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Essential Basque Country Culinary Tour

Essential Basque Country Culinary Tour

10 Days/9 Nights From
AU$6,518 Per person twin share
 
  • Tour Type
    Escorted TourEscorted Tour
  • Tour Code
    MIM-19-6630
10 Days/9 Nights From
AU$6,518 Per person twin share
 
  • Tour Type
    Escorted TourEscorted Tour
  • Tour Code
    MIM-19-6630
Description 
  • Tour Highlights
    AccommodationAccommodation 10-night accommodation in Bilbao, San Sebastian & RiojaActivityActivity Wine tasting sessionMealsMeals Daily breakfast at hotel, lunch & dinners in local restaurantsToursTours Pintxo tastings. Up to 6 pintxo bars. TourTour Walking tours in Bilbao, San Sebastian, Biarritz, St. Jean de Luz & PamplonaTransportationTransportation Private luxury transportation

Summary

Discover the allure of the Basque Country with our 10-day, Essential Basque Country tour. During this tour, explore Spain's fabled region known for its beautiful landscape and culinary delights. Visit the city of Bilbao and explore its architectural landmarks including the gleaming Guggenheim. You will also visit the beautiful towns of Getaria and Gernika including the Balenciaga Museum. Head to San Sebastian, one of the world's best dining destinations. Enjoy a culinary tour of the city and find out the Basque food movement including the pintxo culture. You will have an opportunity to visit the lesser known side of the Basque Country. Visit the coastal town of Biarritz and the fishing village of St. Jean de Luz.

Guaranteed departures on 9th May and 3rd October 2019.

Itinerary

Day 1, Thursday
Transfer from the airport to the accommodation in Bilbao and free day to rest from the flight. Overnight accommodation in Bilbao

Day 2, Friday
Enjoy a morning walking tour of the city, post-modern and medieval, followed by a guided visit to the acclaimed Frank Gehry building and its collection, with works by Beuys, Serra, Koons, Rauschenberg and Kiefer. Lunch in the Guggenheim restaurant.

Free time in the afternoon to explore the city at your own pace. End the day with a sumptuous dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight in Bilbao.

Day 3, Saturday
You have free day to explore the city's tourist attractions and landmarks. Overnight in Bilbao.

Day 4, Sunday
Visit of Gernika. Linked to Euskadi's history and symbol of Basque rights and peace, Gernika is a must-see town to those who come and visit us. After a short walk in the village and having learned where the famous gernika painting from Picasso comes from, we drive to the small fishing ports strung along the newly declared UNESCO Geopark, which celebrates the extraordinarily elaborate and contorted flysch formations of this part of the Basque coast.

After a tour of Gernika, enjoy grilled fresh catch for lunch in nearby Getaria, a beautiful village with some of the region’s best fish restaurants. Sardines and seafood are grilled along the narrow cobbled streets leading to the port.

In the afternoon, visit the Balenciaga Museum, combining the 20th century sophistication of a museum dedicated to the fashion designer Cristobal Balenciaga, and the evocative atmosphere of the 13th century Gothicchurch of San Salvador. The church has a dedication to Getaria’s most illustrious native, Juan Sebastián Elcano, he captained Magellan’s fleet and completed the first circumnavigation of the globe after the latter’s death.

At 5:30 pm, arrive in San Sebastian.

At night, celebrate Spanish wines, and their incredible variety, through pairings with local produce cooked right before your eyes. Five special wines are perfectly paired with original pintxo creations
made with fresh produce, purchased daily at La Bretxa market. With a glass in hand, ask the sommelier all your questions about the Spanish wine scene, and glean great cooking tips from the chef as he prepares your food. From crisp, floral whites to robust reds from Rioja or Ribera del Duero, this fluid experience allows you to experience wine in a new way, from sitting at our wooden table to gathering around the stove, chatting and learning. Spain has more vine-covered acres than any other country, so travel by taste in this unique experience. You’ll come hungry and leave happy, with a table full of new friends.

Overnight in San Sebastian.

Day 5, Monday
Discover the captivating city of San Sebastian, undoubtedly one of the world’s great dining destinations with a culinary tour. The striking beauty of San Sebastian’s mountains and beaches is its calling card. Experience it in a fuller way with this tour, which gives you a more in-depth taste of the city’s eye candy.

Stroll through the Old Town’s endless narrow streets, learn about architecture, history, and of course the famous food culture of San Sebastian in situ, passing by famous landmarks, churches, plazas and bars. En route, you will stop at three of the city’s most famous pintxo bars to sample hallmarks of the city’s pintxo culture, whilst learning about the Basque food movement, which has inspired an entire generation of chefs. This is no guidebook and no typical canned tour. Connect you with the inner workings of San Sebastian on this multi-faceted experience.

Free afternoon and evening.

At 8:00 pm, have a wonderful opportunity to be invited in by a chef for dinner as his special guests at his private eating club. These clubs have rules: no talk of politics, business or religion. A very special dining experience, not accessible to most visitors to the Basque Country, offering insights into the gender politics of the region.

Overnight in San Sebastian.

Day 6, Tuesday
Discover the lesser-known side of Basque Country. Experience the chic, fabulously French Basque Country in this tour, designed to take you into the Belle Epoque flavored world of the towns and villages of Iparralde (literally, the North side). Take a leisurely stroll through the glamourous streets of Biarritz, the chic coastal gem. Local experts will lead you through Les Halles de Biarritz, the famous food market, whose selection of regional cheeses, wines and seasonal bounty is on another level. Enjoy a midday aperitif with a distinct local flavor before moving further south to St. Jean de Luz. This enchanting fishing village is charming and better yet undiscovered by all but the select French cognoscenti. An elegant seaside lunch featuring French Basque cuisine and techniques finishes this magical tour of Le Pays Basque.

You have a free afternoon after Biarritz and in St. Jean de Luz.

Optional: Rioja wine tasting
Take a trip to one of the most famous wine regions in the world, without leaving San Sebastián. The Rioja Wine Tasting is an experience that will take you on a journey between bodegas, and through time. Sip traditional varieties, like Tempranillo, Graciano, Mazuelo and Viura, you may know, but an expert sommelier will fill you in with little known wine gossip and teach you how to tell the difference between these wines.

Overnight in San Sebastian.

Day 7, Wednesday
Free day to explore San Sebastian.

Optional: The Essnetial Pintxo Cooking Class
Small bites pack a powerful punch when it comes to the pintxo, Basque Country's most famous culinary export. At its most basic, a pintxo is a small bite—but with a world of knowledge, tricks and tips behind its preparation. From the simple gilda, the city’s emblematic pintxo, to the elaborate creations that inspired by avant-garde cuisine, the world of pintxos is demystified and made easy and fun in our cooking school. Learn the basics and beyond in The Essential Pintxo class. Each pintxo cooking class ends with a delicious lunch and carefully chosen wine pairings. You will gather around our rustic wooden table to enjoy what you and your fellow classmates have cooked using your newly acquired knowledge.

Overnight in San Sebastian.

Day 8, Thursday
Visit of Chillida Leku Museum*
The work of the sculptor Eduardo Chillida (San Sebastián, 1924-2002) meets nature in its purest state at the Chillida-Leku museum. Built in Zabalaga, a former farmhouse owned by the author and only a few minutes from the city centre, Chillida-Leku proposes 150 pieces that invite reflection. Visitors can enjoy the work of an universal artist in the intimacy of a space customised for his collection.

Visit of Pamplona
Founded by the romans and located on the Pilgrim's Way to Santiago, Pamplona is a city full of history and deep-rooted traditions, where tradition and modernity live in harmony. The streets and squares of its historic quarter still preserve a significant collection of monumental buildings dominated by its churches and medieval walls. The city of Pamplona is world famous thanks to its San Fermín fiestas and the running of the bulls, that takes place each July.

Transfer to Rioja.

At 9:00 pm, enjoy a delicious dinner at a local restaurant.

Overnight in Rioja.

Day 9, Friday
Discover one of the world’s most famous wine regions guided by a team of experts, whose combined enthusiasm for Rioja is unparalleled. On this day-pass to the secrets of winemaking, you will be chauffeured you around this beautiful region, visiting two contrasting wineries along the way, each with their own style, history and architecture. The trip also includes a stroll through the lovely medieval village of Laguardia and lunch at one of its most local restaurants, tried and tested by expert guides. Tasting and teaching is the name of this package. Starting with the soil and moving from barrel to glass, you are taken step-by-step
through the process of winemaking. Test your taste buds, enrich your wine knowledge, and develop your ‘nose’ for wine. No questions are too silly and no wine thought too random for our passionate guides, devoted to celebrating the Rioja region.

In the evening, dinner at a local restaurant.

Overnight in Rioja

Day 10, Saturday
Pick up from the hotel and transfer to Bilbao airport.

Inclusions

  • 3-night stay in a 4-star hotel Miró in Bilbao
  • 4-night stay in a 4-star hotel Villa Soro in San Sebastian
  • 2-night stay in a 4-star hotel Los Agustinos in Rioja
  • Daily breakfast
  • Lunch and dinners in local restaurants
  • Walking tours in Bilbao, San Sebastian, Biarritz, St. Jean de Luz & Pamplona
  • Guggenheim, Balenciaga and Chillida Leku museums visits
  • Pintxo tasting tour and gastronomic society experience in San Sebastian
  • Visit of two wineries in Rioja
  • All the food and wine during the experiences
  • Local English-speaking guides throughout
  • Private luxury transportation

Exclusions

  • Flights
  • Gratuities
  • Room service
  • Any meals and drinks not specified

Important Notes

Optional Activities/Inclusions

  • Rioja wine tasting in San Sebastian
  • Pintxos cooking class in San Sebastian
  • Michelin restaurant lunch or dinner arrangements in San Sebastian
  • Personalised welcome gift in hotel room

Please note that single supplement applies for this tour.

Contact a Spain & Portugal Travel Specialist

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Call us

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1300 858 795

Opening Hours:
9am - 5.30pm Monday to Friday

Find out more information from our Spain & Portugal Specialist

Call us

Prefer speaking to us over the phone?

Our Spain & Portugal Specialists would love to help you out!

1300 858 795

Opening Hours:
9am - 5.30pm Monday to Friday

Enquire about this Tour

Find out more information from our Spain & Portugal Specialist

Enquire Now

Meet Your Spain & Portugal Travel Specialist

(We're real people that want to help you)

Contacts