South Coast Walks & Historical Sites
Bring intriguing coastal trails and history alive in South Hampshire
The green Pyrenean foothills of Navarra and the wide bays and sandy beaches of the Atlantic Coast come together to create a simply wonderful, diverse holiday. This heartland, with its language, cuisine, fiestas and scenery are the epitome of a more ‘hidden’ Spain.
Tour codes: 56410
Our range of Adagio leisurely walking holidays and sightseeing tours are designed at a slower pace than the average Ramblers Walking Holidays, perfect for those who would like to slow things down but keep active.
The northern coastline of Spain’s Basque Country, bordering the Bay of Biscay, and the captivating countryside of the Kingdom of Navarra, offer a quite unique flavour to this otherwise familiar country. Dramatic cliffs, rocky coves and rias, lush green valleys, striking architecture, fascinating culture and traditions and celebrated cuisine & wines are just the start of what this region has to offer.
The wide bays and sandy beaches of the Atlantic Coast and the green Pyrenean foothills of Navarra all come together to create a simply wonderful, diverse holiday. There are many pilgrimage paths that criss-cross the region en route to Santiago de Compostela, a couple of which we’ll discover, and across the border we’ll find French Basque country, where we’ll follow a coastal path and relax in St Jean de Luz.
This heartland, with its unique language, mouthwatering cuisine and stunning scenery is the epitome of a more ‘hidden’ Spain.
Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.
NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen
Itinerary & Travel
Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we may unfortunately need to withdraw a tour that is currently confirmed to operate and we therefore reserve the right to cancel your booking. We would always do our utmost to give you plenty of notice should we have to do this. Selected elements of this tour, including local attractions and restaurants, may change at late notice. Please ensure you have valid insurance cover before you travel.
We fly to Bilbao and transfer to the elegant resort of San Sebastian, surrounded by green hills and fronted by a sweeping promenade and wide, sandy beach. Dinner is at a restaurant close to the hotel this evening.
We meet our local guide for a walking visit of San Sebastian this morning and a stop in the fascinating San Telmo museum in the afternoon. You will also find a wonderful covered market, an old historic quarter for exploring and there is a funicular to Mt Igueldo, which offers wonderful views of the sweeping bay, plus you can expore an amusement park from 1912!
We travel into the French Basque Country today to enjoy a coastal walk (approx 5km, 1.5 hourss), which ends in the sea-side town of St Jean de Luz, where we have time for lunch and exploration before returning to San Sebastian, where you may want to enjoy the Old Town before dinner
Taking the train to the seaside village of Orio, we take a breath-taking coastal walk (approx. 6.5kms; ascent/descent 250m; 2.5-3 hours) along the Camino Norte, which takes us to Zarautz, with its sweeping bay and where we enjoy a traditional Basque seafood lunch paired with the locally produced white wine called Txakoli. To drop down from the path into Zarautz, there are over 400 steps, but they are well built and we take our time. We’ll return to San Sebastian by train, where we spend the evening in the Old Town sampling local, delicious Pintxos dishes.
Saying goodbye to the Bay of Biscay, we travel inland, through captivating landscape, to the ancient Roman city of Pamplona, in the Kingdom of Navarra. Dominated by the cathedral of Santa Maria, the winding streets and old city walls, much loved by Hemingway, are best explored on foot, which we will do with our local guide. We’ll enjoy a lovely traditional dinner this evening at our hotel’s restaurant, which is well known for its wonderful dishes.
Travelling to the magnificent town of Olite today, home of Navarra’s wine region and once a royal residence of the Kings of Navarra, we’ll have a stroll around the town, visit a winery, and explore the Royal Palace which has magnificent views over the town and countryside. A highlight of today is our included lunch at a traditional restaurant in Olite, wine included. Back in Pamplona, you have time to explore the city and dinner is on your own this evening.
After a visit to the tiny Romanesque Ermita of Santa Maria de Eunate, we’ll walk with our guide on part of the “Camino de Santiago”(approx. 6.5kms; ascent 100m/descent 150m; 1.5-2 hours) which takes us to the pilgrimage town of Puente La Reina with time to visit the town and see the famous bridge. There will be time to further explore Pamplona before our farewell dinner.
We transfer to Bilbao for a guided visit to Guggenheim Museum with lunch included afterwards. Transfer to Bilbao Airport.
Departure dates for your selected tour
7th Jun 2022 - 14th Jun 2022 (7 Nights)
13th Sep 2022 - 20th Sep 2022 (7 Nights)
20th Sep 2022 - 27th Sep 2022 (7 Nights)
16th May 2023 - 23rd May 2023 (7 Nights)
6th Jun 2023 - 13th Jun 2023 (7 Nights)
12th Sep 2023 - 19th Sep 2023 (7 Nights)
19th Sep 2023 - 26th Sep 2023 (7 Nights)
Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.
You cannot help but fall in love with San Sebastian. The charming, cobbled streets of the old town, sweeping sandy beach, interesting architecture and wide promenade all have an air of elegance about them. There are numerous fascinating museums, an aquarium, wonderful shops and cafes, and the view from the top of Monte Igeldo is simply breathtaking. Food plays an important part of Basque life and you’ll find many tasty dishes, and of course Pintxos - the Basque take on tapas - in all the town’s restaurants. You will find banks, hospitals and supermarkets in the town.
The contemporary, three-star Hotel Codina is located in the quiet residential area of El Antiguo, a short walk from San Sebastian’s promenade and Ondarreta beach. All 65 rooms are en suite and have air conditioning, telephone, satellite TV, safe, free WiFi and hair dryer. The hotel has a bar, restaurant and coffee shop. Being a city hotel, the rooms are not large, but they do offer all the amenities for a comfortable stay.
Capial of the fiercely independent Kingdom of Navarra, the charming Roman town of Pamplona, filled with architectural gems of the Gothic cathedral, 16th-century citadel, and Baroque town hall, is surrounded by medieval city walls and contains a myriad of quaint, narrow streets and spacious plazas. Food again is an important part of the city’s character and there are numerous cafes, bars and restaurants to while away an evening. The town offers many services including banks, hospitals and supermarkets.
Our four-star hotel, the contemporary Hotel Maisonnave, is located in the heart of Pamplona, close to all the important sites, numerous restaurants and cafes. All rooms are en suite with TV, free wi-fi, safe and hairdryer. The hotel’s own café offers a range of Pinxtos, beers and wines.
All Adagio holidays are expertly designed to allow you to immerse yourself in the destination. Leisurely exploration of the must-see, as well as lesser known, highlights together with relaxed enjoyment of local food and wines is what we have in mind.
There may be days of sightseeing on foot around a spectacular city or unchallenging strolls on easy terrain in open countryside interspersed with winery visits, guided tours, boat trips, cafe stops and traditional restaurants.
We use a mix of privately hired vehicles, taxis, and public transport which gives us some flexibility in our itinerary. We have a wonderful programme of walking, sightseeing and visits planned to let you fully experience the area along with opportunities to relax at our wonderful hotel and enjoy your surroundings.
Local transport costs, entrance fees and tips to local providers are included in your holiday price. You may wish to budget for any meals and drinks not included in the holiday arrangements, non-included entrance fees and any optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.
Local Transport Costs
All local transport costs in conjunction with the advertised activity programme are included in the holiday cost. There may be occasions where additional visits or excursions are added to enrich your experience, these will be paid for locally by you if you choose to participate. Local transport can be a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses and ferries depending on the itinerary.
The currency in Spain is the euro. ATMs are widely available in the larger towns and villages and most establishments accept credit/debit cards. You may wish to take some euro in cash with you for the first day or so until you locate a bank.
We include tips in the holiday cost and your Adagio Leader will take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. If you feel that someone has gone out of their way to make your holiday enjoyable or help you in anyway, please feel free to give a personal tip to the person should you wish. If you are having an independent lunch or other service not included in the holiday arrangements, tipping is at your own discretion.
Leaders Evening Briefing
Your Adagio Leader will discuss the programme for the following day with the group at each evening briefing. This will be your opportunity to find out more details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. Also, if you have any questions or concerns on clothing or lunch arrangements, this can be discussed then. If you wish to opt out of the organised group programme, this is fine, just let your Leader know.
Visiting historical sites, churches or museums are much more rewarding with a local guide. They give an insight to the local culture, language and traditions and can bring a destination alive. Many of our Adagio holidays include a knowledgeable English speaking guide on at least one of the days. Please refer to your daily itinerary to see where a guide is included.
We believe that the best things come in small packages, and our Adagio holidays prove just that. We limit our groups to a maximum of 18 persons, plus the Adagio Leader, so that everyone has the opportunity to mix, share their love of travel and return home with new friendships. Small groups also have less detrimental local impact, allows us to use public transport on some days, eat at small local restaurants and, we believe, offers a better experience.
An Adagio Leader will accompany you throughout the holiday. They are all experienced travellers with a love for exploring and will help capture the true essence of the destination with their stories, knowledge and insights. They are well-organised, pay great attention to detail and enjoy being with people. They are there to help make your holiday as enjoyable and stress free as possible.
Luggage Allowance & Tickets
When booking a flight or rail inclusive holiday with us, details of your travel arrangements and baggage allowance will be confirmed in your travel documents, sent to you approximately 10 days prior to departure.
Personal Details Check
Please ensure that the personal details we have on file for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements.
Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to accurately manage your holiday booking are correct at the time of booking (including health and dietry requirements). You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.adagio.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 386700. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.
Getting to your Holiday
We fly from London Gatwick to Bilbao airport and return with British Airways. The flight takes approx. 2 hours.
Booking Your Own Travel Arrangements
If you wish to organise your own flights from either a non-UK or UK regional airport, or travel by rail or car to your holiday destination, 'land only' reductions are often available. If you choose to do this, before finalising any independent travel arrangements, please check with us first - especially if doing so 12 weeks or more before your intended date of travel. If you do intend to join your holiday locally please do tell us at least 14 weeks in advance.
If you are joining and leaving your holiday overseas we assume, unless you advise us otherwise, that you will join and leave the holiday at the hotel. Although airport/train station transfers are not included for those making their own independent travel arrangements, if you wish to join the group at the overseas airport/train station, depending on your flight/train arrival time, you may be able to be included on the group's transfer. Please contact us at least 5 weeks before departure for more details.
Please note that your flight/train must arrive within 30 minutes of the group flight/train to be able to join the group transfer. We also need your flight/train number, arrival time and departure point so that your Adagio Leader is able to meet up with you.
General Passport Advice
It is a good idea to carry photocopies of the personal details pages of your passport page (with your photo on). Should you lose your passport, this may assist with the issue of replacement documents and your return to your home country. Passport and visa requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements. General passport advice for UK nationals on the UK Government website.
Brexit Passport Advice
If you are planning to travel to an EU country (except Ireland), or Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City, you must meet the Schengen area rules.
Your passport must meet 2 requirements. It must be:
The guidance for Schengen border guards may not be updated until the spring of 2022. Until then, for some Schengen countries your passport may need to be less than 10 years old during your whole visit, and the 3 months at the end of your visit may need to be within 10 years of your passport’s issue date.
Check both the issue date and the expiry date in your passport. If you renewed your passport early, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. This could affect the requirement for your passport to be less than 10 years old.
Non British Passport holders should consult the host country’s embassy for applicable passport and visa entry requirements.
We have breakfast in our hotels and dinner at a mix of local restaurants and our hotels. Noted as the “food of the people” Basque dishes include meats, stews, grilled fish, beans, sheep’s cheese and of course Pintxos – Basque tapas. Pintxos can be eaten for lunch, as small plates accompanied by a small beer or small glass of wine, or for dinner, where you have the chance to taste many delicious flavours with numerous larger dishes - racionnes. We include lunch on two days, one at a traditional seaside restaurant and the other in the medieval town of Olite. Lunches are not included on other days. We may choose to picnic or our day may allow for a stop at a local restaurant. As our lunch in Olite is substantial, we do not include dinner that evening. You will find plenty on our doorstep in Pamplona if you are still hungry! Your Adagio leader will give you more information at the daily briefings.
Comfortable, broken in, walking boots or shoes with a good sole are recommended for this holiday. Walking shoes or other comfortable footwear will be suitable for sightseeing days.
General Kit List
We recommend you bring the following items with you:
Water To Go
An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.
We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.
Travel Document Checklist
To ensure your holiday gets off to a good start, please make sure that you bring the following documents and information with you:
Electricity in Spain
Electricity is supplied at 220 Volts. If you wish to use electrical equipment you will need a European two pin adaptor with round pins. More information can be found at https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/
The DK Eyewitness travel guide to Northern Spain and Sunflower’s Basque Country of Spain and France - Walks and Car Tours are a good accompaniment to this holiday.
The Map Shop
If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:
The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.
No compulsory immunisations are required for visits to Spain
You should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended in the UK.
Further Health Advice
For further advice please visit:
You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.
Please take your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you; it will help you in the event of you needing medical assistance during your holiday. Please note that the EHIC has an expiry date, so please check that your card is valid for the duration of your holiday. Please note however the EHIC should not be considered a substitute for medical or travel insurance.
For more information please visit ehic.org.uk.
It is a condition of booking with Adagio that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the trip, including all optional activities.
Your travel insurance policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation. Please ensure your policy covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are walking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. Medical and repatriation insurance cover are not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Whoever you insure with, please ensure that you take full details, and ideally the policy itself, with you on holiday and provide our tour leader with your insurer's name, the policy number and emergency assistance contact numbers.
Please note that it is very difficult to obtain travel insurance once your holiday arrangements have started.
Looking for travel insurance cover?
If you have not already arranged cover, please visit SunWorld who offer travel insurance.
SunWorld policies include cover for COVID-19, subject to applicable terms and conditions.
It is important to ensure while purchasing insurance that you are insured for guided walking upto 1000m.
We're committed to operating responsible tours in all our destinations as best we can. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.
Heart and Sole
We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way.
Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust
Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel Ltd’s (inc Adagio) profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public.
In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.
Visas and Passports
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