These are some of the activities we propose in the surroundings of our agrotourism house:
Over our rural Cottage, in the heart of Guipuzcoa a wide massif stands dotted in its hillsides by a great number of towns and rural exploitations. With a height average of nearly one thousand meters, the Mount Ernio is its main top (1075m) and names all the mountain range.
It is a peak full of history and religiousness, which joined to its views, turns it into one of the most visited one in the province.
GAZUME (997m) and AKATEGI (966m)
Gazume rises in the massif of Ernio, geographic centre of Guipuzcoa, separated from the main peak (Ernio) by the pass of Zelatun, an ancient fold and now a local shrine place.
Its real name is Akategi. Gazume is the name of the slope but this is the name which has prevailed over the mountain name. These slopes were surrounded by inns and hostelries. Some abbeys have survived: Zarate, which preserves a carved sundial, Etumeta, with a pretty arcade with two arches; Santa Engracia and San Juan de Iturrioz, the best known because there, Saint Ignatius of Loyola stayed overnight in 1535 when he travelled from Paris to his town home Azpeitia.
The massif of Izarraitz, with the Mount Erlo as its main and emblematic peak, rises in a spectacular way over 1000m among Azpeitia, Azcoitia and Zestoa. In this environment, the limestone heart of the mountain keeps the most important sinkholes of Guipuzcoa and some of the best treasures of the prehistory of the province: Ekain Cave or Urtiaga Cave, where the most ancient skull of the Basque country was discovered. This sanctuary is completed with the numerous tumulus existing in its mountainsides and which dates from the Neolithic.
ROUTE OF THE THREE TEMPLES. GR-120
Following the steps of Saint Ignatius of Loyola we can make the way between Loyola and Arantzazu going through the chapel of La Antigua, going pass the Chapel of La Antigua, following the track of the GR-120 known as The Route of the Three Temples.
IGNATIUS WAY, GR-21
In this way between Pamplona and Azpeitia was inaugurated. Azpeitia is the place where his ancestral home is located. Ignatius of Loyola was a great walker (he called himself in his autobiography as “the pilgrim”). The route sets out one of his crossings, perhaps the most grueling, as he was hurt by the French in the capital of Navarre and this represents the path he had to make coming back to his family tower in Loyola Valley.
ROUTE BTT FLYSH
A very enjoyable and pleasant route which allows us makes a passionate journey back, step by step, to other times. In the short distance that it covers, it shows splendid views of the coast, characterized by some extraordinary geological formation named Flysch, included in the protected biotope Deba-Zumaia. This environment is integrated in the Geopark of the Basque Country.
CYCLO-PEDRESTRIAN NET IN UROLA VALLEY
From the neighborhood Brinkola in Legazpi to Arroa Behekoa of Zestoa one, the itinerary covers the flow of the Urola River in a route with a length close to 44 km. The itinerary has a conexion with the coastal one Donostia-Mutriku in Arroa Behekoa in Zestoa, and through the itinerary Bergara-Beasain allowing conexion with the ones which covers Deba and Orio Valleys.
1.BASQUE RAILWAY MUSEUM AZPEITIA
The ancient Railway of Urola station in Azpeitia takes in a collection of old locomotives and other elements related to the railway world the visit can be completed getting on an authentic steam engine train.
SANCTUARY SAINT IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA AZPEITIA
Ignatius of Loyola was born in Azpeitia in 1491. He, who will be the founder of the Society of Jesus and who is considered the most universal Basque, lives his childhood in the actual “Saint House” or “Tower House of Loyola” and “Egibar Farmhouse”, house of his nursemaid María Garin. The Saint House can be found inside the sanctuary, attached to the church. In this magnificent tower built in tough walls in the low floors, and elegant Moorish brick decoration in the upper floors, we can appreciate how the Oñaz-Loiola everyday life was.
ENVIRONMENT MUSEUM (INGURUKO ETXEA) AZPEITIA
The equipment that is today known as Inguruko Etxea signed in 1986 between the city council of Azpeitia and the Department of Territorial Policy and Transport of the Basque Government and was inaugurate the 5th of June 1987. Its main aim was the acquisition of the necessary knowledge, interest and sensibility by the visitors in honor of the defense of the environment.
Ekain Cave, known due to its cave paintings from the Magdalenian time, was discovered in 1969. During millenniums, these paintings had remained hidden, sheltered by the frail microclimate of the cave, in perfect conditions for its conservation. How could we gaze the proof of the concerns of that human mankind without damaging it? From this necessity, the idea of building a replica of Ekain Cave emerged. It is called Ekainberri (New Ekain).
Thanks to that replica we can now discover, know and feel the Basque Paleolithic artistic legacy, declared World Heritage by UNESCO the 7th of June 2008.
CRISTOBAL BALENCIAGA MUSEUM. GETARIA
Cristobal Balenciaga was born in Getaria, a sailor village in the seaside of Guipuzcoa, on the 21st of January 1895. He was the son of José Balenciaga Basurto, a sailor, and Martina Eizaguirre Embil, seamstress. He started in the trade of his life just being a child by the hand of his mother. Martina sewed for the most prominent families of the area, being the Marquise of Casa Torres one of his best and more distinguished client.
Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, was designed by the American architect Frank O. Gehry, is a magnificent example of the avant-garde architecture in the XX century. The building itself represents a special historical success due to its innovative designs and forms an alluring backdrop for the Contemporary Art Exhibition.
The Aquarium – Palace of the Sea was inaugurated in 1928 by initiative of the Oceanographic Society of Guipuzcoa (SOG). In fact, it was the first museum set for the Natural Sciences founded in Spain.
Eureka Zientzia Museo (Eureka Science Museum), work of the benevolent work of the Kutxa, is a cultural and educative resource at the service of our society. Settled in the Technological Park in Miramon in San Sebastian, it is a natural privileged environment. Eureka Zientzia Museum is an interactive museum where information is presented in an attractive way, with a new style of communication through the operation and use of objects and doing experiments.
BELLAS ARTES. BILBAO.
The origin of the current museum is located in the first Bellas Artes Museum, founded in 1908 and which was opened in 1014, and the Modern Art Museum, inaugurated in 1924. Both institutions and their collections joined in 1945 when the old building was built. In 1970 the modern building was added and in 2001, an important refurbishment gave the building its current appearance.
Mountainous town of 32,2km2 and 620 inhabitants is located in the valley named after the village and in the lap of the massif Ernio. It adjoins Zestoa, Aia, Asteasu, larraul, Bidegoian, Albiztur, Beizama and Azpeitia, and it also has a little enclave towards the south, in Santa Marina neighborhood.
RESULT OF THE MERGER OF Goyaz and Bidania was made up as Bidegoian in 1964. It is in the plateau of Bidania, surrounded by mountains, among which Ernio enhances with more than 1050m. Its population hardly reaches the 500 inhabitants. Both Goya and Bidania took part in the Mayor City Hall of Sayaz from its foundation, obtaining the title of independence village in 1563.
Azpeitia is buried deep in the basin of Urola River, in the geographical centre of Guipuzcoa. According to dates from January 2008, it has 14.157 inhabitants, and 85% of them live in the urban area.
Azcoitia is a town in the centre of Guipuzcoa settled in the basin of the Urola River, in a plain surrounded by high mountains, in the hollows excavated in the soft rocks.
Except the area where the river flows, the rest of the town is rough, where Izarraitz (942m) and Azkarate raise in the north, while in the south the ground raises softly until it reaches similar heights, as Irumugarri (939m) inside the group of Irukurutzeta (895m). It has 11.260 inhabitants.
From the down of human life we can find remains from more than 100.000 years ago: a clear exponent of it, is the archaeological site of Idiakitz (Irikaitz), in the open air, a few meters far from the village.
It is one of the greatest prehistoric discoveries in the Basque Country. On the other hand, in Ekain, we can admire the best paints frieze of horses in all the Franco-Cantabrian Coast.
The first remains of human occupation in Getaria go back to the Bronze Age and they are related to the pastoral culture at that moment.
It will be with the Roman Empire when, through its geographers, Getaria started to enter in the History. There are traces that in that times there was a roman settlement, probably the one mentioned by different authors, named Menosca.
The environment determines the human actions at the same time that the hand of the man acts over that setting, modifying it. So, what we know about Tolosa is the result of that interaction: it is rugged territory with many mountains and streams and a valley with its main river, Oria.
Horse riding / Rural activities
In Sastarrain, in a Farm School settled in Zestoa, 15 km far from Izarre, the pottoka horse is the main protagonist animal. It was so millenniums ago, when horses inhabited the little valley and the prehistoric mankind, fascinated, painted them in Ekain Cave. This docile but resistant animal is suitable to enjoy the children and satisfy the experiment riders.
That is why many activities are offered in the Farm School, with its pottokas in that picturesque rural area in Sastarrain and Zestoa.
You can also combine the enjoyment with the pottoka with many other nature and adventure activities, to spend unforgettable days.
The pottoka is a breed of horse framed in the kind of Celtic horse. The height in the thoroughbred horses should be between 120 and 132cm, and its weight should be between 220 and 300kg. it is normally a dark horse, sturdy and strong, with a nearly prehistoric aspect, which makes it suitable to withstand harsh weather conditions.
Rural experiences: Stable, vegetable gardens, bread bakery, milk-dairy, basketwork, bees.
Prehistoric experiences: Fire work and prehistoric weapons, archaeological excavations.
Ecologic experiences: Recycling, water, ecologic itineraries.
Sailing ship, cetacean sightseeing
Golfo de Vizcaya
The Bay of Biscay is a rich area of cetacean and sea birds. In its waters up to 24 different species of cetacean live or migrate, as a common dolphin, stripped dolphins or bottle nose dolphin. There can be also found pilot whales, Beaked as Curier’s Beaked whales.
The different species of the seabirds are also very common in the Atlantic area as it is a very important area of migration for most of them. We can highlight gannets, great skulls, grey phalaropes, storm petrels, cormorants, gulls, kestrels or skuas.
ONE DAY TRIP
WEEKEND TRIP / 2 WORKING DAYS
These waters called “guesalaga” (salty waters) were declared of public usefulness in the year 1792. In 1804 the SPA of Cestona was opened and tourism started in the Basque Country.
Deba is a little seaside village of about 5.000 inhabitants, which has one of the gems of the Basque Coast, the spectacular Flysch between Zumaia and Deba. It is visited by thousands of people attracted by the beauty of the scenery.
Besides, in the heart of the old quarter we can find the church St Mary of Deba, National Monument and a gem of the Basque Gothic.
Zumaia is settled in a privileged place in the coast of Guipuzcoa, on the seaside and on a bay where Urola and Narrondo rivers converge. It has about 8.700 inhabitants and its characteristics make Zumaia a pleasant and peaceful place to live far from stress and city noises. Its main attraction is the Flysch, spectacular cliffs which hide a singular natural gem: millions of geological history written in successive rocky stratum. It has two beaches.
Getaria is a town in this coast, mainly known because it is the town home of the sailor Juan Sebastian Elcano, the first man who sailed around the world, Cristobal Balenciaga, one of the most prestigious couturiers of the History. It is also famous the white wine with guarantee of origin (DO) cultivated nearby which gets the name of txakoli, it has two beaches.
Zarautz is found in a wide plain open to the sea in the coast of Guipuzcoa. Its main attractiveness is its 2 km beautiful beach, flanked by Santa Barbara and Mollarri cliffs. Although quite rightly has been stated that Zarautz is sea and also mountain, the village also has a great cultural and festive offer.
Adjoined to San Sebastian, Orio is a little fishing village of about 5.000 inhabitants, which has a natural and privileged environment. On one side, Orio River melts with the sea together with the beach and at its back, seaside green mountain enhance; that is why that it is said that Orio is blue and green. Although it is also yellow. This is the colour of the drifter and its rowers, because the rowing in Orio has a great support and large tradition.
Donostia-San Sebastian is the capital of the province of Guipuzcoa and it has 186.122 inhabitants. It is one of the widest known tourist destination. Its landscape is overlooked by La Concha Bay and other beaches. Its architectonic development favoured the development of the touristic activity at European level. All this, joined to the international Film Festival of San Sebastian (Zinemaldia) has shown Donostia internationally despite its little dimensions.
In the different woods that populate our valley, you would be able to enjoy the passion of looking for and recollect different varieties of mushrooms.