This was an experience I will always treasure. Getting to the site is a pain, but experiencing it is amazing! We took the bus from Bilbao to Burmeo, then another bus that leaves from Burmeo and stops at the site on it's way to Bakio. It's a hike down to the path to the church and the steps are a source of intense architecture. We walked out to the church and found a group of backpackers staying inside the little barn area, which I thought was pretty cool. Because we had taken the bus to the location we ended up walking into Bakio, not a very long walk for us, but may be more difficult for older or disabled individuals.Remember to ring the bell when you make it all the way up!
Wow.I actually went to San Juan de G. on Christmas Eve, so for about half an hour I was the only one on the entire island :) Absolutely spectacular--and to be honest one of my favorite parts of the climb was towards the bottom--after you cross the bridge you can walk down a set of stone steps towards the sea and relax beneath one of the stone arches of the bridge, taking it all in. The climb up is magnificent all the way--dont' just go up and go back--hang out on top for a while and take it all in.I walked from the bus stop in Bako--takes about an hour or so. The whole walk is beautiful as much of it goes right along the coast.Ah--and no amenities. I forgot to bring water/snacks--don't make that mistake!
In rainy days, its better to use the asphalt road (access from the east - now closed for cars) - it takes the same amount of time but is not so muddy and slippery. However, You will miss a nice viewpoint that is located higher on the cliff. Your choice!
This very pleasant climb, some 230 steps, to the church is a must and takes about an hour to complete. We got there just in time to see the sun setting and what an experience.
Few minutes walking from the road, and you will see a breathtaking view, that you will never forget. Then you continue to the small church at the top. You take a sit in the shadow, and keep your mind in peace, looking at the endless ocean. Very calm, lovely place.
We took the longer but easier gravel path to get there (the other one is much near a bus stop). The view was amazing and we could see the chapel from a different angle. The isthmus was not that difficult to walk, just steps to climb. Wear a pair of walking shoes will do. The chapel was not open but you could ring the bell as a souvenir.
It is definitely a touristic attraction of Basque Country in Spain. We visited it in September, and the weather was nice. It is near Bakio. The GPS was unable to locate the right place, so we missed out the path and entered in Bermeo. Getting there from Bermeo was not so easy. The traffic signals helped a lot on locating it. For getting there, there are several parking places near Eneperi Restaurant. It is recommended to arrive early in the morning, because a lot of people is arriving there after midday, and parking becomes a bit difficult. Regarding the place, it is not difficult to walk in, and it can be convenient for all kind of people with quite good health. More than 200 hundred steps should be overcome to get to the church on the top of the island. Some days it is closed, some days it is open. The overview of the landscape is nice, both from Gaztelugatxe and from the nearness of the place. A nice visit to do.
My son and I arrived by bus from Bilbao to Bakio. It was a lovely summer day and we decide to walk to it. It was exhausting because it is mostly uphill.....then you have to go down the narrow pathway and go up the stairs to visit the church. It is stunning beauty, the island, the church, the ocean, the amazingly shaped rocks. I am glad that we had enough drinks and snacks with us because the restaurant at San Juan was closed !!On our way back to Bakio we walked again. We were tired but it was worth it.
Located on the Basque coast. This scenic rock and chapel offers a great view of the sea and the Basque countryside.
This is a tough place to find without a car- you need to get a bus from the Covered Marketplace in BERMEO (the Numero 3561 I think) which leaves Bermeo every hour at 30 mins past the hour. You can use your Bilbao Travelcard for this bus service - You get off on the side of the road and walk down a very steed and unstable cliff face (some paved, most of it not) until you reach almost ground level THEN you climb 200+ steps up to the church. The climb and the views as well and the penance of it all is well worth it. This is free to visit and when you get back to your starting point there is a very nice restaurant and cafe to get refreshments.
It will not be an easy walking if you're not used to walking. We parked the car on the car parking, from there there is a narrow and slippery dirt pathway to tarmac road... then a bit down you start climbing the steps to the church. For sure the most difficult part is the dirt pathway so be prepared, take a bottle of water and some snacks with you.Nothing else to say as everybody has said how beautiful the place is.
Beautiful place, parking is on the cliff above, which means a 20-25 minutes walk down to the island, and a gruelling climb back to the car, which might be very hard on a hot day. Nevertheless it's totally worth the money because of the unique location, the beauty of the ocean and the rugged coast
What a great way to finish our holiday!Do not follow road, it has collapsed and super dodgy and you won't get far. Park at turn off carpark and follow track. Hard but short walk but well worth it. It's free. I recommend going in the morning before it gets too hot and also less busy. They sell drinks, postcards, etc. up there. There are Toilet facilities but you might not be keen to use them (you'll see what I mean).Great views, and an interesting site. A must if you're in the area. I also recommend a visit to Bakio Beach-great spot for a swim and a bite.
Definitely worth it renting a car for! What a stunning, unique place. Do use your most comfortable shoes because it's a grueling walk from the car park. Take water with you!
Read the great reviews of this place and wanted to see it for ourselves, and we weren't dissappointed! It was a hot day (late afternoon) and there were lots of people to share the trail and walkway with, But what a treat to reach the little chapel perched on a rock/island - just off the coast! The whole walk took our family about 40-45 minutes each way.The restaurant at the trailhead had just reopened, although we opted to continue our journey and not stop for drinks or food - since we were running behind schedule. But next time!Oh yeah, don't be foolish about this hike! You need to dress appropriately for a somewhat strenuous hike, without wearing sandals or high heels! There is drinkable water at the beach level, but bringing a water bottle and a snack would also be smart.