The Basque Country is a captivating region that combines awe-inspiring natural beauty, a rich cultural heritage, and a distinctive cuisine. It is situated in the north of Spain and the southwest of France.
Basque Country offers a variety of attractions, ranging from its picturesque coastal towns to its verdant green landscapes.
What is Basque Country Famous For?
In addition to being renowned for its maritime traditions, the Basque region is a leader in the production of world-class wines!
Rioja, which is a DOCa (denominación de origen calificada), the highest category of wine regulation in Spain, is one of the most renowned wine regions in northern Spain.
Is Basque Country Expensive to Visit?
Thus, a one-week trip to the Basque Country for two people costs an average of €1,661 ($1,756). These average travel costs have been compiled from the experiences of other travelers to assist you in budgeting for your own trip. A one-week trip to the Basque Country typically costs around €831 per person.
What Kind of Food Do They Eat in the Basque Country?
Other sea delicacies that are always present in the local cuisine include hake, bonito, red bream, spider crab, small cuttlefish, anchovies from Getaria, and the highly coveted eels, which are used to prepare seafood casseroles such as “marmitaco” and “zurrukutuna.”
Best Places to Visit in Basque Country
This article explores the top ten places to visit in this extraordinary region.
1. Donostia (San Sebastian)
San Sebastian, also known as Donostia in Basque, is a coastal gem renowned for its breathtaking beaches, gourmet cuisine, and thriving culture. La Concha Beach is a must-see due to its pristine waters and iconic bay.
Additionally, San Sebastian is renowned for its pintxos, the Basque version of tapas. Explore the historic old town, where you can hop from pintxos bar to pintxos bar and enjoy delectable regional flavors.
2. The City of Bilbao
The Basque Country’s largest city, Bilbao, is a blend of modernity and tradition. The Guggenheim Museum, a futuristic architectural masterpiece, is its crowning achievement.
Explore the Casco Viejo (Old Town), which is comprised of narrow streets, traditional Basque houses, and a variety of pintxos bars, in addition to art. The iconic Arriaga Theater and a stroll along the Nervion River are not to be missed.
3. The city of Vitoria-Gasteiz
The medieval old town of Vitoria-Gasteiz, the capital of the Basque Country, offers a tranquil retreat. Stroll its charming streets, visit the imposing Santa Maria Cathedral, and unwind in one of the city’s many parks and green spaces.
The city’s dedication to environmental preservation has earned it the title of European Green Capital.
4. Biarritz, France
Biarritz, a French coastal town with a distinct Basque character, is just a short drive from the Basque Country. Biarritz is a fantastic destination for beach lovers due to its world-class surfing, gorgeous beaches, and luxurious resorts.
Explore the historic neighborhoods, savor the fresh seafood, and absorb the coastal atmosphere.
5. Henriquez de Hondarribia
Hondarribia is known for its well-preserved medieval old town, which includes cobblestone streets, colorful buildings, and a fortress overlooking the bay.
Numerous restaurants in the city serve delectable Basque dishes, contributing to the exceptional quality of the cuisine.
6. The Zarautz
Zarautz is a laid-back beach town with one of the country’s longest beaches. It is a surfer’s paradise and offers beachgoers a relaxed atmosphere.
Stroll along the promenade, enjoy the sun and surf, and dine on fresh seafood at local restaurants.
7. The Getaria
Getaria is a picturesque fishing village renowned for its culinary heritage and the birthplace of the first person to circumnavigate the globe, Juan Sebastián Elcano.
Explore the town’s narrow streets, go to the Balenciaga Museum, and dine at one of its outstanding seafood restaurants.
8. The Gernika-Lumo Group
Gernika-Lumo occupies a unique position in Basque history and culture. Casa de Juntas (Assembly House) was the location where Biscay’s General Assemblies were held for centuries.
It is also where Picasso painted his famous painting “Guernica.” At the Peace Museum, you can learn about the region’s history and the Basque culture.
9. Reserve de la Biosphère Urdaibai
The Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve is a natural marvel comprised of verdant forests, wetland habitats, and breathtaking coastal landscapes.
It is a paradise for birdwatchers, hikers, and nature lovers. Explore the various trails, visit the quaint village of Mundaka, and appreciate the natural beauty of the region.
10. Saint John of Gaztelugatz
The magical island of San Juan de Gaztelugatxe is connected to the mainland by a stone bridge and 241 steps.
The island’s chapel offers breathtaking views of the rugged coastline and the Bay of Biscay. This location is rich in history, legends, and breathtaking scenery.
The Basque Country is a captivating destination due to its unique combination of culture, history, and natural beauty. Every corner of this region has something unique to offer, whether you’re exploring the lively streets of San Sebastian or savoring pintxos in Bilbao.
From the verdant landscapes of the Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve to the historical significance of Gernika-Lumo, the Basque Country promises an unforgettable journey through Spain’s northern jewels.