The Basque Coast Geopark is a small area wedged in between the Bay of Biscay and the Basque mountains and comprising the municipalities of MUTRIKU, DEBA and ZUMAIA. At first sight, what makes the Geopark stand out is the harmony of the various tones of green of its meadows and forests that follow one after the other from the coastline and extend inland. But the true interest of this place is to be found in its bowels. Geology is the true protagonist of a landscape that preserves the history of some of the most dramatic episodes in the Earth’s recent history.
The 13 km of cliffs in the Geopark have a spectacular formation of rock layers known as Flysch deposits, which in the manner of a large encyclopaedia show us over 60 million years of the history of the Earth. Geologists and visitors can walk along these cliffs or go on a boat trip and sail across time to discover, for example, the thin black layer that indicates the impact of a giant asteroid and the wholesale extinction of the dinosaurs about 65 Ma ago.
After making a voyage through the Earth’s history, the visitor can lose him-/herself in the green inland valleys where more recent time seems to have stopped for ever. Here it is possible to enjoy the roots of one of Europe’s oldest peoples and visit the best set of cave art horses on the planet found at the Ekain cave, which has been declared a World Heritage site.
The Basque Coast Geopark is a lesson that leaves no one indifferent. Here time, the earth, life and our own species are the main players. Discover it!
Geoparks are areas that are committed to a strategy for sustainable development based on their natural and cultural values. The Basque Coast Geopark, the first in the Basque Country and in the whole of Cantabrian coast, was created to implement these ideas in the towns of Zumaia, Deba and Mutriku.
We, at the Basque Coast Geopark, are working to support and promote the natural environment, in particular our geological environment, but we are also working to promote the culture of our region. We want to preserve all this heritage as a legacy for future generation.
Similarly, the Geopark aims to be recognised for its participatory nature, so your ideas and suggestions are always welcome.
The Basque Coast Geopark is managed by the association Geogarapen.