Stage 5

Vitoria – Gasteiz

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What to see > Araba-Álava > Vitoria-Gasteiz

Before you is the capital of the Basque Country, seat of the Basque Government, and the Basque city that has best maintained its medieval charm. It is also one of Europe’s ‘greenest’ cities thanks to its efforts to become more environmentally friendly, with an admirable quality of life, dozens of kilometres of bike lanes, a silent tram, and more than two dozen city parks and green spaces.

Vitoria-Gasteiz is so green that it earned the international Biosphere Responsible Tourism certification as a sustainable tourism destination. The city sits calmly on an extensive plain that has many surprises. Uncovering them all is possible, but it takes time: the Green Belt is a 30-kilometre circuit that connects all the parks that surround the city. You can enjoy this route on foot or by bike, and it’s totally flat.

Another of the treasures this city has to offer is the Medieval Almond, so-called because of its oval shape, which is one of the Basque Country’s most emblematic historic centres.

The district maintains its medieval outline in the shape of an almond that was created more than eight centuries ago when Sancho IV “The Wise” founded the town. The Historic Centre sits atop a hill presided over by the Santa María Cathedral. Together with the Cathedral, the three towers of the San Miguel, San Vicente, and San Pedro churches etch out the city’s most well-known profile.