Cooking and walking holiday

Pyrenees, Aragon, Spain

8 days from
per person
$1,429

Average user rating

Holiday Itinerary

The unspoilt region of Aragon in the Spanish Pyrenees, known for its gorgeous landscapes and rich history, will be the setting of this 7 night / 8 day Spanish cooking and walking holiday. Nestled in the valley of the river Ara, you will find the carefully restored 17th-century farmhouse which will act as your starting point for all walking and cooking excursions.

This tranquil location sets the scene for several incredible walks through the region to the historic and famous village and scenic sites. Then, you’ll be able to take a break from walking in the on-site, modern kitchen for three courses in traditional Spanish cooking, including how to make tapas.

Simon and Lucy, your hosts, are experts of the local area, so you will encounter the best that the region has to offer under their guidance.

This gorgeous region of Spain allows you to experience and immerse yourself in the natural beauty surrounding you. Walk to the Basa de la Mora, or lake of the Moorish Woman, and picnic near what is known as one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in the central Pyrenees. Several excursions to the National Park of Ordesa - both on foot and by 4x4 - take you through enchanting glacial valleys and past geological rock masses that have stood guard for centuries.

Get closer to the local culture with several visits to various sites including a private home still containing the traditional kitchen and a small rural chapel with an interesting history.

On top of all of that, you will get the chance to tour a local bodega, taste the various cheeses at a small dairy farm, sample honey from a beekeeper, cook with the regional liquor from a nearby liquor distillery, and learn to sample and appreciate olive oil like a fine glass of wine at the family-owned olive oil mill. Close encounters with the local artisans allow you to understand what life in this quiet region is truly like.

During your course, stay in a gorgeously renovated 17th-century farmhouse in any of its 7 guest rooms, complete with a wonderful view of the surrounding grounds or mountains. Each room has a private en-suite bathroom, WiFi, and various other modern amenities. The grounds include a vegetable patch used to cook your meals, beautiful gardens, and a courtyard with a library and small gym, the ideal place to unwind and immerse yourself in the local culture and cuisine.

Who is this suitable for?
- Cooking and walking holidays are suitable for all levels from complete beginners to experienced walkers and cooks
- Minimum age is 18 for this holiday with no upper age limit
- Your hosts are English, and all cooking classes and guided walks are in English

I'm travelling solo - can I join?
- Cooking and walking holidays make great singles holidays and singles are welcome to join an existing group
- Solo travellers can have a private room with no single supplement

When can I start?
- This holiday is available on specific limited start dates
- Cooking and walking holidays are for 7 nights / 8 days
- If dates appear ‘on request’, please email us at hello@golearnto.com and we’ll check availability for your preferred day of arrival as quickly as possible

Typical itinerary
The itinerary is for guidance only and is subject to change based on the group’s needs and wishes. You are also able to take a day of rest at any time. The typical itinerary is as follows:

Day 1 - Arrival
- Arrive in Albella
- Check into your room anytime after 5pm and settle in
- Enjoy a refreshing welcome drink along with the chance to meet Simon and Lucy, your hosts for the week
- Have your first evening meal at the farmhouse

Day 2 - Local dairy farm visit, first walk, & first cookery course
- Enjoy a buffet breakfast at the farmhouse
- Depart for the mountain village of Saravillo, where you will visit a small dairy farm which produces various goat’s cheeses, yoghurt, and milk
- Watch the production process and taste some of the delicious cheeses
- Head to the Basa de la Mora, or lake of the Moorish Woman for your first walk to the lake, which is heralded as one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in the central Pyrenees
- Eat a hearty picnic lunch here, surrounded by the amazing pre-summits of Cotiella before returning to the farmhouse
- Using produce from the dairy visit, begin your first cookery workshop in our modern, catering-capable kitchen
- Dine in the spacious dining room this evening on some of your creations

Day 3 - Ordesa National Park walk & second cookery course
- After breakfast, head to Ordesa National Park for a walk through the enchanting valley, Valle de Otal, complete with mountain streams, marshy meadows, and a wide variety of flowers followed by a picnic is this beautiful setting
- Look out for the Lammergeier (Bearded Vulture), as well as other beautiful wildlife
- On the way back, stop in Broto to visit a small local family business where they make the regional liquor, Pacharan
- Return to Albella and the farmhouse for refreshments and your second cookery workshop, using your recently acquired Pacharan
- Enjoy an evening meal in the farmhouse dining room
 
Day 4 - Bearded Vultures, stunning views & medieval town of Ainsa
- Breakfast at your leisure, then leave for an area that supports the highest population of Lammergeier (Bearded Vulture) in Europe and walk to view points to see these beautiful biards in their natural habitat
- Lunch is enjoyed at a mountain restaurant where you will eat delicious home-grown produce and cooking; perched on the hillside, you may just catch a glipse of more wildlife during your meal
- In the afternoon, there is a circular walk to see an 11th century chapel in a dramatic setting before stopping at the medieval town of Ainsa as you head home
- Return to Albella for your evening meal and coffee 

Day 5 - Private house tour & tapas cookery course
- Today, stay local in the Albella hamlet with a short walk to the chapel of San Urbez
- Then, visit a private house in the village of Casa Cebollero, which takes you back in time with its traditional Aragonese kitchen complete with a central fire for cooking and intricate stone floors
- Eat lunch
- Return to the farmhouse kitchen for your third cookery workshop on the secrets of Spanish tapas
- Dine on your creations and relax with refreshments before a light dinner
 
Day 6 - Wine region visit & olive oil mill tour
- After your buffet breakfast, leave for Somontano, the closest wine region in Aragon and just over an hour’s drive from the farmhouse
- Somontano, meaning ‘under the mountains’, aptly describes the gorgeous region which sits in the foothills of the central Pyrenees less than 35 miles from France
- Take this opportunity to walk to a breathtaking view point en route to one of the many bodegas
- After a picnic lunch, visit a family-run ecological olive oil business
- Stop at the medieval town of Ainsa, wander the narrow streets, and shop for souvenirs before sampling the local tapas for dinner
 
Day 7 - 4x4 excursion to Ordesa National Park
- Enjoy a leisurely morning at the farmhouse after breakfast
- Eat a delicious homemade lunch before departing for Torla
- Today take a 4x4 excursion to Ordesa National Park for stunning overviews of this wondrous natural landscape
- Marvel at the panoramic views across to Monte Perdido, Brecha de Roland, and the Massif, plus learn a bit of the the valley’s history, the wildlife, and the flowers
- Return to Albella for a light dinner

Day 8 - Departure
- Eat a leisurely breakfast and enjoy a flexible departure time depending on your flight schedule and timing

About your hosts
- Your English-born hosts, Simon and Lucy, moved to Spain 7 years ago and fell in love with the unspoilt corner of the Spanish Pyrenees where they set up their farmhouse
- They refurbished the farmhouse in 2011, and now use it as a base for a wide range of small-group activity holidays
- Both passionate about nature and the outdoors, they love hiking, mountain biking, watching wildlife, and try to pass on these passions along with their expertise in each of their holidays
- Lucy is a scientist and linguist who can give nutrition advice for sport or relaxation, information on geology and local language
- Simon is a creative designer who takes care of all things art, photography, and cookery
- A varied team of talented individuals also assist Simon and Lucy with course specialities from photography to walking to cookery

What will I learn?
- By the end of the week, you will have all of the skills and knowledge necessary to prepare a variety of Spanish dishes, including tapas
- How to properly taste olive oil
- Tasting Spanish wines and finding their unique flavours
- Please note: dishes vary according to the season and what food is available and if you do have dietary requirements, some food replacements may not be readily available in Spain so this must be discussed before booking
- You will leave with a diverse knowledge of the Aragon region of Spain and its history, architecture, and local culture
- Learn about the local wildlife, flora, fauna, and geological past

Where will I be staying?
- Your accommodation in the heart of the rural hamlet of Albella surrounded by the magnificence of the Spanish Pyrenees in the unspoilt valley of the Ara river
- You’ll stay in a renovated 17th-century farmhouse lovingly restored by your hosts, Simon and Lucy
- There are a total of 7 twin/double guest rooms, decorated with antiques and traditional decor 
- If you are travelling solo, stay in a twin/double room for sole occupancy with no single supplement
- Most rooms have private bathrooms with rain showers and heated towel rails
- Extensive grounds with open views
- Free WiFi in the common areas
- Free car parking if you choose to drive
- Small, on-site gym
- Courtyard
- Library and sitting room for guest use
- An on-site restaurant caters all of your meals throughout your stay
- Accommodation is included for 7 nights / 8 days
- Check in anytime after 5pm on day 1 and check out by 11am on day 8
- Please note this accommodation does not have disabled access and is not suitable for those with restricted mobility

Are meals included?
- All meals are prepared by hand in the spacious farmhouse kitchen
- The focus of meals is on well-balanced diets with fresh ingredients from the on-site vegetable patch or local sources
- Breakfast is a nutritious continental buffet with plenty of cereals, fruit, and your host Lucy’s homemade bread.
- Evening meals are three courses with wine and coffee, unless a light dinner is part of the day’s itinerary.
- Picnic lunches are hearty to sustain you throughout the day
- You’ll drink only local wine from the Somontano region of Aragon
- A range of herbal infusions, normal tea, and coffee are available 24/7
- Water comes from the mountain spring and is clean and drinkable
- If you have dietary requests, these must be communicated to us at the time of booking

What can I do in my free time?
- This Spanish cooking and culture holiday is packed with culinary delights and historic and food tours and plenty of breathtaking walks to immerse you in the culture of the local area
- In the evenings, you can choose to explore and of the nearby villages or wander the stunning countryside surrounding the farmhouse property
- Your hosts can give you lots of information on what activities are on offer in the local area as well
- It is recommended to have a car to fully explore the area and you may find you wish to stay on for a few nights to get the most out of your trip!