France & Spain – Bordeaux to San Sebastian | Family
An epic journey through two of the most romantic countries in Europe.
6 days / 5 nights
Activity Level Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.
Whether it’s cycling on the Piste Cyclable Roger Lapébie through charming villages in France, or keeping your eyes open for rampaging while exploring Pamplona Spain, you’re sure to make long lasting memories on this epic journey through two of the most romantic countries in Europe. Discover the Chateaux of Bordeaux, and take in the sweeping views on a hike through Basque country in the Pyrenees. Become enchanted with the Bahia de la Concha in San Sebastian, a gem along Spain’s Atlantic coastline. From Croissants to Crescent shaped beaches, unforgettable adventures await your family on this fun filled journey.
A few more reasons why you've gotta go:
Bayonne: This small city holds countless wonders, including botanical gardens and a majestic cathedral among others.
The cafes: From converted train stations to snug cityside coffee shops, you'll not be left wanting for beautiful cafes on this adventure.
The coastline: Explore some of the most beautiful seaside views Europe has to offer!
Bordeaux, France BOF
Bilbao, Spain BIO
Our trip begins in the bustling city center of Bordeaux with a bicycle ride on the scenic Roger Lapébie cycling path. Pedal your way past chateau’s, through enchanting forests, making sure to stop along the way at an enticing winery or two. Recharge in Lignan de Bordeaux in an old train station turned café, along this unforgettable rails to trails route. Take a break from the biking to explore the ruins of the Abbaye de La Sauve-Majeure. Tonight we’ll dine in the quaint village of Saint Émilion
Chateau Hotel & Spa Grand Barrail
Located within a 7-acre park with a lake, this 19th-century chateau hotel sits nestled between the charming village of Saint-Émilion and downtown Libourne on the banks of the Dordogne river. Featuring a spa with swimming pool, sauna, hot tub, and Turkish baths, you might not want to leave the property. A refined gourmet restaurant with stained-glass windows offers outside dining with views of scenic wineries, a bar and a cigar smoking room, and fitness center complete this gorgeous property.
Today we’ll paddle along the beautiful Dordogne river, through pastoral landscapes the have looked the same for centuries. Picnic along the river with some local wine, cheese, and baguettes… how very French of you! In the afternoon an optional bike ride or free time to climb the tower of Saint Émilion for the most stunning views of village life. Enjoy free time walking the stone streets in St. Émilion before a wonderful dinner.
We transfer to the beautiful French city of Bayonne for a walking tour of the small city and it’s Botanical gardens, Cathedral, and monuments. After lunch we head to the coast of Spain for an magical walk along a wild coastline with crashing waves and unforgettable viewpoints. Bask in the glory of the symmetrical Bahia de la Concha as we arrive at our home in the Basque region for the next 3 nights.
Hotel Mercure San Sebastian Monte Igueldo
Perched on Mount Igueldo and overlooking the scenic bay of La Concha, this upscale hotel has one of the best vantage points of the magical coastline. Polished rooms with balconies that overlook the mountain and sea, there’s also an outdoor pool and a playground, plus a casual restaurant and bar with panoramic ocean views.
This morning you’re whisked off to the historical city center of Pamplona, the home of the famous running of the bulls, for a tour of the famed streets. Learn about the pilgrimage route “Camino de Santiago” that makes its way through the impressive city. Savor a memorable tapas lunch, (more Bull anyone?), before heading off on a hike of your own through the Pyrenees in the Parque Natural Urbasa Andia. Tonight you’ll have a chance to explore the amazing food scene of San Sebastian on your own.
This morning we’ll have a chance to kayak through the picturesque bay of San Sebastian, enjoying a mesmerizing perspective on the picturesque coastal town. Find yourself on a perfect beach, wind your way through the old town, or check out the cities world class aquarium along the coast during some free time this afternoon. Tonight we end in style with a delicious final dinner together.
Arrival & Departure
Prior to the trip, arrive at your own convenience in Bordeaux via the airport of TGV station. On Day 1, we will meet you in the lobby of the Hôtel De Sèze at 8:30 a.m where after a briefing, the bike riding begins. After breakfast on Day 6, we take you to the airport, train station, or the hotel of your choice in Bilbao or San Sebastian (1.5-hour transfer).
Day 1 bicycle mileage options: 24 / 32 mi
Day 2 bicycle mileage options: 8 / 16 mi
Day 3 Hiking mileage options: 5 / 6 mi
Day 4 Hiking mileage options: 6 / 8 mi
Day 2 mileage options: 6 / 8 mi
Day 5 options: 3 / 6 mi
Perched between peaks of the Spanish Pyrenees and the picture-perfect playground of French winemakers, lies the often under visited, but never underappreciated Bordeaux and the Basque countries of Spain and France. Delight in the warm textures of two incredible regional cuisines, which are home to a few of the world’s most influential chefs and some of the most undeniably mouth-watering flavors. Paired with a perfect regional wine from two of the most prestigious vine growing regions in both France and Spain, connoisseurs cannot help but feel indulgent. Explore a complex crossroads of cultures in Pamplona where the famous pilgrim trail of El Camino de Santiago intersects with the same streets the bulls roam each year in June. All set on the backdrop of stunning Coastal scenery, fresh mountain air, and expansive wine chateaus this region is sure to capture your heart and imagination.
Austin Adventures guides are experienced facilitators and regional experts. They take the time to explain the local history and daily sightseeing and route options. Each route has been carefully planned to include options to please each traveler’s interests. Austin Adventures guides are available to help you select the distance that’s right for you and to offer advice and assistance as you desire.
The hallmark of an Austin Adventures vacation is our exceptional dining. All meals: breakfasts, lunches, snacks, dinners, refreshments and receptions are included as indicated by the itinerary. (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner). Alcoholic beverages and related gratuities are not included in the trip price.
After receiving your reservation and deposit, we’ll send you a pre-trip planner with general information about the area you’ll be visiting, a packing list, exercise guidelines, a guest information questionnaire and a liability release agreement for you to sign and return within 10 days.
Included in the Trip Price
- Double occupancy rooms with private baths.
- All breakfasts. Lunches and dinners as listed by day. Snacks along the route.
- Fully trained, first-aid certified professional guides and knowledgeable local partners.
- Bikes, helmets and other necessary equipment – all safe and well maintained.
- Vehicle support and land transportation during the trip.
- Austin Adventures T-shirt, water bottle, luggage tags and luggage service.
- Pre-departure and packing information.
- Incidental expenses such as taxes, dining and housekeeping gratuities, local partner and expert gratuities
Not Included in the Trip Price
- Gratuities to Austin Adventures guides.
- Alcoholic beverages and related gratuities.
- Pre-and post-trip accommodations and associated expenses.
- Air and land transportation to/from host cities.
- All types of personal insurance.
- Personal expenses.
Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.1 Easy (1)
Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.2 Moderately Easy (2)
European Operations Manager
After moving to a new neighborhood at age five, Adam took off on his bike in search of new friends in Minnesota. More than thirty years later Adam still enjoys making friends on his bike while cycling around Europe. Adam has lived the life of a nomad, having taught English in China, managed a beach […]