5 unforgettable activities to do in Navarra that will suit everyone's taste
For many, Navarra is synonymous with San Fermin, bull runs and tides of people in white and red.
But the truth is that, Navarra, is a lot more than that.
Navarra hides endless surprises for you, the food lover...
Or for you, the sports enthusiast...
Or for you, always fascinated by legends and history ...
And, especially for you, the person who dreams of being able to relax surrounded by a pristine natural environment, away from the hustle and bustle of the big city.
Whatever you do, the personality and charm of this little heaven in the North of Spain will steal your heart.
To give you an idea of ??how much our land offers, we have compiled some suggestions to suit everyone’s taste.
Here they are:
Must-do activities in Navarra for the foodie
A list of activities to do in Navarra must start with a reference to our gastronomy.
Because here the verb "comer" (to eat) acquires a totally different meaning from anywhere else.
In Navarra we eat because we enjoy the quality of our product (we have 15 designations of origin, testimony of the excellent quality of the raw material of our land).
And in Navarra we eat because we enjoy the social aspect of eating.
Eating is a very important part of our lives.
The Basque-Navarre cuisine it’s a rural cuisine without any pretensions. Just like us.
We use a few ingredients, born of the great variety of landscapes and climates of our land, all of excellent quality: meat, fish and vegetables produced in some of the best orchards in Spain (with all respect to our friends in La Rioja and Murcia who surely would have something to say about that!).
We like to be able to recognize the true flavor of the product, and enjoy its true essence. No spices. No games (although, as of late, many young chefs are taking the Basque-Navarre cuisine to a completely new different place and we totally love that!).
The act of “eating” for us, is synonymous with friendship and good vibes. Hence, “pintxos”, one of our most ingrained traditions. Because together, with our friends and/or family, we hop from bar to bar before lunch and dinner, enjoying the amazing variety and quality of pintxos prepared by our great cooks.
Are you keen to try some of this delicious "miniature cuisine"?
Find out more in our post This is how we eat in Northern Spain, are you joining us?
Must-do activities in Navarra for the nature lover
Green valleys, snowy peaks, amazing gorges sculpted by erosion, caves, lakes, forests, natural parks...
The surprising geographical and climatic variety in Navarra opens up an endless number of possibilities for the nature lover. You can practice air, snow and water sports, hiking, cycling, mountaineering ... the list is endless.
Where do you start?
Here are some suggestions:
Framed by the intense green of the slopes of this valley, here you’ll find palaces, tiny hamlets, monasteries and medieval bridges. Lose yourself in any of the natural trails on the Baztán Valley and discover the many fascinating legends that talk of a past full of witches, pilgrims and smugglers!
Natural Park of the Manor of Bertiz
Enjoy the 2,040 beautiful hectares of this natural enclave located in the western Pyrenees, on the banks of the river Bidasoa. Discover the charms of its hundred-year-old botanical garden and the many trails in this exuberant Atlantic forest.
Carved by the erosion caused by the Urtxuma River for over 14,000 years, the Urdax caves enclose a magical universe that tell tales of legendary characters like witches, smugglers, pilgrims, monks and catholic inquisitors. Join one of the guided tours through the fascinating galleries of these caves hidden in the picturesque Pyrenean town of Urdazubi /Urdax.
Declared Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, the Bardenas Natural Park offers a totally different scenery to the leafy forests of the north of Navarra. A semi-deserted landscape stretches along the park's 42,500 hectares, sculpting unusual clay and sandstone forms. Its lunar-looking environment has inspired artists all over the world. Many TV and movies have also been filmed in the Bardenas Natural Park, including, the acclaimed series, "Game of Thrones".
Birth of Urrederra River
One of the most impressive natural spaces in Navarra, the birth of the Urederra River will surprise you with its impressive waterfalls, rocky amphitheatres, and the vivid turquoise of its many natural pools. A trail suitable for all fitness levels that travels along the course of the river, this natural jewel houses some very unusual local fauna including vultures, Egyptian vultures, kites and eaglets.
Must-do activities in Navarra for the wine connoisseur
Thanks to the unique climatic conditions that meet in Navarra where the Atlantic, Mediterranean and continental climates converge in a region of about 150 km in length, Navarra produces some of the best wines in the Iberian Peninsula. Five different wine producing areas - Baja Montaña, Valdizarbe, Tierra Estella, Ribera Alta and Ribera Baja – offering equally exquisite wines.
If you love good wine, you will feel at home in any of them.
Must-do activities in Navarra for culture and history buffs
The Old Kingdom of Navarra is one of the political entities of greater historical continuity in the entire European continent. One of the first domains that emerged in Spain after the disintegration of the Visigoth kingdoms and the invasion of the Arabs, Navarra was one of the engines of the Spanish reconquest against the Arab invaders. Our King Sancho III united part of the kingdom of Castile-Leon, Aragon, the Rioja and, of course, Navarra under his rule great.
In Navarra we are proud of our heritage and we take care of it. Today, many of our beautiful historical homes, palaces and castles are available for rental. Villa Argentina is one such example. From the comfort of some of the most beautiful properties in Spain, you can enjoy a serene environment as well as the rich culture, history and local cuisine, helping you connect with the essence of this beautiful land and its immemorial past.
A small town of only 200 inhabitants in the western Pyrenees of Navarra, you will fall in love with Zugarramurdi not only for its traditional white houses and the natural charm of its surroundings, but also for the many local legends that talk about potions, spells and witchcraft among its neighbors. Join the town of Zugarramurdi on August 18 and celebrate the incomparable history of this mystic village with the locals. And do not miss their wonderful caves!
Art, tradition, culture, and above all, community, merge in Pamplona, Hemingway’s favorite destination!
Founded by the Basques in the first millennium BC under the name of Iruna, Pamplona succumbed to the forces of the Roman Emperor Cnea Pompeyo from which the city derives its present name. The medieval Pamplona was divided in three socially differentiated boroughs and divided by walls. The Old Town today still preserves part of the walls, churches and palaces of the old days and its timeworn cobbled streets have become pedestrian areas buzzing with bars, restaurants and an ever ending flow of happy city dwellers.
The historic heart of Pamplona is located in Plaza del Castillo, one of Hemingway's favorite spots and vantage point from where he used to watch the locals entering and leaving the many restaurants, bars and hotels in this area.
Many of the old town alleys are known today for being part of the slippery course where bulls and men run for their lives during the “Encierro”. Other musts in this area are: The beautiful Cathedral of Pamplona, ??the Town Hall and the Museum of Navarra.
Puente la Reina and Eunate
It is in this picturesque medieval bridge that all the roads that lead to Santiago de Compostela unite, forming a unique route through the historic town of its name, "Puente la Reina". Through its cobbled streets, pilgrims gather strength and continue with towards the final point of destination of their long journey.
Overlooking this stately town 42 km south of Pamplona, ??stands the slender silhouette and the battlements of the castle-palace of Olite. Rumor has it that Walt Disney was inspired by this wonderful construction to create the famous Sleeping Beauty castle. Whether it is true or a myth, the Castle-Palace and the village of Olite will transport you to an era of princesses, jugglers, archers and tournaments. Watch it all unfold while enjoying one of Olite’s delicious "wines", as this villa is considered the wine capital of Navarra.
Must-do activities in Navarra for the sport lover
On foot, on horseback, by bike, quad or even in a segway! Your choice! Whatever you do, you will be surrounded by a natural environment second to none. Disconnect by practicing quiet activities in any of our natural parks, or get your adrenaline fix by paragliding and hang gliding over the Belagua Valley, the Sierra de Aralar or the Sierra de Leire.
And, to conclude that unforgettable day in Navarra, is there anything better than sitting on Villa Argentina’s outdoor entertainment area, with a glass of local wine, taking in the amazing landscape that surrounds it?
Book your dream holiday in Navarra here today!