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Wine Regions of Northern Spain

Wine Regions of Northern Spain


Trip Overview:

In Northern Spain, four main wine-producing regions stand out: Rioja, Galicia, Catalonia, and Ribera del Duero in Castilla y León. Each region is unique, offering exceptional wines with their own special "Denomination of Origen" guarantee. These areas are steeped in history and culture, and their diverse and delicious gastronomy re...

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Trip Summary:

RIOJA WINE REGION (3 nights) - RIBERA DEL DUERO (2 nights) - ZAMORA (1 night) - RIAS BAIXAS GALICIA (2 nights) - BARCELONA (2 nights) ...

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Daily Departures. Flying into Bilbao Airport. Departure from Barcelona. Totally Spain does not arrange International Flights so you have the flexibility to book the flights you prefer. We can recommend a US travel agent with whom you can book your international flights if required. Otherwise a website such as Skyscanner is very useful fo...

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Tour Itinerary

Bilbao - Rioja Wine Region, Spain

Arrive in Bilbao where your rental car will await you. Enjoy a 90 minute scenic drive through spectacular mountainous countryside into the heart of the Rioja wine region and check in at your centrally located 4 star hotel.

Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure soaking up the atmosphere of one of Spain's premier wine producing regions.






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.


Rioja Wine Region, Spain

Day exploring the wine region of Rioja. This region is divided into 3 areas: Rioja Alta (High), Rioja Baja (Low) and Rioja Alavesa (that part of Rioja within the Basque Country). All Rioja is characterized by being a “Denominacion de Origen”, in which the type of wines are achieved through a careful grape selection process in the various subzones.

There are mainly three types of wine from Rioja: 

  • Crianza = young wine with minimum of 1 year ageing in oak casks.
  • Reserva = wines with minimum of 3 years maturing in oak barrel and bottle. At least one year must be in the barrel.
  • Gran Reserva = wines of exceptional vintages. Minimum of 2 years aging in oak cask and 3 years in the bottle.

The wine production in Rioja is mainly for red wines although some quality rose and white wines are produced here too. The entire region is dotted with wineries and here we recommend some routes featuring the most important villages and wineries.

  • Route 1 . Haro – Brinas – Labastida - San Vicente de la Sonsierra – Abalos – Samaniego – Leza – villabuena – Navaridas.
  • Route 2 . Elvillar – Paganos – Laguardia – El Ciego – Cenicero – La Puebla de Labarca – Elvillar.
  • Route 3 . Bargota – Mendavia – Alcanadre – San Adrian – Azagra – Alfaro – Calahorra – Agoncilo – Logroño

Accommodation of your choice in the Rioja Wine Region.

Rioja Wine Region, Spain

Full day spent exploring in Rioja.

The harvest of grapes in Rioja, a lovely time to vist the region, takes place mid-September.

Interesting wine museum visits include the Villa Lucia Wine Museum in  Laguardia and the outstanding Dinastia Vivanco winery and museum in Briones where visitors may learn about the characteristics of the Rioja geology and the climate that make Riojan wines so special. 

Totally Spain can arrange for you to visit a variety of wineries, wine tasting and dining in bodegas with traditional Riojan cuisine.

Accommodation of your choice in the Rioja Wine Region.

Ribera del Duero, Spain

Next stop is the Ribera del Duero region in Castilla y Leon, fast becoming Spain’s most fashionable red wine producer, with its aromatic, rich yet fine reds produced from tempranillo grapes. Ribera del Duero along with nearby Rueda and Toro make up the great wine area in Castilla y Leon. Toro is particularly famous for its fiery red wines.

Each of the three areas are high-lying with extreme climates – very hot summer days combined with cold nights, and cold winters. The marked difference of temperature between day and night helps to preserve the acidity in the grapes.

Accommodation in the Ribera del Duero area.

Ribera del Duero, Spain

Day spent exploring in Ribera del Duero.

In Ribera del Duero, the most important village is Aranda de Duero, which has a fine old quarter and a notable church; the Iglesia de Santa Maria, with an elaborate Isabelline façade.

In this area Totally Spain can arrange visits to different bodegas, wine tasting, museum visits, special meals with typical regional cuisine, etc..

Accommodation in the Ribera del Duero area.

Zamora, Spain

Today enjoy visiting the Rueda and Toro wine regions.

Rueda is very well located, being close to Medina del Campo and Tordesillas and less than 2 hours from Madrid. Toro on the border between Zamora and Valladolid, has a fine 12th century Romanesque Colegiata, with a notable 16-sided cimborio.

In this area Totally Spain can arrange visits to different bodegas, wine tasting, museum visits, special meals with typical regional cuisine, etc..

Accommodation in the Zamora area.

Rias Baixas Galicia, Spain

Onto the northwest province of Galicia which is home to three different types of wine, all of them with “Denominacion de Origen” and all of them white. These are:

  • Albarino: from the Rias Baixas in southern Galicia and one of Spain’s most popular white wines.
  • Ribeiro: popular everyday wine that is slightly fizzy. It is often served in white porcelain cups.
  • Valdeorras: fine white wine from the northeast of Galicia.

All of the wines are mainly young and it can be said that nowadays an authentic renaissance in the wine industry is taking place in Galicia due to the demand for this product.

Today, en-route to your stay in the Rias Baixas area, visit the Ribeiro region.

Starting in Ourense. The city has a large wine market, where you can find not only wines from the nearby O Ribeiro region but from all over Galicia. Continue to Leiro, at the heart of Ribeiro region and where no urban landscapes are to be seen in this peaceful countryside. The route will finish in Ribadavia, where the most important Jewish quarter of all of Galicia is found. Apart from the wine the villages surrounding Ribadavia also produce a delicious coffee liqueur.

Accommodation in the Rias Baixas area.

Rias Baixas Galicia, Spain

Today enjoy uncovering the secrets of Galicia's treasured Albariño wine.

The Albarino wine phenomenon took off in Cambados (north west of Pontevedra), besiged by Albarino vineyards. Key visits on this route are Villagarcia de Arousa; historically linked to the sea, continuing through O Grove, Sanxenxo and Combarro, and finishing in Poio.

Accommodation in the Rias Baixas area.

Barcelona, Spain

Today depart from from Santiago de Compostela airport or Vigo airport to Barcelona to discover Catalonia´s wines such as the delicious sparkling wine known as cava. Upon arrival continue to the Tarragona area.

Catalonia has been producing wine since the 18th century in the area known as El Penedes which capital is Vilafranca del Penedes located just southwest of Barcelona and easily visited on a day trip from Barcelona. This village is surrounded by squares, palaces and churches and is a centre of many cultural activities. It has a fine Wine Museum situated in an architectural group consisting of the former royal palace, a gothic chapel and several modern buildings.  The museum was opened in 1945 and it shows the history of wine and its elaboration through different materials. At the end of the visit, an 18th century-like tavern offers wine tasting.

Also within Catalonia, close to Lleida, we can find the Raimat area where a remarkable range of wines, such as a Chardonnay-based cava is produced.

Finally, southwest of Tarragona, is the delightful Priorat region which is not unlike the Rioja region in appearance.  Here they produce many fine red wines. 

Accommodation of your choice in Barcelona or Tarragona.

Barcelona, Spain

Full day spent touring the wine area of your choice in Catalonia as described on Day 9.

Accommodation of your choice in Barcelona or Tarragona.


Following breakfast you will be met by your private driver and transferred to Barcelona International Airport for your departure.

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What's included

If you like the look of the above Suggested Tour we will gladly prepare a quote for you. The itinerary is not rigid and can be modified to suit your needs. The services we can provide include:

  • Accommodation in quality hotels in or within easy access of each wine region and their wineries
  • Transport as required including car hire, private transfers and chauffeur drive
  • Pre-Booked visits to wineries with tasting included.  If preferred, a `tasting-only´ without a guided winery tour can arranged at certain wineries too.
  • Private expert wine guides to accompany you
  • Pre-Booking of special meals including wine pairing at selected wineries


Contact us today using the link shown below in the red banner ENQUIRE ABOUT WINE REGIONS OF NORTHERN SPAIN

Customer Reviews

I trace part of my family heritage to Northern Spain and my wife and I decided to take our two teenagers to Spain this summer for a two week vacation to see some of their family history. I started trying to plan the trip myself and was lost. There is...

Scott Givens, Brandon, FL USA

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Then please contact us today by clicking below, so we can customize this trip to suit your specific needs and travel dates. We will prepare a personalized proposal for your consideration.