Ribera del Duero itineraries
Itinerary in Ribera del Duero
Ideas for a road trip in Ribera del Duero, one of Spain´s best well-known wine regions
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Ribera del Duero region wine route
This wine route starts in El Burgo de Osma. This is a perfect place to stay and enjoy its culture. From there on everything along the river Duero revolves around wine: Aranda del Duero is the DO Ribera del Duero´s capital, Penafiel´s medieval castle hosts a fascinating wine museum, and on your way to Valladolid, Castilla y Leon´s biggest city, you will find some of the most famous and prestigious Spanish wineries. Our wine tours in Ribera del Duero cover areas of Valladolid and Burgos near the Duero river.
Burgo de Osma
A good place to start is Burgo de Osma. It is a wonderful, small, medieval town to stay in with lots of history and several cool things to see and do. It’s also known as a great place to eat in the region, with several top-notch “asadores”.
El Burgo de Osma is not part of Ribera del Duero, but is a perfect place to stay and start our route. From there on along the Duero riverside, everything revolves around wine.
The road N122 leads us to San Esteban de Gormaz, where we will find two Romanesque churches, castle ruins and a medieval bridge. As we leave the N122, we can go down to Atauta to discover a typical castilian landscape. It’s worth a short stop before arriving at the next important stop on the way.
Aranda de Duero
Aranda welcomes the Duero river under its bridges. The Tourist Office organizes visits to underground wineries.
Aranda del Duero is Split down by the Duero River. Its two halves are connected by the Aranda Bridge. Aranda is filled with wine cellars, although this might not be immediately obvious. Cellars in Aranda, and in Ribera in general, are traditionally located underground and the only way you would know that you are near one is by finding the tale-tell chimneys ore “luceros” as they are known that allow the underground cellars to breathe.
In Aranda, you may stroll through its cobbled squares and eat in its renowned asadores (typical restaurants for roasted meat), famous for their roast lamb. You make be surprised by a pleasant walk through its parks along the river Duero. You can also admire the façade of the Church of Santa María or that of San Juan.
There is a complex web of underground tunnels and cellars that crisscross underneath Aranda that house excellent Ribera del Duero wine and about 10 minutes outside of Aranda is Bodegas Portia, one of the most modern wineries in the region.
Aranda del Duero also has some sight-seeing opportunities including the Church of Santa Maria, the Church of San Juan, its town squares, and the many parks that line the Duero river as it crosses through Aranda.
If you drive to Fuentecen on your way to Peñafiel from Aranda de Duero we recommend you look up to the nearby hill you can barely see a small village at the top. Once you make your way up the hill you arrive at the abandoned medieval town of Haza. Because of its strategic vantage point, Haza was once an important garrison in the region, and now lays abandoned. It is worth the trek, if nothing else for the views.
The abandoned village of Haza
We hope you decide to take a tour to Ribera del Duero and enjoy the region whilst being driven. If you plan to stay overnight you may be interested in finding out how to get to Ribera del Duero from Madrid. You can also find ideas on this to do and see in Ribera del Duero in this other post.
We suggest you continue along the Duero towards Peñafiel, but if you have a bit of spare time it is a good idea to take the road A1 to Gumiel de Izán and visit some of the nearby villages which are very interesting from a cultural and wine point of view, with a multitude of wineries and vineyards in Gumiel de Mercado or la Horra, where a large concentration of vineyards and wineries can be found. La Horra is a few miles away from Roa de Duero, which is the small town where the office of the Ribera del Duero DO is located. iWith so many vineyards, it is easy to understand why Roa was chosen to be the proverbial capital of the Ribera del Duero appellation. The most important monument in Roa is their small church Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
Once you reach Peñafiel, the first stop has to be at the Castle of Peñafiel, now converted into a wine museum. One iteration or another of the castle has stood in the same spot since the 10th century. It is perched high up on a very narrow hill, which gives the castle the appearance of a ship. Peñafiel is one of the most important villages as it relates to wine production in the region. It famously has several underground wine cellars that are hundreds of years old and its home Protos which is one of the top wineries in all of Ribera. The castle of Peñafiel is among the most beautiful castles in Castilla and Spain
La Plaza del Coso is another must in Peñafiel. The square is lined with beautiful antique homes and is still used as a bullfighting ring when in season.
The Torre del Reloj in Peñafiel is over 10 centuries old and the clock housed inside it is over 100 years old. In front of the tower, you will see a few of the ever-present Zarceras (cellar chimneys), letting you know you are standing above century-old caves and tunnels.
On the way to Valladolid
On the way to Valladolid, we may go through Curiel de Duero and Pesquera de Duero or go towards Quintanilla de Onésimo. In Curiel de Duero you will find a lot of interesting historical buildings.
This village is also near Peñafiel. The surrounding landscape is nothing but vineyards and wineries. Its an ideal place to take a rest and truly feel like you are in wine country. Curiel also features a castle at the highest point of the town which is now a fantastic boutique hotel in castle
In Pesquera there are as many as 17 wineries belonging to the Denomination of Origin Ribera de Duero, some of which are very prestigious.
Pesquera del Duero is not exactly a tourist destination, the village does not offer much in terms of historical landmarks of picture-worthy views. It is, however, an important site as it relates to wine production. Underfoot are hundreds of meters of tunnels that are filled to the brim with aging wine. The ancient ventilation systems may be confused with protruding boulders but at second glance, we can see that they are actually rock chimneys that allow the release of toxic CO2 from the chambers below. This is an ideal system to maintain a constant cool temperature, oxygen flow, and humid conditions in the cellar.
A few kilometers outside of Peñafiel we find Valbuena del Duero which is home to the monastery of “Nuestra Señora de Valbuena”. The monastery is from the 12th century and it is currently been repurposed as a hotel and museum. It sits on the bank of the river and is a great place to enjoy the sunset.
Valbuena del Duero
In Quintanilla de Onesimo, the river Duero flows under a bridge dating back to 1583, and you will be able to go for a walk near vineyards of renowned wineries
You can find more information about the history of Ribera del Duero in this post.
Valladolid is the capital of Castilla León and its largest city and it’s a town filled with history and culture. Using Valladolid as a hub to go on wine tours is an excellent option. From Valladolid, you can easily visit several amazing wineries nearby.
Historically in Valladolid, the main winemaker was the catholic church. There are several religious monuments that have a close relationship to winemaking that is worth visiting. Winemakers in the “Herederos del vino” guild also have their cellars in Valladolid and make excellent wines as well.
There are tons of cool things to do in Valladolid but you can’t miss out on visiting the gardens that line the riverbanks of the Pisuerga that cuts through the center of the city. You also don’t want to forget to eat at a traditional meson and enjoy some amazing Ribera wine as it is meant to be enjoyed: accompanying a wonderful meal and in Good company.
The Capital of Castilla y León has an important historical and cultural heritage. There are remarkable religious monuments such as the monasteries which were responsible for the development of winemaking in past centuries. However individual producers gradually appeared and decided to join in a guild called "Herederos del Vino" (wine heirs).
A stroll in the gardens along the Pisuegra river in the city center is a pleasurable experience, followed by a gastronomical halt in its mesones, taverns and figones, where you will discover Valladolid’s wines. The Office for wine tourism suggests 2 different routes to make the most of the city’s appeals and wine tradition.