Our Advice on Bike Rides for Biarritz and The Basque Coast
We recommend 2 beautiful electric bike rides from Biarritz along the coast.
Cycling from Biarritz to Saint Jean de Luz.
A perfect place to start on the Grande Plage with the Biarritz Casino fixed at one end and the royal Hotel du Palais dominating the northern end. We’re heading South. Follow the coast line with the beach on your right, past the ice cream stands, crepe shops and the grand Saint Eugénie Chapel. Peer down upon the Fisherman’s Port with all the quant fishing boats moored safely from waves. Through the tunnel will see you pop out in front of the Biarritz Aquarium which is directly opposite the Virgin on the Rock and the famous bridge that was originally built under the orders of Napoleon III. Next up is the picturesque Port Vieux which literally translates to ‘Old Port’, watch out for the white bears, the swimmers that make it their purpose to swim here every day of the year. Keep to the coast and the beautiful Villa Belza will welcome you the the stretch of beach that is perfectly name the Coté de Basque (Basque Coast). Make your way up the bike path that climbs up the cliff called the Cent March (100 Steps). Be sure to stop at the top and take in the breath taking view of the Pyrenees and the Spanish coastline to the left. Follow the road and cruise down the wonderful decent towards Plage de la Milidy, looking out to the sandy beach often filled with umbreallas, surfers, and smiling faces. You are not far from the Cité de l’Océan and Ilbiaritz Golf Course.
Keep to the dedicated bike path and follow the signs to Bidart, passing the lookout to Plage d’Erretegia. Meander along the road Corniche de la Falaise until you arrive at Chappelle Sainte Madeleine, possibly one of the best views in Bidart. With a backdrop of the Pyrenees, you can see clearly the jagged coast line of Spain and all the towns in between. Next you’re heading straight into the town centre of Bidart. So many local shops like, Etxe Peio, with all it’s local food specialties, and L’Atalier with locally handmade bags, jewellery and more. The Fronton de Bidart is often filled with people, whether there is a game of pelote basque being played, local dancing in the square, the weekly market or just people basking in the sunshine. Stop, walk around and even pop your head into the restaurant Elissaldia, a restaurant with a trinquet court inside where there is often a fast indoor game of pelote basque being played.
Cruise down Rue l’Uhabia on your way towards Plage de L’uhabia, over the little bridge, past the beach carpark and keep going until you reach the first street on your right, Chemin Palementia. You will have a slight climb along the marked bike path however the rewarding view from the picturesque church of Saint Joseph des Falaises is well worth it. Here you can look out to the famous wave of Parlementia which can get as big as 6 meters on a big swell day.
Continue down the hill and over the bridge, where Chemin Zubialdeko greets you on the right, you’re now entering the little town of Guéthary. Often referred to as little Paris the streets are often filled with the very trendy and fabulously dressed, not really a barefoot or bare chest in sight as that seems to only be appropriate for the actual beach.
Back over the train line guiding yourself past the charming train station, pass Plage de Cenitz and you will soon find yourself on the dedicated bike path. Cruise along the cliff top overlooking Plage de Lafitenia, you’ll pass camping car after camping car as this is the valley of the camp grounds, where families set up their home away from home to enjoy the beaches and seaside restaurants. Get yourself back to ocean level and hit the bike path next to the sand at Plage d’Erromardie. Not a surfer in sight here, barely a ripple on the water, lots of sun baking and listening to the music playing from the nearby bars and restaurants. From here the path is clearly marked as you make your way towards your first glimpse of the bay of Saint Jean de Luz. The glistening white facade of the Pointe de Sainte Barbe will welcome you at the north opening of the bay. This little church/bunker has lived through the wars, been occupied by the Spanish, the Germans and now the French, it has been built and demolished and rebuilt again over the years. With the bay on your left, cruise along the edges until you make your way to the town’s centre. Saint Jean de Luz is so much more than a humble fishing town with it’s buzzing indoor market, cobble stone streets, the House of Louis XIV and Sainte Jean Baptiste Church. It’s time to explore and congratulate yourself on your ride…then all you have to do is get back.
Cycling from Biarritz to Bayonne.
A perfect place to start is on the Grande Plage. With the Biarritz Casino fixed at one end, head towards the royal Hotel du Palais Grande Plage dominating the northern end of the prominard. With a steady climb just ahead you’ll pass the Biarritz Lighthouse and the Biarritz Lighthouse Golf Course. You may be saying goodbye to Biarritz but it’s a big warm hello to Anglet and their designated bike paths. Surrounded by stone houses that we can barely even begin to imagine how they were built all those years ago, it is only moments before the overwhelming ocean view of Plage de la Petite Chambre d’Amour arrives. Whether you take the bike path directly next to the beach or the bike path next to the Boulevard des Plages you’ll be wizzing past the many beaches of Anglet where you’ll see happy families, salty surfers, beachside restaurants and countless ice-cream stands. Making your way to where the river Adour of Bayonne meets the Atlantic Ocean often filled with large cargo ships unloading their treasures. Glide along the banks of the river, watching as the cargo ships turn into sailing boats and the trees turn into buildings adorned with different coloured shutters. The oceans horizon disappears behind you, you’re arriving in Bayonne with it’s gothic style Bayonne Cathedral, Basque Museum and narrow medieval streets. It’s time to explore and congratulate yourself on your ride…then all you have to do is get back.