The Mysteries of the Basque Country

The Basque country – otherwise known as Euskadi – lies in the north of Spain. It spans both sides of the French and Spanish borders, but culturally the Basque country is very different from both of its neighbours.

The countries size and diversity makes it an ideal location for touring holidays and short breaks. The three major cities; Vitoria, Bilbao and Sans Sebastian each provide their own unique charm, while the coast has quaint towns and small villages that are a joy to explore.

It is a country with its own unique identity, beginning with its climate, which is wonderfully mild all year round. It has managed to remain unspoilt from tourism and its age-old cultural traditions have survived unchanged for centuries.

The Basque people have their own language, Euskara, which is reported to be the oldest language in Europe, although the majority speak Spanish. The country is a place of mystery with little being known of the Basque people’s origins. They have different ancestry to that of their Spanish neighbours and they have blood group characteristics that distinguish them from the rest of Europe. They share many characteristics with the Cro-Magnons, and they are thought to be direct descendents of this ancient race who lived 40,000 years ago.

The Basque people take great pride in their cuisine and it’s considered by many to be the best in Spain. It is renowned for its freshness and simplicity; no visit to the Basque country is complete without sampling the tapas bars of San Sebastian.

Another place of interest in the Basque country is the city of Bilbao. This is Spain’s sixth largest city and it serves as a great place to begin your exploration of the Basque country. Many holidays to the Bilbao are inspired by the controversial design of the Guggenheim Museum designed by American architect Frank Gehry.

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