A Cool Taste of Spanish Life
An interesting option for a holiday or short break this year is with The Spanish Thyme Traveller. Mediterranean sunshine, great local food and wine and authentic Spanish culture are all ingredients of their tours.
They organise trips in small groups and specialize in the Valencia and Teruel area of SE Spain. Their trips are a nice mix of history, activities(such as walking),good food and wine and Spanish culture.
Besides having an amazingly diverse capital city packed with old and new architecture Valencia offers a picturesque and typically Spanish rural interior which is characterized by orange groves in the valleys and olive groves, small pine forests, carob trees and the inevitable vineyards in the mountains; ideal country for leisurely walking and taking in the scenery and a great way to get a feel for the place. On top of offering a more outdoor, walking orientated holiday on their Iberos Tour which is loosely based on visiting the remains of fortified hilltop villages built by warrior tribes(the Iberos) in around 500 BC and local wineries, The Spanish Thyme Traveller also have on offer their star trip, The Borgias Tour,which is a mixture of local history, food and wine and typical Spain and based on the fact that the two Borgia popes both came from the medieval town of Xativa which besides offering fascinating history in its narrow streets and imposing castle, has a fantastic array of great restaurants, bars and local patisseries where you can experience the real Spanish way of life and try local dishes such as Arnadi(a Moorish sweet pudding) and Arroz al Horno(Oven rice). An integral part of all the tours is wine. Besides visiting unique and enchanting local bodegas and doing tastings you have nearly all your meals included in the holiday cost(see webpage for details) which include excellent quality local wine. The accommodation varies slightly according to the tour but all the hotels used are local privately run unique establishments with loads of charm and character.
The tours are run with a unique personal touch and with a mixture of fun and relaxation. Your tour leaders are Patrick Waller and his wife Julia who have lived in this area for over twenty years and are passionate about all things Spanish. They have also recently launched Day Trips from Valencia which offer tourist the chance to visit the interior of the province and experience some great history, architecture and local food.
So if you are keen to experience the authentic Spain, tasty food and wine in a friendly atmosphere this is a perfect holiday for you.
Ideally the best option would be to do a 5 day trip with The Spanish Thyme Traveller and tack on a couple of days exploring the city of Valencia on your own. A city of contrasts which offers fantastic food, amazing modern architecture (the architect of the stunning “Science City” is the world famous Santiago Calatrava) which contrasts with the old quarter (the Barrio Carmen) and the cathedral. And not to be missed: the authentic Paella Valenciana eaten by the dazzling azure Mediterranean (the Malvarrosa Beach), a real tradition in Valencia and a gastronomic treat.
When to go? Well the number of days of sunshine in this area is upward of 300 days a year so almost any time is fine although from March to October is the best period.
How to book? Check out their website