Project Description

Day 1 – ARRIVAL IN COSTA DEL SOL – 25 Km (-, -, D)

Upon arrival at Malaga Airport you will be met and greeted by your escort and guide interpreter. On the way to the hotel you do an orientation tour seeing from outside the most interesting sites and monuments. Accommodation at the hotel, dinner and overnight.

Day 2 – RONDA WINE REGION (B, L, -)

Costa del Sol-Ronda (140 km)

Breakfast. From the sea level, you head towards the town of Ronda.

Arriving there you visit a winery where vines grow on pastureland, planes and terraces, with textures which include clay soils, loamy sand as well as some predominantly limestone plots. To achieve the highest standards, we have devised innovative methods of vine training and control to ensure that these vines, young in years, but old in history, are adequately ventilated and exposed to the sun so that, in a short space of time, they could enjoy conditions and a development which would have taken older vines years to achieve. Into the cellar you get explanations about the winemaking process. You end the visit with a tasting of some different wines. Then you head to the city centre where the lunch will be served in one of the best restaurants in town.

 

In the afternoon you will visit another winery. The vineyard, although has only 3 hectares, in 1982 the owner started to cultivate new varieties at the plot of land to study their vegetative and generative behaviour and later the production of wine from them. The removal of the most significant nutrients is compensated with compost and green manure. So, he uses an organic and biodynamic cultivation system. The harvest is done 100% by hand.Then you go to the cellar also receiving full explanations about the elaboration and crystallisation systems ending with a sample of 5 wines. Remainder of the day at leisure, dinner on your own and overnight.

 

Day 3 – RONDA – SEVILLE AND FLAMENCO SHOW – 150 Km (B, L, D)

Breakfast. In the walking tour you see that the town is located on a platform site cut by the Guadalevín River ravine with a depth of 150 metres. The ravine divides the city in two: the old and the modern part. The best bird’s eye view is from the Puente Nuevo (New Bridge). The Old Part has narrow and picturesque streets with typical ironwork balconies. There is also the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria la Mayor. Afterwards you head to Seville. Arriving there you have a typical tapas lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon you begin the journey on foot through the Quarter of Santa Cruz.  At the end of this quarter, you will find the Royal Alcazar or Fortress, the Cathedral; next to it one can find the Archivo de Indias. These three buildings have been designated World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO. Entrance fee to the Royal Alcazar OR to the Cathedral is included. A stay in Seville is not completed whether you don’t attend a dinner and a flamenco show as you will do. Overnight.

Day 4 – MANZANILLA WINE (B, L, D)

Sevilla-Sanlucar-Jerez  (150 km)

Breakfast and departure to the town of Sanlucar de Barrameda. You visit a winery founded in 1792; it is the few wineries that belongs to same family since the foundation; now it is managed by the 8th generation of the family. Into the cellar you get full explanations about the elaboration process and the vintage of its several types of wine, ending with a taste of two different kind of Manzanilla and other 3 wines with some dry fruits. This visit has a duration of one hour and the half. Lunch will be served in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, you visit a winery located in a Cortijo, built 200 years ago, which is the typical Andalusian country house.

    

The new winery was built in 2008. It is an estate with 800 hectares although only 32 hectares are planted of vines in different plots close to the cellar. They make the wine only from grapes of its own estate. It has a production capacity of 250,000 bottles per year combining the traditional way of work with the modern technology. During the visit to the vineyards and the wine cellar you receive full explanations ending with an aperitif with some snacks and tasting different wines. Continue to Jerez. Dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 5 – ANDALUSIAN HORSES – SHERRY WINE – 10 Km (B, L, -)

Breakfast. In the morning, you visit the Royal School of Equestrian Art. In the basement, you will find the Museum of Equestrian Art. The visitor may admire the place where the harnesses are made and repaired. You continue walking and enjoying the training in the outdoor exercise rings. A couple of days a week take place the Show “How the Andalusian Horses Dance”; so if your stay in Jerez coincide with one of the days of the show, instead to visit the Royal School, you will have the chance to attend and admire this performance unique show in the world based upon Classical Dressage, Doma Vaquera (country-style riding) and traditional equestrian chores. Lunch will be served in a local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will visit a Sherry winery, not so renown although some of their wines have been very well scored by international wine specialists. This winery was founded in 1896 and has two vineyards in the Jerez region. Nowadays their philosophy has remained the same since its inception. In recent years, has been honoured and recognised with several international awards and its oenologist has been named Best Fortified Winemaker of the Year seven years in a row. It is a small cellar, but their products are exported around the world. Ending the visit, you will taste different types of sherry wines. Remainder of the day at leisure to discover the town of Jerez which holds some relevant monuments. Dinner on your own and overnight.

 

DAY 6 – IBERIAN HAM – ALENTEJO WINES, LUSITANO HORSES (B, -, D)

Jerez – Aracena (180 km) – Albernoa (155km) – Évora (100km)

Breakfast. Your head north towards the province of Huelva; this area is where there are produced some of the best Iberian Hams of Spain. Close to the town of Aracena you will visit an artisan dryer and cured Iberian ham factory. The journey of this company is that of a family living in this village beginning in 1818; since that time till nowadays they are artisans for generations united in a tradition of excellence in the production of Iberian Ham and Cold Cuts. They breed 100% pure Iberian Pigs – whose fat is deposited below the skin and penetrates the muscles; the Iberian pig transforms all it eats into proteins, phosphorous, calcium and iron, polyunsaturated fats (like those of olive oil) and Vitamins B1 and B2. The minimum age when slaughtered is 18 months as opposed to the industrial minimum of 6. The pigs in open range in the meadows only eat grass and acorns. To salt the pig coming from the slaughterhouse the only use sea salt. You see how the pigs are pasturing then you go to the drier and cured rooms whether the ham follow the process after at least 20 months ending the visit with a taste of several pig products. This visit takes more than 2 hours. From there you depart to Portugal where you cross the border and head to Albernoa where you meet the Portuguese guide-interpreter and the bus. Start your Portuguese jorney by visiting a typical Alentejo family wine estate. The unique conditions of the location, more than 10 years of producing wine and the passion of the team involved, made their wines a reference, distinguished with several international prizes and exported to over 25 countries. Their wines are elegant, intensely fruity and very complex, and was scored with 90 pts and 92 pts by Robert Parker.

Second stop will be to learn about Lusitano horses and watch this unrivalled horse in rideability in action.

This stud has been rewarded by several prizes in Modeland Movements competitions at the International Lusitano Championships in different countries, as well as in England, in the Royal Windsor Show, in adition to several horses with outstanding performances in dressage events and bullfighting.  Some of their horses are already being followed in order to integrate some important projects in the area of sport. Most of their horses have been sold to other countries, mainly to Germany, Austria, Spain, France, Belgium, Holland, Sweden, USA, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland and England.

Dinner in a typical restaurant in Évora, as well as hotel accommodation.

DAY 7 – ALENTEJO WINES, UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE CITY OF ÉVORA, SAUSSAGES, OLIVE OIL (B, -, -)

Évora – Portalegre (70 km) – Estremoz (40 km) – Évora

Breakfast. You’ll start the morning a guided walking visit to Évora. Évora is a World Heritage site, an open air museum according to UNESCO since 1986. Its walls have been guarding the streets and building practically unaltered throughout the centuries. It is this historical and cultural wealth which attracts more and more Portuguese and foreign visitors. You are awaited by traces of Roman times, medieval buildings, palaces and convents which are witness to the golden era of Portugal (15th and 16th centuries). After the walking guided visit you will be welcomed by Alentejo Regional Winegrowing Commission in its Tasting Room to learn everything about this famous Portuguese region of wines. The Regional Winegrowing Commission will introduce you to each of Alentejo wines subregions and their specific terroirs, as well as the native and more common grapes used in this region. A blind wine tasting will be done to close this visit. Lunch on your own. In the afternoon will head to Portalegre wine sub-region. First stop will be at a sausage factory specialized in Black Pig cured meats and related regional charcuterie. This cured meat factory pioneered the revival of sausage black pork Alentejo breed, investing in the highest quality fresh, smoked and frozen products. For the Black Pig, this is fed acorns, having a more succulent meat, tastier and with a more intense flavor. Its fat is rich in oleic acid, containing similar characteristics to the oil. It has nutritional properties and promotes cholesterol lowering. After the visit to its facilities, you’ll be able to enjoy a delicious tasting of their products.

You’ll then visit a wine estate that produce still and fortified wines, spirts, olive oil and honey. Their wines are of superior quality and have been consistently been award, scored 90 pts and 97pts by Robert Parker. In the property there are also 50 hectares of mature olive groves, a large part of which are over 100 years old – oldest date back to 1903.

The principal variety is the Galega olive, native to the Alentejo. In 2008, the agricultural wing, commenced its very own production of olive oil. Specialised mechanical cold press machinery was installed with a view to producing very high quality extra virgin oil. The result has been the very low acidity (usually around 3%) golden oil which has been so well received by a discerning market. The olives are picked in the traditional manner by hand with particular attention being paid the speed with which the olives are processed after picking – a secret of the best quality oils.

 Recreational time, dinner on your own and accommodation back in Évora.

DAY 8 – LISBON, BAIRRADA and BRANDY WINES, CORK FACTORY, ROASTED SUCKLYING PIG (B, L, D)

Évora – Coruche (90 km) – Lourinhã (130 km) – Bairrada (200 km)

Breakfast.  You’ll visit the largest producer and supplier of cork stoppers worldwide and in whom the main wine producers place their trust. Cork, which is just as natural and noble as wine, benefits from the production of wine and reciprocates with premium performance stoppers. Both industries have grown together over the centuries. You’ll be first introduced to cork, its natural growing environment and the industry; You’ll visit then the raw material production unit and, finally the production unit of Twin Top and Agglomerated technical top stoppers.

Lunch and visit to a centuries-old farmhouse rich in the traditions of the region of Estremadura. Keeping its original features of the last century, it has modernized its processes and cultures. They’re well known for their Horse Riding center, following the renowned Portuguese equestrian tradition, and for their production of Lisbon PDO wines, sparkling wines and Lourinhac, the single Portuguese PDO Brandy region and one of the very exclusive and only three PDO brandy regions in the world, along with Cognac and Armagnac in France.

Continue to Bairrada wines region. This 3 generation family project has been leaded by the youngest member, winemaker who decided in 1989 to start bottling and selling the family wines under a new brand. Soon it became a reference in the wines of Bairrada and in Portugal. Following a minimalist approach to winemaking, produces wines as naturally as possible, so that they convey the terroir where they were grown. Dinner at a local restaurant for the famous roasted suckling pig, one of the Seven Wonders of the Portuguese gastronomy. Few Portuguese meals pass without the transportation of pork from plate to lips. The biggest affectios of the Portuguese is the leitão assado da bairrada, the suckling pig roasted and basted until the flesh is creamy and the skin develops a prerequisite crunch. Leitão assado is to be found on menus throughout Portugal but, if you want to experience the dish at its very best, you should head to the Bairrada wine region. Each weekend families from across Portugal towards Bairrada region to feast on the best suckling pig in the country.

Accommation and overnight in Bairrada.

DAY 9–DÃO and SPARKLING WINES, SERRA DA ESTRELA DPO CHEESE, CURED MEATS, MEATLOAF BREAD (B, L, -)

Bairrada – Penalva do Castelo (100 km) – Lamego (85 km)

Breakfast.  Visit to a manor and farmhouse, that produces the most famous Portuguese PDO cheese, jams and Dão region wines. This estate dates from 18th-century and has 37 hectares. Around the manor house impressive gardens with centennial trees and rare flowers such as the lotus flower that blooms between June and July dyeing 48 hours later. On the farm there are apple orchards of Bravo de Esmolfe, Golden and Starking qualities, which serve to make the delicious jams based on centuries-old recipes; A herd of 80 sheep from Serra da Estrela breed which are milked daily to produce the PDO Serra da Estrela Cheese, the most famous Portuguese cheese. And, last but not least, there are vineyards and a winery. In this rural estate, you’ll visit the house, gardens, cheese factory and winery, enjoying the end to paired tasting with all their products, including their delicious jams. You’ll head then to Lamego region, famous for its cured meats and sparking wines. First stop for hotel checkin and for lunch.

After lunch, you’ll visit a Cellar. The prestige of the wines from de Lamego region, which dates back to the 16th century, was definitively established with the sparkling wines produced by a company founded more than 100 years ago. He has, over the years, achieved a solid market position, thanks to the high quality of the sparkling wines produced. This quality has provided the company’s wines with almost constant leadership of the Portuguese market. At the end of the visit, a tasting will be paired with Lamego’s typical gastronomic and regional products as it is its cured ham and bôla de carne (meatloaf bread).

Recreational time, dinner on your own and accommodation in Lamego.

DAY 10 – DOURO WINES, FEIJOADA (BEANS STEW TRADITIONAL DISH)  (B, L, -)

Lamego – Douro Valley (35 km) – Amarante (90 km)

Breakfast. You’ll start the day with visit a wine estate that belongs to a company founded in 1765. It is the oldest and most emblematic wine company in Portugal, with 260 years old and uninterrupted activity in the service of Port Wine. They produce Port and Moscatel fortified wine, Douro still wines and olive oil, under several different brands. Its 2012 Grande Reserva red scored 92/100 by Wine Spectator and 93/100 by Wine Enthusiast. This visit will end with the traditional lunch of Feijoada à Transmontana (Portuguese bean stew). Besides this delicious traditional dish, you will also enjoy a breath-taking 360º view of Douro Valley. In the afternoon you will visit a property located in a prime spot in the Douro Demarcated Region in Northern Portugal. The earliest records mentioning this property and its wine production date back to 1615. They have a full range of products, from white and red Douro wines, to premium Port wines and Extra Virgin Olive oils. A range of charming wines with intense flavors, consistently hand ighly rated. Dinner on your own and accommodation in Amarante.

DAY 11 – VINHO VERDE and PORT WINE CELLARS, COOPERAGE, PORTO, CALDEIRADA (B, L, D)

Amarante – Penafiel (30 km) – Espinho (56 KM) – Porto (30 km)

Breakfast. Visit to a wine estate that the history is lost in time, but there are countless records of this estate after the 16th century.  Currently the largest Vinho Verde exporting company, they are proud to remain a family-owned business in every way. They are also well known for its brandies, aged up to 30 years in oak barrels in the shadows of the old cellar, during which time the magnificent amber color and the rich bouquet of their spirit is achieved. Besides the winery, you’ll visit their cheese factory and taste both soft and mature cheeses as well as their homemade jams from seasonal fruits.

     

Still before lunch you’ll visit to a cooperage, where fine wine barrels have been shaped from high quality wood by the same family since 1962. Over the years, the younger generations of the family joined the company and made it grow and improving. The productive capacity and the high quality of its crafted products turned this cooperage into a well-known and strong competitive player in markets such as Europe, Russia, Middle East, United States, China and Taiwan. A lunch of Caldeirada (Portuguese typical fish stew) will be specially cooked for you by a local community movement that aims to promote the study, defense and dissemination of this genuine Portuguese Fish Stew and Prawn of this region. Its relationship with gastronomy, art and crafts, science and literature is a complement to all historical and cultural activities as well as the defense of Art Xávega, an ancient art of fishing exclusively practiced by the Portuguese fishermen. In the afternoon you’ll visit one of the oldest Port Wine cellars with 137 years of history, founded in 1880. In 1990, became part of another group, whose history has identical characteristics. So, the qualities that gave fame them took on an international dimension.

   

Crossing to the North bank of Douro river, you’ll reach finally Porto. Overlooking the Douro River, Porto is the second biggest city of Portugal and one of the most ancient European cities, stemming from the northern bank of the river during the Middle Ages. One of the most significant aspects of Porto and its historical centre is its surrounding landscape, the steep river banks providing a dramatic setting for old town.  Both the streets next to the river and the surrounding countryside have been classified as a World Heritage sites by UNESCO. Discovering Porto is full of surprises. You’ll be taken in a seeseeing to be introduced to unique places such as historic center, Clérigos Tower, Stock Exchange Palace, Ribeira, Passeio Alegre and Foz, among others. Farewell dinner will be cooked by all of you, guided by a local cook in culinary workshop. You’ll learn what to cook a delicious 3 course Portuguese meal, easy to cook back at home. In a private atmosphere you will enjoy the dinner together, paired with Portuguese wines from regions meanwhile familiar to you, as well fun and joy for a memorable ending of your Vines, Wines and Food journey. Accommodation in Porto.

DAY 12 – CANNED FISH FACTORY, PORTO (B, -, -)

Porto – Espinho (15 km) – Porto

Breakfast. Early in the morning you’ll be taken to visit to a canned fish Factory, nearby Porto. Opened since 1930s in one of the oldest in Portugal. All of its production is exclusively done from fresh fish, caught on the Portuguese coast, selected and prepared manually to please the most exquisite tastes, both in the domestic market and in more than 30 countries in the world they export to. Nowadays they owned of the best industrial facilities in Portugal, balanced in perfection with hand-made qualified work. This canned fish factory offers a wide range of products, all of high quality, packaged and wrapped by hand, using vintage papers and cans, beautifully retro-designed. This factory is particularly known for its canned sardines, mackerel, tuna with different sauces, as well as other specialties as sardine roe. At the end of the factory visit you’ll enjoy a tasting of several of these delicatessens.

You’ll be then back to Porto city, with free time for visiting more, shopping or just enjoy youself walking around before time to move to the airport back home. Lunch on your own. Transfer to the airport included. Disclaimer: Planned visits to the selected wineries may vary its chronological order. The visits to the vineyards are subjected to the weather conditions. We reserve the right to replace visits to other wineries with similar characteristics and quality as well as the types of wines for the tastings.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The program has also the option to start from Lisbon, as well as to be made shortened to 10 or 8 days, being these optional programs available upon request. We remain at your disposal.

Spain and Portugal 12 days

Contact us for more information and detailed itinerary as well as for a quotation according to your requirements.

Email: groups@gammatours.com