Sports and winter activities to enjoy the snow, near Bayonne and Biarritz

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If you want to enjoy the snow, near Bayonne or Biarritz, the Basque Country offers all kinds of activities and winter sports. In the resorts, there is not only downhill skiing… Luge, snowshoeing, Nordic walking, cross-country skiing, dog sledding, horseback riding… On the heights of the Rhune or in the forest of Iraty, there is something to satisfy all your winter cravings.

The Pyrénées Atlantiques department offers you an idyllic setting, on the Basque side, to have fun in the snow, with a view of the Atlantic Ocean! And if you want to reach the Pyrenean peaks, it's in the nearby Béarn that you will hit the slopes. And why not cross the border and go skiing in the resorts of the Spanish Basque Country?


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The Pyrenees mountains and the winter sports resorts of the Basque Country

Labourd and the Rhune mountain at the foot of the coast, Basse-Navarre and the Iraty passes, Haute Soule and its peak of Orhy are part of the Pyrenees chain. In the resorts, you can discover unusual winter activities. If you are looking for an authentic atmosphere and you like mountain gastronomy, the Basque Country is the ideal place for your stay in the snow.

From the first flakes, you can enjoy the pleasures of snow on the Rhune, a stone's throw from the ocean. With its 900 meters of altitude, this Pyrenean massif is not equipped for skiing, but it is ideal for a hike, in the heart of its snow-covered forest. For the anecdote, the Spanish border crosses it. This is a great opportunity to make a getaway in the Spanish Basque Country.  


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La Rhune adorned with snow, it's beautiful and rare!

Between Labourd and Basse-Navarre, you enter the Basque hinterland. Its typical villages are colorful and warm, especially thanks to their " etxe ", these houses with characteristic architecture, with their whitewashed facades and red half-timberings. Under a white veil, their beauty is revealed all the more. The Guide of the Basque Country has selected for you the 10 villages of the interior Basque Country that will leave you speechless.


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Between Basse Navarre and Haute Soule, the Iraty cross-country ski resort has been developed, with 24 km of Nordic ski slopes and 23 km reserved for snowshoeing. To test a more original activity, try a musher initiation to go on a dog sled ride on your own. Summer and winter, you can also go hiking through the beautiful Iraty Forest, the largest deciduous forest in Europe. We tested for you a sensational hike on the GR10, through the Pyrenees and the Basque Country.

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Enjoy an exotic stay, in the charming village of Chalets d'Iraty (fr).


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Go for a walk in the mountain, enjoy its soothing environment!

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Test the dog sledding, now is the time and it is an unforgettable activity!

For lovers of snowshoeing, go to Haute Soule, in the Issarbe resort. On the website of the Béarn Pyrénées et Pays Basque tourist office (fr), you will find an itinerary to Larrau, with a topo-guide and information. To please the whole family, you can practice cross-country skiing and tobogganing for children. The resort of La-Pierre-Saint-Martin in Arette is, for its part, rather famous for downhill and Nordic skiing. For a change, what if you took advantage of your winter vacation to take a road trip in Haute-Soule (fr).

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If you are looking for accommodation in Soule, Gîte Chantina is located between Iraty, La-Pierre-Saint-Martin and Issarbe stations and welcomes you all year round.


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On the way to La Pierre Saint-Martin and the Béarn resorts!    

Enjoy the snow around the Basque Country

In Béarn, here are the best resorts from the closest to the Basque Country to the furthest :

  • The Gourette resort is a ski resort, with many other activities : snowshoeing, sledding, sledding... But the most unusual is its large winter zip line and Nordic baths.
  • The station of Artouste is, with that of Gourette, one of the closest to the Basque Country. You can cross-country ski, snowshoe, Nordic walk, but above all you can climb an icefall!
  • Just before the Spanish border, in Urdos, the Somport resort offers cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails.

Across the border you will find the Spanish resorts of Candanchu, Astun and Aramon Formigal.


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Snowshoes or cross-country skiing, the choice is yours!

Our tips and addresses

As soon as the resorts open, we advise you to make a phone call to the ski clubs and the Basque Country Tourist Offices (Bayonne, Biarritz, Anglet) to ask if bus trips are organized. Some stations also offer shuttle services. You can also try carpooling...

For more information, news and ideas for activities, you can visit the following sites :  


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This walk along the Pyrenees and the ski resorts comes to an end and we hope to have made you want to try new activities.

Did you like our article? Find more on our Blog.

Follow us on the Guide du Pays Basque Facebook page and on Instagram @guidedupaysbasque.


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