The Basque Country, located in the northeastern part of Spain, is a region known for its breathtaking landscapes, rich culture, and delicious cuisine. One of the best ways to truly experience the beauty of this region is by taking a walking tour. Whether you are a nature lover, a history enthusiast, or simply looking for an adventure, walking tours in Basque Country offer something for everyone. In this guide, we will explore some of the top walking tours available, highlighting the key attractions and providing helpful tips for an unforgettable experience.
The Camino del Norte, also known as the Northern Way, is a popular walking route that stretches along the northern coast of Spain. Starting in the Basque Country city of Irun, this scenic trail offers breathtaking views of the coastline and takes you through charming fishing villages, stunning beaches, and lush green landscapes. The Camino del Norte is known for its natural beauty and is a great choice for those seeking a moderate to challenging walking tour.
Along the way, you will have the opportunity to explore historic towns such as San Sebastian and Bilbao, famous for their architecture, museums, and delicious Basque cuisine. Make sure to try the local pintxos, small bite-sized snacks similar to tapas, which are a culinary delight in this region. The Camino del Norte typically takes around 30 days to complete, but you can choose to walk smaller sections if you have limited time.
The Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve, located in the heart of the Basque Country, is a UNESCO-recognized area known for its outstanding natural beauty and biodiversity. This walking tour allows you to explore the diverse landscapes of the region, including marshes, cliffs, beaches, and forests. The reserve is home to numerous species of birds, making it a paradise for birdwatchers.
During the tour, you can visit charming coastal towns like Mundaka, famous for its world-class surfing waves, and admire the iconic San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, an islet with a stunning hermitage perched on top. The Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve offers a variety of walking trails suitable for different fitness levels, ranging from short leisurely strolls to more challenging hikes that reward you with breathtaking panoramic views.
For those interested in urban walking tours, Vitoria-Gasteiz, the capital city of the Basque Country, offers a delightful experience. This green and bike-friendly city is perfect for exploring on foot, with its well-preserved medieval old town, parks, and vibrant plazas. The city tour takes you through cobblestone streets, where you can admire architectural gems like the Gothic Cathedral of Santa Maria and the neoclassical Virgen Blanca Square.
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Basque Museum-Center of Contemporary Art, which presents the region’s history and contemporary art scene. The city’s gastronomy is also a highlight, so make sure to indulge in traditional Basque dishes such as pintxos, Idiazabal cheese, and txakoli wine.
A walking tour of Basque Country is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the region’s natural beauty, culture, and history. Whether you choose to embark on a long-distance pilgrimage like the Camino del Norte, explore the Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve, or discover the charm of Vitoria-Gasteiz, each walking tour offers a unique and rewarding experience. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes, dress in layers, and bring a camera to capture the breathtaking landscapes you’ll encounter. So, lace up your shoes and get ready for an unforgettable adventure in the Basque Country!
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