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Basque country

Cycling holiday to the highlights of the French Basque country

From Biarritz, this cycling holiday takes you along the Basque country coast and through its majestic countryside at the foothills of the Pyrenees. This cross-border region has kept a strong identity and a sense of enjoying life that is contagious on a bike trip there!

Reviews (1) :
5.00 / 5
Reference BPB0801
  • Loop trip
  • 8 days
  • Challenging
  • From April to October
  • Minimum age 14 years old
895€ / pers.
  • Itinerary
  • Our self guided cycling holiday in the Basque country will totally immerse you in a welcoming region, which is particularly attached to its land and proud of its traditions. You cycle on quiet country roads or cycle paths, on an electric bike (for those who want to make it a challenge, feel free to ride on a classic bike). You discover Bayonne with its colourful timbered houses and Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, a stopover on the pilgrimage of Santiago de Compostela. You ride along traditional villages, where you can enjoy the delicious local products such as the famous Espelette pepers. Your cycle itinerary takes you further to the Atlantic coast on the Velodyssey bike route, passing by the coastal town of Saint-Jean-de-Luz or Bidart before going back to Biarritz. This week bike tour will provide you with an all-round experience of the Basque country.

    Day 1

     
     

    Arrival in Biarritz

    Discover Biarritz, the historical capital of surfing in Europe and one of the most famous seaside resorts on the Atlantic coast. Stroll through the town and admire the palace built by Napoleon III for his wife Eugénie, the "Rocher de la Vierge" (Rock of the Virgin), the lighthouse of Biarritz or the "Cité de l’Océan" (a museum complex). This former fishing village, which became a popular holiday resort for European aristocrats in the 19th century, is now a dynamic and welcoming city that will seduce you with its relaxed lifestyle.

    Day 2

     
     

    Biarritz - Cambo-les-Bains

    Altitude
    ±195m
    Bike
    36km
    E-bike (touring bike available)
    On this first riding day, you leave behind the luxury hotels and wonderful houses of Biarritz to follow the coastline and the Adour river towards Bayonne. It is worth a break to admire its nice colourful houses, enter the cathedral and sense the atmosphere of the historic town. Then, you enter the Basque hinterland and cycle along the Nive river banks to the village of Ustaritz.

    You cycle on small country roads to reach the spa town of Cambo-les-Bains. Do not miss to visit the beautiful Villa Arnaga, house of the French writer Edmond Rostand, author of Cyrano de Bergerac.

    Day 3

     
     

    Cambo-les-Bains - Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port

    Altitude
    ±860m
    Bike
    40km
    E-bike (touring bike available)
    You leave Cambo-les-Bains, riding up the first climbs of the Pyrenees foothills. Take the time to admire the magnificent panorama under your wheels. Your bike itinerary continues in the valley where cows and sheeps will keep you company. For gourmets, we recommend a short stop at the Basque museum of pastoralism and cheese. You can see the affinage cellars and taste some cheese !

    Your route will then reach that of the pilgrims of Santiago de Compostela joining Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, the last stop in France before the climb of the Roncesvalles pass and Spain. Let yourself be seduced by the charming character of this town. Discover its medieval streets and its local crafts without missing the Saint-Jacques gate, listed in the UNESCO World Heritage.

    Day 4

     
     

    Hiking around Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port

    Altitude
    ±619m
    7km or 15km (2 to 5-hour walk)
    You have the choice between a resting day to discover Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port or a hike in the beautiful surrounding valley.

    This hike is accessible to all and makes you discover the Arradoy and its AOC Irouléguy terraced vineyards. The gentle ascent offers a breathtaking view over the valley and the Pyrenees. You reach the orientation table and a picnic area, where you can stop before walking down.

    For the bravest, an itinerary leads you to the peak of the Arradoy on small paths before entering a forest of oaks and chestnuts with an enchanting atmosphere!

    Day 5

     
     

    Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port - Itxassou

    Altitude
    ±795m
    Bike
    40km
    E-bike (touring bike available)
    Ride up on little countryside roads and admire the wonderful landscapes of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and the Aldudes valley. Discover the vineyards of Irouléguy (the smallest appellation in France) planted by the monks of Roncesvalles in the 12th century. From small villages and their authentic farms to the Roman village of Saint-Etienne-de-Baïgorry, discover the rich historical and cultural heritage of the region.

    Your itinerary takes you on nice mountain roads surrounded by the soft hills of peaceful pastures where the cow bells are ringing. From Bidarray on, you cycle along the Nivelle river to Itxassou, a typical Basque village where you will probably have the opportunity to watch pelota players on the fronton square.

    Day 6

     
     

    Itxassou - Sare

    Altitude
    ±420m
    Bike
    25km
    E-bike (touring bike available)
    You leave Itxassou to reach the charming village of Espelette, where houses are decorated with dried peppers. On your way, do not hesitate to stop in one of the local farms to buy the finest products. After crossing the Pinodieta pass, you reach Ainhoa ranked among the most beautiful villages of France.

    You are now not so far from the French-Spanish border. Pass the old customs office before cycling on the Spanish roads. You may stop in the beautiful village of Zugarramurdi, well-known for its caves and its "Witches’ museum". You keep on to Sare. You can make a detour of 8km to visit the impressive caves of Sare if you want.

    Day 7

     
     

    Sare - Biarritz

    Altitude
    ±365m
    Bike
    32km
    E-bike (touring bike available)
    You leave Sare and cross the Saint-Ignace pass. Take the "Petit Train de La Rhune’’ and discover the breathtaking views at the summit of La Rhune. This authentic vintage rack railway train dating from 1924 will take you on a 35-minute ride, up to 905 meter high, where you will enjoy one of the loveliest panoramic views on the French and Spanish Atlantic coast and the peaks of the Pyrenees.

    A few pedal strokes further, you reach Saint-Jean-de-Luz and its sumptuous houses built in the neo-Basque style. Your cycle itinerary follows the "Vélodyssée" along the Atlantic coast, its beaches, its cliffs and waves loved by surfers. On your way discover the town of Guéthary, famous for its sumptuous villas. Finally, you come back to Biarritz and enjoy its relaxed atmosphere in the evening.

    Day 8

     
     

    Departure from Biarritz

    After breakfast, take a last stroll in the streets of Biarritz before leaving.
  • Accommodation
  • Category A

    You stay in hotels with **/*** standards offering all the necessary comfort after a day outdoors. These family hotels welcome you warmly. The breakfast is included.
    * Example of the type of accommodation
  • Bikes, luggage and documents
  • Bikes

    On your arrival day, we provide you with:

    • an electric bike adjusted to your size
    • equipped : front rack pack with an integrated file compartment, saddlebag, helmet (on demand), repairing toolkit with patches etc.



    Luggage

    Our services include luggage transport in order to let you enjoy your trip comfortably and without stress :
    • We transport your luggage from one accommodation to the next using a private vehicle.
    • Your luggage is directly delivered in your accommodation before you arrive.
    • We provide a saddlebag for the things you shall need during the day.

    Our word of advice : as we know from experience, we strongly recommend you to avoid wearing a backpack during your cycling trip.

    GPS tracks


    For this trip, we also provide the GPS tracks on demand in the .gpx format at no extra cost.



    Travel documents

    A cycling holiday is the best way to explore a region and discover its culture, landscapes and local traditions.

    Your tour is self-guided to give you the freedom to ride at your own pace. You will be provided all the information you need to enjoy peacefully the itinerary and its interesting sites.
    You will have in your travel documents :
    • a detailed map (A4 format) of the itinerary that we drew at the easiest scale to follow for a bicycle rider
    • a step-by-step description of the itinerary (bound A5 format) giving the direction to follow at each intersection
    • a tourist leaflet containing a brief presentation and useful practical information (opening time, price, contact) about the points of interest along the way

    Example of a map and a step-by-step description

  • Practical information
  • To get to departure point :

    • By plane: flight to Biarritz.
    • By train: Direct TGV (fast trains) from Paris Montparnasse. The duration of the trip is about 4h10. Then, take a bus to reach the city center (20-25min). To plan your trip, www.raileurope.com.


    Parking:

    It is very difficult to park in downtown Biarritz, especially in high season. If you wish, you can park your car in the secure car park at Biarritz SNCF station (~ 4km from the city center). The price is 45€/7days. You must then, take the bus to reach the city center (20-25min).

    Otherwise, you can also park in Anglet (~4km from Biarritz). Parking is usually much easier. Our bike partner has a shop in Anglet, so you can pick up your bikes directly and cycle to Biarritz (30min).


    Meeting time:

    The first day is an arrival day without cycling. You arrive whenever you want depending on from where you come. Please note that rooms are usually available in the middle of the afternoon depending on your accommodation. We thank you to advise us if you plan to arrive late.


  • Reviews
  •   Memory of the trip  

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    1 bike travelers reviews 5.00 / 5

    “ Le Pays Basque à 360° ”

    On the 2017-09-03 by Michel
    Un très beau circuit à découvrir au rythme tranquille du vélo électrique qui aplanit le relief très marqué tout en permettant d'admirer sans fatigue les beaux paysages. Les étapes sont plutôt courtes mais bien calculées. Les vacances, quoi !
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    the trip description
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