bacchus travel
Catalonia
An epicurean odyssey from mountains to sea

The northeastern knuckle of the Iberian Peninsula, known as the Empordà, is a place relatively unknown given its rich gastronomic, viticultural and olive oil producing heritage. Over 2,500 years have passed since the Romans and Greeks arrived to Empuries and planted the first vines.

Rich in quality products from both land and sea, a food and wine tasting  holiday in this corner of Catalonia can begin in the foothills of the Pyrenees and culminate down in the azure waters of the Mediterranean.

Wine

Flanked by the glittering Mediterranean and the imposing Pyrenees, Nuria and Diego of Mas Estela winery would tell you there are few better spots to produce (or drink) a bottle of full-bodied red than Alt Empordà. The tramuntana winds from the north means the vines never get too warm while the Mediterranean climate works the grapes to ensure Empordàn wines are full of character and bursting with flavour. As a result, family vineyards have started bottling innovative organic and biodynamic wines of surprising quality at very reasonable prices.

Food

Alt Empordà and Baix Empordà form the northeastern knuckle of Catalonia, a knuckle that boasts beautiful national parks, quaint seaside towns and the most eastern point of the Iberian Peninsula. With quality land and sea produce so readily available, Catalan cuisine has an inimitable identity that has transformed it into a recognised leader on the international culinary stage. Whether dining in Michelin starred restaurants in Girona or enjoying a simple menu del dia in the medieval town of Pals, the use of fresh local ingredients and traditional techniques goes without saying.

Cycle Touring

Catalonia has been the ‘secret’ playground for amateur and pro cyclists in recent years for a reason – winding backroads, mountain passes, coastal vistas and an enviable Mediterranean climate. However, dare to venture off the beaten track and you will find unspoilt trails and narrow tracks that weave through open pastures, medieval villages and local wineries. The 360km Pirinexus route is one of the most spectacular ways to experience the region and many of our cycle tours in Catalonia take advantage of these dedicated cycle paths.

Hiking

Connecting the myriad of great eateries and wineries in Catalonia is a honeycomb of coastal tracks and mountain trails – paradise for those who want to get away from other tourists and discover the lesser trodden path. The famous GR11 trail spans the entirety of the Pyrenees and the Cami de Ronda follows the length of the Costa Brava coastline. Our local guides have explored these routes for years and know all the hidden coves, local pit stops and characters, making your group walking holiday even more special.