Beneath Biscay

By Douglian

Getariako Txakolina

Txakonin the local wine produced in the district around the towns of Getaria and Zarautz on the Baquse coast, new San Sebastian.

On the second day of our stay in Zarautz we walked to Getaria, over the hills and past the vineyards on the way out and via the coast road on the way back.

It was a glorious sunny day. The first kilometre or so was steeply up hill out of Zarautz on large, possibly roman, cobbles. Soon we were passing farmhouses where every inch of the landscape seemed to be put to productive use, whether for vines or vegetable gardens with huge marrows, tomatoes, peppers, beans, onions etc. all for their own tables I imagine.

We passed one very modernistic house built into a hillside (see extra photos) and even this had a vegetable roof garden. There was quite a bit of activity with tractors buzzing around with loaded with grapes.

It really did seem like the land of plenty.

We descended into Geteria, a small fishing town, but birthplace of both Sebastian Elcano, first to complete a circumnavigation of the world, and Cristobál Balenciaga, the famous fashion designer. The former has a huge monument in the town in his honour and the latter, a huge museum. Being a Monday, the museum was shut. This was not a huge disappointment for me I must admit, but I would have liked to have bought something for my daughter.

After wandering around the town we stopped at a bar in the harbour where I tried my first glass of txakolin. To my surprise it was poured from a height, rather like the cider back in Asturias. It was well chilled and after the long hot walk it went down a treat.

Then a 'menu del dia' in a local bar before walking back to Zarautz along the coast road. Tiring, but a great day out.

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