Explore the gastronomy of Rioja at your leisure with a self-driven trip across the region, to wineries, vineyards and cooking classes.

Highlights of this Wine Tour

4 days from £1159pp
  • Drive at your leisure through the unfolding hills from Bilbao airport to the capital of ‘La Rioja’ with 4 day car hire
  • Rest your head in a hotel in the heart of Haro in a 4 star boutique hotel, with breakfast
  • Explore in style with two chauffeured private tours, visiting numerous estates, a chorizo sausage factory and an oil mill
  • Feast and learn in a cooking class on traditional Riojan dishes and sample much of the local produce
  • Brush shoulders with locals in a guided, lively tapas crawl with accompanying wine

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A Sample Itinerary

  1. Self drive through the rolling hills from Bilbao airport to the capital of ‘La Rioja’ and stay in central hotel in Haro.
  2. Your day starts with a private guided wine experience with an English speaking driver / guide, including visits and tastings at a selection of boutique wineries around La Rioja and a tapas lunch with accompanying wine.
  3. This day will show you that the Rioja region is much more than wine. Visit a traditional chorizo sausage factory where you will learn about one of the most famous spicy sausages in Spain, basic ingredient for Riojan cuisine, and finish with a tasting of it. Next, enjoy a cooking master class on traditional Riojan dishes and modern tapas. Not quite full? finish the day with a visit a centenary oil mill and taste their extra virgin olive oil with local cheeses. In the evening, enjoy a guided tapas crawl – taste 5 wines with accompanying Pinchos! These bar snacks are irresistible!
  4. Before driving back to the airport, visit the Old Town, and walk along streets that form part of the Camino de Santiago, and tick off the four monumental churches that stand majestically in the capital of La Rioja.

Need to know: This is a tailor-made itinerary based on 3* hotel that we can happily adapt to suit your requirements. Please note upgrades are also available – please ask for details. All our suggested packages are completely flexible and designed to give you some ideas and inspiration of what we can offer.

Nearby Wine Regions: Did you know that just two hours south of Rioja is the wine region of Ribera del Duero? – A superb cousin to the reds you’ve been sampling and boasting some of the most stunning food and scenery in Spain. Or perhaps hearty Bordeaux’s are a better match? Just five house north of Rioja is Bordeaux – the heartland of French wine and another world-renowned wine region to tick off your list. Why not take a few extra days to do them all?  – We’ll sort the details!

Need to know: This is a tailor-made itinerary based on 3* hotel that we can happily adapt to suit your requirements. Please note that the wine tour and tutorial is semi-private which means that there may be up to seven other wine enthusiasts with you – still allowing for an informative and intimate experience with the winemakers. Private tours can be arranged for special occasions.  All our suggested packages are completely flexible and designed to give you some ideas and inspiration of what we can offer. SmoothRed is ABTA and ATOL bonded which guarantees financial protection on all your travel bookings.

Nearby Wine Regions: Did you know that just two hours south of Rioja is the wine region of Ribera del Duero? – A superb cousin to the reds you’ve been sampling and boasting some of the most stunning food and scenery in Spain. Or perhaps hearty Bordeaux’s are a better match? Just five house north of Rioja is Bordeaux – the heartland of French wine and another world-renowned wine region to tick off your list. Why not take a few extra days to do them all?  – We’ll sort the details!

travel

Getting Here: Bilbao Airport is the closest main airport to the Rioja region. Flights arrive into Bilbao from Heathrow (with British Airways), Gatwick (with Vueling) and Stansted, Manchester and Bristol (with EasyJet), as well as from a number of other European airports. La Rioja is just southwards of Bilbao, and Logroño and Haro are no more than a few hours away by train or by car.

Trains run daily from Bilbao-Abando station to Logroño directly, which is a stop 2½ hours away on the journey from Bilbao to Barcelona. Trains also occasionally run from Bilbao-Abando to Haro, and take about 2 hours directly. The journey between Logroño and Haro (which can also be made directly) takes between half an hour and an hour.

From Bilbao by road, Logroño is 1½ hours away, and Haro is an hour. From Logroño to Haro or vice versa will take no more than half an hour along the Autopista AP-68. The more scenic route via the N-232, which will take you through Briones, Torremontalbo and Fuenmayor, should add on no more than an extra ten minutes to that time.

 

 

Customer Reviews
SmoothRed
Reviewed from Google

5 out of 5 stars

Tony Rook
Tony Rook

5 out of 5 stars

posted 5 days ago

We had a fantastic trip to Rioja with Smooth Red. The tour guide, wineries and hotels were all magnificent. A truly memorable trip and a great wine and food experience.

Mikaela Bell
Mikaela Bell

5 out of 5 stars

posted 1 week ago

This was such an amazing trip and I will be booking through Smoothred again to do this same trip and will book many more trips them. There constant support was awesome. It was a perfect holiday and we didn’t have to lift a finger; they arrange the transfers to and from the airport, the chateau, food & wine on the first day and a full day of tours.
The chateau was the perfect location in a quaint little town called de Lilly. It is about a 15-20min taxi ride from the Reims train station. There are a handful of champagne houses in the town and a bakery and butcher. We walked around the town in about 20 mins. It is a beautiful chateau with some of the best hotel staff we have come across ever. We had a beautiful room which faced the courtyard which was lovey when you opened the windows to hear the water from the fountain and birds. The bed was huge and the room was spacious and clean. There was really good Wi-Fi and we received a glass of champagne on arrival. With the smooth red package, you get a 5 course meal which was AMAZING and 3 bottles of alcohol which was really good quality; champagne, white & red wine. There is Jacuzzi and sauna downstairs which is very nice and clean. The chateau is perfectly located in-between Reims and Epernay via a 20/30 min taxi ride. Smoothred book you 3 tours which I highly recommend to do. We did the Moet tour which was really informative and a good start to the day. Then we went to 2 family run houses which we by far the tastiest champagne. The lunch was really good quality at the first champagne house. You taste around 10 glasses for champagne across the day so do stay hydrated! We will be coming back again soon. I could not fault the trip at all. Perfect location, divine food, amazing staff, beautiful rooms, stunning grounds and just a perfect trip all round. Thank you Smoothred!