Northern Spain cultural tour
Description of Northern Spain cultural tour
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As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) holiday so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetWe are passionate about leaving the beautiful regions of Asturias, Cantabria & the Basque Country as we find them - we feel lucky to be in a position to benefit from the beauty of these areas, both country & city, and we recognise the need to leave them in a pristine state. As such we operate a strict no litter policy, taking all refuse to either be recycled or properly disposed. We ensure our clients understand how to responsibly manage any toileting in the wild. We work with the policy of ‘take nothing but memories, Leave nothing but footprints’.
We promote travel by ferry to Northern Spain as an alternative to flying. Although the most timely way to get to the Picos is to use a low cost airline, there is much joy to be found in incorporating your travel into your adventure and choosing the lower carbon footprint option of the ferry. You can travel to Santander from Plymouth (18hrs 30mins) and Portsmouth (23hrs 30mins) and to Bilbao from Portsmouth (23hrs 45mins), all with Brittany Ferries. An added bonus to this form of travel is the opportunity to spot whales and dolphins in the Bay of Biscay!
During the adventure we are of course primarily walking to experience the sights, sounds and smells of this beautiful country, which is a low carbon way to see the sights. Where required we use private minibus transfers.
During the adventure we introduce our clients to the works carried out by the local charity FAPAS; Fund for the Protection of Wild Animals. Our clients are invited to learn about the Conservation and biodiversity work done by the charity, in the areas we visit and to make a donation to support them, if they would like.
We are very proud to be working with Pure Hydration, specialists in personal and expedition water purification, instantly, and on-demand. We recognise that the ability to produce safe drinking water from sources off the beaten track, of sometimes dubious quality, offers incredible benefits to our adventure travellers and so are excited to be subsidising this product to make it more accessible to you. Having a re-usable filtration bottle avoids single use plastic, with each bottle purifying 350L of water. RRP is £39 our clients are able to purchase a bottle for £20.00.
PeopleWe work directly with a small Spanish operator based in the heart of the Picos de Europa mountains, who provides a local English speaking guide (qualified) for our adventures - our clients benefit from their expertise, and they benefit from our employment.
We use small, locally run hotels wherever possible during our adventure rather than larger internationally run chain hotels (this is not always possible in larger locations such as Bilbao & Santander). The more remote hotels in mountain villages and small towns, rely on local produce and serve traditional cuisine for our clients to enjoy.
These 3 regions of Northern Spain are under developed in terms of tourism, compared with much of the rest of the country. By visiting the beautiful, understated sites, such as the Basilica de Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga, and the Monastery of Santo Toribio de Liebana, we are supporting local tourism. We are also promoting local produce with a cider factory visit in Llanes, and a pintxos tour in San Sebastian.
Our Spanish partner has a fabulous network of local contacts who are passionate about developing the right kind of tourism in the Picos, one which supports local communities as well as the environment. With their input we are building build positive and sustainable relationships between ourselves and the tourism industry within the areas we visit.
As mentioned in our section about the Environment, as part of this adventure, we introduce our clients to the works carried out by the Spanish charity; Fund for the Protection of Wild Animals (FAPAS). Our clients are invited to learn about the Conservation and biodiversity work done by the charity, in the areas we visit and to make a donation to support them, if they would like.
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From €719 7 days excluding flights
Walk and talk on this small group language holiday in Picos de Europa National Park