The cosmopolitan city of Bilbao is the economic capital of the Basque country. It is a city of contrasts, from its industrial past and gray buildings to its world-renowned Guggenheim Museum. The city has become a popular centre for culture and the arts in Spain and Europe.
The seaside ancient port and resort city of San Sebastián is a one hour’s drive from Bilbao and offers both the charm of a small town and the advantages of a large capital city tracing its roots back to its birth as a small fishing village in ancient times. Cross the border into France and lunch in Biarritz, destination of the European royalty and famous.
La Rioja is a small region nestled into north-central Spain at an hour’s drive from Bilbao and is noted for being one of Spain's most famous wine producing areas as well as having an important historical heritage. Of major interest is the Way of Saint James, a part of which leads through La Rioja, where monumental towns of great beauty dot the landscape such as San Millán de la Cogolla, Santo Domingo de la Calzada, Calahorra and Arnedo; The monasteries are not only of high artistic value but also of cultural importance, for it is here where the first texts in Castilian Spanish were written.