Award-winning Spanish tour operator Hidden in Spain plans to add Michelin-Starred Restaurant Food Lovers Tours for 2019. Available in four- and five-night options, as well as longer stays based on clients’ needs, the customizable tours provide several gastronomic experiences across Spain, sampling the cuisine of some of the world’s top restaurants. Typical tours include a day of sightseeing and planned activities, capped by dinner at a Michelin-starred restaurant.
In the north of Spain, travelers would be welcomed in Bilbao, with private transportation arranged to San Sebastián. The itinerary could include a visit La Concha Bay. Highlights include the Peine del Viento, or The Comb of the Wind—a sculpture designed by Eduardo Chillida that extends from the rocks near the shore. Guests would also hop on the hundred-year-old Igeldo funicular railway for a ride to Mount Igueldo, where they could view the town. The day finishes off with a meal at San Sebastián’s Akelarre, restaurant owned by chef Pedro Subijana (it has retained its coveted three Michelin stars since 2006).
Guests can also go to historic San Antón Bridge—a vantage point to witness the San Anton Church, a Gothic structure constructed over 140 years ago—and the Arriaga Theater, a building resembling the Paris Opera. Afterwards, travelers will eat at the one-Michelin-starred Nerua Guggenheim Bilbao, a titanium-covered restaurant overseen by Spanish chef Josean Ajila, who presents modern but delicate dishes.
Other tour highlights include a visit the coastal fishing port of Santander in Cantabria, a city recognized for its bay, along with a visit to the palacete, or small palace, on the quay and the Menéndez Pelayo Library (known for its 41,500 volumes gifted to the town by writer and thinker Menéndez Pelayo).
Other attractions include the Magdalena Palace and the Plaza Porticada, followed by a walk-through of the Las Llamas Park, which is rich with trees, birds and lakes. Afterward they would dine at El Serbal, a restaurant serving northern Spanish food with a modern touch that holds one Michelin star.
Travelers on the Michelin-Starred Restaurant Food Lovers Tour in northern Spain also visit the city of Leon, dating back to the first century of Roman occupation, to see one of its main attractions—the San Marcos Monastery, which is now converted to a hotel. Guests also see Leon Cathedral, a historical building located on the site of second century Roman baths.
The tour includes a walk through the Barrio Humedo (Wet Neighborhood), featuring hundreds of small streets saturated with churches and bars, which offer free “tapas” with each drink. Dinner would be at Cocinandos, offering a fare that brings “a creative flair” to the table with menus that reflect the season. It is the only Michelin Star restaurant in the city.
All Hidden in Spain tours include accommodations at either four-star or boutique hotels, or a combination of both.
For other ideas in the north, San Sebastián's old tobacco factory has been converted into the Tabakalera International Center for Contemporary Culture, hosting films and art exhibits—plus, it offers impressive views from its rooftop terrace. Elsewhere, in Pamplona, a new exhibit is offering a behind-the-scenes look at the town's famous bullring.