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The French Basque Country is a part of the department Pyrénées-Atlantiques. It actually is an ideal holiday destination. Beautiful beaches, jacked rocks that have been carved out by the waves, green forests, parts of the Pyrenees, popular cities, and, as you can expect, some typical Basque villages. It is a part of France that literally has everything, which is exactly why this is a must-visit.

We’ve created a list of 5 must-do tips!


The train of La Rhune: Le Train de la Rhune

Do you find yourself daydreaming about beautiful views often? With a breathtaking train ride you can enjoy panoramic views on the Pyrenees, lovely small villages, the forest of Les Landes, and the Atlantic Ocean!

The mountain La Rhune is about 950 meters high. You can only get there by taking the oldskool train from Col de Saint-Ignace. The entire ride takes about 1 hour.


Visit the city of Bayonne

Bayonne is the biggest city in the French Basque Country, which is known for its amazing chocolate. You can buy some chocolate, enjoy a nice meal and do some shopping, but there is even more to see.

Cathédrale Sainte-Marie de Bayonne is worth a visit. This used to be one of the most important stops on the pilgrim route to Compostela. Since 1998 it has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage List.
If you would like to dive even deeper into the culture, you can visit Musée Basque, where not only Rembrandt, El Greco, Rubens and Sandro Botticelli are displayed, but you can also learn more about the Basque traditions.


White homes with red pepper in Espelette

Espelette is a village that is actually known for red peppers that look like long and small paprika. What makes it interesting to visit is that – specifically in the fall – the typical Basque white homes almost all have the red peppers drying on the exterior of the home, which makes a unique sight.

In almost Basque dishes, these peppers are used, so make sure to eat something while you’re in the village as well.


Drive through La Corniche Basque and stop at Hendaye

The coast between St-Jean-Luz and Hendaye is also known as La Corniche Basque. It is a beautiful coast with a lot of steep cliffs and rocks, which makes it almost impossible to get to the beach with its wild waves. While driving, you can stop at Socoa and enjoy the amazing view.

At the most southern point of the route, at the Spanish border, the seaside resort Hendaye is located. Hendaye has a great boulevard with a lot of Neo-Basque villas in 20th-century style.
Besides the seaside boulevard, there are some great hiking routes in Abbadia, a nature reserve.


Seaside resort Biarritz

Great sandy beaches and a lively boulevard is what Biarritz has to offer you. The beach is about 6 kilometers long, so you can enjoy a swim and get some sun.

Go for a walk at the old harbor, go surfing or visit Musée de la Mer with family. The museum has about 24 water tanks full of fish.

To zoom into surfing just a little bit: Biarritz is known as one of the most popular surf spots in Europe. It is the perfect place to get a lesson if you’ve never tried this before.

Curious of what the French Basque Country has to offer?

Curious of what the French Basque Country has to offer?