Basque Country Foodie Road Trip by Paul Bachant

18 04 2017

Basque Country Foodie road trip by Paul BachantA Basque country foodie road trip is not the first think people think of when planning a trip to Spain. This autonomous region in the north of Spain contains a dramatic scenery of rugged coastlines, interior mountains and rolling vineyards, with strong culinary and cultural traditions existing alongside avant-garde art and architecture, all of which is well-worth a visit. 

But let’s get right to heart of the matter: the food. We’ve sampled tapas, or pintxos as they are called here, in many parts of Spain, but nothing compares to what you find in Basque Country. The attention to eating well is part of the culture, from the simplest of snack bars to the more formal restaurants. It is said that the revolution in Spanish cuisine witnessed over the past few decades originated here and then spread to the rest of the country and beyond.

So if you don’t like great food and wine, then the essence of Basque Country will escape you. If you doPaul Bachant, ManAboutWorld gay travel correspondent, then dive in with us! Story and photos by Paul Bachant.

DAY 1 – BILBAO TO VITORIA-GASTEIZ

After landing in Bilbao, we immediately noticed that we were in what is called the “Green Belt” of Spain. As the car whisked us to Vitoria-Gasteiz, the regional capital just one hour away, we were welcomed by the lushness of the green, forested hills. And while the rest of Spain was baking, we enjoyed the mild temperatures and a refreshing breeze.

Our first lunch in Vitoria-Gasteiz was at the intimate Taberna Tximiso where we were treated to an exquisite assembly of pintxos, each one more toothsome than the last, washed down with a crisp, local white wine. The owner explained each one with passion and even treated us to an off-menu item. The bill? A mere 23 euros for two. The evening meal consisted of a sampling of the many pintxo bars lining the streets of the medieval quarter, where the strolling and chatting and eating and drinking crowds contributed to a festive atmosphere. Read the rest of this entry »





Parting Shots: John Coe’s Spain

21 05 2014

JRC_Ronda_2ManAboutWorld Global Correspondent John Coe’s life can be summed up as a photographic journey with images defining milestones and bringing life to the mundane. During childhood, his father, a talented photographer in his own right, instilled a passion for telling stories through visual imagery. Over the years, John has exhibited his images in over 25 photo exhibits. We spoke to him about his love of travel, and we selected his journey to Spain as this month’s Parting Shots in our magazine. Here’s the expanded story and more of his photos.

The photo above was taken by John Coe in Ronda, Spain: Beautiful Christian iconography is a common sight on most Spanish streets.

1. Why do you love to travel around Spain?

I love packing in as many new and different experiences as possible in a trip, and even within the cozy region of southern Spain, there is amazing variety from city to city. Toledo, Seville, Granada, Córdoba — these are cities that are an hour or so apart by train or car, and yet so delightfully different.

2. How far in advance do you plan your trips?

For two- to three-week trips, I find it handy to block calendars and book flights about three months in advance. Then I spend the next couple of months reading, getting excited, and planning the itinerary one city at a time. 3. Who do you travel with?

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