A decade ago, wine tourism was an alien concept in Spain. Visiting a bodega and seeing how the wine was produced was virtually impossible for foreigners and locals alike. But in ten years’ time a lot has changed. Today, Spain is home to some of the most spectacular wineries in the world.
Ground-breaking architecture, unbeatable scenery and (of course!) stellar wine combine to make Spain a top destination for wine lovers. For design and architecture, Spain is experiencing a Renaissance and an atmosphere of creativity and investment has attracted top architects from around the world to build design wineries including Frank Gehry, Norman Foster, Zaha Hadid, Philippe Mazières as well as local celebrity architects like Santiago Calatrava and Rafael Moneo.
Exploring our towns and villages, you’ll find a wealth of cultural and heritage sites around every corner. Enchanting villages, medieval towns, monuments, castles, museums, archaeological sites, monasteries, historic and artistic complexes... A never-ending list of attractions awaits you.
We have created this category in our portfolio with an extra special focus on art and heritage for wine lovers who also love art and design.
Bodegas Terras Gauda in O Rosal, Galicia, organizes Francisco Mantecón International Poster Design Competition biennial every year. Bodegas Terras Gauda, is the only company in the wine sector to organise an event of this kind, set up the competition with a view to recovering the former glory of the advertising poster and acting as a creative platform for graphic designers. Art, passion for design, creativity and communication between diverse cultures are the essence of the Biennial which, from Galicia, opens a door to the international avant-garde of graphic design with the collaboration of prestigious universities. After its 14th edition in 2019, the 1,435 posters from 66 countries capture the graphic and geographic diversity in the imposing exhibition.
La Rioja, where a sea of vineyards combines with the cultural and architectural heritage of its medieval towns, bearing witness to the passage of time. An amazing heritage waiting to be discovered slowly and unhurriedly. As you travel through the region, you’ll come across castles, medieval villages, monasteries, chapels, burial sites, underground vaults and ancient wineries amongst the vineyards stretching over the countryside. You cannot leave Rioja without exploring our medieval towns, without discovering a prehistoric wine press, without going down into one of our ancient underground wine vaults and without seeing the Vivanco Museum of Wine Culture, with one of the best collections in the world.
There’s no shortage of festivities and community festivals in La Rioja keeping local traditions alive and dotting the calendar from January through to December, including “Uztaberri Eguna” in February and the great Grape Harvest Festival in September. July is the month for the Music in the Vineyards festival, along with artisan markets, sporting activities and exhibitions plus a range of wine and gourmet food events. The area offers you the chance to venture into the past, turning the pages of our history one by one as you explore the countryside. We recommend you take a walk round our villages, peek inside our churches and admire the altarpieces, take photos of ancient stones or conquer our castles.
In Ribera del Duero there’s something for everyone. Charming villages where visitors can admire monuments and castles, seek peace in monasteries, enjoy exploring medieval square and streets. And for culture enthusiasts, there’s the Wine Museum, the Ribera House and Museum, the delightful Train Museum and the amazing Museum of Aromas.
While in Somontano, Don’t forget to visit the cave paintings in the Vero River Culture Park (now a UNESCO World Heritage Site); the medieval town of Alquézar and its Collegiate church in the heart of the Vero river canyon; the lively capital of Barbastro; the spirituality of the Torreciudad Sanctuary... and lots more besides. And, of course, wineries that are both artistic and spectacular.
Penedés will introduce you to Cava’s Arquitecture · In the long and exciting history of vines and wines, Cava stands for modernity, the culmination of the art of winemaking, the compendium of what winemakers have learned over centuries. VINSEUM, Museum of Wine Cultures of Catalonia, in Vilafranca del Penedès, Pau Casals Villa Museum in Vendrell or a human towers festival are a short list of many different ways of experiencing local heritage.
The origins of the Rueda’s wine-producing industry date back to the 11th century, and since then, cultivating the vineyards and making wine have resulted in a distinctive culture and tradition reflected in all aspects of its personality, including its art. History has left a major legacy all along the Rueda Wine Route. As you make your way you’ll come across ancient Mudéjar and Renaissance churches, convents and monasteries housing magnificent treasures and fortress castles such as La Mota and Medina del Campo; they all stand witness to the many battles fought on the plains of Castile and to the region’s past political and economic importance, especially during the reign of queen Isabel La Católica.
Marco de Jerez offers endless ways of experiencing the region's rich winemaking culture, including exploring the famous ‘cathedral-bodegas’, being initiated into the art of wine tasting or just wandering through vineyards. We’ve all been in the large modern wineries where the wine may be amazing but it’s hard to get around the fact that you are often looking at large industrial vats. Not so in the wonderful winery of Real Bodega de La Concha Tio Pepe. Often overlooked in the conventional wisdom of wine routes in Spain, Jerez de la Frontera provides a whole new kind of wine tasting. This village on the southern coast of Andalusia is the center of Sherry territory.
Tradition, history, art and culture combine at the Tio Pepe “city of sherry”. Some of the oldest parts of this giant wine complex, one of the oldest and largest in Spain, were designed by Gustave Eiffel, the architect of the Eiffel Tower. Be sure to visit the Real Bodega de la Concha, which was inaugurated in 1869 in honour of Queen Isabel II.
But this is not all, Toledo’s castle route, the craftsmanship of Basque country, Frank Gehry’s tremendous Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and savouring your art-palate with bohemian Barcelona’s best contemporary art museums such as the Picasso museum and Joan Miró Foundation are only a short list to keep on the agenda.