Unique spots in Rioja Alavesa - arabaturismo
Rioja Alavesa in certainly one of the most magical places in Álava. Its villages teeming with culture and history make it an essential stop any time of year. Vineyards, routes, wineries and museums are just a taste of everything offered by this wonderful destination. Although choosing just one thing to do here is impossible, here are a few ideas:
One of the most well-known itineraries in Rioja Alavesa is the Dolmen Route, featuring no less than eight different dolmens. Dolmens are megalithic structures made more than 6,000 years ago that have become a tourist and cultural attraction. The route can be done both by car and by bike.
The dolmens you’ll find along the way are: Montecillo, Sotillo, San Martín, Layalza, Alto de la huesera, Chabola de la Hechicera, Encinal and Los Llanos. Each one has a different distinctive feature that will pique your interest in the time period.
The most popular thing to do in Rioja Alavesa is visit its famous wineries. The infinite number of walks surrounded by vines make the landscape of Rioja Alavesa a unique place you’ll never want to leave. There are renowned wineries including Marqués de Riscal designed by architect Frank Gehry and Bodegas Ysios by Santiago Calatrava. You can also visit traditional wineries like Valdelana and Solar de Samaniego. They all offer guided tours to see how the wine is made and participate in tastings. Bookings should be made in advance. Many of them also offer meals with a menu paired with their wines and even the option of spending the night at the winery. It’s a must if you visit Rioja Alavesa.
Visit its Medieval towns
If you’re looking for a more relaxed activity in Rioja Alavesa, wandering its towns might be just what the doctor ordered. Elvillar, Labastida, Leza... And, of course, the most well-known: Laguardia and Elciego.
Laguardia conquers the hearts of all its visitors with its Medieval features preserved for more than 1,000 years, its walls and its doors that transport you to this small town’s past. Wandering its Medieval streets and stopping at its bars to try the various wines of the area is one of the most commonly repeated activities for visitors.
Elciego is home to the famous Marqués de Riscal, combining winegrowing tradition with the Avant-garde, luxury and technology of the 21st century. Get lost in the town's picturesque streets packed with palaces and visit architectural sites like San Andrés church and Virgen de la Plaza hermitage.
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