Upcoming events in the Basque Country: what not to miss in 2023

In the Basque Country, as elsewhere, 2023 will see a return to traditional festivities, a taste of the land and cultural encounters. The Biper Gorri campsite has put together a selection of unmissable and unusual events not to be missed during your vacation in the Basque Country.

APRIL: Biper Gorri presents its new features for the 2023 season

April, don’t get your hopes up, but spring looks set to be sunny with the reopening of our 4-star Basque Country campsite in Espelette. Mark your calendars for April 8, 2023! As well as a selection of not-to-be-missed vacation events, we’ve also got some great accommodation and lots of new features for the season!

JUNE: Cherry Festival in Itxassou

June is cherry season in Itxassou! A colorful country tradition that has been attracting crowds beyond the Basque borders since the 1950s. Join us on the 1st weekend of June, just after the producers’ harvest, to fill up on black cherries, jams and other local produce. The festivities kick off at 10 a.m. with a Basque mass. The day is punctuated by events: pelota challenge at the fronton, dance performances, Basque strength games, makilaris, workshops, tours, games for children, donkey and pottok rides. More about the Cherry Festival in Itxassou

JULY: The Basque Country in the spotlight on the Tour de France

The Basque Country is in the spotlight for the 110th edition of the Tour de France. The start of the Grand Loop will be given from Bilbao, the historic capital of the Spanish Basque Country, on Saturday, July 1, 2023. The second stage will link Vitoria-Gasteiz to San Sebastian on July 2, while on Monday, July 3, the cyclists will make their entry into France, arriving in Bayonne after a start in Amorebieta-Etxano in Biscay. More information on the official Tour de France website.

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The AGENDA for village festivals in the Basque Country In July, Pamplona dresses in red and white for one of the world’s best-known festivals

AUGUST: Cesta Punta Professional Internationals

This is the not-to-be-missed summer event in Saint-Jean-de-Luz to discover the sporting world of Basque pelota. For several weeks, the world’s best players take part in this high-level competition, broadcast on major sports channels such as Canal+. Cesta punta is the fastest ball game in the world (200 km/h on average) and the most spectacular of Basque pelota. From July 5 to August 25, 2023, every Tuesday and Thursday evening at the Jaï-Alaï (indoor playground) in Saint-Jean-de-Luz. At the end of the game, in the lobby, the pro players will be waiting to take a selfie with you. More info

SEPTEMBER: Bixintxo festival in Urrugne

On the first weekend in September,Urrugne‘s festivities, known as “Bixintxo” (pronounced bichintcho), offer a musical and family program in the local tradition. Basque pelota, bandas, country-style meal and toro fuego. The pedestrian bullfight traditionally marks the opening of the festival. Wednesday is the day of the Comice agricole, a festive event that has been going on for over 200 years. An opportunity to plunge right into the heart of local traditions. From Friday, September 1 to Wednesday, September 6, 2023.

OCTOBER: Chilli Festival in Espelette

Every year, on the last weekend in October, the village of Espelette celebrates its famous pepper, brought back from Mexico in the 16th century by the Conquistadors. It is much sought-after by chefs the world over for both its gustatory and visual qualities. All day long, gastronomic fair, sale of chillies and regional products, as well as concerts, bandas and Basque songs. Nearly 20,000 visitors are expected in Espelette for the event. Don’t miss: the blessing of the chillies, the Confréries parade and the induction ceremony, followed by the “Chilli of the Year” award ceremony. Saturday, October 28 and Sunday, October 29, 2023.