Guéthary, the soul of the Basque Country
05 October 2017 - Destinations
Guéthary - New Saint-Tropez n°3
In 1962, Catherine Deneuve took her first surf lesson there. Today, Guéthary is one of the French Touch's favorite vacation spots, and international celebrities like Madonna fall in love with it for the summer. Even Frédéric Beigbeder, the most Parisian of all writers has permanently dumped "le Flore" for "le Madrid" in Ghéthary.
It's not the sweetness of life, the vigorous ocean sprays, the connection with the nature or its strong character that make Guéthary, this tiny village of the Basque coast, a paradise that captivates anonymous and celebrities for decades. But a combination of all that added to something indescribable that hangs in the air and explodes in your face when you barely have stepped foot on its floor. As an old whaling port, an elegant beach resort and the temple of the surf culture, the village of Guéthary has preserved a wild authenticity, an unwavering consistency, letting go remorselessly the fashions, rumors and versatile lovers.
Le Madrid: The favorite place in Guéthary. Considered a true institution, it is impossible not to stop by Le Madrid, even only to drink a coffee. The whole of Guéthary meets there. Sleeping there is a privilege. The hotel offers 5 rooms with a contemporary, refined, and chic design. Some rooms enjoy an ocean view.
Hôtel villa Catarie: Located in a charming traditional Basque villa, the Villa Catarie Hotel is an intimate place where it's good to meet up, at night, in the beautiful flowered garden.
Arguibel: Luxurious guest house located away from the village, on the hills of Guéthary, in the middle of several valleys. This elegant Basque villa from the '30s offers 5 trendy rooms subtly decorated. Every room has its own balcony or terrace. Arty and chic.
Hôtel Briketenia: The gastronomic restaurant of the Briketenia Hotel - 1 star in the Michelin Guide - is certainly one of the best in the village. Classic and chic. firstname.lastname@example.org
Le Poinçon: Located in the old Guéthary Station, this restaurant offers fresh market cuisine in a pop and joyful setting. A patio with an ocean view or a teak bar overhanging the tracks, at your liking.
Providence Guéthary: A hybrid place, young and trendy at the heart of Ghéthary that tickles your taste buds and spirit. Café, restaurant Elsa Marie with surprise plates, boutique, gallery, grocery store and more. The selection is rigorous and the atmosphere is spicy.
Le C: Beware of appearances at Le C. At first glance, you can only see a simple hut made up of bits and pieces, certainly installed in a heavenly setting, on a cliff facing the sea, but the elaborate menu offers the ultimate in gastronomy. Highly recommendable spot. Our favorite place.
Café de Madrid (see also in the Hotels section): Meeting place of the whole of Guéthary. An absolute must to capture the essence of the village.
Hétéroclito: The Hétéroclito - and the Kostaldea located lower - are sufficient for happiness of any stranger who is falling in love with the Basque Country. Surf atmosphere - the famous Parlementia spot is across) - running shoes, sunglasses, groups of friends for 25 years or 5 minutes. You can't miss it.
Kostaldea: Probably the coolest bar in the world, let's not be afraid of the words. A perfect spot on the waterfront for a drink (do not miss their "couteaux à la plancha") and to enjoy the sunset, the surfers, or both. An atmosphere of peace, love and surf.
- Take a surf lesson: of course you will not start on the legendary waves of the Basque Country but if you want to feel the sensations of surfing, this is where you need to go. École de surf de Guéthary
- Try out the national sport: the Basque ball on the marquee located in the center of the village.
- Visit the municipal park: modern sculptures from the contemporary art museum are scattered inside the century-old tree park.
- If you feel like extending your Basque getaway by taking the coastal path going towards Saint-Jean-de-Luz, take a break on the roof of the Balda Food Bus truck on the Cenitz Beach. The view is stunning.
- Don't miss the restaurant La Ferme Ostalapia, run by Christian Duplessis. Natural delightful setting, crazy plates.
How do you get around ?
- By foot
- By tuk-tuk: as weird as it may seem, you can also get around with these famous tricycles originally from Asia.
You can't leave the Basque Country without
A T-shirt BTZ La Côte des Basques, the surf magazine Hotdogger, the espadrille of Art of Soule.
The movies to see:
L’amour dure 3 ans from Frédéric Beigbeder (2011). The parisian cynism floored by love, between Paris and the Basque Country.
Le Refuge from François Ozon (2009). A story of birth and rebirth facing the sea.
Bring in your suitcase:
For her: our red bikini, very mermaid like at Cenitz beach.
For him: our swim trunks with shellfish prints, red-colored of course.
Your trip's soundtrack
Bon Air Electrical or Simple Things.
Lovers both on and off stage, Gaétane and Guillaume have chosen the fresh air of Guéthary as their adoptive and inspirational home to deliver a surf music between folk and «easy-going».