Welcome to Basque Country
No matter where you’ve just come from, be it the hot, southern plains of Spain or gentle and pristine France, the Basque Country is different. Known to Basques as Euskadi or Euskal Herria (‘the land of Basque Speakers’) and called El Pais Vasco in Spanish, this is where mountain peaks reach for the sky and sublime rocky coves are battered by mighty Atlantic swells. It’s a place that demands exploration beyond the... Read More
Top experiences in Basque Country
Basque Country activities
Way of St James Walking Tour from San Sebastián
Meet your guide in the Gros area of San Sebastián and hike your way out of town to reach Ulia Mountain, just east of the seaside town. The mountainside is etched with a centuries-old walking trail that was once a Christian pilgrimage route to the town of Santiago de Compostela, where St James’ remains are said to be buried.Known as the Way of St James or the Pilgrims’ Way, the coastal trail is now as popular for its views as it is for its history, offering incomparable vistas of San Sebastian and the Basque Coast. Made famous from the 2010 American film The Way (featuring Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez), the trails are perfect for scenic hikes with the Lighthouse of La Plata as one of the main landmarks to explore.Follow your guide along the Way of St James’ rocky paths, enjoying stops a plenty to soak up the panoramas. The route heads down the hill and goes at a steady pace, allowing you to focus on the idyllic scenery stretched out before you. Stop in Pasaia San Pedro on the Bay of Pasaia, and learn about local village life and culture, hearing tales of pelota (a Basque boules game) and rowing competitions that take place in the town. Then, board a sightseeing boat across the inlet towards the port side of Santiago Square.Stroll to one of the town’s elegant terrace bars and take a seat to admire the views. Enjoy a pintxo along with a glass of txakoli, the local slightly fizzy, dry white wine. After some well-earned relaxation time, continue walking to Pasaia – a captivating coastal village where the 19th-century French poet Victor Hugo found inspiration. Explore the narrow streets of the town with your guide, and then travel back to San Sebastian by public transportation.Your tour finishes at the start point in Gros, San Sebastián.
San Sebastián Food Tour: Pintxos and Wine
Meet your guide in central San Sebastián, and set off on a stroll around Constitution Square and the city’s Gross neighborhood, hearing about the region’s famous cuisine as you walk. Often cited as Spain’s pivotal food destination, the Basque Country region has a cuisine that reflects its rich layers of history; the early Christians introduced seafood; the Industrial Revolution produced wealth and a demand for French chefs; and the 20th century saw Spanish chefs experimenting with the Basque dishes of old.As the region’s capital, San Sebastián flies the flag for foodies with its cluster of Michelin-starred restaurants and, of course, its ever-popular tapas bars. Serving up pintxos, a Basque variation of tapas, the bars are rammed to the rafters with locals and visitors alike who go to eat and be merry.In between chatting about food, visit three of San Sebastian’s finest pintxos bars to try out their lovingly crafted specialties in each one. Dishes may change on occasion, but typically include a succulent rabbit dish paired with a glass of local txakoli wine and carrillada – stewed pigs’ or cows’ cheeks – with a glass of full-bodied Rioja Alavesa. Try artisan cheese, cider and even seafood delicacies such as txangurro, a spider crab dish. The three bars are different in style, giving you a glimpse of the many types of pintxos bars in town. Learn the difference between a sagardotegi and sociedad gastronomica, and marvel at the creative flair shown in each one.Your tour finishes at the third bar in the center of town, leaving you well placed to continue eating and drinking your way around San Sebastián, if you wish!
Small-Group Pintxos and Wine Tour in San Sebastián
Meet your food-loving local guide in central San Sebastián, before strolling to the lively Parte Vieja Old Town to experience a night on the town in true San Sebastián style. The culinary heart of the city, Parte Vieja is where the most popular — and reportedly the best — pintxos bars are found.While similar to traditional Spanish tapas, pintxos are smaller and are often served on a small piece of bread with a toothpick pierced through the middle. These beautifully prepared, bite-sized morsels are a Basque Country specialty, and best when paired with a refreshing glass of wine or cider.Navigate your way through the bustling streets of the Old Town with your guide. Walking through Parte Vieja in the evening is a real feast for the senses, with bar after bar bursting with hot and cold pintxos and the smell of rich meats and fresh fish rising in the air. Follow your guide as you weave through the crowds to visit six of the most interesting pintxos venues in San Sebastián, from traditional haunts to chic modern Basque bars.Your guide picks a selection of the most exquisitely prepared and delicious pintxos, each paired with a drink of wine or cider, for you and your group to try. From fresh prawns and wild-caught squid to succulent veal and pork tenderloin, Basque food is bursting with delicate flavors that dance on your tongue!Your tour ends in the late evening at the final venue, leaving you perfectly positioned to follow your nose to the next pintxos bar where you can put your newfound pintxos knowledge to the test, if you so wish.
San Sebastián Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour
Known locally as Donotia, San Sebastián is every bit as handsome as its Basque name suggests. With its sunny coastal location, the city has world-class beaches, smart 19th-century architecture and culture by the bucket load. Sightseeing opportunities abound around every twist and turn, and there’s no better way to see the sights than by your hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour!Aboard your open-top, double decker bus, ride around town and see top San Sebastián attractions such as the pretty Bridge of Maria Cristina and Miramar Palace with its regal-looking façade. Pass along downtown streets near Playa de la Concha, San Sebastián’s arc-shaped beach, or perhaps hop off at Alameda del Boulevard for a browse of its shops, restaurants and cafes. A complimentary map is included with your hop-on hop-off tour ticket to help you find your way around town.With your ticket, you can remain on the bus for an entire loop (roughly 1 hour) as you listen to the informative audio commentary, or you can hop on and off at any of the 29 stops around the city to discover San Sebastián’s countless delights.San Sebastián Hop-On Hop-Off Tour Stops: Paseo República Argentina Paseo Salamanca Paseo Nuevo Calle Aldamar Alameda del Boulevard Calle Legazpia Santa Catalina Bridge (Puente de Santa Catalina) Paseo de Francia Bridge of Maria Cristina (Puente de María Cristina) Paseo del Árbol de Guernica Calle Miracruz Avenida Ategorrieta Avenida de Navarra Avenida Zurriola Zurriola Bridge (Puente de Zurriola) Alameda del Boulevard Calle Hernani Calle Andia Miramar Palace (Calle Miramar) Avenida de la Libertad Calle Zubieta Paseo de la Concha Avenida de Satrustegui Plaza del Funicular Calle Pamplona Avenida Zumalacarregui La Concha Bay (Playa de la Concha) Calle de San Martín Paseo de los Fueros
Stories and Legends of the Gothic Quarter Walking
The Gothic Quarter dates back to the Middle Ages, when Gothic architecture was all the rage (hence the name of the neighborhood). It’s filled with streets so tiny that most of it is closed off to traffic. Meet your guide at Plaça Nova to start the walking tour and immediately cross through the city’s ancient city gate of Barcino. Your guide will set the scene, providing historical detail to give a sense of what life was like in medieval Barcelona. Stroll through the old Jewish Quarter, home to most of the city’s Jewish denizens until they were banished from Spain by Queen Isabella at the end of the 15th century. Then continue on to Plaça del Rei , Plaça de l’Àngel, Argenteria Street and Santa María del Mar Church. See the Santa Caterina Market, a great market that is often overlooked because of the popularity of the city’s main market, Boqueria.For the final part of the tour, pop into a restaurant in El Born to sample some pintxos, bite-size snacks that are popular in the Basque Country in northeast Spain (one pintxo included in price). Choose a drink, either a soft drink, a beer or a glass of Txakoli, a slightly effervescent white wine that also hails from the Basque Country. Sit back and raise a glass to medieval Barcelona and the new knowledge you have of the city. The tour concludes at Santa María del Mar Church, leaving you free to continue to explore this remarkable area on your own.
San Sebastian Lunch Time Pintxo Tour with Wine
Pintxos (Basque tapas) line every bar in San Sebastian’s famed Old Town, but knowing where to find the best ones is an art. While it’s hard to have a bad meal in town, knowing exactly where to go for the best, freshest, and most exciting pintxos takes local, insider knowledge. Do a pintxo hop in San Sebastian like a local, led by our friendly and knowledgeable Basque guides.We dive straight into the culinary heart of the city for an eating and drinking experience unlike any you’ve ever experienced. From fresh prawns to line-caught baby squid to perfectly charred steak, the pintxo tasting tour changes every day but always features a range of traditional spots and chic, avant-garde bars. Come thirsty, too, as we’ll be pairing each pintxo with the perfect pour, from cider to local whites and reds.