Your Local Specialist Travel Advisors For Custom Tours

7 nights Architecture in the Basque Country (Spain)

7 nights Architecture in the Basque Country (Spain)

MAP OF THIS ITINERARY

Trip Overview:

Experience the architectural highlights of the Basque Country on this 7 nights private, self drive tour.  Start with 3 nights in one of the European Green Capitals; and the capital of the Basque Country - Vitoria.  It's got a fascinating and very well preserved Old Quarter known locally as the `almendra´ or almond for it's f...

+ Read more

Trip Summary:

VITORIA (3 nights) - SAN SEBASTIAN (2 nights) - BILBAO (2 nights) ...

+ Read more

Access:

Daily Departures.

Flying into Bilbao International Airport. Departure from Bilbao.

Totally Spain does not arrange flights so you have the flexibility to book the flights you prefer. We can recommend a travel agent with whom you can book your flights if required. Otherwise a website such as Skyscanner is very useful for checking up-to-date flight schedules and prices.

+ Read more

See all »

Itinerary

Bilbao - Vitoria, Spain

Arrive in Bilbao where your rental car will await you. Enjoy a short 50 minute drive through spectacular mountainous countryside to the Basque Capital Vitoria; and check in at your centrally located 4 star hotel.

Spend the remainder of the day relaxing in one of Europe's `Green Capitals´.

 

 

 

 

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • 7/8 days car rental. Standard size (Opel insignia or similar) Manual transmission
  • Basic CDW/LDW, unlimited mileage and theft waiver
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room. Upgrade options available on request.

Vitoria, Spain

Today after breakfast meet your expert local Vitoria guide and enjoy a panoramic walking tour of the city including the medieval quarter. See the Virgin Blanca Plaza. See Stately homes and Renaissance palaces such as Villa Suso, Casa del Cordón, Escoriaza-Esquival, Portalón and Montehermoso. Visit also the unique Fournier Playing Card Museum, which holds one of the most important collections of playing cards in the world. See also parts of the medieval wall that once surrounded the original village of Gasteiz.

Tour the Santa María Cathedral where a very important restoration and excavation project is taking place. See also the Church of San Miguel, the Plaza del Machete, the Plaza de Esoaña.

Afterwards enjoy any of the fine restaurants and bars serving delicious Basque cuisine and local beverages such as Rioja wine, Txakolí (a young white wine) and traditional cider. Your guide will be happy to make a suggestion.

Later today you might enjoy shopping along fashionable Calle Dato or perhaps you may choose to visit the Museum of Fine Arts or Museum of Modern Art, the Artium.

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • Private guided visit of Vitoria with expert, English speaking guide
  • Pre-Booked entrance tickets for Santa Maria Cathedral
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room.
     

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast

Vitoria - Daytrip to Rioja, Spain

Following breakfast, depart by car for the Rioja wine region.

Go via the Balcon de la Rioja which offers magnificent panoramic views as you enter the Rioja Alavesa wine region. Travel through the typical landscape of vineyards, where the region´s internationally renowned wines, are produced.  As you approach Laguardia, stop to admire the amazing, undulating Bodegas Ysios; by architect Santiago Calatrava.

Next visit Laguardia, capital of Rioja Alavesa, a splendid walled village that has carefully preserved its medieval characteristics. Walking through its narrow streets you can appreciate the traditional architecture of the Rioja region.  Stop at the the church of San Juan; see the extraordinary portico of the Santa María de los Reyes church; and visit the 17th-century baroque emblazoned Casa de Samaniego with its striking embossed shield of the Ramírez de la Piscina y Acedo family.  Here enjoy an included tour and wine tasting in the ancient underground wine cellar. 

Afterwards head over to the Villa Lucía Wine Centre, and have the opportunity to learn interactively about wine culture and production methods in Rioja Alavesa.  Here you will also enjoy a special included lunch.

Following lunch head to Elciego where you can appreciate the amazing Marques de Riscal winery designed by Frank Gehry; his second work in the Basque Country after the Guggenheim in Bilbao.

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • Guided visit with wine tasting in a Laguardia winery
  • Entrance to Villa Lucia Wine Centre
  • Special 3-course traditional Riojan lunch. Drinks are not included.
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room.
     

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast
  • Lunch

Vitoria - Hernani - San Sebastian, Spain

Today travel north to San Sebastian.  You may like to stop in Hernani and visit the museum of world renowned Basque sculptor Eduardo Chillida; Chillida-Leku. The Chillida Leku museum; housed in a restored Basque Farmhouse and surrounded by peaceful gardens, stands out for its unique design and is a work of art in itself created by Chillida.

Continue to San Sebastian and check in to your 4 star central hotel.

SAN SEBASTIAN or Donostia in the Basque language, is gloriously situated around the shell-shaped La Concha Bay, protected from the Atlantic by a wooded islet, the Isla de Santa Clara. San Sebastian has for a long time been considered one of the most elegant and fashionable Spanish seaside resorts, since it became a popular summer retreat with the Spanish aristocracy in the late 19th century. Of late, the city has been hailed by many as one of the gourmet temples of Europe.

This evening meet your local expert guide for a small group walking pintxos tour in San Sebastian's Old Quarter.

Pintxos are the elaborated Basque tapas that adorn every bar in San Sebastian, but knowing where to find the best ones is an art.  Dive straight into the culinary heart of the city like a local with eating and drinking that is unique and unlike any you’ve ever experienced. From fresh prawns to line-caught baby squid to perfectly charred steak, the pintxo hunt changes daily but always features a range of traditional spots and chic, avant-garde bars. Come thirsty, too, as you’ll be pairing each pintxo with the perfect pour, from Basque cider to local whites and reds.

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • Guided Gastronomic walking tour with a small group. Includes delicious tapas (pintxos in the Basque language) and drinks (10 participants maximum)
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room. Upgrade available on request.

 

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast
  • Tapas style dinner

San Sebastian, Spain

This morning after breakfast meet your expert local guide for a private tour of San Sebastian.  Visit the Old Town and walk along the la Concha promenade. Your guide will highlight works including the Pico del Loro and Peine de los Vientos by Eduardo Chillida. See also; the controversial Kursaal Centre - opened in 1999 - designed by Rafael Moneo.  Admire the Plaza de la Constitucion and belle epoque gems such as the Maria Cristina hotel, the Victoria Eugenia theatre, the Koldo Mitxelena library and the Town hall.  View the city's early 20th century bridges - Zurriola, Santa Catalina and Maria Cristina. Also the 19th century Miramar Palace and the station of the old Monte Igueldo funicular which, you will ride on so as to enjoy spectacular views over San Sebastian bay and city..

This afternoon you might enjoy relaxing at the La Perla spa.  It was constructed in the early 20th century when the Royal family and aristocracy of the time used to spend their summer in the city.

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • Private guided visit in San Sebastian with expert, english speaking guide
  • Transport by taxi to Monte Igueldo
  • Funicular ride up Monte Igueldo
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room.
     

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast

San Sebastian - Bilbao, Spain

Today depart San Sebastian for Bilbao.

You may enjoy one of several possible detours en-route.

  • Visit the remarkable Basilica of San Ignacio de Loyola in Azpeitia.
  • See the splendid universtiy town of Oñati known as the Basque `Toledo´ for its monumental centre.
  • Visit the dramatically sited Sanctuary of Aranzazu;standing on the edge of a rocky cliff it is an award-winning basilica with a long history. Created by a number of architects and artists including Eduardo Chillida.

 

 

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room.
     

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast

Bilbao, Spain

This morning you are joined by your expert local Bilbao guide for a private tour of Bilbao city.

Visit the Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank Gehry; a masterpiece of modern architecture from the end of the 20th century which has been acknowledged as one of the greatest buildings of the century. Walk around the space inside and out to see the distinctive titanium curves and soaring glass atrium. In addition to visiting the temporary exhibition spaces, you’ll be able to enjoy the Puppy and Tulip sculptures by Jeff Koons and Louise Bourgeois’ Spider outside and Richard Serra’s Snake inside.

During your tour you will also see the Zubi Zuri Bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava and the `Fosteritos´ - as they are known locally - on the Gran Via (Norman Foster’s acclaimed metro entrances).  Visit Bilbao’s newest internationally designed library and cultural space – the Alhondiga (meaning wine warehouse) designed by Ricardo Bastida in 1909 and re-furbished by Philippe Starck in 2010.

This afternoon you may like to visit nearby Portugalete where the first ever `hanging transporter bridge´ is still in operation today.

 

 

Activities & Services Included today

 

  • Car Rental as described previously
  • Private guided visit of Bilbao with expert, English speaking guide
  • Pre-Booked entrance tickets for Guggenheim Museum
  • 4 star hotel accommodation in a standard room.
     

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast

 

Departure,

Following breakfast make your way to Bilbao Airport where you return your rental car.

 

Activities & Services Included today

  • Car Rental as described previously. Returned today.

Meals Included today

  • Full Buffet Breakfast

Share this:

GALLERY OF THIS ITINERARY

About this trip

This Trip Includes

Accommodation (based on 2 people sharing)

  • 7 nights accommodation in quality 4-star hotels in a standard room. Upgrade options available on request.

Meals

  • Full Buffet breakfast daily
  • Special tasting lunch menu in Rioja. Drinks payable locally.
  • Tapas style dinner in San Sebastian. All food and drink included.

Transport

  • Car hire as described in itinerary on Day 1
  • Monte Igueldo Funicular in San Sebastian including transport to and from

Private Guided Tours

  • Private Walking tour in Vitoria with expert English speaking guide
  • Private Walking tour in San Sebastian with expert English speaking guide
  • Private Walking tour in Bilbao with expert English speaking guide

Pre-Booked Entrance Tickets

  • Vitoria – Santa Maria Cathedral
  • Bilbao – Guggenheim Museum

Group Guided Tours

  • Gastronomic guided tour with a small group in San Sebastian. All food and drink included.

Special Highlight

  • Winery visit in Rioja with tasting

Other

  • Comprehensive personalized trip documentation including local maps, guides and tourist information
  • Totally Spain's specialist trip planning service and support
  • Spanish Government tax


NOT INCLUDED
Flights, Personal Travel Insurance, Porterage (not commonly available in Spain), Tips, Meals, drinks or hotel extras other than those described above. Anything else not specified above.

Customer Reviews

Aloha Olaia, We just got back from out trip to Spain and I wanted to take a moment to thank you once again for all of your help and your recommendations. Picking up the rental car was a breeze, and google maps worked just fine. We absolutely ad...

Rachel Heller, Kailua, HI, USA
2018-07-19

More reviews >>

LIKE THE LOOK OF THIS ITINERARY OR SOMETHING VERY SIMILAR?

Then please contact us today so that we can customize this trip to suit your exact needs and dates of travel; and prepare a personalized proposal for you to consider.