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French Pyrenees & Spain Basque Country Walking & Hiking Tour

Sparkling Biarritz to Spain's Rioja

From $4,298 - $4,498 pp dbl. occ. | 6 days / 5 nights

(+$1,310 for sgl. occ.)

On a map, there's a line. One side France. The other, Spain. But as you gaze at the sparkling Bay of Biscay, walk the high plains and valleys of the Pyrenees, follow the path of pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago, and toast the vibrant colors, light and superb wines of La Rioja, you'll see it's a place all its own. 

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France & Spain

Start Biarritz / End Bilbao

Spain and France walking tour map

Highlights

  • Journey from the dramatic Atlantic Pyrenees in France to the glorious green mountain landscapes of the Basque Country in Spain
  • Appreciate incredible hiking with views of vast beech forests, broad patchwork hills and sheep-pocked pastures
  • Walk with travelers from all over the world on part of the famed pilgrimage trail of St. James, the Camino de Santiago
  • Savor superb Basque cuisine created by Michelin-starred chef Francis Paniego and exquisite wines of the Rioja region 
France & Spain

Start Biarritz / End Bilbao

Spain and France walking tour map

Itinerary

Day 1 Hike along the coast, past beautiful beaches, quaint seaside villages and rugged rock formations | Arrive in the idyllic town of St-Jean-de-Luz, beloved for its picturesque square | Stroll the town's sheltered port, where fishermen tend to their colorful boats.

Days 2-3 Discover the Basque Country's pastoral charm as you walk through green sheep-dotted hills | Hiking in the Pyrenees, skirt the line between France and Spain on an ancient route once used by pilgrims and smugglers | Savor a traditional Basque lunch in charming Bidarray.

Day 4 Cross into the Navarra region of Spain for a walk on the renowned Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route | Ramble through medieval villages and across old stone bridges along the Pilgrim's Way | Taste an array of local pintxos—delicious small plates | Prepare to be stunned by tonight's Frank Gehry-designed hotel and winery.

Days 5-6 Rural beauty surrounds us in La Rioja wine region, where hundreds of ancestral wineries have thrived for generations | As you hike, admire the play of sunlight, shadow and color on the vineyard-laced landscape | Amble on ancient cobblestone streets in historic villages like Laguardia and Elciego | Indulge in Basque specialties at a Michelin-starred restaurant—the ideal finish to an extraordinary week.

The earlier you book, the more choice you'll have and the lower your price. And you can always change your mind — you won't be charged to transfer to a different trip before your final payment is due. View cancellation policy.

Please click on a date below for specific pricing and possible itinerary variations.

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C Classic Dates

2018 July
2018 August
2018 October

View Private Dates

Gather your favorite people to share a Backroads adventure on a ready-to-book Private Trip - featuring all the legendary Backroads hallmarks from expert leaders to unforgettable activities. You can pick from the selection of dates below for your group; some dates are only available for 16 or more guests while other dates are available for 8 or more guests. If your party has fewer than 8 guests, or your preferred date is not available, we'll create a departure just for you. Call or email us to reserve your date.

2018 Private Trip Pricing
  • 10 or more guests: from $4,298 pp dbl occ
  • 8 - 9 guests: from $4,798 pp dbl occ
  • 6 - 7 guests: from $6,398 pp dbl occ
  • 4 - 5 guests: from $7,098 pp dbl occ
  • 2 - 3 guests: from $8,198 pp dbl occ

Please click on a date below for specific pricing and possible itinerary variations.

Don't see your ideal travel date? Make a Date

  • 8 AVAILABLE TO BOOK
    for 8 or more guests
  • 16 AVAILABLE TO BOOK
    for 16 or more guests
  • Reserved

C Classic Tours

2018 July
2018 August
2018 September
2018 October

View Scheduled Dates

Prices

From $4,298 - $4,498 pp dbl. occ.
6 days / 5 nights

(+$1,310 for sgl. occ.)

Premiere Hotels

Le Parc Victoria
Hotel Parc Victoria

St-Jean-de-Luz (1 night)

Auberge Ostape
Auberge Ostapé

Bidarray (2 nights)

Hotel Marques de Riscal
Hotel Marqués de Riscal

Elciego (2 nights)

Activity Level

This trip is rated Levels 2-4

What's Included

Services and equipment are included.

Why Backroads

Why Travel with Backroads in French and Spanish Pyrenees

Reviews by Power Reviews ®

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Premiere Hotels

Accommodations may vary based on departure date. Any difference from what is listed below can be found by clicking on your desired date on the View Scheduled Dates or Private Dates tabs.

Le Parc Victoria

Hotel Parc Victoria

St-Jean-de-Luz (1 night)

Enjoy lush gardens and lovely art deco style at this elegant 19th-century hotel. A Relais & Châteaux member. (pool, spa)

Auberge Ostape

Auberge Ostapé

Bidarray (2 nights)

A beautifully restored traditional Basque farm from the 17th century offering pastoral tranquility and dramatic views of the surrounding emerald hills. (pool, spa)

Hotel Marques de Riscal

Hotel Marqués de Riscal

Elciego (2 nights)

Created by Frank Gehry to complement his famed Guggenheim design in Bilbao, this architectural masterpiece—featuring Michelin-starred cuisine—is a destination unto itself. (pool, spa)  

This Trip Is Rated Levels 2-4

Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next—and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.

Daily Route Options (drag to see full )

Daily Route Options
Day EASYGOING ACTIVE AVID
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5
miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain
1 3* 300 6 500 8 600
2 4* 800 9* 1200 9* 2300
3 5* 1600 9 2800 9 3900
4 6* 800
5 7 1700 12 1700 13 2400
6 3 300
 

Note: The terrain on this trip includes level to rolling dirt paths and quiet country roads, with some steeper climbs and descents.

* Includes shuttle.

Learn more about how we determine our activity level and fully support a range of abilities and interests.

Please note that our distance and elevation figures come from Ride with GPS. Other sources (such as Map My Ride and Garmin devices) may give differing elevation figures due to different GPS and mapping technologies. Readings from a Garmin or a smart phone are influenced by other factors such as air pressure.

Meals

All breakfasts, 5 lunches, 5 dinners

Also Included

  • Expertise and services of our experienced Trip Leaders
  • Snacks and beverages between meals
  • Additional guides and experts from the region on many trips
  • Van shuttles to support a variety of route options
  • Comprehensive Travel Planner with detailed pre-trip information
  • Private guided tours at museums, historic sites, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the Travel Planner
  • All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
  • Special events, including wine tastings and other select attractions as mentioned in the Travel Planner
  • On biking and multi-adventure trips, use of fully equipped Backroads titanium bike plus helmet and accessories
  • Trailercycles, carriers, and kid-sized helmets for Family Trips
  • Equipment and experienced guides for kayaking, rafting, snorkeling, sailing and canoeing as described
  • Park and other entry fees
  • Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the Travel Planner
  • Select coach transfers
  • Baggage transfers and porterage

Get the Straight Talk about This Trip

We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.

Limited & Fixed Menus

On many nights, the gourmet restaurants where we dine offer specially prepared limited or fixed menus featuring a delicious selection of authentic regional cuisine.

Why Travel with Backroads in French and Spanish Pyrenees

Care for a Little More Biarritz or Bilbao?

In creating this unique marriage of Spain’s historic wine country and France’s mountainous southwest, the Backroads design team bookended the trip with two fascinating gateway cities. We meet in Biarritz, the French Basque resort town renowned for its beaches and nightlife. And we finish just outside of Bilbao, the Spanish port best known for architect Frank Gehry’s remarkable Guggenheim Museum. If you plan to extend your stay, we’ve got plenty of insider tips for both.

More Leaders to Support You

On our French and Spanish Pyrenees trips we have an extra leader supporting you along the trail—for a total of three, compared to the industry standard two. So we can be in more places at once, giving personal attention to guests traveling at their own pace. Here's more on our Trip Leaders.

Everyone at Their Own Pace

We design and support our French and Spanish Pyrenees trips to suit mixed abilities and varied interests—so you can set your own pace, then change things up as the day unfolds. And all guests are free to do the same, traveling together or apart, with no one cramping anyone else's style. Which sounds easy in theory, but it's hard to pull off. Here's more on how we do it.

Only the Best Hotels

On this trip featuring Premiere Hotels, you can count on the best lodgings French and Spanish Pyrenees has to offer. In fact, the hotels we've chosen in this region have higher retail room rates than those offered by any other active travel company—even when their trips cost more.

A Variety of Routes Each Day

In French and Spanish Pyrenees you head off each morning after choosing among several expertly designed routes—all with detailed directions, mileage and shuttle options. Unlike trips with one fixed daily route (or worse, one guide that everyone's obliged to follow), you're free to enjoy the best of the region at your pace, stopping wherever you want to explore further.

Signature Backroads Picnics

Guests rave about our picnic spreads. Enjoy a welcome break in a scenic spot, or a quick refuel stop if you don't want to lose momentum. And because we have two vans, one can host lunch while the other is out providing support along the route.

Experts with Secrets to Share

In choosing the ideal experts to enrich your travel experience, we look for people with a wealth of local knowledge, but also the ability to convey their insights in English. Too often travelers find themselves smiling politely, not quite understanding what they're being told. Our experts share intriguing facts, anecdotes and inside stories that stay with you forever.

Quality You Can Measure

Since 1979, Backroads Founder and President Tom Hale has shown that staying #1 means constantly evaluating our performance using the best possible source of information: our guests. As we systematically analyze your feedback on our trip consultants, leaders, hotels, meals and on-trip activities, we never stop working to make a great company even better.

A Second Van When You Need It

Backroads is the only active travel company providing two support vans in French and Spanish Pyrenees—because we know it's essential to ensure a truly great travel experience. It doubles our ability to be there when you need us to offer hydration, lighten your load or give you a lift if it's time to take a break. Read more on why two vans make all the difference.

Your Trip Will Run. Period.

Under our Book with Confidence policy, your Backroads trip will run even for one or two people (or a family of three or four), subject to a nominal extra fee. Or transfer to another trip, and we'll give you a credit. It's all part of our trademark commitment to treating guests with integrity, transparency and total accountability. Read all the details.

Photo Gallery

Hiking - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Cheese - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Beach - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Church - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Horses - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Cafe - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Goats - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Wine - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Hotel Marques De Riscal - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Oysters - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour
Boats - French Pyrenees-Spain Rioja Walking & Hiking Tour

Videos

Straight Talk

We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.

Limited & Fixed Menus

On many nights, the gourmet restaurants where we dine offer specially prepared limited or fixed menus featuring a delicious selection of authentic regional cuisine.
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