The Iberian Ham
from Salamanca to Huelva
The Iberian Ham
from Salamanca to Huelva
Departure : Madrid, Spain
Places : Madrid, Salamanca, Guijuelo, Plasencia, Cáceres, Badajoz, Mérida, Sierra de Aracena, Seville.
Arrival : Madrid, Airport
Spain is widely known as a world leader in gastronomy and with so many culinary possibilities…there are also many words related to culinary specialities which have no translation to other languages. We provide all our travellers with a special pocket dictionary of these words and phrases that helps to further a greater understanding of these unique foods and the words that describe them.
Day 1 – ARRIVAL IN MADRID
On arrival at Madrid Airport, the group will be met and greeted by a Gamma Tours escort. Transfer to the hotel. Time to relax and to refresh up. Welcome dinner will be served at one of the oldest restaurants of the city with 200 years of history. Overnight.
Day 2 – MADRID – SALAMANCA – 220 Km
Depart towards Salamanca. You will leave Madrid driving along the motorway to northwest until you arrive in Salamanca.
Lunch will be served in a restaurant close to Main Square tasting a starter or a dessert typical of the city reside the main dish.
You focus the visit in the monumental area of the city, which centre is the Main Square, possibly one of the most beautiful of Spain and from tire you stroll seeing the Romanesque church of St. Martin, the Shell’s House, the Patio de las Escuelas, the Old University, the New and the Old Cathedrals. Time at leisure. Overnight.
Day 3 – SALAMANCA – GUIJUELO – PLASENCIA – 150 Km
Depart to the town of Guijuelo and its surroundings. This area has its own Origin Denomination for Iberian Ham that is renowned for the quality and taste.
You will visit a small “secadero” (dry factory) of Iberian Ham of the Origin Denomination Guijuelo. This family firm is produces ham “lomo”, “chorizo”, “salchichon” and “longaniza” with a very advanced technology, but also maintaining the artisan spirit in the main aspects of production.
Throughout the visit, you will be given details on the production process. You will end the visit with a sampling of some of these products, served with some good red wine.
Lunch will be served in Guijuelo in a small but popular restaurant, with a good cuisine especially as far as the typical products are concerned.
Then you will continue to Bejar and Candelario, typical village of the mountain area that jeeps the charm with its own peculiarities that makes different of the others.
You will then go on to Plasencia, which is the most important town of the area. Its medieval layout of the city can be seen in the remains of the walls, the Walls, the Main Square, the Town Hall and the Old and New Cathedrals.
For dinner, will be served a menu with based in typical products of Extremadura. Overnight.
Day 4 – PLASENCIA – CACERES – 100 Km
You will head south, towards the region of sleep cheese production, known as the “Torta del Casar” Origin Denomination, that makes mainly cheeses using sheep’s milk. You will visit a cheese factory that has the best reputation for the quality of the cheeses they produce in an artisan manner.
During your visit, you will be given details on the production process and shown an introductory video. This will be followed by a sampling of some of these cheeses.
Continue to Caceres. For lunch, you will have an Extremaduran menu based in ancient recipes make with local products.
It is a historical city at least 2000 years old and has been designated a World Heritage Site
On your visit on foot to the city, you will see the Almohad Walls, the aristocratic Gothic and Renaissance houses, the Santa Maria Square, the Palace of the Golfines de Abajo with a magnificent façade dating back to the 15th century, the House of the Storks, the House of the “Veletas” (weather cocks), which is the present Museum of Caceres and the House of the Knight Commander Alcuescar, now converted into a hotel. These are the most important places and monuments of the city.
Time at leisure. Overnight.
Day 5 – CACERES – BADAJOZ – MERIDA – 180 Km
You head towards Badajoz. You will then go to an important factory of Iberian Ham and sausages that still prepares its products in the traditional manner. According to the information we have been given, they only make their products with 100% Pure Iberian Pork. Their products are included in the Dehesa de Extremadura Origin Denomination. During the visit, you will receive full explanations about the elaboration system ending with a taste of products.
Then you’ll leave towards Merida.
You will visit one of the most reputable winery in this area that show you the vineyards and the cellar giving you all kind of explanations about the elaboration process ending with a tasting of a couple of different wines.
Lunch in a local restaurant in which menu it will be included cod to the Extremadura manner.
Merida, town founded by the Romans on 25 B.C. Thus, the Roman legacy is still present in the Roman Theatre being one of the most emblematic constructions. Erected in the first century B.C., the theatre can seat 6,000 people. Next to it, the Amphitheatre is located; a stage where gladiators wrestled with beasts. These buildings were designated World Heritage Sites; besides you can see the Temple of Diana and the Arch of Trajan – one of the gates to the old city, rising to a height of 15 metres – now located in the city centre. We have also to mention the National Museum of Roman Art, that if you want you may visit it on your own.
Time at leisure. Overnight.
Day 6 – MERIDA – SIERRA DE ARACENA – SEVILLE – 250 Km
Departure to south where you will be entering Andalusian lands and you will cross a part of the Sierra de Aracena. Due to the abundance of rain there is an extensive growth of chestnuts forest, cork and holm oaks. The acorns from these trees are the main food of the Iberian Black Pork, from which the excellent Sierra de Huelva Origin Denomination Iberian Ham is made.
You will visit a production centre of this ham and a “secadero” – dry factory – in a well-known firm for the quality of its products. It still dries the hams in the traditional manner and its hams and “embutidos” are all made of the pure Iberian Pork.
The visit will end with a taste of the products made by this company with some bread and red wine as a drink.
You head to the beautiful town Almonaster la Real where you will have a lunch in a local restaurant; the menu will be based with products of the area.
In the afternoon after lunch, you will leave towards Seville. A visit to Andalusia is not complete if you don’t attend to a Flamenco show. Overnight.
Day 7 – SEVILLE – MADRID
In the morning, you will do a tour of Seville with an official local guide, viewing some of its most important monuments such as the Park of de Maria Luisa and its Plaza de España, the typical Santa Cruz Quarter that it was the Jewish Quarter during the middle ages; you will also visit the Gothic Cathedral which is the third largest in the world or the Alcazar or fortress, of which the beautiful palace of Pedro el Cruel (Peter the Cruel) and its gardens are specially outstanding. Both monuments were designated World Heritage Sites.
You will then go towards the Guadalquivir River, going past the Torre del Oro (Golden Tower) and the bullring “La Maestranza”, which probably is, one the most emblematic in the whole of Spain.
A “tapas” lunch will be served in a local restaurant.
Transfer to the high-speed train station and depart towards Madrid. Upon arrival to the capital of Spain clients will be transferred to the hotel having then time at leisure.
The Farewell dinner will be served in fine restaurant. Overnight.
Day 8 – MADRID DEPARTURE
Transfer to the airport where you will be helped in the check-in formalities at the airline counter, and then you will pass through the passport and security control and leave for your next destination.
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