Northern Spain Food & Wine Tour

Duration:

10 days

Style:

Luxury

Age:

21+

Group Size:

8-12

2022 Set Departure Dates
October 12th

Not seeing dates that work for you? Want to take this trip with your own private group? All of our tours can be customized and adapted into private and small group tours! Send us a message on our Custom Tours page for more info!

Valdemar Family Northern Spain Food & Wine Tour - 10 days

Experience old-world elegance and thousands of years of wine-making history in Northern Spain’s wine country on this inclusive wine and culinary tour!

Our trip will take us to Ribera del Duero, the Rioja region and home of Valdemar Family, followed by the Basque Country, home to Europe’s oldest culture, where boundless innovation and modern design blend easily with timeless local tradition.

Join us for an exclusive travel experience immersed in the true character of Northern Spain with all its culinary variety, age-old wines, remarkable architecture, natural landscapes, and captivating towns, all at a relaxed and undemanding pace.

This travel experience whisks you away from the well-trodden tourist path – you’ll feel catered to and cared for, gaining complete insight into local traditions and lifestyle with all the freedom and luxury of an independent traveler.

Madrid > Ribera del Duero > La Rioja > Bilbao > San Sebastian > Guetaria

COVID-19 and EU Travel

The impact of COVID-19 and international travel continues to evolve and shift often. The US Embassy website has the most current information for US travelers. https://es.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Additionally, we are closely monitoring the situation in Ukraine 🇺🇦 as it unfolds and if/how it may impact travel and safety in the EU. https://ec.europa.eu/info/index_en

InquisiTours will monitor the and communicate the most current requirements a month before the departure date to ensure our guests have the information they need to make arrangements for any pre-trip requirements (if applicable).

Board your overnight flight from the U.S. to Madrid, Spain

Upon arrival at Madrid airport, you will be welcomed and escorted to a private vehicle where your Spanish journey begins.

You’ll be driven deep into the scenic landscape of Ribera del Duero where an idyllic destination welcomes you for the next three nights. The majestic 5-star Abadia Retuerta is one of the best-preserved Cistercian monasteries of the 12th century, surrounded by vineyards and peaceful pine groves.

The remainder of your day is at your leisure to enjoy the marvelous location of this exceptional Romanesque converted abbey and its sweeping, cinematic views across the Ribera del Duero.

Join us for a welcome reception to meet your guide and fellow travelers.

This evening, à-la-carte dinner is included at any of the fine venues in the hotel, including room service.

Meals Included: Dinner

Today, experience an exclusive immersion into the heart of Ribera del Duero. Winding our way through the vineyards, we’ll discover the world-famous, state-of-the-art wineries along the “Golden Mile” where some of the best wines in the world are produced.

  • Take a private 4×4 tour of the Abadia Retuerta winery, estate and vineyards.
  • Explore the dramatically located Castillo de Peñafiel, a 10th century Castle housing a state-of-the-art local wine museum, complete with impressive panoramic views from the top.
  • Sample the signature dish of the region “Lechazo,” lamb roasted in a wood oven, just as they’ve been doing for hundreds of years.


Spend your afternoon as you prefer. You may choose to:

  • Discover the beautiful riverside with a bike ride along the River Duero
  • Relax, kick back and luxuriate at the five-star thermal spa.
  • Take a leisurely and scenic stroll by the river
  • Have a unique lesson in how the chef grows his own vegetables in the hotel’s gardens


This evening, à-la-carte dinner is included at any of the fine venues in the hotel, including room service.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today, add to your gastronomic expertise with a visit to a traditional cheese maker. We’ll set off on a drive through the gentle greens and golds of the Ribera del Duero landscape, to see how these artisan cheesemakers have been serving up delicate, aromatic, and varied flavors of world-acclaimed cheese for decades. You’ll gain detailed insight into their traditional methods and see the cheesemakers at work.

Afterward, we’ll find our way through the tree-lined back roads of Spain to a hidden gem, where we will enjoy a traditional lunch featuring a 3-course a-la-carte menu of authentic slow food, a classic of this Spanish region.

Design your own afternoon, whether you’re seeking adventure or relaxation:

  • Stroll or cycle along the banks of the pretty River Duero and explore.
  • Experience pure peace and tranquility at the five-star thermal spa.
  • Learn how the chef grows his own vegetables in the hotel’s gardens.


This evening, à-la-carte dinner is included at any of the fine venues in the hotel, including room service.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast, your driver will take you to what is arguably the Queen of all Spanish wine destinations – La Rioja, an absolute essential in any self-respecting wine and food aficionado’s itinerary!

Wander the picture-perfect walled city of Laguardia, a medieval town of narrow streets and underground tunnels, surrounded on all sides by vineyards. We’ll stop to savor a memorable lunch while soaking up the history and local atmosphere at a popular Laguardia restaurant, built during the 13th century.

After the meal, we will visit the extraordinarily stunning Marqués de Riscal winery, with a unique tour of the Frank Gehry designed- updated building, and of course we won’t be leaving without tasting some of that infamous Rioja!

This evening, you will be escorted to a local restaurant for a casual dinner, run by one of Spain’s best chefs in the heart of charming Logroño.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll take an escorted tour and stroll through the enchanting Riojan city of Logroño.

This city is quickly gaining a reputation for its excellent pintxos, (Basque tapas) and we plan to get in on the action with a tapas crawl along the famous Calle del Laurel.

The original tapa was a small dish placed over your drink by the barman, like a lid (hence the name – tapar means to cover). Tapas have evolved into sophisticated dishes of their own, varying all over the country but in Logroño, they come with a unique twist. Each bar specializes in one particular ingredient, explored through a variety of dishes and crafted with passion over decades of experimentation to perfection. Leave plenty of room to try a tantalizing selection!

The rest of the day is yours to fill however you please – explore the local shops, discover the trails along the Ebro river, relax back at the hotel spa, or simply experience life as the locals do, soaking up the afternoon sun in a tree-lined square or rambling about the narrow streets and glimpsing the hidden corners of Logroño.

Your guide will provide recommendations for your dinner this evening.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

The Valdemar family has been making wine in La Rioja, Spain for over 130 years. What started as an underground stone cellar in the small town of Oyón has grown into one of the most prestigious international brands in Rioja. The flagship location, Bodegas Valdemar, has more than 300 hectares of stunning vineyards on the property, making it a truly unforgettable destination.

Optional: Join the group for a beautiful early morning hike along the Camino de Santiago, the ancient route followed by pilgrims for hundreds of years. What a way to begin the day, steeped in history and glorious nature, surrounded by the vineyards of La Rioja, approximately 5 miles / 8 km.

  • Channel your inner winegrower and learn how to harvest, shell, and press grapes!
  • Enjoy a picnic with a view at a selected spot, with exclusive wines hand-picked for your very own educational and sensory journey.
  • Feast your taste buds with a traditional Rioja lunch paired with unique family wines.


Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Start the morning with a delicious breakfast before we travel to our next destination: the thriving city of Bilbao. Tucked into a green and lush corner of Northern Spain, Bilbao pulses with life and vibrant culture. It’s home to the traditional and the modern, from ancient Basque carvings and neo-baroque architecture to the magnificent and iconic Guggenheim Museum, designed by Frank Gehry.

We’ll have lunch in the Guggenheim Cafe, giving you plenty of time to explore every corner of this shimmering landmark and take in the sheer magnitude of this titanium work of art.

Afterward, we travel to our home for the next three nights: San Sebastian. This graceful town with its elegant coastal location happens to be one of the world’s best dining destinations, and our culinary tour would not be complete without it!

For a proper introduction to the local cuisine, your guide will escort you to a traditional Basque restaurant to enjoy a meal of selected local specialties such as fresh oysters, baby squid, and baked spider crab.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today, we spend a full day in San Sebastian, the pearl of the Cantabrian sea. After breakfast, we visit the Basque Culinary Center. This academic institution is a leading culinary entity in which some of the world’s top chefs are trained, and you too will have a hands-on experience in a cooking workshop where you can experiment with different product infusions to create your own pintxos.

To continue the culinary focus for the morning, we will walk around the old town’s seemingly endless narrow streets, including the central farmers’ market. The slow food culture makes the local dishes so tasty, which you will experience during lunchtime during a pintxos bar crawl. The rest of the afternoon is at your leisure to explore the city.

Your guide will provide recommendations for dinner on your own. Bookings to dine at world-renowned Michelin-starred restaurants can be arranged in advance.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Following breakfast, your guide will drive you to one of Spain’s most charming villages – the medieval fishing settlement of Guetaria, wedged between two beautiful beaches. The village is surrounded by the rolling green hills of the Txakoli vineyards, where we will pay a visit to a local winery so that you can experience a tasting of txakoli wines.

Back in picturesque Getaria port, we’ll enjoy a bittersweet farewell lunch in one of the best seafood restaurants in Spain. Abundant with local maritime flavor, grilled fish straight from the Bay of Biscay is the town’s specialty and we’ll savor that along with a cold glass of txakoli, gazing out across the blue sea.

After lunch, we will return to your hotel in San Sebastian. You will have the rest of the day to yourself to soak up the last beautiful remnants of your trip, taking in the unique magic of the Basque country at your own, relaxed pace.

Your guide will provide recommendations for dinner on your own tonight.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Individual private transfer from your hotel to Bilbao’s airport.

Meals Included: Breakfast (with the exception of early morning flights)

Ramble and Trek
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"We traveled in May 2019 with Guy Glaeser (of Inquisitours) on this wonderful journey through the wine regions of Washington and the Columbia River Gorge. We were struck by the fantastic beauty of this part of the U.S. and how friendly the people were as we made our way across Washington and back through Oregon. The itinerary that Guy and Robin put together was excellent -- we really feel we saw the "best of the best" in this region -- and our time together included enough flexibility that we could request customizations that Guy willingly included. Guy knew all of the best wineries, and we learned so much about the landscape and history of these areas. He also had suggestions on what to see and where to eat when we were on our own. We were able to also enjoy time with Robin (and their children!), so that by the end of the week, we felt like we had been traveling with friends we had known for a long time. Guy and Robin have created a tour experience with just the right mix of structure and flexibility. We HIGHLY recommend this company!"

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