What to do in the Basque Region - March 2018


A list of mains events in the Basque Country (in Spain & France), Navarra, Rioja & Cantabria to enjoy after your private tour. 

Easter in Balmaseda.

Regarding traditions and festivities in Basque region:

  • In Pamplona. Week of the Pintxo. From March 2nd until 11th. 
  • In Sopuerta, Biscay, Pork Butcher's Festival (Chacineria), contest to choose the best Basque pork butcher and making contests of best Spanish sausage chorizo and best black pudding. March 4th.
  • In Javier (Navarre). “Javierada”. Pilgrimage to the Castle of San Javier. Old Navarra Tradition dating back to nineteenth century. From March 4th until 12th. First Javierada: day 4th. Second Javierada: March 10th.
  • In Moreda de Alava. VII Edition of the Olive Oil Fair of Alava. Great opportunity to get to know the world of olive trees and olive oil in the area. Agricultural and food fair. Organized by: Ayuntamiento de Moreda de Álava. March 18th.
  • In Bakio. St. Joseph Festival. The wineries of Bakio present the txakoli elaborated with the harvest obtained the previous year. March 18th. 
  • In Mutriku. Mackerel Fish Day. Where, apart of food market and pintxos, you can see a traditional Basque boats competition. March 24th.
  • In Bilbao. BASQUE FEST GOURMET. Exhibition space of tourist regions of the Basque Country with information on their destinations and their food and wine attractions, free express tastings, workshops and activities ... Arenal Port. March 29th to 31st.
  • Easter is celebrated all over the Basque Country from March 29th until April 2nd this year, but these are the best places to see something different in your visit: 
    • Segura (Gipuzkoa) and Balmaseda (Biscay). These have famous living performance by locals representing the last days of Jesus Christ life from the 1600s.
    • Bilbao and Vitoria and other smaller towns have traditional parades which take out of the churches images and march in an old traditional penitent dressing (dressing that some foreigners wrongly confused by some foreigners with Ku Klux Clan costumes).
    • Hondarribia. Religious processions dating back to the begining of the 1600s. 
    • Laudio - Llodio, Alava - Araba, The Traditional "Friday of Sorrows". A festival originally granted by the Christian Catholic Church to the locals to enjoy meat during Easter. Nowadays a lively market to see Basque farmers showing best of their horses, goats, sheeps, cattle, etc. Exhibit of Basque Traditional Sport of stone pulling by oxes. 
    • Bergara. Ramos Saturday Fair. On the eve of Palm Sunday, the city of Bergara organizes a cattle and agricultural fair. It is preceded by a bertsolaris festival on Friday night
  • In Tolosa. "KARAKOL SALTSA". Snail race competition. Snails tasting. March 30th.
  • In Vitoria-Gasteiz. The Napoleonic Market. It gathers, during a whole weekend, more than 140 stalls of gastronomy and local products. In addition there are activities, performances, theaters, parades, recreations and characters from the time of the French occupation for all audiences. Arriaga Park. Neighborhood Association Ipar-Arriaga . March and April.

Gustoko Gastronomic Fair. March 2nd until 4th, 2018.

Regarding arts and exhibits in Basque region:

  • In Bilbao. Zinegoak 2018: XV Bilbao International Gay-Lesbo-Trans Film. Bilborock Hall, BilbaoArte and The Golem Cinemas. From February 19th until March 4th. 
  • In Bilbao. Gustoko 2018. Fair of spanish food and gastronomy inspired by the agricultural world, which is committed to maintaining the quality and origin of local products, following some artisan standards in the production processes. Bilbao Exhibition Centre. March 2nd until 4th.
  • In Bilbao. Musika-Música: International Festival of Classical Music. The outstanding feature of this Festival is its themed nature, as every year the performances focus on a specific period, style or composer: this year is Bohemia. Euskalduna Palace. From March 2nd to 4th.
  • In Bilbao. Stock Euskadi. The most important outlet shopping experience in the Basque Country. Bilbao Exhibition Centre. From March 2nd until 4th. 
  • In Bilbao. Super Enduro. It competes with the enduro motorcycles in a route created expressly for the occasion in a closed enclosure, with difficult obstacles, technical and with different materials (stones, trunks, tires, sand, water, etc). Bilbao Exhibition Centre. March 3rd.
  • In San Sebastian. DFERIA. The main objective of the Fair is the performing arts market, interrelating its agents and presenting the latest Basque and international creations. Places: Victoria Eugenia Theater, Principal Theater and other stages. From March 5th until 8th.
  • In Bilbao. German caviar. Program: Concerto for violin and orchestra nº2 [28 '] by Shostakovich and Symphony nº2 [32'] by Beethoven. With Robert Treviño as director, Dmitri Makhtin on the violin and the Euskadi Symphony Orchestra. Euskalduna Palace. March 7th.
  • In Vitoria-Gasteiz. Miniature Pintxo Congress. IV Edition of the Small Haute Cuisine. Europe Palace of Congresses and Exhibitions. On March 8th until 14th.
  • In San Sebastián. Sevatur: Leisure and Tourism Fair. Kursaal Convention Centre. March 9th to 11th.
  • In Bilbao. Unpacking. Fair of pieces with a minimum age of 40 years. Bilbao Exhibition Centre. March 10th and 11th.
  • In Bilbao. ImagineNano. 4th edition of the largest European Event in Nanoscience & Nanotechnology, at Bilbao Exhibition Centre (BEC). March 13-15, 2018.
  • In Vitoria-Gasteiz and other Basque capitals. The fairy and the funeral. Program: Funeral Song [12 '] and The Kiss of the Fairy [24'] by Stravinsky, and Don Quixote [38 '] by R. Strauss. With Andrey Boreyko as conductor, Ivan Monighetti on the cello and the Euskadi Symphony Orchestra. March 16th to 22nd.
  • In San Sebastian. Calígula. Co-production of the International Festival of Classical Theater of Mérida, Teatre Romea and Grec 2017 Barcelona Festival, directed by Mario Gas and starring Pablo Derqui. Victoria Eugenia Theater. March 24th and 25th.
  • In Getaria. "Balenciaga. Fashion and Heritage". Exhibition that shows the evolution of the work of the couturier in its successive stages and aspires to become a reference sample to understand and know in depth the legacy generated by Balenciaga: where he comes from, what he contributes in his time, and what he transmits to us today. Cristóbal Balenciaga Museum. From March 24th until January 29th 2019.
  • In Biarritz. Salon des Antiquaires. Antiques, contemporary art, vintage, antique books. From March 30th to April 2nd. Le Bellevue.
  • In Bilbao. Art and space. It includes works by Eduardo Chillida, Olafur Eliasson, Lucio Fontana, Sue Fuller, Robert Gober, Eva Hesse, Cristina Iglesias, Prudencio Irazabal, Agnieszka Kurant, Sol LeWitt, Richard Long, Anna Maria Maiolino, Asier Mendizabal, Bruce Nauman, Iván Navarro, Damián Ortega, Jorge Oteiza, Pablo Palazuelo, Nobuo Sekine, Susana Solano and Lee Ufan, among others. Guggenheim Museum. Until April 8th.
  • In Bilbao. Eduardo Arroyo. He is one of the most outstanding painters of Spanish art of the second half of the 20th century. Fine Arts Museum. Until April 9th.
  • In Bilbao. HENRI MICHAUX: The other side. A selected review of sixty years of visual work by Henri Michaux (Namur, Belgium, 1899-Paris, France, 1984), an unclassifiable figure of twentieth-century art and literature, and a cult reference for great artists such as Francis Bacon or Asger Jorn . Guggenheim Museum of Bilbao. Until May 13th.
  • In Bilbao. Goya and the illustrated court. Exhibition for the life and work of the artist during his years of consolidation as a painter in the Court of Carlos III and Carlos IV. Bilbao Fine Arts Museum. From February 14th until May 28th.

International cycling tour of Bilbao. March 11th. Anniversary 30th.

Regarding basque or events sports: 

  • In Bilbao. SAIL IN FESTIVAL. Bilbao becomes the sailing centre of the world, and the meeting place for a long list of sailors, yachtsmen and women, adventurers and lovers of the sea, with the very best of international sailing cinema. Sala BBK. From March 1st until 4th.
  • In Vitoria-Gasteiz. III Women's Open Squash 'Gasteiz Hiria 2018'. March 3rd to 4th.
  • In San Sebastian. Lilaton. Popular race for women only, 5km. This year is dedicated to improving the quality of life of people affected by retinitis pigmentosa. March 4th.
  • In Bilbao. “Cycling event BILBAO-BILBAO”. 30th Anniversary. International cycling tour of Bilbao. 85km, 115km or 125km lenght and open to all cyclists. March 11th. 
  • In Bayonne, French Basque Country. Xare Senior National A. Trinket Modern. From January 20th until March 31st.
  • In Bilbao. 38th Engineers-Deusto Regatta. Each year this Olympic rowing competition pits the Engineer School and University of Deusto crews against each other, two prestigious university centres with over a century of history in teaching and sports. Bilbao river. March 23rd.  
  • In San Sebastian. 41st edition of the "San Sebastian City" International Chess Open. This is a very well-known event among chess lovers, and players will come to compete from across the globe. This year, a total of nine rounds will be contested. Karmelo Balda pelota court. March 24th to 31st.
  • In Bilbao. Under Run Metro Bilbao 2018. Only 200 athletes, male and female, participate. March 25th.
  • In Bilbao. Bilbao Downhill International Cup. UCI Class 1. March 31st and April 1st.
  • In Biarritz. 34th edition of Biarritz Quiksilver Maïder Arostéguy. It is the oldest surf competition in Europe. This meeting of the Easter weekend in Biarritz brought together 250 surfers from all over France (Brittany, the Mediterranean, the Landes, the Royal countries, the Basque country) but also Spanish Basques, Italians and other European nationalities. From March 31th to April 2nd.

And remember, if you are thinking to come to Bilbao, San Sebastian, Rioja, Vitoria, Pamplona or anywhere else in the Basque Country, you can get a better understading on our culture and traditions with a local guide. 
 contact Aitor Delgado Basque Private Tour Guide 


 Enjoy the Basque Country!