Welcome to Alava
In a beautiful region such as País Vasco, Álava is its biggest province. One of the popular destinations around here that you will be able to visit is Vitoria, the capital of the province, where the Santa Maria cathedral awaits you.
Besides, the landscapes and natural reserves are not so bad either here, and if you want some fresh air there is no better place than the valley of Ayala. And don't forget to visit the beautiful falls in the river Nervión, and other waterfalls that you can find in the area.
One of the natural highlights that you will be able to visit is the Valle Salado, in Salinas de Añana, which is the oldest and biggest natural, salt producing site known to this day. As you can see, this province has many secrets to discover.
If you prefer to see some of the medieval villages and architecture, you can't miss the Cuadrilla de la Guardia, or the Cuadrilla de Campezo.
Regardless of where you want to you, you will be able to enjoy of the local gastronomy, that uses products such as the black truffle, honey or the local meat, never forgetting the Rioja wine elaborated in this region, with a PDO status and known and loved internationally.
Start looking now for the best accommodation for rural tourism in Álava.
What to see in Alava?
Out of the three regions in which consists the Basque Country you are coming to the most singular of them all.You will find here landscapes, and views that still reflect the tradition and monuments, that tell us about the story of this region.
Without doubt, there are elements that make Álava a place like no other, such as the bed of greens and maroons where the capital, Vitoria, sits.
What curiosities are there?
It may be because of the differences between ths region and the others that surround it, but this has become a favourite destination for nature and wine lovers.
You will fis in this region of more than 3,000 Km of extension, castles and medieval villages, and many other places filled with magic that you mustn't miss.
Discovering the inland of this province, will also allow you to enjoy of the quiet and calmness of rural tourism.
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Where can you sleep?
Like everywhere else, finding cheap accommodation in the capital is not that easy, but you can always find towns and villages close to it and with more availability, that will surely adjust to your needs. If you're a wine lover. We recommend visiting Elciego, a place known as the Guggenheim of wine because of its longtime tradition of winemaking.
And if you would like to feel like you have travelled back in time to the Middle Ages, Labraza is your place to go, a small town surrounded by greenery, vines and that particular earthen smell that you will love for sure. We also recommend Labastida, another charming town that you will love.
What to do in the area?
There are many places in this region that deserve a visit. Starting with the capital of the province, Vitoria, you can't miss the Catedral Vieja, built in the gothic style, at the very center of the city, where you can also walk by its streets and discover the hidden spots it has. Palaces, museums, and even a botanical garden built in the ruins of an old monastery, are some of the more interesting places that you will be able to visit if you move around the capital and nearby area.
And if you're more into nature, we strongly recommend the Salto del Nervión, the river falls with some of the most impressive views of incomparable beauty, in this area.
On the other hand, another destination if high natural value you should check out is the Valle Salado, where you will be able to explore deeper into the wild.
What typical foods are recommended?
Its lack of seaside, but vast inland territory make for the perfect location for a gastronomy where beans and meat predominate.
One of the principal dishes you will find here is the local stew, the 'cocido alavés', or similar stews elaborated with broad beans from Vitoria, or the 'perretxiko' which is a mushroom that can only be found in this area.
Nevertheless, here there is also a longtime tradition of 'pintxos', a typical style of serving food in small quantities here at the País Vasco, that will help you try all the different, traditional and delicious dishes from Álava. And don't forget about the local meat, with pork being the most popular here, or the local fish, like the 'txakoli, which are still very much present in any menu here in Álava.
Where are the festivities?
And if there's something that tourists love are parties and celebrations, and Álava is no exception to the rule. There are two local festivities that are a must here in Álava. The first of them takes place at the end of April, concretely the Retretas de las Tamborradas performed the 28th, honouring the local patron saint, San Prudencio.
The other celebration you mustn't miss is the festivity of la Virgen de Estíbaliz, the other patron saint of the capital, held in the second sunday of September.
So, if you want to make sure you enjoy your time in Álava to the fullest, make sure to write down those two dates in your calendar.