The history of this region’s wine trade dates all the way back to the 11th Century when most of the wines were being sold as people traveled along the Camino de Santiago. However, after being conquered by Charlemagne and later granted independent status, there was a fair amount of trade between France and Spain. At the time the area was well reputed for its rosados made mostly from Garnacha. From the high (about 1800ft altitude) vineyards of Valdizarbe to the lower (750ft altitude) vineyards of Ribera Baja, there is a huge stylistic variance in red wines. The region extends from the Pyrenees Mountains to the Ebro basin located on the edge of Rioja Baja. In the northern portions of Navarra, the terrain is very mountainous where the Pyrenees act as a protector from the strong Mistral winds of France. Further South, the landscape becomes more pastoral. Unlike Rioja, Navarra has considerable plantings of French varietals such as: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc.