Northern Spain Real Food Adventure

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Northern Spain Real Food Adventure

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Description

Explore the sights, sounds and tastes of Northern Spain on this food-focused adventure. Immerse yourself in local history and culture as you sample produce at Santa Catarina Market, whip up Catalan specialties in a cooking class, enjoy myriad tapas bars in Logrono, discover the medieval streets and underground wine caves of Laguardia, and venture north to San Sebastian where beaches and a thriving food and arts scene bask together under a beaming sun. Experience a traditional Asturian sidreria (cider house) near Oviedo, attend a centuries’ old farmers market in the Potes and taste fresh seafood on the coast in Galicia. With Santiago de Compostela in your sights, your Spanish food pilgrimage is a path worth taking.

Trip Name
Northern Spain Real Food Adventure
Last Updated
2019-11-18
Days
10
Capacity
12
Highlights
  • Uncover the local specialties of Asturia and Galicia, sampling true Asturian cider poured in the traditional style, and eating fresh Galician mussels straight from the sea in A Coruna.
  • Few places know how to do a farmer’s market better than Potes, so lap up all of the food traditions with an included market brunch of delicious regional offerings.
  • Learn the difference between pinxtos and tapas with a number of opportunities to crawl around town, tasting the local fare – Logrono’s Old Town has some of the best in the country.
  • In between market visits and tapas tastings, discover the medieval history and charming cobbled laneways of Northern Spain, stopping off for a glass of the local drop to soak up your surroundings.
  • See one of the many reasons why Bilbao and San Sebastian are hot on the map of Spanish travellers, with time spare to visit the acclaimed Guggenheim museum.

Itinerary

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and may be on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

Day 1 - Barcelona
Hola! Welcome to Spain. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm today. For those who arrive early, perhaps explore the streets of the old Gothic Quarter, check out the Picasso Museum, wander the tree-lined pedestrian boulevard of La Rambla, or take the funicular to the top of Montjuic or Tibidabo for some wicked views. After the meeting, jump straight into your Real Food Adventure by feeling the rhythm of Barcelona, sipping a locally produced cava in a local bar then perhaps continuing on a tapas crawl, tasting rustic bite-sized Catalan dishes.
Day 2 - Barcelona
This morning, get ready for a truly authentic introduction to Catalan cuisine with a passionate Barcelona local and respected chef. Taste your way through the stalls of Santa Catarina Market and pick up some fresh ingredients for a cooking demonstration. Hang out with the stall holders as you select the best piece of meat, feel for the crispest vegetable and choose the freshest seafood. Afterwards, your host will show you how to whip up some Catalonia specialties, like salt cod salad or crema catalana, then sit down to a leisurely lunch accompanied by a glass or two of wine from the nearby Penedes region. Spend the afternoon exploring more of the city's food hotspots or get cultural with some Gaudi at the Casa Mila or La Sagrada Familia. Maybe get lost in the mysterious alleys of the Gothic Quarter and finish the day with a sip of red wine from a Porron – a traditional glass pitcher.
Day 3 - Logrono
Ride the rails east to the prized vineyards of La Rioja wine region and Logrono (approximately 3.5 hours). The town sits on the banks of the Ebro river and is the capital of Spain’s most renowned wine region. It also boasts one of the most distinguished culinary traditions in the county and is home to some of the best tapas bars in the whole of Spain, all crammed into its small medieval centre. Logrono is a charming city of medieval fortifications, where much work is being done to restore it to its full glory. This evening you’ll go on a walking tour of the Old Quarter, wandering down Calle del Laurel and the 60 or so taperias (tapas bars) that line the way. This is the perfect opportunity to sample a bit of everything, as each bar has its own speciality – taste your way through some grilled chorizo or wild mushrooms, and wash them down with a glass of the region’s famous red.
Day 4 - Logrono/San Sebastian
This morning you’ll stop past the Logrono market and pick up some treats for a picnic lunch. Then take a local bus (approximately 30 minutes) and go back in time in the historic walled town of Laguardia, perched atop a rock foundation. The entire centre of Laguardia is traffic free as underground lies a maze of tunnels, used to make and store wine for centuries. Here you’ll tour Laguardia's wine caves and then enjoy a guided tasting through some of the region's distinct varietals. Later in the afternoon, transfer to the stunning seaside San Sebastian – jewel of the Basque country and a city obsessed with food (approximately 2 hours). Take an orientation tour of the Parte Vieja (Old Town) – a mix of alleyways wedged between the bay and the Urumea River. This evening why not hit the neighbourhood streets for a txikiteo of pinxtos, a Basque-style tapas crawl that will fill the senses – and stomach – with the unique flavours of the region. Don’t forget to wash them down with txakoli – a slightly fizzy white that’s the region’s signature wine.
Day 5 - San Sebastian
One of the secrets to the success of San Sebastian’s food scene is the obsession with high quality, local, seasonal ingredients. The best way to experience this firsthand it to visit the traditional food markets of La Bretxa or San Martin, and you’ll do just that this morning before a masterclass in Basque cuisine. In this hands-on cooking class, you’ll learn how to prepare some of the signature dishes of the region, and you’ll also taste Basque products including idiazabal – a local cheese, and txakoli – a lightly sparkling dry white wine. The afternoon is free you to explore the town or surrounding area more. Perhaps catch a cable car to Monte Igueldo for some truly spectacular views or take a trip along the winding coast to the nearby small fishing village of Getaria. Maybe discover San Sebastian’s beaches, shops and charismatic streets, or dive into pinxtos bars that range from the traditional to the experimental.
Day 6 - Bilbao/Picos de Europa NP
Continue east to Bilbao (approximately 1 hour) – a city that was revitalised by the arrival of the Guggenheim. Spend some free time perhaps visiting Frank Gehry’s sweeping metal building and the artistic treasures housed inside and out. Afterwards, climb by bus (approximately 3 hours) up to the Picos de Europa National Park. The park is not what many people picture as Spain – it’s an alpine landscape, high, cool, lush and green, with forests, deep gorges through the cliffs, and grassland dotted with photogenic toffee-coloured cows. Covering some 647 square kilometres, Picos de Europa is Spain's second largest national park and spans across the three provinces of Asturias, Cantabria and Leon. Work up an appetite for tonight’s meal with a walk through this stunning landscape (approximately 2 hours). For dinner, a classic Cantabrian dish is on the menu – Cocido Lebaniego. Cocido Lebaniego is a rich, hearty stew of black pudding, pork shoulder, chorizo and locally grown chickpeas. Enjoy a cooking demonstration followed by your own cocido tasting. Be sure to enjoy your dinner with some crusty bread and a glass of cider.
Day 7 - Oviedo
This morning, take a short trip to the small mountain town of Potes, nestled in the Picos de Europa National Park. Bordered by ancient monasteries, Potes is brimming with centuries of history, and is a quaint tapestry of bridges, narrow streets and old houses. You will arrive in time to experience the wonderful weekly food market, where you’ll enjoy a market brunch. Depending on the season, you may get to savour locally grown apples, pears, cherries, walnuts, chestnuts or Cantabrian cheeses. On the way to Oviedo, the ancient capital of the region, drive to the charming hillside village of Arenas de Cabrales (approximately 1 hour). Here there’s the opportunity to taste famous Cabrales cheese – a natural blue cheese produced by farmers using a traditional artisan method. Next, stop past an Asturian cider house – the traditional drink of the region. Enjoy a glass in the local style, from a bottle held high over the head into a glass at the knee to produce natural carbonation. You will then arrive in Oviedo by later afternoon (approximately 1.5 hours).
Day 8 - Oviedo
Take a walk around the handsome city of Oviedo, with its unique personality, quaint pre-Romanesque churches, elegant streetscapes, fine monuments and grand houses built by those who sailed to the New World and returned wonderfully rich. At the heart of the town sits the impressive Gothic San Salvador Cathedral. You’ll also enjoy an introduction to wonderful local products of Asturia at El Fontan market, home to excellent fish stalls beneath a canopy of wrought-iron and glass. This afternoon is free for your own exploration. Perhaps take a trip up to the port city of Gijon for fresh seafood and sweet-filled bakeries, or the fishing village of Luanco for a relaxing drink on the promenade. For dinner, consider heading to Calle de la Gascona, which is lined with lively sidrerias (cider houses) serving a wide range of raciones (tasting plates).
Day 9 - Santiago de Compostela
This morning, take a bus to A Coruna in the region of Galicia (approximately 4 hours), taking in some of the spectacular Galician coastline. Here you will visit the impressive fish market in the Praza de Lugo and marvel at the range of seafood on offer. Lunch on fresh seafood at a nearby café, with other delicious non-seafood options available. Then, like thousands of pilgrims before you, end your journey in the capital of Galicia, believed to be the final resting place of the apostle St James (approximately 30 minutes). The beautiful old city of Santiago de Compostela holds many delights within its walls, all overseen by the mighty cathedral. Take a walk around the Old District lit up at night, through the arcaded stone streets, the spacious Praza del Obradoiro and past the Archbishop’s imposing palace. Santiago is home to more than just pilgrims, with the large population of students from the university enhancing the city’s nightlife. Perhaps spend the night in one of the cafes, bars or tapas restaurants in the Old Town.
Day 10 - Santiago de Compostela
You will finish this Northern Spain adventure on a gastronomic high with a morning tasting tour around some of the city's best food gems, including the celebrated Mercado de Abastos (Abastos Market). Toast the end of the trip with a cheeky pre-noon glass of wine. The Real Food Adventure Northern Spain will conclude at midday. You may leave your luggage at the hotel until the conclusion of the trip.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
05-05-202014-05-2020AUD $ 3,642-
12-05-202021-05-2020AUD $ 3,408-
19-05-202028-05-2020AUD $ 3,340-
26-05-202004-06-2020AUD $ 3,540-
02-06-202011-06-2020AUD $ 3,277-
16-06-202025-06-2020AUD $ 3,213-
07-07-202016-07-2020AUD $ 3,213-
14-07-202023-07-2020AUD $ 3,243-
25-08-202003-09-2020AUD $ 3,213-
08-09-202017-09-2020AUD $ 3,340-
15-09-202024-09-2020AUD $ 3,340-
22-09-202001-10-2020AUD $ 3,374-
29-09-202008-10-2020AUD $ 3,340-
06-10-202015-10-2020AUD $ 3,213-
13-10-202022-10-2020AUD $ 3,213-
04-05-202113-05-2021AUD $ 3,780-
18-05-202127-05-2021AUD $ 3,780-
25-05-202103-06-2021AUD $ 3,780-
08-06-202117-06-2021AUD $ 3,780-
22-06-202101-07-2021AUD $ 3,780-
06-07-202115-07-2021AUD $ 3,780-
20-07-202129-07-2021AUD $ 3,780-
10-08-202119-08-2021AUD $ 3,780-
31-08-202109-09-2021AUD $ 3,780-
07-09-202116-09-2021AUD $ 3,780-
14-09-202123-09-2021AUD $ 3,780-
21-09-202130-09-2021AUD $ 3,780-
28-09-202107-10-2021AUD $ 3,780-
12-10-202121-10-2021AUD $ 3,780-
26-10-202104-11-2021AUD $ 3,780-

Accommodation

Hotel (9 nights)

Transport

Public bus,Taxi,Train,Private vehicle

Map