What to see in Basque Country

Basque Country Attractions

Visitors will be delighted by the many attractions of Basque Country, which has a unique and well-preserved culture that fascinates outsiders. Although the capital, Bayonne, and the glamorous Biarritz resort are full of creature comforts and attract many tourists, the majority of things to see and do in Basque Country revolve around the natural splendour of the region. The mountains and coastal scenery are spectacular and it is a particularly good area for walking trips.

Bayonne is a well-preserved cathedral city with traditional narrow cobbled streets and half-timbered houses. Be sure to visit the magnificent 13th-century Cathedrale Ste-Marie and the Basque Museum, which gives great insight into the region's history and culture and is a truly interesting local museum. Biarritz, a beloved holiday destination of the aristocracy for centuries, adjoins Bayonne and is still spectacular, offering lovely beaches and the best surfing in France.

The great Roman Catholic pilgrimage town of Lourdes, situated in the dramatic Hautes-Pyranees, also still draws thousands of visitors. Although the grotto, with its miraculous healing waters, is the main attraction, this beautiful village also offers some good historical sightseeing. The Fortified Castle is extremely worthwhile and there are a number of wonderful old churches in the area, as one might expect.

There are many charming villages in Basque Country, particularly in the Pyrenees mountains of the Bearn region, and one of the best bases from which to explore them, and the breathtaking scenery, is the small city of Pau.


The popular holiday destination of Bayonne is the capital of Basque country, and a beautifully preserved cathedral city.…

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Not strictly Basque country, but part of the nearby Bigorre region, the town of Lourdes is situated in the Hautes-Pyrénées…

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The popular holiday destination of Pau is situated 50 miles (80km) inland, high above the Gave de Pau River, and is a…

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The Pyrenees

The wild mountains of the Pyrénées stretch for 250 miles (402km) from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean…

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