French Basque Country attractions

Top Choice Area in St-Jean Pied de Port

Walled Town

Though modern St-Jean has expanded considerably, during medieval times the entire town was enclosed by defensive ramparts guarding France's southwestern corner against incursions from across the Spanish border. The …
Top Choice Church in St-Jean de Luz

Église St-Jean Baptiste

The plain façade of France’s largest and finest Basque church conceals a splendid interior with a magnificent Baroque altarpiece. It was in front of this very altarpiece that Louis XIV and María Teresa, daughter of …
Top Choice Cathedral in Bayonne

Cathédrale Ste-Marie

The twin towers of Bayonne's Gothic cathedral soar above the city. Construction began in the 13th century, and was completed in 1451. Above the north aisle are three lovely stained-glass windows; the oldest, in the …
Top Choice Museum in Bayonne

Musée Basque et de l'Histoire de Bayonne

If you're still getting to grips with the complex culture and history of the Basque region, this excellent ethnographic museum is a great place to start. It's crammed with artefacts, from traditional costumes, artwo…
Workshop in Larressore

L'Atelier Anciart Bergara

At this workshop in the village of Larressore, around 6km north of Espelette, craftspeople make the traditional wooden walking sticks known as makhila, which have been carried by shepherds, farmers and hillspeople i…
Cave in French Basque Country

Grottes de Sare

Who knows what the first inhabitants of the Grottes de Sare, some 20,000 years ago, would make of today's whiz-bang technology that now lights up the Stygian gloom in these stunning subterranean caves? Multilingual …
Beach in Biarritz

Grande Plage

Grand by name, grand by nature, Biarritz’ vast main beach has been the place at which to be seen since the days of Napoléon II and Eugénie. It's wall to wall with bodies on summer days, and dramatically deserted in …
Museum in Bayonne

Musée Bonnat-Helleu

Bayonne's venerable fine-arts museum is undergoing an extensive expansion, which will give it more spacious, modern galleries – veritably doubling its size. It is slated to reopen in mid- to late 2019.
Fortress in St-Jean Pied de Port

La Citadelle

From the top of rue de la Citadelle, a rough cobblestone path ascends to the massive citadel itself, from where there's a spectacular panorama of the town and the surrounding hills. Constructed in 1628, the fort was…
Museum in Biarritz

Cité de l'Océan

Biarritz' splashiest sea-themed attraction is part museum, part theme park and part educational centre. It takes a fun approach to learning about the sea in all its forms – attractions range from a chance to explore…