Our trip to the Basque Country in Spain was definitely one of the most memorable trips we’ve had. We got to make new friends, eat lots of different and amazing foods to our heart’s contents and become a lot more open to travel.

In the past, I’d  (like everyone else I suppose) been particularly keen on visiting places I’d known about for ages and when we visited the Basque country, this was one of the first time I’d been to a place I didn’t know much about and effectively had to wing things as we went along.

It was incredible! Suddenly, this whole new series of options for travel planning and travel destinations opened up and to be honest, it’s very liberating.

Since then, we’ve been so much more open to visiting places we’ve never been to before and travelling without having a real idea of what sights we’d like to see when we visit.

Personal development aside, there’s also the whole thing about how beautiful the Spanish Basque Country is.

The landscape is quite dramatic and unlike anywhere else in Spain we’d ever been in before and the pace of life here is amazing.

Everything is all centred around family and friends and even in bigger cities, there are still so many close-knit communities.

A 4-Day Travel Plan For Exploring The Basque Country In Spain

To that end, we’ve put together an itinerary to help you explore the Spanish Basque Country and soak in all of its brilliance in just 4 days.

Day One

1.) Arrive in Bilbao

Arriving at Bilbao Airport and pick up your rented car. You can use public transport but if you can rent a car, for your own flexibility, it’s probably best to do this to get around the more rural parts of the Basque Country. 

2.) Drive to Arantzazu

Drive to Arantzazu in Oñati (city) and stop for typical Basque food at Sindika restaurant (you’re really here for the view though).

Sanctuary of Arantzazu Gipuzkoa Basque Country Spain

3.) See the Sanctuary of Arantzazu

Go on a guided tour of the Sanctuary of Arantzazu in Oñati which is an old Franciscan monastery and of huge importance to the wider region.

Mountains High, Valley Low and STEAKS! A First Day in Gipuzkoa! (12)

4.) Visit the Arrikrutz caves

Visit Arrikrutz caves in Oñati (not too far from the Sanctuary).

The caves have such an amazing history behind them and is home to several extinct prehistoric animals including cave lions!

Mountains High, Valley Low and STEAKS! A First Day in Gipuzkoa! (21)

5.) Check into your hotel

We stayed in the Hotel Torre Zumeltzegi which was the home to the old Count who ran the town and has now been converted to a hotel by the family who have owned it for several generations.

Mountains High, Valley Low and STEAKS! A First Day in Gipuzkoa! (32)

6.) Go for an evening tipple

Pop-out for evening drinks and a mini walk around the village. No one has dinner in the Basque Country early!

Mountains High, Valley Low and STEAKS! A First Day in Gipuzkoa! (28)

7.) Time for sleep

After drinks, get yourself some dinner and then get back to the hotel for a good night’ sleep!

Mountains High, Valley Low and STEAKS! A First Day in Gipuzkoa! (50)

Day Two

1.) Gorge at breakfast 

Breakfast at Hotel Torre Zumeltzegi (it’s included so…)

2.) Explore Pasaia

Head over to the city of Pasaia where you can learn all about Basque cuisine in Ziaboga restaurant. Don’t worry, you can get as involved (or as un-involved as you like) – all before you tuck into all the food you’ve been talking about all morning. 🙂 (Do try the monkfish when you’re here – it’s so good!)

Visiting Restaurant Ziaboga, Pasaia, Gipuzkoa, San Marco's Fort and Oiartzun Pasteria (4)

Cobbled Streets, Alley Ways And Seafood... Fish, Monkfish, Hake, Restaurant Ziaboga, Basque Country, Pasaia, Spain (20) Cobbled Streets, Alley Ways And Seafood... Fish, Monkfish, Hake, Restaurant Ziaboga, Basque Country, Pasaia, Spain (9)

3.) Visit the Basque Maritime Heritage Foundation

Take a boat ride from the restaurant to the Albaola foundation (Basque Maritime Heritage Foundation) where you’ll get a fascinating insight into Basque culture!

(You don’t have to spend too long here but you’ve gotta do it for the boat ride and the chance to stretch out in the sun while your food digests).

A Dusky Evening In The Spanish Basque Country (26)

4.) See San Marko’s Fort

Drive to San Marko’s Fort in Errenteria and take a guided visit of this fortress.

Oh, and stop for drinks afterwards (there’s a bar here so why not!)

A Dusky Evening In The Spanish Basque Country (47)

5.) Stay in Hondarribia

Head over to Rural Hotel Higeralde in Hondarribia.

You’ll be exploring Hondarribia the next day and the owner cooks up one mean feast! Also, expect to be dining till late accompanied alongside lots of Spanish wine.

Hotel Higeralde, Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, Travel, Bed and Breakfast, Accomodation (22)

This hotel is actually the owner’s home in his farmhouse (it’s quite big; there were several other guests there when we visited) and it’s another amazing way to immerse yourself in Basque country life.

Hotel Higeralde, Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, Travel, Bed and Breakfast, Accomodation (26)

It’s like being a guest at a family dinner; definitely worth experiencing.

Hotel Higeralde, Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, Travel, Bed and Breakfast, Accomodation (25)

Day Three

1.) Gorge at breakfast

Have breakfast at the Rural Hotel Higeralde.

Hotel Higeralde, Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, Travel, Bed and Breakfast, Accomodation (6)

2.) Explore Hondarribia

Head down to the centre of Hondarribia town where you should take a tour of the historical route around the town to the old castle (13th century).

Photo Diary: Hondarribia - The Beautiful Seaside Town In The Basque Country (6)

3.) Visit San Sebastian

Head over to San Sebastian where you’ll check into the Hotel Londres and subsequently spend far too much time taking photos from your hotel room of the city and the beach.

The Most Beautiful City in Spain. San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa, Spain, Hotel Londres (15)

4.) Explore the city itself

Once you remember that you can actually leave the hotel to see more of San Sebastian, head on our and go explore the sights of the city at your very own pace.

The Most Beautiful City in Spain. San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa, Spain, Hotel Londres (17)

So Here's The Thing About San Sebastian... (31)So Here's The Thing About San Sebastian... (3)

5.) Gorge on pintxos

Chances are that all this walking has your tummy rumbling so settle your hunger pangs by venturing into the pintxo area.

Pintxos are little portions of food – akin to tapas, so the plan here is to hop from one place to the other, trying out pintxos and having as much Spanish wine/beer as you can handle.

Pintxos are a must-do in the Spanish Basque country;, especially on Sundays.

Pintxos!!! What Are They? (31)

6.) See the Igeldo Mountain

Visiting Igeldo mountain and enjoy Igeldo amusement park in San Sebastian.

7.) Dinner in the city 

Head back down to the city for dinner after which, it’s back to the Hotel Londres for bedtime! (Unless you wanna boogie – in which case, do your thing!).

Day Four

1.) Gorge at breakfast

Breakfast at hotel Londres in San Sebastian.

The Most Beautiful City in Spain. San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa, Spain, Hotel Londres (22)

The Most Beautiful City in Spain. San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa, Spain, Hotel Londres (40)

The Most Beautiful City in Spain. San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa, Spain, Hotel Londres (43)

2.) Head on a walking tour

Visit the city of Oñati properly and take a walking tour.

4.) Go for lunch in the town’s little foodie spots

Have lunch in Oñati and stop at the place that serves the seafood you like most. 

5.) Time to say goodbye 

Leave for the airport/train station/bus stop

Read more: Best things to do in Spain

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