Stage 2, Zumaia – Zenarruza


Height, minimum: 0 m, maximum: 493 m

Accumulated height difference, in ascent: 1.884 m, in descent: 1.904 m

Stage kilometers: 61,29

Stage time: 6:42:59

Average speed: 9,12

Maximum speed: 43,48

Total kilometers: 139

Total time:13:09

If in the previous stage we stopped at the rural house Jesusoka, now we have to go back to Zumaia and take the path we left the day before. Already in Zumaia near the harbour and the ria we will seek Odieta street and start climbing towards the shrine of nuestra señora de Arritokieta and the cemetery, and we will continue the ascent for another kilometer. After crossing two farmhouses we take a path on the left that leads to a playground and from there we head to the chapel of Elorriaga. We continue through a local road in decline and reach the road N-634, which we abandon right away to take a path that we see just in front of us and which starts to rise. Then we take another path to the right and go back to the N-634 through which we circulate for a short stretch to cross a bridge over the highway. Later we get to a crossroads where we must go in the direction of Itziar.

A little farther, aside Erdoitza crossroads, we continue to the right to finally reach Itziar. We enter the town looking for the center and its church to head to the cemetery through a cement path, which we will follow to get to the hermitage of San Roque and from there descend rapidly to Deba.

Inside Deba and following the arrows we will surely get to an urban elevator that will easily take us down from the upper part of the town to the lower, next to the ria and the harbor.

At this point it is recommended to take the national road towards Markina, as the Camino goes into some fairly inhospitable mountains with steep ramps, which make the stretch marked by arrows from Deba to Marquina very demanding and extremely hard. Even regular pilgrims who venture these paths speak of their extreme difficulty.

If after the previous dire warnings we still prefer to take the path marked we must go up the ria and find the bridge that leads to Mutriku, and from there take the road to Laragamendi, which will lead us to the side of a stunning climb that, exhausted and tired of pushing our bike, will lead to Ermita del Calvario. When reaching this chapel the rising behind us will have seemed a true martyrdom and “Calvary” for us, giving justice to the name of the shrine.

We will recover a bit going down a road full of intersections to cross the road connecting Mutriku and Astigarribia and we ascend again, in this case towards the pelota court of Arnope.

Later we pass next to a farmhouse and then we abandon the path to the right to take a forest track. We arrive at a new crossroads and take a path through a forest of oaks to get to a plateau.

In this area besides the difficulty of the terrain and steep slopes we have to add the endless forest roads and crossroads in which we must be very careful to not get lost. If we have the help of a GPS device we will take a great advantage of it and if we do not have it (I insist it is advisable to skip this section and go by road) we must be very attentive to the arrows to avoid getting lost in the midst of this imposing mountain range.

After a time we will circulate through a summit and will see, on the horizon, the valley where Markina is located. At this point the arrows send us through a path with a very strong downward slope, very dangerous as it is full of very slippery stones with rounded edges. Here it is recommended to take a little road we can see on our left just at the pass of the summit, which after a steep descent will take us to Markina by a road.

From Markina we go through the BI-633 towards Bolivar. Before reaching Bolivar we find a shrine and the chapel of Erdotza. Within the town of Bolivar we look for a pretty road that in gentle climb and through a beautiful scenery will lead us to Zenarruza, where besides the small shelter of the monastery we can stay at IRUROK Jatetxea, where there are bunk rooms (similar to a hostel), restaurant and bar.

IRUROK Jatetxea – ZIORTZA BEITIA Landetxea
Goierri – 13 48279 Zihortza – Bolibar (Bizkaia)
Phone: +34 946 165 259

If we follow the wise advices above and get to Zenarruza avoiding the hard and dangerous stretch of road from Deba to Markina, the stage will surely seem really short and perhaps this is not a good place to finish the stage, so we can continue reading the travel information and will be much more interested in stopping at Gernika.