Spain from Basque Country to Albarracin
Most trips in the North of Spain run East – West or the other way round. This trip goes North – South, a 4×4 self-drive tour from Basque Country to Albarracin through an area little frequented by overland tours or travellers. It is all the more impressive for that.
We first drive through Basque Country, with its own language, culture and traditional houses. Then there is the un-European desert of the Bardenas Reales. Further South we come to a long mountainous region culminating in the Sierra de Albarracin, before we end in the town of Albarracin, which, according to many Spaniards, is one of teh most beautiful in the country. Most of the time we will hardly seen any other travellers.
Green mountains, yellow dessert
The starting point for this journey is St. Jean Pied de Port in France, one of the most popular places for pilgrims to start their walk to Santiago de Compostella. The town is cut in two by the river Nive, with a beautiful towered bridge. Its medieval centre is almost completely in tact. Well worth a visit. From St. Jean Pied de Port we head South into Basque Country.
Through the Forest and Valley of Iraty, we come to the Bardenas Reales, a desert that could have been in Arizona. It is a moon-like landscape with canyons, plains and steep rock formations where eagles and vultures have made their nests. We spend plenty of time here to let you take in this miracle.
Going further down South
The next highlight of the tour is of a different nature: the monastery of Veruela. Walk around, take your time and stand in awe at its beauty.
We continue along the river Tage where we can have a dive to freshen up. From here we climb into the mountains of the Sierra de Albarracin to an altitude of 1800 mtrs, where it can be quite cool even in the middle of summer.
Albarracin is a very nice medieval village, where it’s lovely to spend some time wandering around. As we approach it, the road takes one last turn and we see it in the valley. Just fantastic.
The dates are the days on which we travel. We meet near St. Jean Pied de Port, from where we start our journey the next day. We arrive at our destination in the afternoon of our final day, which thus gives us seven full days for the trip. We stay in comfortable hotels are comfortable, usually family owned. The food is always good.
You will get all the information you need for a successful trip well before it starts. This contains a day-to-day description of the itinerary, list of hotels with addresses and all sorts of other practical information.
The trip is about 550 km, of which 60% is on tracks. These are interesting to drive and never challenging. Good ground clearance and all-terrain tyres are a must. A low range gear box is helpful, though not strictly necessary. No special preparation of your car is required.
This is the area we will be travelling through:
If you want to take part in this trip and haven’t got a suitable vehicle, you can use our Defender at an additional cost, subject to availability.
- Seven overnight stays during the trip in hotels, including breakfast
- Welcome dinner
- Seven days of travel
- Researched itinerary
- Tour description
- Support car and two guides
- Hand held radio in car
- Any other meals
- Overnight stays outside trip dates