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Things to do in Álava, Spain

Our most recommended things to do in Álava, Spain

From Bilbao: La Rioja Wine Tasting Tour with Hotel Pickup

1. From Bilbao: La Rioja Wine Tasting Tour with Hotel Pickup

Take a tour of La Rioja, a wine-producing region recognized worldwide for the excellence of its wines. Explore 2 wineries in the area, the village of Laguardia, and more on a guided tour. After pickup from your hotel, travel from Bilbao to La Rioja as you admire the beautiful scenery. Enjoy a relaxing walk through the vineyards and learn the wine-making process, from the grape harvest to the aging. Finish your tour of each winery with a tasting session. Savor some of the best Rioja wines, and learn to appreciate the difference between the varieties. To complete your gastronomical experience, visit the charming medieval village of Laguardia to try 2 types of pincho, a local snack along with more quality wines.

From Bilbao: Wine Tour of Rioja with Gourmet Lunch

2. From Bilbao: Wine Tour of Rioja with Gourmet Lunch

Visit two of Rioja’s finest wineries on this day trip from Bilbao. Sample some of the region's most exceptional wines and learn about the production methods. Relax with lunch at a gourmet restaurant and then tour the village of La Guardia.   Travel to the wineries of Ysios Cellar and Marques de Riscal with a guide. Taste at least 9 types of wine from both wineries. Enjoy a full tour of one of the wineries to learn the unique production methods used in the area.   Capture photos of the Rioja vineyard landscape from secret vantage points. Admire the views of Rioja's vineyards against the mountainous backdrop. Continue the day with lunch at one of the region's finest restaurants. Try a tasting menu with local wines.  Finally, take a guided tour of the walled, medieval city of LaGuardia, complete with underground cellars and wineries.  Discover the fortified walls and winding cobblestone streets surrounded by vineyards and mountains. 

From Bilbao: Vitoria and Rioja Region Tour with Wine Tasting

3. From Bilbao: Vitoria and Rioja Region Tour with Wine Tasting

Explore the capital city of the Basque Country, Vitoria, on a guided tour departing from Bilbao. Then, discover the La Rioja wine region with a visit to the town of Laguardia and a traditional wine cellar. Enjoy tasting regional wines in a charming setting. Start with pickup from your hotel in Bilbao by bus. First, travel to the city of Vitoria where you will take a guided walking tour of its historic center. Learn about its history and modern-day importance as the capital of the Basque Country. Taste a typical sweet of the region at an artisanal sweet shop. Next, travel to the La Rioja region, the heartland of Spain's wine industry. Admire the views of a sea of vineyards set on rolling hills. Stop at the quaint town of Laguardia for a walking tour around the historic quarter. Then, enjoy a guided visit to a traditional winery located in a scenic location. Learn about the production of wine in the region, with tasting included. Afterward, relax on the journey back to Bilbao, with drop-off at your accommodation or hotel.

Rioja: Private Wine Tasting Tour

4. Rioja: Private Wine Tasting Tour

This tour is designed to guide you into one of the oldest traditional "cave-cellars" in the area, dug 7-8 meters (23-26 feet) deep under the houses. This is a fabulous experience not to be missed! This activity also includes  tasting wines in one of the most famous local wineries. You can also tour 'Marques del Riscal' winery cellar/hotel, which was designed by Frank Gehry, the architect who designed the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. You will also walk along the medieval streets of Laguardia, one of the most charming towns in La Rioja area, before discovering local home-made food for lunch in an off the beaten track, non touristy restaurant.

From Bilbao: Rioja Architecture and Wine Tour

5. From Bilbao: Rioja Architecture and Wine Tour

Discover both the ancient and modern beauty of Bilbao's surrounding towns on an insightful excursion. Visit the Marques de Riscal and Ysios wineries to gaze at the innovative architecture and taste some Rioja wines. Explore the medieval town of LaGuardia and enjoy a traditional pintxos lunch. Depart from Bilbao to tour the Marques de Riscal winery, designed by one of today's leading architects, Franck Gehry. Admire the breathtaking structure made of titanium, stainless steel, wood, and sandstone. Taste their white wine, their Crianza red wine, and their award-winning Rioja Reserva. Move on to the Ysios cellar and observe a structure with many architectural features, such as the roof, meant to resemble the Sierra Cantabria. Enjoy a brief introduction to the winery and their winemaking process, followed by a guided tasting of two of their exceptional wines with an apéritif. Take a walk through the walled medieval city of LaGuardia, one of the most beautiful towns in the Rioja Alavesa region. Look at the fortified walls and winding cobblestone streets surrounded by vineyards and mountains. Finally, enjoy a Riojano lunch of 3 traditional 'pintxos' with Rioja wine.

From Bilbao: Vitoria and Rioja Day Tour

6. From Bilbao: Vitoria and Rioja Day Tour

The famous Rioja Wine region is a must for wine lovers visiting Spain. Located in the south of the Basque country, you will visit the village of Haro, the unique medieval village of Laguardia. Of course, you will visit a traditional wine cellar for a wine tasting, and a guided walking tour of Vitoria. Follow the highway towards the south, until you arrive at Vitoria, the capital city of the Basque Country, where you will have a panoramic tour through the city. It is considered to be one of the best cities in Spain for quality of life, and is the city in Europe with the most green square meters per inhabitant. You will do a walking tour through the old part of the city where you will see such sights as the old Inn 'el Portalon' from the XV century, the Virgen Blanca square, the Machete square and the Cathedral of Santa Maria among others. After your walking tour, you will head towards the south and arrive finally into the land of Wine, to Rioja.You will stop at Laguardia, a unique medieval village that still keeps the real atmosphere of the old times, with the two churches, the walls, the house shields and the narrow medieval streets among others. You will visit in this village, a traditional underground Rioja wine cellar, carbonic maceration with open pools and do a wine tasting at the end of the visit. Afterwards, there will be free time for lunch and your guide will suggest a selection of recommended local restaurants. Finally you will return directly back to arrive to Bilbao in the evening

From Bilbao: Mountains and Sea Full-Day Tour

7. From Bilbao: Mountains and Sea Full-Day Tour

Depart Bilbao and head for Vitoria-Gasteiz to explore the capital city of the Basque Country. Take a guided walking tour through the center to see the cathedral, parliament and historical monuments of Plaza de la Virgen Blanca. Discover a medieval quarter in Plaza del Machete and admire the Church of San Miguel. Go to the Salinas de Añana salt flats and learn the history of the landscape. Continue to Orduña village and enjoy lunch at a typical restaurant in the medieval village of Balmaseda. Venture through the Ayala Valley and the mining area of ​​Bizkaia (Biscay) to reach the coast at Santurtzi and Portugalete, where you will cross the Vizcaya Bridge to Getxo.

Rioja Alavesa: Wine Tasting in a Traditional Winery

8. Rioja Alavesa: Wine Tasting in a Traditional Winery

Enjoy the experience of visiting the winery where Pascual Berganzo and Alútiz Vinos make their wines in Samaniego, the heart of Rioja Alavesa. Take a tour through three cellars and taste a variety of wines. The experience will begin in the stainless steel cellar, where you will be introduced to the world of wine by your guide. Here, witness the production of carbonic maceration wine. Next, head over to the concrete cellar, where the wine rests and acquires a special body. Lastly, go 15 meters underground inside the stone cellar where you can taste different wines and local products.

Wine Tour: Winery & Traditional Lunch From Logroño

9. Wine Tour: Winery & Traditional Lunch From Logroño

La Rioja exudes the flavor of wine on all four sides and visiting at least one winery during your stay in the region is practically an obligation. Get away from the capital Logroño to discover the plains of vineyards that surround the city and enjoy a visit to a small-sized winery where you can learn the secrets of local-style wine production. Afterwards, we will go to a typical restaurant to savor a traditional Rioja menu that, accompanied by wine, of course, will delight all the senses.

From San Sebastián: La Rioja Wine Region Day Tour

10. From San Sebastián: La Rioja Wine Region Day Tour

Discover the immense beauty and delicious tastes of the La Rioja wine area on this guided day tour. Experience local wineries and exquisite wines, visit medieval towns, have a 4-course Riojan meal, and more. The tour starts at the Barrio de la Estación de Haro, known for its many wineries, close to the railroad tracks in order to transport wine barrels more easily. Visit a wonderful 100-year old winery and taste a selection of its best wines, from the classic to the new and daring. Wine is not the only magical liquid produced in these lands, La Rioja is also a producer of olive oil – here you’ll enjoy a delicious tasting of this liquid gold. It’s then time to visit 2 charming villages. First, San Vicente de la Sonsierra, built on top of a hill. Take in the unbeatable views over the Ebro river, the sea of vines, and the hills that dot the valley. Next, it’s on to the popular Briones for a bit of Spanish authenticity: streets suspended in the past, an imposing Gothic church, and old sandstone buildings. In La Rioja, lunchtime, and gastronomy in general, is a sacred thing. Visit a restaurant that specializes in traditional Riojan cuisine. Partake of a delicious menu and enjoy more excellent local wine. Next, visit a small family winery to learn its working method, which adds great value to Spanish wine culture. Enjoy a tasting and see why this winery is considered one of the most prestigious producers in the country.  Finally, be driven back to your accommodation satisfied with a truly Spanish experience.

Other Sightseeing Options in Álava, Spain

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What people are saying about Álava, Spain

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 32 reviews

I loved Stefan, he is a great guide, he explained absolutely everything in two languages and also provided small details such as the final store of a winery that was not included or a couple of stops to see the grapes or take extra photos, which is very much appreciated.

Very nice wine tour with visits to 2 beautiful towns. Quality of the wine in the cellar is excellent and highly value for money. Highly recommended to buy a few bottles if you have spare space in your luggage

Our trip with Stefan was brilliant. He went out of his way to give us little extra chances to see the region. He was very entertaining and interesting

Very enjoyable day with witty and funny Stefan. Never a boring moment , a lot of facts and info about local history, architecture, trafitions

Fantastic experience among vineyards. Everything was terrific.