On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Zarautz to Getaria

January 3, 2015 — 8 Comments

For many pilgrims, Zarautz is a logical choice for their second night on the Camino del Norte. If you have time, spend a few hours or even a day. I was surprised how modern and touristy the Basque town was. I think many of us gravitate toward the beach but make sure you explore the downtown too. As for me, I had my sights on Deba for my second night. It was a strenuous 22 kilometers away which I don’t recommend on the second day, especially for an out-of-shape pilgrim like I was!

I left my last post, A Walk in Zarautz, Spain – On and Off the Camino Del Norte, just on the outskirts of Zarautz. Now, let’s continue along the Cantabrian Sea for a scenic, and I must add, very flat, walk to Getaria.

Shore Zarautz Getaria Spain Camino del norte copy


An interesting sculpture along the route.

Sculpture Zarautz Getaria Spain Camino del norte


Looking back at Zarautz. The hill at the center-right, where I had been only a couple of hours earlier, now looks so far (I know I said that from Zarautz but now it REALLY looked far!)

Rocky shore Zarautz Getaria Spain Camino del norte


My immediate destination of Getaria is in the center. San Antón Mountain is on the right. It’s difficult to see here but there is a lighthouse on the right peak of the mountain. San Antón Mountain is affectionately known as the Mouse of Getaria due to its peculiar shape. From this angle, it looks more like a hedgehog to me. Originally, San Antón Mountain was an island but the harbour was filled to join the mainland.

Getaria Spain Camino San Antón Mountain


 The rocky Basque shoreline.

Rocky shore Zarautz Getaria Spain Camino del norte Basque


The one lane tunnel for the highway leaving Getaria.

highway tunnel Getaria Spain Camino del norte


I’m not sure what these birds are. If you know, please leave a comment below.

rocky shore birds Getaria Spain Camino del norte



rocky formation Getaria Spain Camino del norte


Malkorbe Beach is prominent on this side of Getaria. Gaztetape Beach is another sandy beach on the West side of town.

Zarautz Getaria Malkorbe Beach San Antón Mountain



Sign Getaria Spain Camino del norte


Loved houses with flowers and vines.

Getaria Spain Camino del norte home


I have no idea if this is a palace or a hotel but wouldn’t mind spending a night here (or a month). I’ll take the top floor.

home Getaria Spain Camino del norte


Malkorbe Beach is 420 meters in length and can get very busy. The 14th century Church of San Salvador is in the center. The highest tower is the Tower of the Inquisition which took 230 years to build. Five years after its completion, lightening struck and destroyed the top of the tower.

Malkorbe Beach Getaria San Antón Mountain Church San Salvador


Steep cliffs with a stone bridge above the beach. On the right is…

Getaria Spain Camino del norte beach


Monument Juan Sebastian Elcano.

Basque explorer, Juan Sebastián Elcano, was born in Getaria in 1476. He was famed for completing the Magellan-Elcano expedition in 1522 which was the first circumnavigation of the Earth. The monument dates to 1922, the 400th anniversary of the circumnavigation, however, it wasn’t completed until later in the 20th century. Let’s take a closer look…

Getaria Spain Monument Juan Sebastian Elcano


The statue is actually a replica of “Nike of Samothrace” with the head of Elcano.

Monument Juan Sebastian Elcano Getaria Gipuzkoa



Monument Juan Sebastian Elcano Getaria Spain



Monument Juan Sebastian Elcano Getaria


Sadly, Juan Sebastián Elcano died at sea during the Loaísa Expedition in 1955. Getaria has two other statues to commemorate perhaps its most famous citizen.

Please join me on my next post, On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Getaria to Zumaia, as we continue through Getaria and before I would encounter a roller coaster of ups and downs on the way to Deba where I would stay the night.

If you have my book, Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, or have ordered it, I really appreciate your support. It’s also out on Kindle and Kobo. My Goodreads and Amazon pages have reviews and more information. Please share this post, and thanks for your time.

About Randall St. Germain

Randall St. Germain, author of Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, is a middle-aged Canadian Boy who is passionate about nature, photography, hiking, music, and self-improvement. After the death of his mother, he chose to walk the famous pilgrimage, the Camino de Santiago, across the north of Spain, despite knowing little about it. He certainly didn’t plan to write a book until the latter days of his Camino. Similar to walking the Camino, writing and publishing a book was a learning experience. It was also very rewarding, and part of his ongoing journey. Please join him as he takes you along on his journey in Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, and on his blog Camino My Way.


8 responses to On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Zarautz to Getaria

  1. These photographs are gorgeous! I would love to visit some day!

  2. Hey!! I stumbled upon your page actually and was reading through your Camino del Norte blog and realized you are there NOW!! wow. how fortunate was that? I’m looking forward to your daily reporting. How’s the weather there, it looks nice and sunny!! I completed my camino frances in April 2013 and since have thought about whether my next camino is going to be another Frances or the Norte. Your blog might just change my mind. 🙂 Buen camino, my fellow Canadian. God’s speed.

    • Serene, I completed the del Norte long ago. I’m just way behind on my blog. This is from my Summer Camino del Norte. It is not possible to blog like this from the Camino and I like to concentrate on experiencing the actual Camino instead of finding a computer and WIFI. Blogging right across the Francés and now, the del Norte, is an arduous task for me, but I promise to go as fast as I can. Take care and Buen Camino 🙂

  3. Hello,

    many compliments on your blog. I found it and read the Camino Frances portion of it only after returning from my own pilgrimage last year. You took photos of all the places along the Way that were incredibly important to me – what a treat for me, as I decided against taking photos during the Camino, wanting to fully immerse myself in the walk, but wishing afterwards I had some!

    I am walking the Camino del Norte starting on the 3rd of April 2015 – this time I’m reading your blog before my journey, and am looking forward to you finishing it before I leave 🙂

    Many thanks and Buen Camino,

    • Matus, thanks for visiting my blog. Glad you like it. I don’t know if I’ll finish the entire Camino del Norte on my blog by April, but I’ll try. I walked for 24 days and I’m only on Day 2 on my blog. I’m also re-working some of my earlier Camino Francés post and trying to include other destinations. I wish you a safe and pleasant journey. Buen Camino 🙂

  4. What time of the year did you do the Camino del Norte? From what I’ve read of that route, it isn’t marked that well and the hostels are supposed to be few in number and the route is described as being difficult in many spots. Can you add any insight to those somments? Really enjoying reading your blog!
    Brent in Kingston, Ontario

  5. Brent, I started in the first week of July. The route is marked mostly fine until you get to Asturias. Unless there has been recent improvements, much of the route was difficult and frustrating. Arrows were often faded,the Camino sometimes followed more than one route, other Caminos were marked better and so on. I’m not saying this was aways the case, but there would be many days where I spent walking the wrong path for minutes or more. And I’m usually good at route finding. Basque Country, Cantabria, and Galicia are marked fine for the most part.

    The albergues are less with less beds than the Frances. Then again, there are less pilgrims. If you walk into the mid afternoon, you should not have too many problems. If you like to walk into the evening like I do, then there were many issues. I had to carry enough money for a hotel room every day, just in case. I believe I stayed in hotel rooms at least 12 times.

    The route is much more difficult than the Frances. You’ll experience a roller coaster of ups and downs on most days.

    Thanks for stopping by. Sorry, I’m not blogging the del Norte faster. Buen Camino 🙂

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