Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle travel guide

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Visit Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle (Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France)

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Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle is a traditional basque village a short distance to the east of Sain-Jean de-Luz.

Explore Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle

France This Way review: Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle is not one of the most visited of the basque villages in this region, but the small centre merits a visit if you are passing, and the nearby leisure lake is a popular attraction with locals and visitors

Start your visit to Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle with a walk through the centre of the village to see the basque style houses.

Basque style houses in centre of Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle village

You quickly reach the church that dominates the centre of the village: although there was already a church here before the 17th century, the current church of Saint-Pierre was largely built at that time. The church entrance is through a porch at the base of the large tower that dominates the end of the church.

Inside you will immediately notice the remarkable altar, that occupies the entire end of the church and has numerous statues and gold features. The floor of the church has numerous funeral slabs some of which pre-date the church, and all three sides of the nave have a series of three balconies: this is a feature of churches in the basque region that is rarely seen elewhere.

Outside the church you will find a large park which follows the banks of the river and has a large childrens play area: the park is ideal for a picnic. Elsewhere in Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle there are two historic bridges and a lavoir.


The main attraction for visitors to Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle is a few kilometres east of the village at the Lac de Saint-Pée: to reach the lake follow the road towards Espelette from the village centre.

This leisure lake is well maintained and very popular with runners and walkers as well as swimmers and those using canoes on the Lac de Saint-Pée. Visitors with children will also enjoy the sandy beach on the edge of the lake and the playground and activities.

Leisure lake near Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle

Attractions near Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle

The train that goes up the La Rhune mountain is a popular and very enjoyable attraction close to Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle that takes you to the top of the mountain that overlooks this whole area. There are lots of other basque villages close to here, including Espelette, Ainhoa, Sare, Itxassou and others (I have listed them in my own order of preference in case you don't have time to visit all the villages).

A tour of these traditional Basque villages around Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle and the train ride up La Rhune together make for a very nice short break or can be visited as excursions from Saint-Jean-de-Luz, itself a charming seaside resort.

Explore elsewhere in the Pays Basque. You can find more travel ideas in the Pyrenees-Atlantiques guide and the Aquitaine guide.

See also: 

Photos of Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle

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Map of Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle and places nearby


Visit near Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle with France This Way reviews



Sare is one of several traditional Basque towns in the western Pyrenees, with lots of houses in the local architectural style

Sare guide


Betwen sea and mountains, the basque village of Ainhoa is listed among the most beautiful villages in France

Ainhoa guide
Ainhoa church of Notre-Dame

Ainhoa church of Notre-Dame

The church in Ainhoa is a traditional Basque church with rows of balconies around the walls

Ainhoa church of Notre-Dame guide


Home of red hot chillies, Espelette is a very traditional basque village in the western Pyrenees

Espelette guide
La Rhune

La Rhune

The Rhune is a small Pyrenees mountain that you can go up in a scenic train - a nice way to enjoy the scenery.

La Rhune guide


A long established beach resort, Saint-Jean-de-Luz also has a lively and popular town centre to explore

Saint-Jean-de-Luz guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Pyrenees-Atlantiques

Address: , Aquitaine, , France || GPS coordinates: latitude 43.3575, longitude -1.549444

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The French version of this page is at Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle (Francais)