"For an outstanding cultural experience in southern Spain, we highly recommend contacting Carlos from Explore la Tierra located in Vejer de la Frontera. My wife and I visited the Andalucian Region of Spain (October 2019) and wanted to enlist a local guide to develop a customised tour for us to experience a more thorough appreciation of all that the Andalucian Region has to offer. His knowledge of the Andalucian Region, in terms of its history and the products it produces, is only surpassed by his passion for the area. Carlos is bilingual (English & Spanish) which was a huge asset as I think it enriched our experience with the locals. Carlos is enthusiastic for visitors to experience the gastronomy of Andalucia and was a real asset explaining flavours we could expect from a variety of dishes and assisted to make great selections. Being certified through the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), Carlos was able to further enrich mealtimes with recommendations for flavourful wines or Sherries to accompany the local Spanish cuisines. We cannot emphasize enough what an asset it was to use his services during our visit.
Our customised tour included a White Villages tour, a Sherry and Tapas tour in Vejer de la Frontera, a very fun afternoon tasting creative beef tapas at the Retinto Festival in Zahara de los Atunes, a historical visit to the Roman ruins of Baelo Claudia in Bolonia, an informative and flavourful Sherry (D.O.) Bodega tour in the Sherry triangle, and a visit to an Iberian ham (D.O.) producer in Huelva Province which included seeing the hogs in the fields, a tour of the curing process, and tasting of the delicious ham..."
"Carlos is the perfect local guide! He is from the local area, well-versed in the local history. He is passionate about Spain and the local food/wine/sherry/culture. It was a joy to spend the day with him at Bolonia (Roman ruins on the southwestern coast of Spain) and we had a fabulous, long and amazing lunch at Otero right next to the ruins. The clams in garlic/olive oil/parsley were to die for!! And the fried sea anemones were the best I have ever had. Carlos is an amazing chef and is a wealth of knowledge for the local cuisine and local ingredients. I keep falling in love with Southern Spain more every time I am here. You will not be disappointed. Carlos is the best!!"
"Carlos is a great guide of the local area and loves to show it off to visitors. Being bilingual means Carlos is able to fully immerse you in the local culture, helping you to understand local customs, menus, or strike up a conversation with other locals. This part of Spain is beautiful and as with all of Spain, the food is great! I would definitely recommend traveling to see Carlos and this part of Spain!"
"Es war ein tolles Erlebnis fur uns. Wir haben superleckere Tapas in 4 verschiedenen Restaurants/Bars gehabt, verschiedene Sherrysorten probiert und haben nebenbei noch viel uber Vejer und die Region erfahren. John Carlos hat das sehr gut gemacht. Auch die An- und Abfahrt mit dem Taxi (von Conil) hat er noch organisiert. Wir empfanden diesen Abend als einen Hohepunkt unseres Urlaubs und konnen diese Tour nur weiterempfehlen. John Carlos spricht sehr gutes und gut verstandliches Englisch."
"Coming from Australia and England, the three of us had very little knowledge of sherry. Carlos opened our eyes and palates to the world of sherry and to the surprising taste sensations when good sherry is married with great food. Carlos is engaging and knowledgeable and the bars he took us to were varied but equally charming and characterful. My husband was more interested in the white wines of Spain so while two of our party enjoyed the sherry, my husband was served white wines of the same grape varieties our sherries were made of. We really had a great time and would highly recommend the Sherry and a Tapas tour."
To celebrate a special occasion, I organized a tour with Explore la Tierra to celebrate Father's Day for my family and two other families. We were a big group! We totaled 6 adults and 9 children - ranging in ages from 4 to 17. My family just moved to Spain less than a year ago, and we have been eager to learn all about the history and culinary delights of this gorgeous country. Sadly, our ability to explore was not a possibility during Spain's State of Alarm. Once we were given the green light to start exploring, we jumped at the opportunity! This is when I contacted Carlos from Explore la Tierra and started to organize a multi-family one day adventure. From the moment I contacted Carlos, I knew he was someone special! He was kind, enthusiastic, extremely responsive, attentive, and organized. He was excited to work with us since we were his first clients after the State of Alarm. Carlos made planning the tour easy-breezy! He is a fluent English speaker, so communicating was never an issue. He is also a wonderful translator, and his knowledge of Spanish history, cuisine, and agriculture is quite impressive. Carlos organized a beautiful day for us! We started out at the Sancha Perez Bodega, where we met Ramon, the owner of an organic olive farm and vineyard. At Sancha Perez, Ramon shared his beautiful farm with our families. We learned how his ecological farming practices help conserve Earth's precious resources. The many kids in our group loved walking through the "olive tree museum" and the fruit orchard, where a wide variety of yummy fruits are sun-ripened and waiting to be picked. The kids were so excited to eat right off the trees! Then we went inside the bodega to learn how Ramon makes aceite olivia (olive oil) and vino (wine) from the fruits of his labors. I loved the oak barrel room for the reserve wines. To end this memorable experience, Ramon served us a delicious snack that included his wines and olive oil. It was so lovely to sit under a shaded canopy with an amazing view of the vineyards, olive trees, sunflowers, and the ocean. While the adults enjoyed sitting and relaxing, the kids ran freely through the orchards playing and laughing. Now, you might think we ended the day here, but we didn't. From Sancha Perez, we followed Carlos to Vejer for a walking tour of the famous white city. Vejer is stunning! We didn't have time to fully explore the town because we had lunch reservations at La Patria, which is a fabulous restaurant! We will definitely go back to Vejer to explore and learn more about its unique place in Spain's history. We ended our adventure with Explore la Tierra at this point. It was a wonderful day with good friends, happy kids, and a great tour guide. Just before I end my review, I want to say that Carlos and Ramon took precautions against Coronavirus by wearing a mask, and they asked that we do the same. Wearing a mask and being vigilant in this era, doesn't detract from the experience and ability to explore Europe. It is still possible to tour in the time of Coronavirus!
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