative pintxos made with local ingredients as well as the most traditional bites.
After lunch, you will enjoy a stroll along San Sebastian beach where you can stop in a bar for a coffee or a drink.
You will be driven back to Bilbao in the evening but there will be one stop before you go to your hotel in a hidden village in the green landscapes of the Basque Country.
Basque Country is a big producer of apple cider. Their cider is different from the one you tried in Asturias but you will love it. We have designed a plan for lovers of cider and Basque gastronomy including a guided tour of traditional cider house followed by a magnificent traditional menu including chorizo sausage cooked in cider, salt cod omelette, salt cod with peppers, bone-in ribeye steak, Basque cheese, quince jelly, walnuts, almond tiles and cigarettes from Tolosa. All washed down with our cider, served directly from the kupela or barrel in true txotx ritual fashion.
It’s time to say goodbye to your Spanish trip. At the designated time, you will be driven to the airport on time to take your flight home. Enjoy your last day in the Basque Country at your own leisure. It’s time to do some shopping to take home.
Do you want to change anything of the trip to fit your needs?
More days, different accommodation, some other food you would like to try?
No problem. You will have a custom trip designed exactly to your interests. Like a tailor making a bespoke suit, it will fit you perfectly. Simply select your date and send an inquiry to Eat Northern Spain and they will be happy to assist you.
Elias is the "Eat Northern Spain" Founder. He believes that Northern Spain, in particular, the areas of Basque Country, Cantabria, Asturias, Galicia and Castilla y León, have so much to offer, Elias and his team want to share them with you. All the amazing team of Eat Northern Spain are natives of the area so, who better to show you around? They want to help you discover the real country as the locals live it. Tailored to your interest, they will take you on a private tour. The team shall be your guides, your interpreters, your friends.
All meals will be served at Michelin-starred, signature and traditional restaurants and all other meals as indicated à-la-carte (8 lunches and 9 dinners) with wines and drinks included à-la-carte (no fixed menus, you may choose from each restaurant's public menu what you want to taste).
Pre and post-tour extensions to Madrid and Barcelona are available by request.
Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport
Please book your flight to arrive at Madrid-Barajas Adolfo Suárez Airport (MAD). Transfer from and to the airport is included. The organizer will pick you up from the airport. On the departure day, you will be dropped off to Bilbao Airport (BIO).
For this organizer you can guarantee your booking through BookCulinaryVacations.com. All major credit cards supported.
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