Featured holiday Food and wine holiday in the Heart of Spain Spain

5 nights/6 days
This is a five-night food and wine holiday based at the Hacienda Zorita, a 5-star small, luxury hotel on a country estate producing wine and olive oil near Salamanca in the heart of Spain. We include a selection of food and wine items such as a dinner with wine pairing, a wine-tasting, an olive or wine spa treatment, and a ‘pata negra’ tasting. There is time to explore the region on your own with a hire-car too.
Included in your Expressions holiday
  • Accommodation in a double or twin room on bed and breakfast
  • Scheduled flights with British Airways London to Madrid return, economy
  • Hire of a Group B car for the duration of your stay
  • Dinner with wine, wine-tasting, pata negra tasting, olive or wine spa treatment with lunch
  • Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Luxury food and wine holiday in the Heart of Spain in the Duero Valley region

This five-night luxury food and wine holiday based at the 5-star Hacienda Zorita, located on a country estate with organic farm, olive groves and vineyards, about 20 minutes’ drive north of the historic city of Salamanca, about 2 hrs and 30 minutes’ drive north of Madrid. The Hacienda Zorita is a blissful setting for a discovery of authentic produce and a rural way of life in a little-known corner of central Spain that is rich in history, natural scenery and incredible local produce. During your stay we include a Concordia dinner with 3 starters, 2 mains and 1 dessert accompanied by 4 paired wines with the tasting and pairing explained by a wine expert. On a separate occasion there is a wine-tasting, a tasting of the famous ‘pata negra’ Iberico ham and a Wine or Olive spa treatment consisting of a body and facial with a healthy brunch afterwards.

Highlights

Concordia menu dinner with 3 starters, 2 mains and 1 dessert and 4 paired wines with the tasting and pairing explained by a wine expert • Wine-tasting of three wines • Pata negra tasting • Olive or wine spa body and facial treatment for 60 minutes with healthy brunch


Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room for 5 nights.

From about

£1,720

Holiday Code FHSN02

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Luxury food and wine holiday in the Heart of Spain in the Duero Valley region

Your holiday starts when you collect your hire-car at Madrid. It’s a drive of about 2 hours and 30 minutes to Valverdon north of Salamanca and a scenic introduction to central Spain, ending on the peaceful banks of the River Tormes, home to the five-star Hacienda Zorita. A former 14th century monastery turned flour mill in the 19th century, Hacienda Zorita is now a luxury wine hotel and spa, and each of the 40 rooms, suites and villas enjoy vineyard or river views.

You have four days at the Hacienda Zorita to enjoy the calm and peaceful surroundings of this charming hotel on its estate. Within the Duero Valley region, the Hacienda Zorita’s estate holds a farm of about 300 hectares and was a pioneer of natural and organic farming in Spain, as well as of the Spanish Slow Food movement. The farm produces high quality raw milk ewe’s cheese, Iberico hams and charcuterie, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, vegetables, fruit and breads. Wine has been produced on the estate since the 14th century. The local estate produces the Crianza, 100% tempranillo, aged for 12 months in oak and idea with meats and pasta. It has an intense, fruity flavour. Its other locally produced award-winning wine is the Magister, 60% tempranillo, 30% syrah and 10% merlot. This wine is aged for 18 months in French oak and is an exceptional, complex and elegant wine, very suitable for cellar ageing. While away the days indulging in the flavours of Zorita’s Kitchen, where Michelin-starred Chef Victor Gutierrez crafts the menu around what is fresh on the estate’s organic farm. These meals often consist of Mediterranean flavours and hearty regional staples, all devoured in the rustic dining room setting, where large tables foster a communal dining experience. Meanwhile, the unique addition of a wine spa offers ultimate sensory indulgence. This is just one of the wine-themed experiences of Hacienda Zorita thanks to the age-old vines that have adorned this sprawling riverside plot for over seven centuries. Make sure you take the time during your stay to visit Salamanca, with its museums, palaces, plazas and the UNSECO-listed Old City.

Depending on the time of your flight back to London, spend some time enjoying the scenery on the way back or drive straight to the airport and return your hire-car ready for the flight home.

Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room for 5 nights.

From about

£1,720

Holiday Code FHSN02

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Our prices include ● Scheduled flights with British Airways from London Heathrow to Madrid return, economy
● Hire of a Group B car for the duration of your stay
● 5 nights' bed and breakfast in a Double room at Hacienda Zorita, near Salamanca
● Concordia menu dinner with 3 starters, 2 mains and 1 dessert and 4 paired wines with the tasting and pairing explained by a wine expert
● Wine-tasting of three wines
● Pata negra tasting
● Olive or wine spa body and facial treatment for 60 minutes with healthy brunch
● Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room for 5 nights.

From about

£1,720

Holiday Code FHSN02

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Our prices include • Scheduled flights with British Airways from London Heathrow to Madrid return, economy
• Hire of a Group B car for the duration of your stay
• 5 nights' bed and breakfast in a Double room at Hacienda Zorita, near Salamanca
• Concordia menu dinner with 3 starters, 2 mains and 1 dessert and 4 paired wines with the tasting and pairing explained by a wine expert
• Wine-tasting of three wines
• Pata negra tasting
• Olive or wine spa body and facial treatment for 60 minutes with healthy brunch
• Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

The journey and how you get there There are flights with British Airways from London Heathrow to Madrid several times a day. A hire-car is included for you to collect and return to Madrid airport. The drive is about 2 hours and 30 minutes from the airport to the hotel.

Luxury food and wine holiday in the Heart of Spain in the Duero Valley region

Expressions Holidays includes this hotel in this holiday.
Hotels included in this tour
Valverdon
Hacienda Zorita

Hacienda Zorita is a 5-star luxury hotel in a converted 14th century monastery in a beautiful rural location. Award winning cuisine and pampering Wine and Olive spa afford guests a tranquil retreat.

Double room

From about Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room for 5 nights.

Holiday Code FHSN02

Luxury food and wine holiday in the Heart of Spain in the Duero Valley region

About Heart of Spain

An Expressions tailor-made holiday to the Heart of Spain feature some of the best four and five star hotels in central Spain, featuring vineyard hotels, rural estates and city properties. Located at the geographical heart of Spain is its vibrant capital, Madrid, where days can be filled with art galleries and atmospheric outdoor cafes, and evenings promise an energetic nightlife. Surrounding the city are the dry plains of the country's central plateau which are divided by spectacular mountain ranges and dotted with numerous castles, magnificent cathedrals and ancient Roman ruins. The regions which make up Spain's central plateau have all played a hugely important role in the history of modern Spain, which is evident in the numerous castles which were built to protect towns and villages as the Moors fought the Christians in the 10th and 11th centuries. These are some of the least visited parts of Spain where few tourists venture outside of the main cities, ensuring that visitors will leave feeling like they have discovered something new. At the centre of Spain is Madrid, where atmospheric cobbled streets link bustling squares which are filled with pavement cafes and flea markets, whilst tree-line boulevards are overlooked by neo-classical buildings. Surrounding the city are the dry plains of the country's central plateau which are divided by spectacular mountain ranges and dotted with numerous castles, magnificent cathedrals and ancient Roman ruins. To the north of Madrid is Castilla y León, an elevated region which has played a hugely important role in the history of modern Spain. Rolling countryside is littered with historic cities, isolated villages and mediaeval castles, built by the Christians to defend against the Moorish invaders. Salamanca, Avila, Segovia, León, Valladolid and Burgos are all home to a wealth of art and stunning architecture, including Gothic cathedrals and Roman structures. Away from the cities are natural attractions including mountain ranges and nature reserves, with wheat fields and vineyards covering the high plateaus. To the south and east of Madrid is Castilla-La Mancha, an expansive region with dry plains stretching towards mountains in the distance. The predominantly flat scenery is made up of olive groves, wheat fields, extensive vineyards, hilltop castles and the iconic windmills described by Cervantes. Head to the historic city of Toledo, where Christian, Jewish and Arab cultures blend to create a popular tourist destination, or to Cuenca, a dramatic town where houses seemingly dangle over a plunging gorge. Further west towards the border with Portugal is Extremadura, a region with green pastures and rolling hills, forests and fertile river valleys, as well as charming towns boasting stunning examples of Roman architecture. Elaborate palaces and manor houses are found in clusters throughout the region, built by conquistadors with gold from the New World.

Highlights of the Heart of Spain

The three world-class art galleries which make up Madrid's Golden Triangle of Art, home to works by Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dalí and Francisco de Goya. The historical sights of Old Madrid, including the lavish Royal Palace, the grand Plaza Mayor and the city's spiritual centre, Puerta del Sol. Parque del Retiro, a popular spot for relaxation in the centre of Madrid with a boating lake. El Escorial, a large royal residence just outside Madrid which also functions as a monastery and is where many Spanish monarchs are buried. The Gothic cathedrals of León, Burgos and Toledo which feature stunning stained glass, mediaeval art and elaborate sculptures. The numerous castles which are scattered across the region including the Gothic-style Belmonte Castle, the Mudejár Coca Castle and the Moorish Alcazaba of Badajoz. The university city of Alcalá de Henares, birthplace of Cervantes, the 16th century author who wrote about the adventures of Don Quixote. The walled city of Ávila. The university city of Salamanca. Segovia, with its Roman Aqueduct and distinctive castle. Cuenca, a picturesque old town with houses which appear to hang over a gorge. The iconic windmills which sit on the plains near Consuegra. Roman ruins in Mérida. Elaborate palaces and manor houses in Trujillo and Cáceres. The wine-producing regions throughout central Spain including Ribera del Duero, La Mancha and Valdepeñas where visitors can visit vineyards and enjoy wine tastings. Mountain ranges which divide the central plateau, with many opportunities for walking and rock climbing.

Festivals in the Heart of Spain

February: Caja Madrid Flamenco Festival, February to March: Madrid Carnival, February to March: Madrid Contemporary Art Fair, March/April: Holy week celebrations, May: San Isidro bullfighting festival (Madrid), May/June: Toledo Corpus Christi processions (Toledo), July to August: Madrid summer arts festival, October: Saffron Rose Festival (Consuegra), October: Cervantes Week (Alcala de Henares), October to November: Madrid Autumn Festival

Gastronomy in the Heart of Spain

As expected, Madrid is home to some excellent restaurants serving a great range of cuisine from throughout Spain and around the world. Roasted meat and game as well as a variety of broths and stews are common features on menus throughout central Spain, where traditional cooking is simple and hearty. Cuisine varies slightly between the regions, with more paprika and saffron being used in the south. Various pulses are grown on the plains of Castilla y León, whilst Manchego cheese produced in La Mancha and high quality Ibérico ham is produced in Extremadura. There are a number of wine regions which produce high-quality red and white wines. Local dishes include ‘Pollo a lo Padre Pero’ (chicken with a spicy sauce), ‘El frite’ (fried lamb), ‘Sopa de ajo’ (garlic soup), ‘Pisto manchego’ (similar to ratatouille), ‘Yemas’ (a rich dessert made with egg yolks).

Climate in the Heart of Spain

The climate of central Spain is generally quite extreme, with extremely hot summers and bitterly cold yet dry winters. Rainfall is generally quite low thanks to the mountains which surround the region. Madrid can be almost unbearable in the summer months as temperatures reach 40 degrees, whilst during the temperatures regularly drop below freezing. Spring and autumn are the best times to visit as temperatures are warm and pleasant, although there is increased rainfall.

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