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  • Writer's pictureNate + Christa

Basque Country in Biarritz, France

While San Sebastian in Spain garners the attention of foodies clamoring for the most Michelin restaurants, Biarritz is also located in the heart of the Basque Country, a region that spans the border between France and Spain. When considering a trip to San Sebastian or Basque Country, don’t ignore the beautiful and often overlooked Biarritz.

We'll break down why you need to visit Biarritz and provide a full 3-day guide on this Basque country beauty!

Considered one of the best destinations in Europe, attracting surfers from around the world to its beautiful beaches, Biarritz has a long tradition of also attracting royalty to this culturally unique coastline of France. Biarritz has a strong history of surfing, dating back to the 1950s, and its waves are ideal for both beginners and experienced surfers, making it a popular destination for surfing enthusiasts seeking out the laid back vibe of this beach town.

Those wanting the more upscale shopping experience, Biarritz also has a rich history as a fashionable seaside resort dating back to the 19th century. It was a favorite destination of European royalty and aristocrats, and many historic buildings and landmarks remain to this day. The Hotel du Palais, which was built for Empress Eugenie, is a prime example of this.

Biarritz is located in the heart of the Basque Country, a region that spans the border between France and Spain. As such, it has a strong Basque culture, with traditional festivals, cuisine, and architecture. Visitors can enjoy Basque cuisine, including pintxos, a type of tapas, and explore the local markets for fresh produce and traditional crafts. While the prices are slightly higher than their Spanish neighbor, you’ll enjoy a much quieter and less touristed experience in Biarritz.

Our first impression of Biarritz was it’s impressive natural beauty, the sunsets over the seaside cliffs surrounding Biarritz are breathtaking. The city is located on the rugged coastline of the Atlantic Ocean on the Biscay Bay, with stunning views of the sea and surrounding hills. Visitors can explore the nearby Pyrenees mountains or the Basque countryside, both of which offer stunning vistas and opportunities for outdoor activities.

Biarritz, France is a unique and beautiful destination that offers something for everyone. From surfing to history and culture to natural beauty, Biarritz is sure to leave a lasting impression on anyone who visits. Here’s a quick 3 day itinerary to make the most of your time exploring Biarritz.

Day 1:

  • Morning: Start the day with a stroll along the Grande Plage, one of the most popular beaches in Biarritz. Take a swim in the refreshing waters of the Atlantic Ocean, or simply relax and soak up the sun.

  • Afternoon: For lunch, head to Les Halles de Biarritz, a covered market filled with local food stalls offering a variety of fresh and delicious food. Try some of the famous Basque cuisine, such as pintxos and seafood.

  • Evening: Take a walk to the Rocher de la Vierge, a rock formation located at the end of a jetty that offers stunning views of the coast. Afterward, head to the Bar Basque for drinks and live music.

Day 2:

  • Morning: Start the day with a hike up to the Phare de Biarritz, a lighthouse located on a hill overlooking the city. Enjoy panoramic views of the coast and the surrounding countryside.

  • Afternoon: For lunch, head to one of the many food trucks located along the coast. Try some delicious crepes or galettes, a savory pancake made with buckwheat flour and filled with cheese, ham, or vegetables.

  • Evening: Spend the evening at the Cite de l'Ocean, an oceanographic museum that offers a range of interactive exhibits and activities. Watch a 4D movie, visit the aquarium, or try surfing in the wave pool.

Day 3:

  • Morning: Take a day trip to nearby Saint-Jean-de-Luz, a picturesque fishing village located just a short drive from Biarritz. Stroll through the narrow streets, visit the historic church, and enjoy lunch at one of the many seafood restaurants.

  • Afternoon: Return to Biarritz in the afternoon and spend some time at the Plage de la Milady, a quieter beach located away from the city center. Rent a paddleboard or kayak and explore the waters, or simply relax on the sand.

  • Evening: For the final evening, head to the Les Baigneuses de Biarritz, a beachfront bar that offers stunning views of the ocean. Enjoy cocktails and tapas as you watch the sunset over the water.

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