Coastal Gourmet Ride

Catalonia Spain: (IT-SPCA01)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/spain_catalonia_coast_gourmet_ride.aspx

Introduction
Catalonia Spain
Pleasurable riding at the highest level – riding and gourmet, Andalusian horse stud and the coast of Catalonia!

Tempting and delicious! This Gourmet Coast Trail spoils the rider in two ways as it provides pure pleasure for your palate and your soul! Spanish horses, gourmet food, and wellness treats: experience Catalonia with all your senses! Have you ever slept door to door with the most precious horses of an award-winning Andalusian horse stud? Do you enjoy the spicy taste of goat's cheese or paella with fresh seafood and vegetables? Served with delicious wines from vines that are hundreds of years old?

Dive into the variety of Catalonia's culinary world. Whether typical tapas, regional fish or meat, homemade olive oil or a selection of fruits - let yourself be enchanted by our gourmet cook and his exceptional cuisine! Enjoy the different regional wines with your meal - you will surely love Garnaxa and Cariñena!

Allow yourself some relief after adventurous days with beach gallops. Let your muscles relax with a relieving massage. Horse riding, wellness treats and gourmet cuisine at its best: This is what makes your riding holiday in Spain so special!

Highlights
- Daily gourmet menus with local specialties
- Delicious wines of the region
- Visit and overnight at the oldest P.R.E. Stud Farm in Catalonia
- Wine tasting at a winery
- Accommodation in historical ruins 

Accomodation


Accommodations
This is a progressive ride, so nights will be spent in different locations.

Description
You will experience a special feeling of Catalonia in our accommodations, which offer you a cozy ambience in carefully chosen country guest houses, pensions, and friendly family-run hotels. Far away from mass tourism you will be spoiled by attentive hosts with local specialties. The rooms, mostly with private bath (1-2 nights' accommodation may be with a shared shower and toilet), are charmingly furnished and you almost feel at home.  
WIFI is available at some accommodations. Laundry is not available for this trip.

Accommodation Itinerary - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1 & 2: Romanyà d'Empordà
Night 3: L'Armentera
Night 4: Castelló d'Empúries
Night 5: Peralada
Night 6 & 7: Garriguella

Room Occupancy
Single rooms cannot always be guaranteed though booked. If a previously confirmed single room is not available, the guest is entitled to a refund of the price paid for those nights.
Those booked as 'willing to share' will not have to pay the single supplement fee only if we are able to find a rider of the same gender to share. If we have not found someone to share 60 days prior to the trip start, then the single supplement fee applies.


Meals
All meals from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 8 are included. Wine is included with lunch and dinner.

You will get to know the food culture of the region through the lovingly prepared dishes from fish, game, vegetables and fruits. This experience is refined by the fine wine from the growing areas of the Empordá - your taste buds will not be neglected on this journey!
During lunch breaks, you will be cared for with your saddle-bag picnics or a three-course meal prepared by our trail assistants in a beautiful setting surrounded by nature with great attention to detail.

Dinner on the arrival day is at approximately 9:00pm.
Breakfast on the last day is at approximately 9:00am.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to all dietary restrictions such as vegan, gluten, and lactose-free food. Please inform us with your booking if you have special diet requirements!

 

This trip includes some wine with dinner and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Riding Experience
This trip is suitable for low intermediate riders and above. Riders need to be safe on a well-trained horse at all paces - including a long rising trot and canter. Equestrian experience in open country is also appreciated. Participants should be fit enough to spend several hours in the saddle every day.  
On rare occasions, we have to lead our horses, so you need suitable footwear. Lightweight hiking shoes facilitate a short descent into the coastal mountains.

Pace
This trip includes 6 riding days. To make it the perfect trip, we make sure there is free time to relax between riding. At lunchtime there is a delicious picnic and you have time to relax and have a siesta after eating.

Horses
Our horses have a good life! They are are kept in a natural herd setting.
Our horses are selected for their appropriate temperament and a lot of time is spent on training them, so our happy Spanish horses make absolutely reliable and sure-footed companions for you. Each of our "Spaniards" has a unique character, but they have one thing in common: they are high performance athletes.
A choice of around 40 lovely and reliable Andalusian and Spanish horses is waiting for you, to make your riding holiday a unique experience!

Tack
We ride on high quality trail saddles, specially made for long distance riding! In cooperation with the saddler ‘Hidalgo’ we have developed the perfect trail saddle that is very comfortable and safe forboth horse and rider.
Our saddle cloths are also self-produced and hand made with the best materials, such as medical "anti-pressure sore fleece" which offers ideal conditions for our horses’ backs.
During the trails, each rider is provided with a hand crafted saddlebag, which is also made to our specification based on our trail riding experience.

Trail riding without transfers
Travel with your horse. Staying in accommodation close to your horse is our philosophy, so on all trails the horses graze nearby. No annoying transfers along winding roads. After an exciting riding day, horses and riders can rest comfortably.

Age Restriction
Accompanied by an adult, teenagers from 12 years on can join our horse riding holidays. Anyone over 16 years of age can join our horse riding holidays without being accompanied by an adult. The youth should have good riding skills. Prior agreement must be obtained. Approval from the parent or legal guardian must be provided.

Guides
The trails are carefully developed. On remote paths and lanes our friendly trail guides show you a wonderful and unknown Catalonia. The trail leaders are experienced riders and hold a trail leader license. Guides and helpers know the horses, the area and the Catalan/Spanish culture.

Itinerary

Sample itinerary - subject to changes

Day 1 (Sunday): Riding, Gourmet and Wellness
Individual arrival in Barcelona or Girona and free transfer to Mas Roca. Our friend Bogi welcomes us to his home, an old mill from the 16th century which enchants us with its unique character. We get to know our guide and our gourmet cook David, who will inspire us with the traditional cuisine of the Empordá region for the week ahead. Delicious dishes of lamb, goat or beef are part of David's repertoire, as well as sole, gilthead and prawn. You will get to know and enjoy tapas and paellas. The tasty olive oil of the region will be part of your daily dishes, as well as homemade cheese specialties. David creates our first meal to serve around 9:00pm, which we enjoy with a wonderful wine from the region.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight in Romanyà d'Empordà


Day 2 (Monday): Costa Brava
Our first riding day leads us away from the horse ranch Mas Alba, through forests of pine and stone-oak. In a hidden valley, we pass a small creek. Sunbeams break through the deep green of a tropical forest. Shrubs of bamboo line the path and lianas and climbers surround the trees above. We are in Catalonia but the ambiance reminds us of Costa Rica.
At the flood plains of the river Fluvia our head chef David awaits with a glass of sparkling Catalan Cava, which we enjoy while admiring the delightfully set table full of delicacies. Fresh bread, Manchego, homemade goat's cheese and fruits such as figs, peaches and cherries make this a perfect lunch. In the evening we ride to Bogi's place, where we spend another night. The garden with its South American feel is a beautiful spot to relax! This romantic place offers unique accommodation both for us and our horses. And, of course, another Gourmet dinner created by David is waiting for us.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Romanyà d'Empordà


Day 3 (Tuesday): Catalonia's oldest P.R.E Andalusian horse stud
Today's morning is dedicated to the river Fluvia that curls through the countryside. We follow it to the Gulf of Roses where the river flows into the ocean. David awaits us with a delicious picnic under old cork trees. What a great place to enjoy local delicacies! With renewed energy we mount our horses once again.Amid paddy fields we reach our impressive accommodation for the night: Catalonia's oldest P.R.E. (Pura Rasa Española) Andalusian horse stud.
Wonderful horses and charmingly furnished rooms await us. Tasteful furnishings and a great ambience are perfect for relaxing after a day's riding. In this wonderful atmosphere we are spoiled with delicious paella with seafood and fresh vegetables.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in L'Armentera


Day 4 (Wednesday): Beach Gallop and history of the Spanish horse!
Miles of a sandy beach are ahead of us. A dream comes true: pure horse riding!
The water splashes, sand is everywhere and we gallop through the surf. Our horses play with the waves while we try to stay dry. After this great experience we enjoy a gourmet picnic in the garden of the P.R.E Andalusian horse stud. We have a great view of the gorgeous brown Andalusian horses, grazing on the luscious green grass. We enjoy today's gourmet picnic with the beautiful scenery. After lunch, those who want to can enjoy some relaxation with a massage from our masseuse Cerrie. Later we visit a horse presentation at the stud and get to know the history of the P.R.E. Andalusian horse. We have enough time to look around and relax. Who knows, maybe this is the place where you find your dream horse! We spend another evening at the noble stud and discuss the memories of the day while of course we are served another wonderful gourmet dinner! What flavour experience is waiting for us today? Will David conjure up something with Boletus and Chanterelle, or create a dish with wild boar or deer? Let yourself be surprised!
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Castelló d'Empúries


Day 5 (Thursday): Middle-age village of Perelada - Castle and Cava!
We canter and gallop past the village of Castelló with its impressive cathedral. From there we get to the marsh of Aiguamolls which is refuge and hatchery to many birds. Crossing grazing land, we ride speedily and pass fields of vines and sunflowers on our way to Perelada. Here we arrive at the friendly guesthouse of Fina and Pere where we spend the night. The beautiful garden and the swimming pool are perfect for relaxing! We enjoy our picnic and look forward to the afternoon when we will visit the glorious castle and its Bodega. Here we not only learn a lot about Cava but we also have a cava tasting. Salud!
Your body needs a little more wellness? No problem: if you like we can arrange a Spa and Wellness treat for you at the golf hotel in Perelada (not included in package). Their specialities are treatments with wine, whether a body peel, a massage or a beauty treatment: wine can be used in several ways to refresh your body. If you like more "classical" treatments, there are many offers to choose from!
After another eventful day, David is waiting for us with a terrific meal sweetened by tasty almonds, hazelnuts and walnuts of the region - what a great way to end a perfect day! Another highlight of our day is a tasting of the delicious local wines! We let the evening come to a comfortable end.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Peralda


Day 6 (Friday): Wine fields and Bodega visit
The flood plains of the river Llobregat are not only home to a variety of flowers, but also mushrooms like Chanterelle, Boletus and Borel grow here very well.
Our picnic break today includes visiting a bodega. During the wine tasting we get to know the grapes of the region and learn a little more about how their delicious taste ripens and develops.
After this tasty and interesting break we mount our horses again. We pass intricate stone terraces and age-old olive trees line the path. This is where the regional olive oil comes from, that plays an important role in the Catalan cuisine. On the outskirts of the lovely village Gariguella, our horses arrive at their spacious accommodation. We stay at Emilia's cozy house, where we let the day come to an end. Those who want to can relax in Emilia's Jacuzzi-Spa or enjoy a massage. For dinner David creates another great menu. This time - of course - with the special olive oil and honey from the village!
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Garriguella


Day 7 (Saturday): Natural Park Albera-Mediterranean Sea
Age-old olive trees and vineyards influence the landscape in the morning. We get closer to the coastal mountains of Rodas. The light in this wild and fascinating landscape is impressive. We admire the proud formations of the Pyrenees' summits and the deep blue colour of the Mediterranean Sea. Our Andalusian horses climb the mountains brilliantly. In the afternoon, we get to a picturesque bay of the "Wild Coast" where David is waiting for us with a mouth-watering picnic on the beach. In the evening we return to Emilia's place. For our last dinner David has come up with a very special idea: a menu with 5 courses that we won't forget in a hurry!
We enjoy the delicious food and celebrate the end of our gourmet trail with local cava and vino tinto. Visca Catalunya!
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Garriguella


Day 8 (Sunday): Hasta la Vista!
Breakfast is around 9 am and then we transfer to Barcelona or Girona. 
Meals included: Breakfast

Please, note that reverse itinerary is possible.


Rates and Dates for Coastal Gourmet Ride

Rates include:

Accommodations, All meals- some with wine, 6 riding days, Tax on tourist establishments, Luggage transport & Local transfers during the trail
Some helmets can be borrowed

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20208 day trip, AP€1875$2120
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.13

Rates Note:

Single rooms cannot always be guaranteed. If a previously confirmed single room is not available, the guest is entitled to a refund of the price paid for those nights surcharge.
Transfers only payable in cash.

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Rates Note:

Single rooms cannot always be guaranteed. If a previously confirmed single room is not available, the guest is entitled to a refund of the price paid for those nights surcharge.
Transfers only payable in cash.


Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2020 Transfer from/to Barcelona airport, return (5:30 PM, last day drop off around 12:30 PM)
- to be paid locally
120 $140
2020 Transfer from/to Girona airport, return (6:30 PM, last day drop off around 11:00 AM)
- to be paid locally
90 $105
2020 Single supplement 210 $240

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2020 05/17 - 05/24 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 5 /12 Expired
A 2020 09/27 - 10/04 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 5 /12 Reserve

Dates Note:
Additional dates are available on request with 4+ riders between March and November.

Rates do not include:

Airport transfers, Entrance fees to museums and monuments, Drinks and snacks & Gratuities.

Other Info
Meeting: Romanya d’Emporda
Airport: Barcelona, Girona
Transfer: Barcelona airport at 5:30 pm, Girona airport at 6:30 pm

Climate:
                                                    Girona area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

57

59

63

67

73

81

87

87

80

72

63

58

Average Low Temperature (°F)

35

36

40

44

51

59

63

64

58

51

42

37

Average High Temperature (°C)

14

15

17

19

23

27

30

30

27

22

17

14

Average Low Temperature (°C)

2

2

5

7

11

15

17

18

15

11

6

3

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

4

4

5

6

7

5

3

4

5

5

4

3

Source: NOAA


Seasons
The overall climate of Catalonia is similar to Southern California. It enjoys a balmy, year-round climate; not too steamy in summer and with a few cold days in winter. July and August are the warmest months and December, January and February are the coldest months.

What To Bring:
Riding Helmet/Hat
Some riding helmets are very lightweight and are vented, which means they are more comfortable in hot weather, we have a limited supply of basic helmets so we advise that you bring your own.

Riding Footwear
A pair of comfortable boots with a good grip is very important. There are boots on the market which you can use for riding but are also excellent if the terrain dictates that you walk beside your horse for a while. We recommend an ankle boot with half-leg chaps as they are a favourite for comfort both while riding and walking. In the mountains, you will need to lead your horse downhill on rocky terrain.

Riding Trousers

Riding trousers or jodhpurs together with half-leg chaps will ensure you are comfortable for long hours in the saddle. Two pairs of trousers or jodhpurs are usually enough.

Important Extras
  • Riding gloves, personal toiletries (towels are usually provided in your accommodation).
  • Each rider gets a saddle bag, in which you can stow personal things for the way. For quick access, a hip/ abdominal bag has proven itself useful, in which you can accommodate, for example, your camera. A small zoom lens ensures that the most beautiful impressions also inspire at home. For the camera, you should not forget additional batteries or the charger for the battery.
  • A headlamp could be useful, but is not essential.
  • Sun protection, this is essential and we recommend that you carry a small tube or stick with you so you can re-apply it throughout the day.
  • Plastic bags can protect your personal belongings from water damage caused by rain or river crossings.
  • Sun protection is especially important! We recommend that you also have a small bottle of sunscreen during the day so that you can freshen up the protection at any time.
  • A remedy for insects is also recommended. It should be noted that some agents have a particularly high proportion of DEET and the handling of a spray or a pen is often more pleasant than is the case with a lotion.
Medical Kit
  • It is advisable to travel with a small medical kit that includes any basic remedies you may need such as antacids, painkillers, anti-inflammatories such as Ibuprofen, antihistamines and cold remedies. It might be wise to take anti-diarrhoea medication such as Imodium. If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses you might want to take some spares.
Hot Weather
  • You will need long sleeved shirts to protect against the sun as well as a couple of cotton t- shirts.
  • Remember that the Spanish (mountain) sun is strong and you can burn quickly. Wide brimmed hats are preferable to baseball caps for sun protection at the picnic. Both sunglasses (elastic is useful to keep them in place whilst riding) and a good quality sunscreen (rated SPF15 or higher) should be used including lip salve. For those fair skinned it may be wise to take a complete sun-block.
  • A pair of flip flops, swimming costume and shorts for when you get a chance to relax. It may get chilly in the evening even on hot days, so a fleece is a must and a lightweight jacket may be useful.
  • You should be prepared for all weather conditions in the mountains as well as during spring, autumn and winter on any trail. A waterproof mac or poncho will not take up much space but may prove very handy.
Winter Riding/Cold Weather
  • For trails where the weather is inclement, it is vital that you pack correct clothing to keep you warm and dry. Silk vests and thermal underwear will be a good base followed by layers of warm clothes. A good waterproof/windproof coat will prove a good investment. Waterproof trousers and waterproof gloves are light to pack and will be invaluable if it is really wet. Plenty of socks and a spare pair of boots are a good idea.