A Walk in Zarautz, Spain – On and Off the Camino Del Norte

December 11, 2014 — Leave a comment

Although, I had only known my walking companions for a day, it felt much longer. Since we had met on the seaside trail above San Sebastián, we shared our own little adventure which included a few good laughs on and off the Camino del Norte. This day was enjoyable as we walked, had lunch in Orio, and experienced the first views of Zarautz together. I was glad to have the company of the ladies but I knew that if I wanted to complete the Camino del Norte in a reasonable time, I had to continue walking past the early afternoon.

I left my last post, On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Orio to Zarautz, just after I said goodbye to the ladies who were off to the beach for a relaxing afternoon and evening. Now, let’s continue along the Camino to the Franciscan monastery, Convento de San Juan Bautista, which was founded by Zarautz native Don Juan de Manzisidor in the early 17th century. The Convento which houses a church, a convent, and a school, was renovated extensively over a period starting in 1959.

Franciscan monastery Zarautz Camino del Norte Spain


Zarautz dates to about 1237 when the Castilian kings made their way to the coastline and located settlements that earlier included nearby San Sebastián. The Iglesia de Santa María la Real was one of the earliest buildings in Zarautz, although much of what you see here dates to the 16th century and later. The doors were locked when I was there but I understand the retablo which dates to 1560 is quite beautiful. Also of interest to pilgrims, the church contains the Tomb of the Zarauz-Gamboa which reportedly has a scallop shell carved on the outside.

Church of Santa María la Real Zarautz Euskadi Spain
sign Church Santa María la Real Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 Now it’s time to visit the beach…

beach summer Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 I don’t remember what this piece was called but thought it was interesting.

beach art Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 Shops, cafés, and apartments lined the promenade which was clean and well-taken care of.

beach promenade Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 Let’s continue the opposite way…

beach esplanade Zarautz Euskadi Spain
promenade Zarautz beach Euskadi Spain


 Far in the distance, about center-right, is the town of Getaria where we’ll visit very soon.

Zarautz beach Euskadi Spain


I was really hoping I wouldn’t have to climb the hill to Getaria and was happy that the Camino followed along the sea.

beach Zarautz Euskadi Spain Basque


 Let’s head back to the Camino, past these homes…

Zarautz home Spain Camino del norte


 under this bridge…

Narros Palace Zarautz Spain Camino del norte


to the 16th century Gothic Narros Palace where Queen Isabella II and Fabiola of Belgium spent many of their Summers.

Narros Palace Zarautz Euskadi Spain


The hill where I was not long before now looks so far! At 2.8 kilometers, Zarautz has one of the longest beaches in all of Spain.

summer promenade Zarautz beach basque spain


Zarautz Euskadi beach Spain basque


Food is very important in Zarautz and it has many well-known restaurants. In fact, Zarautz doesn’t have one gastronomical society but many. These are called Txoko in Basque and traditionally, only open to males. Located on the edge of the town, Aiten-Etxe Restaurante de Zarautz specializes in meat and seafood.

Aiten-Etxe Restaurante Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 The breakwater enclosure and tiny harbour for small vessels.

breakwater enclosure Zarautz Euskadi Spain


breakwater Cantabrian Sea Zarautz Euskadi Spain


 The Camino follows along a promenade adjacent to the Cantabrian Sea all the way to Getaria.

Cantabrian Getaria Zarautz Spain Camino del norte

On my next post, On the Camino Del Norte in Spain, Zarautz to Getaria, we’ll follow that beautiful walk to the Basque seaside resort town of Getaria where I would make a decision that would result in a very long and exhausting day. Please join me.

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.


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