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Basque Country Trekking (The Camino del Norte)

Namaste Nomad / Basque Country Trekking (The Camino del Norte)

Basque Country Trekking (The Camino del Norte)

€1200 per person

Join Our fixed Departure

Start Date End Date Price Space Availability
07 September, 2018 14 September, 2018 €999 8
30 May, 2019 09 June, 2019 €950 12

The beautiful Basque Country is blessed with stunning landscapes. The region’s nature reserves, hills and mountains attract hikers, walker, pilgrimage, rock climbers, cyclists and adventure sport enthusiasts. Culture and history, Gothic cathedrals and myriad of museums which abound in Bilbao and the capital city of Vitoria-Gestaiz. The coastline is untainted by mass tourism and the region has a rich cultural heritage which sets the place apart from the rest of Spain and Europe. The Basques have often been described as a mysterious people: Where did they come from? What’s the source of their language? How did they survive as a people despite waves of invasion of Celts, Romans and Christian settlers? These hilly and coastal lands have been farmed, havens for shepherds and exploited for their mineral wealth for centuries and centuries by the Basque peoples who share a common language – Euskera. Euskera is a pre-Indoeuropean language and believed to have been in use since the pre-Roman era. The Basque Country (called Pais Vasco in Spanish) consists of the three Basque provinces of Guipuzcoa, Biscay and Alava which together form one of Spain 17 autonomous regions. Although rocky with high cliffs, the country’s coast has many inlets harboring small fishing villages and beautiful beaches.

The region has a maritime climate with moderate temperatures and wet weather all year round. These conditions have been essential in keeping the Basque Country one of the greenest regions in the map of Spain, on our tour we will explore the roots of Basque history and the legacy of 19th C unbridled nationalism, born in the industrial age, on contemporary society .

  • Experience the unique Basque heritage with visits to pilgrimage sites and local bodegas
  • Hikes include forested trails that lead to monasteries and ridge walks past ancient stone monuments
  • Our goal is to show you the Basque Culture from the inside and help you participate in Basque daily life, being part of it. Feel free to ask our guide or friend Alex about any aspect of the culture you would like to participate in!
  • Destination
  • Departure
    Bilbao
  • Included
    Basque Country Trekking (The Camino del Norte)
1
Day 1: Arrive in Bilbao
And transfer to San Sebastian( 1:30min Drive) check in to your hotel and rest for hour or 2, today we just had long journey. Tour briefing with first taste of wine and Basque dining. ( Dinner is not include in the price.)
2
Day 2: San Sebastian
It’s impossible to lay eyes on stunning San Sebastián (Basque: Donostia) and not fall madly in love. This city is cool and happening by night, charming and well mannered by day. It's a city filled with people that love to indulge – and with Michelin stars apparently falling from the heavens onto its restaurants, not to mention pintxo (tapas) culture almost unmatched anywhere else in Spain, San Sebastián frequently tops lists of the world's best places to eat. Enjoy a delicious meal in one of the many restaurants to stock up on calories for your walk ahead. It’s a day for preparation for our walks with city tour, There is many different tours you can do for day such like wine and dine tour, city tours, City bike tour. We suggest and organize 3 hours tours which cost 20 Euro each those who interested, Just put on your walking shoes and meet your local guide at the Kiosko of Alameda del Boulevard at 11am for morning departures. During this 3-hour walking tour, visit 15 significant sites in San Sebastian's romantic Old Town area, learning about the people and culture of this Basque city as you go. Finish your experience with a pintxo (a traditional Basque snack) and drink at one of the many bars in San Sebastian's Old Town. Overnight: San Sebastian
3
Day 3: San Sebastian to Getaria
Now its time to put proper boots on.. Leaving San Sebastian, head out along the coast to the well-preserved port town of Orio, and shipping town of Zarautz. Visit Torre Luzea, a 15th-century Gothic building. Next you have the choice of a higher inland route or a lower coastal option before reaching Getaria, a pretty harbour town. Walk: 20km, 6hrs Overnight Hotel: Getaria
4
Day 4: Getaria to Deba
From Getaria, the high and low routes re-join and return to the beach at Zumaia. A bit of ascent and descent brings you to Deba, where you can enjoy the beach. Walk: 16km, 4-5hrs Overnight: Deba
5
Day 5: Deba to Markina
The route heads inland from Deba, climbing over the mountains. Contrasting scenery to the previous days includes heavily forested hills. While it is also one of the most picturesque stages of Camino del Norte it is also a more difficult one. Walk: 20km, 5-6hrs Overnight: Markina
6
Day 6: Markina to Gernika
Follow a small creek towards the village of Bolibar and the medieval monastery of Zenarruza. Some nice quiet walking through woodland to enjoy before arriving in Gernika. Gernika is famous for Picasso’s masterpiece named after this town and inspired by Picasso’s disgust at the horrific bombing of Guernica in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. Walk: 23km, 6hrs Overnight: Gernika
7
Day 7: Gernika to Lezama
A short day today gives you more time to enjoy Bilbao tomorrow. Follow pleasant forest trails and small country roads for most of the way to Lezama—a small village just over the mountain from Bilbao. We can finish our Hike here for giving enough time for yourself to enjoy the ancient city of Bilbao.But next day is only 12 Km walk we can start early to finish early and rest in Bilbao. Walk: 21km, 5hrs Overnight: Estella
8
Day 8: Lezama to Bilbao
Walk through farmland to Zamudia, before a climb to the top of Monte Avril, a park offering excellent views of Bilbao. From here continue downhill to Bilbao. There is plenty to see in Bilbao including the famed Guggenheim Museum, made from titanium, glass and limestone. Other highlights include the Gothic Basilica of Begona and the cathedral. The city of Bilbao is the largest urban area and the most important industrial and commercial center in Basque Country. Bilbao has an attractive historic center with a Gothic cathedral and many other historical buildings. There are plenty of shops and bars in the area.The biggest attraction of Bilbao is the Guggenheim Museum. Built in 1997, this astonishing building was designed by the American architect Frank O. Gehry, and is one of the 20th century’s greatest symbols of modern architecture. Its our last night we can go out and experience the night life and shopping. Walk: 12km, 3-hrs Overnight: Bilbao
9
Day 9: Onward Travel to home
Unless you are spending more time in Spain, enjoy breakfast and we will drop you to Airport until next time.

PRICE INCLUDES

Guides: Our greatest resource!. All our guides are Basque and Himalayan guide, our friend Eder live in Basque year round and she have good knowledge of her own country well, - no hired-out college grads! When specified, we will hire few different guides for short city tour in Bilbao and san Sebastian to give you extra test of history, it will be extra cost of 20 Euro.

Limited Group Sizes: We prefer small groups to ensure that you receive the individual attention that you deserve. In order to treat each of our clients with a personal touch, we limit our group size to a maximum of 12 participants.

Accommodations :Namaste Nomad selects a combination of 2-3 star hotels,Guest house, restored country manors and family run B&B's that offer the best in hospitality, comfort and location. All rooms have their own bathrooms. Tour prices are based on double occupancy. ( single supplement 350 Euro for 9 days)

Special Event Tickets: Wine tastings, garden tours, concerts, will be extra cost as well but we will provide the tour arrangements.

PRICE EXCLUDES

Airfare to and from Spain, airport taxes / departure fees, visas, or items of personal nature - laundry, phone, luggage surplus charges, medical expenses, bar, tips, and extra transport or pick up from middle of the tour etc.)

Should your vacation to Spain be for more than a few days prior to or after your nomad tour, perhaps you would be interested in a Spain-taineous Custom Tour and personalized private itinerary. Let us know and we'll create an itinerary especially in tune with your needs and desires.

AVAILABILITY

This trip is available to start on any day from the beginning of March to the end of October. Also check our group departure dates above. The Camino del Norte is best enjoyed from March to October but you can walk at any time of year. You can start on any date that suits your travel plans.

SOLO WALKERS & SINGLE ROOMS

The Camino del Norte is available to solo walkers at a single supplement.

GRADE & TERRAIN

This walk is graded moderate to strenuous and includes daily walks on average of 20 – 25 km per day. You can expect to walk for between five and 7 hours each day and much of it is rather arduous walking with some steep inclines/declines. The Camino Del Norte follows a mixture of farm/dirt tracks, minor roads and footpaths.

NAVIGATION, ROUTE NOTES & MAPS

The route is marked with yellow painted arrows but please take care at intersections, if you not walking with the group or guide.

ADDITIONAL NIGHTS

For end of the tour can be possible to add, do let us know in advance.

FEWER NIGHTS

It is possible to walk the Camino del Norte in less time than this but we would not recommend this as walking 20-25 km is enough for average hikers. For group tour we can’t do less than 9 days for this tour, rather we can add more 1-2 days to make walk easy, bust cost will be higher.

BAGGAGE TRANSFERS

Baggage transfers are included (max 15kg per person). Your main bag will be transferred each day between your overnight accommodations so that you only need to walk with a day pack. (There is a supplement applicable for solo walkers on baggage transfers due to the fact that the transfer costs are usually shared.)

CLOTHING & EQUIPMENT

We will provide all list 3 month before departure.

COMPOSTELA/PILGRIMS PASSPORTS

The pilgrim’s passport is issued by the church of St James, you can obtain one at the start of your walk in the pilgrim’s office or the local church in town. You need to get the passport stamped in churches, restaurants and hotels along the way. At the end of the walk in Santiago you can obtain your Compostela Certificate (only if you have walked the last 100km). For the other sections of the trail, the passport is used as a souvenir with all the colorful stamps you will receive.

TRAVEL INSURANCE

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Namaste Nomad that you have suitable Travel Insurance which covers you for the entire activity, emergency evacuation and hospital care, baggage lost etc. However we do our best to keep all safe all the time.

GUIDES

Our greatest resource!. All our guides are Basque and Himalayan guide, our friend Eder live in Basque year round and she have good knowledge of her own country well, - no hired-out college grads! When specified, we will hire few different guides for short city tour in Bilbao and san Sebastian to give you extra test of history.

LIMITED GROUP SIZES

We prefer small groups to ensure that you receive the individual attention that you deserve. In order to treat each of our clients with a personal touch, we limit our group size to a maximum of 14 participants.

ACCOMODATIONS

Namaste Nomad selects a combination of 2-3 star hotels, guest house, restored country manors and family run B&B's that offer the best in hospitality, comfort and location. All rooms have their own bathrooms. Tour prices are based on double occupancy. ( single supplement 250 Euro for 9 days)

MEALS

Food speaks volumes about a culture and we love to eat! During our walk days, when possible, we prepare gourmet picnics, using the freshest of local ingredients and selecting the tastiest recipes of the region. Dinners are celebrated in restaurants chosen not only for their menu, but also their atmosphere and service. We are proud to cater to vegetarians and those with food allergies as well. Food includes in depend on the price and package offer by us.

SPECIAL EVENTS TICKETS

Wine tastings, garden tours, concerts, will be extra cost but we will provide the tour arrangements, within the budget.

GENERAL INFORMATION

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat and sun screen. We will provide detailed equipment list which includes standard walking/cycling gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.

GETTING TO/FROM NORTHERN SPAIN

Flying into Bilbao is the best airport for this particular tour. Direct flights are available from Dublin. From Bilbao you can take an ALSA bus back to San Sebastian if you are not coming with group or coming early, which takes around an hour and a half. If you are traveling from outside Europe Madrid is a good hub to fly in/ out of, from here you can catch a bus to San Sebastian ALSA (takes around 6.5 hours). A bus back to Madrid from Bilbao takes around 4.5 hours.

The Camino del Norte offers a more authentic pilgrim experience than the Camino Frances. 

For booking please mail us - info@namastenomad.ie