Basque Coast Walking Holiday Itinerary
DAY 1: Arrival at Lekeitio
Lekeitio is one of the most beautiful towns in the Basque Country. Visit its harbour, church, mansions and enjoy its bars by the sea. Overnight in Lekeitio.
DAY 2: Walk Lekeitio 14 km/700m or 15 km/100m (can be shorter by taking a bus)
Today you can choose between two routes: Walk along the river Lea to Aulestia (15 kms), or climb Illuntzar peak (726 m uphill and 14 kms long) to admire the 360º views. Return to Lekeitio using the excellent line bus service. Overnight in Lekeitio.
DAY 3: Lekeitio to Ea (13.7 km/600m or 8 km/300m if you start in Ispaster)
Start with the ascent of Otoio, rewarded by incredible views of cliffs and remote beaches. Descend to visit a couple of lonely coves and walk along the coast to the charming little coastal town Ea, where you will stay.
DAY 4: Ea to Mundaka (17.5 km / ↑ ↓ 630m or 13 km / ↑ ↓ 600m or 10 km / ↑ ↓ 600m)
Start this stage with a nice coastal path and climb up to pretty Natxitua, the perfect place to take a short rest before walking into the unique town of Elantxobe, an authentic little fishing harbor. Hardy walkers can take a short walk to Ogoño cliff with impressive views. The first 8 km can be skipped by taking a bus or a taxi (paid locally). Head to Laga beach and from there climb up to pretty Akorda and to San Pedro de Atxarre hermitage, to magic place with probably the best views in the Basque Country: Urdaibai’s estuary, the coast of Mundaka, and also the mainland mountains. Descend to Laida beach, take off your shoes and enjoy a walk on the sand. Have a coffee (or a beer and tapas) at Atxerre bar, definitely a moment you will remember. A taxi will pick you at the beach to take you to Mundaka (or drop in in Gernika to explore this interesting town, to later head to Mundaka by train), but if you prefer a boat ride, in June and September you can take the small ferry to cross to the other side of the estuary. Overnight in Mundaka.
DAY 5: Mundaka Bermeo-San Juan-Bakio (13.5km / ↑ ↓ 630 m or 17.5km / ↑ ↓ 800m)
Take the train or walk to Bermeo, to lively and interesting fishing town, from where you hike to the San Juan de Gaztelugatxe hermitage, one of the most famous and iconic places in the Basque Country. After that head to Bakio along a quiet lane with views and enjoy the beach and the surf ambience of this coastal town. Overnight in Bakio.
DAY 6: Bakio to Plencia (23km / ↑ ↓ 980m or 12km / ↑ ↓ 500m)
Hardcore walkers can take the challenge of the full stage, and even climb up to Jata, a hill with amazing views. Most mortals will travel with luggage to the small harbor of Armintza and walk the beautiful cliffs for the last 12 km to Plencia, a beautiful town with a great beach, an estuary and an interesting Gothic age town center.
DAY 7: Plencia to Bilbao (22, 18, 15 or 11km / ↑ ↓ 450m)
Last stage! Walk the cliffs from beach to beach, with views of the whole coast and even of faraway Cantabria, and then, all of a sudden, after the Punta Galea Cape … the Bay of Bilbao! Enjoy this last part with magnificent views and head to the pretty old fishing port of Algorta, to caracterfull place with great bars. You can keep walking along the promenade for one more hour to the end of the Bay and admire the fantastic hanging bridge, built in 1890, or you can take the metro in Algorta and stop to visit the bridge and later head to Bilbao’s town center, where you will stay. The length of this stage is variable: you can walk the full lenght or take a bus at the start and stop in different places.
DAY 8: Departure from Bilbao
Departure from Bilbao or stay one more night to enjoy this interesting city!