Across the sapphire green to San Juan de Gazteluagtxe

This beautiful stone walkway is the only flattish part of the approach to the shrine dedicated to St John the Baptist, which is built on steep, raggedy rocks off the Basque coast. The little chapel is up beyond the point from which this photograph was taken.

Looking back now, I think how lucky we were to have the time to add this on to our trip to Elantxobe. The day had neither melting sun nor fierce rain, and the post-Covid crowds, clearly anticipated by the carpark, still seemed to be keeping their distance.

The walk was long – down and up, and down and up again – but worth every step just for the curvy joy of this bridge over the water. I have read somewhere that the walkway dates from the 11th century or earlier, some attributing it to the Knights Templar. I’m not sure how accurate this is, but what seems definite is that there have been endless fights over the island, even Sir Francis Drake getting involved. The chapel that now stands at the top was re-opened in the 1980s.

Here are two more photographs to give a feel of this lovely place – the star of the final postcard from the Basque Country.

Copyright Georgie Knaggs & The Phraser 2023

3 thoughts on “Across the sapphire green to San Juan de Gazteluagtxe

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