September is a fantastic month to visit Spain. Not so hot, not so crowded and when much of the Northern hemisphere is switching on the heating and getting out the boots and sweaters, you are still able to enjoy a day out on the sea or a hike and picnic in the hills.
For some very good reason the powers that be at Vitoria Airport in the Basque Country have decided to put on a couple of direct flights between New York JFK and Vitoria, the capital of the Basque Country in October 2014. Yes, you read right – two flights (not a year round service). So New Yorkers will be able to fly directly to the Basque Country in Northern Spain without having to connect in Madrid or Barcelona. Iberia and American Airlines are the airlines operating these unique and unusual connections. So while Basques get to taste the Big Apple, New Yorkers can sink their teeth into the famous Basque pintxos and wash them down with some wines from the neighbouring Rioja region. What are you waiting for?
Congratulations to charming Vitoria in the Basque Country on being elected Spain’s Gastronomy Capital for 2014! This terrific win comes just a year after being Europe’s Green Capital so this city certainly knows well how to go about making a success of these prestigious awards.
If you’ve ever been to Spain you’ll know just how popular the Spanish omelette or ‘tortilla de patata‘ is. The humble dish of eggs and fried potatoes is an year-long staple in homes, bars and restaurants.
Vitoria is a great destination for a parador weekend break and recently we did just that. We stayed at the Parador at Argomaniz in a tiny village just 14km from the city. It’s a wonderful 17th century renaissance palace – where Napolean lay his head before the assault on Vitoria. It’s always been beautiful but following a two-year renovation project, we heard it was looking better than ever and we were keen to see the new improvements for ourselves.
Are you a Jazz fan? Thinking of visiting Spain? You won’t want to miss these three fantastic jazz festivals in the Basque Country coming up in July!