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Basque country of Spain and France
This tour takes in both the French and Spanish Basque regions, following the rugged Atlantic coastline from Bayonne and Saint-Jean-de-Luz over the border to San Sebastian, and inland to the elegant city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, exuberant Pamplona and the modern city of Bilbao, home of the futuristic Museo Guggenheim, which you will visit. Wherever you are, city or beach, green mountain slopes are always on the horizon, a constant reminder of the rugged, unspoilt charm of the region.
- Return Eurostar/TGV from St Pancras to Hendaye via Paris with coach transfer in Paris
- Seven nights accommodation on bed and breakfast basis at the three star Zarauz hotel, Zarautz, based on shared occupancy of a twin room
- Dinner (set menu) at hotel on first evening with wine
- Return transfers from Hendaye to Zarautz and full coach touring programme as detailed in the itinerary conducted by a tour manager
- Tour manager throughout
- Single room supplement
- Holiday insurance
- Standard Premier/First class upgrade on Eurostar/TGV. On the Eurostar this constitutes upgraded seating and light meal with complimentary drink with upgraded seating only on the French railway leg
- Meals other than those stated
- Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls
- Porterage and gratuities
Travel by Eurostar from St Pancras to Paris and onwards to Hendaye by TGV. On arrival, transfer by coach to Zarautz (approx. 40 mins) and the Zarauz hotel. Dinner at the hotel restaurant is included tonight.
Full day tour to San Sebastián. A picturesque resort city, San Sebastián sits on the calm La Concha bay backed by low, rolling hills. The city is best known for its beaches but it is so much more, with a lively atmosphere that fills the streets all day and well into the night. The Parte Vieja (old town) nestles at the foot of the green Monte Urgull, whilst Centro, the shopping and commercial district has some lovely 19th century architecture.
Full day tour to Biarritz, Bayonne and Saint- Jean-de-Luz. Biarritz is a coastal town, a playground of the French glitterati. Today the resort is a haven for surfers, its seafront lined with grand old buildings, including the 1930s Casino Municipal. Being the capital of France’s Pays Basque, Bayonne has a palpable Basque flavour. This attractive small city is best explored with a stroll through the narrow streets of the old town where you’ll find half-timbered houses painted in traditional Basque colours. Visit the excellent Musée Basque to delve deeper into the culture. Saint-Jean-de-Luz, with its sheltered and sandy beaches and magnificent old town complete with half-timbered mansions, is one of the most popular and attractive resorts on France’s Atlantic coast.
Full day to relax and explore Zarautz at your leisure. The coastal town of Zarautz is a popular seaside resort with a long swathe of sandy beach. A luxury resort in the late 19th and early 20th century, a number of mansions sprung up along the seafront, which you’ll find as public buildings today. There are also a couple of museums to explore, the Photomuseum and the Art and History museum of Zarautz.
Full day tour to Pamplona and el Valle del Bidasoa. Best known for its legendary festival of Sanfermines, Pamplona is a wealthy and self-possessed city. Built as a fortress to protect routes into Spain from the Pyrenees before becoming the capital of the fiercely independent state of Navarra the compact Casco Antiguo (old town) is filled with stone lanes leading to churches and a citadel. El Valle del Bidasoa is a lovely lush area of fern, grass and woods scattered with traditional farmhouses.
Full day tour to Vitoria-Gasteiz and Oñati. A flourishing medieval wool and iron trade created the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, filling it with Renaissance palaces, churches and grey-gold stone mansions. The medieval core of the city is arranged over a small hill and is a place to wander and discover plazas, palacios and Basque restaurants. The name Oñati perfectly describes the setting of this lovely town, translating as ‘place of many hills’. Oñati has an abundance of medieval architecture, including the ancient university buildings.
Full day tour to Bilbao. A modern and prosperous city, Bilbao nestles in a narrow valley, the surrounding mountain slopes peeking through the high rise buildings of the city centre. The arrival of the Museo Guggenheim (entrance included) in 1997 transformed the city into a tourist hotspot and although not as pretty as its near neighbours there is plenty to do here – the Casco Viejo is a charming place to explore.
Transfer back to Hendaye station to catch the return TGV to Paris. At Paris, board the return Eurostar service to St Pancras.
NB: Exact order of itinerary may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion.
Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 49 passengers.
The threestar Zarauz hotel is a traditional hotel dating from 1945 housed in a character villa close to the seafront. Facilities at the hotel include restaurant, bar, lounge and comfortable bedrooms with private bath/shower, TV, telephone and hairdryer.
This holiday is booked by phone. Click 'book now' to make a reservation request to our travel partner who will call you back to confirm your booking details and take payment. To speak to a representative now please call 0330 333 6761.
Very interesting tour giving an insight of the region and a chance to see several different places. It was the first time our guide had taken that tour but she had information from the previous guide to pass on regarding local restaurants, local buses, trains etc. for our free day.