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the
BASQUE COUNTRY
TRIP

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2023 dates

​$150 off with

"Eb2023bas"

May 28 - June 4, 2023

Selling quickly - likely to sell out

June 18 - 25, 2023

 

July 2 - 9, 2023

Selling quickly - likely to sell out

July 16 - 23, 2023

 

July 30 - Aug 6, 2023

 

Sept 3 - 10, 2023

Labor Day trip - likely to sell out

Sept 17 - 24, 2023

8 days/7 nights

from $3,299

P.S. All payments can be broken up into a

$500 deposit + 3 additional installments.

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Page Menu

WHAT TO EXPECT

Food, fun, and the sun are the three pillars of our Basque Country excursion. If any of that sounds appealing, pack your bags and get ready for one mouth-wateringly delicious adventure.

 

You'll meet up for drinks with your new travel crew in Bilbao before heading out for your first taste of the culture—unforgettable pintxos. After a bite or two, you'll understand why this region is home to the highest concentration of Michelin-starred restaurants per capita worldwide.

 

Our expedition will crisscross an area encompassing parts of Northern Spain and Southwestern France, defined by an exotic language, ancient folklore, and year-round festivals. We'll wind through historic Vitoria-Gasteiz before ending up on the golden sand beaches of San Sebastian. By the end of the week, you'll be well versed in the region's culture, history, and world-famous cuisine.

FOR THE LOVE OF

PINTXOS

SEASIDE SUNSETS

MICHELIN DINING

LA RIOJA

SUN & SURF

THE OLD TOWN

EUSKERA

FRESH FISH

COLORFUL ARCHITECTURE

BASQUE COUNTRY

Included

  • All accommodations in a shared room with one other person (not hostels)

  • Day trip to Biarritz, France

  • 7 Breakfasts

  • 2 Lunches  (including at a Michelin Guide Restaurant & La Rioja Winery)

  • 4 Dinners (including welcome dinner, farewell dinner, food tour & cooking class)

  • 1 Michelin Star Restaurant Dinner (farewell dinner)

  • Bilbao walking & pintxo tour through the Old Quarter

  • Food & drink tour of San Sebastian with local guide

  • Pintxo cooking class with local chef

  • La Rioja wineries visit and tastings 

  • Basque Pelota class and experience

  • Surf lesson in Biarritz

  • Hike to Gaztelugatxe

  • All country transfers

not included

  • Flights into Bilbao, Spain (BIO) and out of San Sebastian Airport (Donostia Airport)

  • Mandatory trip insurance

  • Meals not mentioned (budget around $200)

  • Incidental Expenses

 
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day by day

*Itinerary is indicative for 2022 and is subject to change

 
 

Day 1 - Bilbao, Spain
Arrive

 

Arrive in Bilbao and hit the town with your new friends over drinks and “pintxos”. These bite sized treats could be anything from local fish to stuffed peppers secured atop a piece of bread with a toothpick—think of them as the Basque Country's take on tapas.

The delectable hors d'oeuvres pair well with a glass of white wine and are often enjoyed on a “txikiteo,” or Basque Country pub crawl. If those words sound challenging to pronounce, well, they are. Many Basques speak Euskera, the oldest European language and one with no known origins.

After devouring pintxos, we'll head to dinner at one of the coolest spots in town. Yeah, the food's a big part of this trip, if you couldn't already tell.

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play

 

Day 2 - Bilbao
Pintxos & Pelota

Kick off day two with a bite at the hotel before hitting the courts for a pelota lesson. The fast-paced sport is the precursor to the more well-known jai alai and a favorite throughout the region. After working up a sweat, you’ll have some free time to explore before we channel our inner chefs and step into the kitchen.

 

We tried pintxos on day one, but today we’re learning how to make them for ourselves in a private cooking class. After all, it’s essential to understand the intricacies of the region’s favorite food (especially when it’s so damn good). 

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Savor

 

Day 3 - Bilbao / Vitoria-Gasteiz
Beautiful Biscay

After breakfast at the hotel, you’ll have the option of exploring on your own or driving up the coast to embark on a breathtaking hike back through time. We'll branch off from the rocky shore of Biscay along an extraordinary serpentine stone wall to a 10th-century hermitage standing on the tiny islet of Gaztelugatxe. It's a sight to behold and one of the most impressive views in all of the Basque Country.

 

Around noon, we’ll regroup in Bilbao before we wind through the scenic countryside to get to our next stop, Vitoria-Gasteiz, the region’s capital. We’ll have an incredible tasting menu dinner at a Michelin Guide recommended restaurant, and then you’ll have the evening free to eat, drink, and explore the ancient streets and plazas of one of Northern Spain’s most atmospheric cities.

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discover

 

Day 4 - Vitoria-Gasteiz
wine in paradise

 

The morning is free to grab a bite and head out with friends to wander the meandering alleyways of Vitoria-Gasteiz. Check out the Renaissance palaces in the old quarter and discover the history of the Gothic Cathedral of Santa María de Vitoria.

In the afternoon, we’ll roll out to La Rioja to sip on some old-world wines made from grapes that have been cultivated in the region for a thousand years. You’ll have the chance to check out a couple of different vineyards because one world-class winery just won’t cut it.

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drink

 

Day 5 - Vitoria-Gasteiz / San Sebastian
back to the sea

 

Eat up before we hit the road. Picturesque, seaside San Sebastian is in our sights, and there’s no time to waste. Drop your bags, hit the beach, and head out to the tear-drop-shaped island of Santa Clara if you’d like. Or, kick back, relax and take it easy; the day is free for you until we meet back up in the evening.

 

We’re getting back to what we love most at night, chowing down on more local Basque Country cuisine. We’ll eat our way through San Sebastian’s pintxo bars with a local guide giving us the backstory on every dish. We’ll be bouncing from one spot to the next, so don’t fill up too early; there’s always more to eat in Basque County.

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taste

 

Day 6 - San Sebastian / Biarritz
Surf's up

 

We’ll take a day trip and cruise over to France’s Basque region to check out Biarritz and soak up the sun, sand, and waves. After all, what better way to round out a week of decadent food than a quick surf sesh? And don’t worry, this is an intro lesson, so it’s all in good fun. Even if you don’t get up, feel free to tell your friends back home tales of your time in the barrel. Your secret’s safe with us. ;)

 

After you hit the waves, take to the sand for some much-needed R&R and grab some lunch with friends. As the sun starts to set on Biarritz, we’ll head back to San Sebastian where the night is free for you to do as you please.

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play

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taste

 

Day 6 - San Sebastian / Biarritz
Surf's up

 

We’ll take a day trip and cruise over to France’s Basque region to check out Biarritz and soak up the sun, sand, and waves. After all, what better way to round out a week of decadent food than a quick surf sesh? And don’t worry, this is an intro lesson, so it’s all in good fun. Even if you don’t get up, feel free to tell your friends back home tales of your time in the barrel. Your secret’s safe with us. ;)

 

After you hit the waves, take to the sand for some much-needed R&R and grab some lunch with friends. As the sun starts to set on Biarritz, we’ll head back to San Sebastian where the night is free for you to do as you please.

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enjoy

 

Day 7 - San Sebastian
mmm Michelin stars

 

The day is yours to do as you please. Walk the promenade or check out some more of the narrow, cobbled streets of the Old Town. If you’re feeling up to it, give your Euskera a go at some of the shops in town.

 

After a week of gastronomical adventures, it's only fitting that we spend our final night dining in style, Michelin star style, that is. That's right, on our never-ending quest to eat our way through the Basque Country, we're wrapping things up at a family-run spot on the banks of the Bidasoa River that's held a much sought-after Michelin star for more than 20 years. So pull up a chair; this just may be the most incredible meal of your life.

 

Day 8 - San Sebastian
farewell

Grab a final breakfast with friends before checking out.

 

If you’ve got some time before your flight, do a little more exploring of one of Spain’s most unique towns. Toss down another pintxo or two; it’ll be tough to come by food this good wherever you return to.

"Everyone who has visited the Basque country longs to return; it is a blessed land."
- Victor Hugo

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FAST FACTS

 

Just for Fun

Folklore is incredibly important in Basque culture. According to one myth, giants know as Jentilaks used to roam the region.

We’re not joking about the food; there are nearly 40 Michelin-starred restaurants in the Basque Country.

Most Basque inhabitants are bilingual, speaking either Spanish and Euskera or French and Euskera.

Trip notes

  • This trip goes to both Spain & France.

  • The Basque Country is not actually a country, it’s a region home to the Basque people.

  • The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao is a main attraction. When it opened in 1997, it led to a resurgence in tourism in the region.

  • Visas are not required for American tourists.

 

About basque country

The greater Basque Country comprises the autonomous Spanish regions of the Basque Country and Navarre and the French region known as Northern Basque Country. The culture is highly unique and different from other surrounding regions, and the Basques are often regarded as the least assimilated of the Western European cultures. However, not everyone who lives in the region is actually a Basque.

GOOD TO KNOW

  • Basque Country in Spain was granted the status of Nationality in the 1978 constitution.

  • Both Spain and France and thus the Basque region are on the Euro; however, a local currency known as the Eusko was launched in 2013 in the Basque’s French territory.

  • In Spain, the Basque Autonomous Community ranks first in economic productivity nationwide.

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Flights

Fly into Bilbao (BIO)

You'll need to be in Bilbao An by 2pm on Day 1, however with the recent amount of flight delays we recommend planning to arrive a day early just to be safe.

Fly out of San Sebastian (EAS)

We recommend flying out of San Sebastian on day 8 or extending your trip and enjoying a few more days in the Basque Country.

Want to check out flights for your trip?

Feel free to also set up flight alerts to Hanoi so you can grab the best deal!

 
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