Visit Hondarribia (Aquitaine, France)
Hondarribia is a town just across the border from Saint-Jean-de-Luz into Spain. It is reached by an attractive coastal road via Hendaye. We have included here because it is a popular trip with people visiting the south-west corner of France.
The city has been under siege many times (and always held out), the worst being in 1638. That siege was finished on 8 September, and to this day the date is celebrated in the town by a parade.
The city that has grown up around the medieval city of Hondarribia is less exciting, but the 'walled city' in the centre is a fascinating place. Hondarribia has been inhabited since prehistoric times. The fortifications that can now be seen, and many of the buildings, were built during the Renaissance.
I have added quite a few pictures in the galery below - it is hard to describe Hondarribia in words, but essentially it is a walled city that contains street after cobbled street of beautifully preserved and restored houses, all at the foot of an impressive church. Many of the buildings have elaborate wooden or iron balconies, and carved eaves.
After walking around admiring the city you can walk around the outside of the walls, now partly laid out as attractive gardens.
After you have completed your tour, continue to drive along the coast for a further 15km or so - the scenery is even better than the approach from St-Jean-de-Luz.
Note; the city was known for many years as Fuenterrabia, but reverted to its basque name, Honderribia, in the 1980's. It's French name is Fontarrabie.
We were pleased to stay at this St-Jean-de-Luz apartment during our visit. The Parador in the centre of the town also looked very attractive, if you are wanting to spend the night in Hondarribia.
Photos of Hondarribia
Click any picture to start the gallery
Address: Hondarribia, Pyrenees-Atlantiques, Aquitaine || GPS: latitude 43.3625, longitude -1.79133
Map of Hondarribia & places nearby
Highlights close by
Saint Jean de Luz 11km
La Rhune 14km
Suggested tourist attractions to visit near Hondarribia, France
- Sare - most beautiful village (18km)
- Ainhoa - most beautiful village (25km)
- Anglet - ville fleurie 4* (26km)
- Bayonne cathédrale St Marie (monuments on French pilgrim routes) - heritage site (29km)
- Bayonne - secteur sauvegarde (29km)
- Jardins de la villa Arnaga - remarkable garden (32km)
- Vallée des Aldudes - site of natural beauty (42km)
- Marais d'Orx - site of natural beauty (42km)
The French version of this page is at Hondarribia (Francais)