Gorliz, much more than a great beach

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Gorliz, home to one of Bilbao's favourite beaches for sun and sea bathing, offers much more to visitors to the municipality. Spectacular cliffs, a beautiful lighthouse, a pine forest that reaches down to the sand, a charming town centre and year-round activities. Just a stone's throw from Bilbao. It is only 25 kilometres and everything changes.

It shares the Butron estuary with Plentzia and its green meadows frame the bay. Moreover, its geographical location and orientation give Gorliz a mild microclimate that is pleasant all year round. Nowadays, its economy is oriented towards the service sector based on tourism. Although there are still small family farms dedicated to agriculture and livestock farming that give the municipality even more charm. In the past, fishing and shipyards specialising in certain vessels used to transport ore were very important.

Its beach is one of the safest and most beautiful on the Basque coast. It is protected by the shell-shaped bay of Gorliz. It is an exceptional place to relax and enjoy the landscape and the dunes, as well as to practice all kinds of sports such as bodyboarding, diving and swimming.

Playa Gorliz, atardecer
Gorliz Beach, sunset

Gorliz beach is one of the

safest and most beautiful

of the Basque coast

Petrified dunes

The pine forest can be accessed from the sandy area. This forest is the second largest recreational area in Bizkaia and is perfect for a stroll or to enjoy a picnic and the barbecues provided for this purpose.
Not far away, in the Astondo area, you can observe a phenomenon of particular geological value: the petrified dunes. They were listed as a Point of Geological Interest by the Provincial Council of Bizkaia in 1990 and are also a Special Area of Conservation according to European assessments.

Unique on the Basque Coast, the petrified dunes of Gorliz are accumulations of wind-driven sand that have sedimented and dried out. They become solid when the humidity evaporates and, due to the weight, the sand is compacted to create different layers. This is how sandstone is formed. The different layers can be horizontal and form unique shapes due to the wind.

The tallest lighthouse

On the other side stands the white, vertical Gorliz lighthouse, which emits its beam of light from Cape Billao. It was built in 1990 on cliffs 165 metres above sea level. With a 21-metre tower topped by a glass lantern, it is the tallest lighthouse on the Cantabrian coast. The cliffs offer splendid views of the coast.

In the spot of Azkorriaga, on the point of Uztrikotze, the 'Castillo Roto' (Broken Castle) emerges. An artillery fort built in the 18th century due to the presence of English ships in the Bay of Biscay. Following the path next to the lighthouse, you can see that the hillside is perforated by an old coastal battery, installed during the Second World War.

In the town centre of Gorliz, the church, which dates back to the 10th century but was completely remodelled in the 18th century, stands out. Next to it, an archaeological site was discovered a decade ago in 2007, which is the first documented example of an early medieval settlement from the 8th-10th centuries in Bizkaia.

Activities all year round

Activities and events take place throughout the year. In February, the Bizkaia Canicross Championship takes place; in March, a sensational bean competition; every Easter Sunday, the Flower and Plant Fair; on 29 June, the San Pedro Festival; around 25 July, the Santiago Festival with an Agricultural and Crafts Fair, Habaneras, etc.; around 5 August, the Andra Mari Festival, with a paella competition, rural sports, etc. The third weekend in August, Urezarantza Fao Festivities; in September, the Popular Cross; in October, European Heritage Days and Gastronomic Uribe; in November, Mycological Days. And, on any date, guided tours of the municipality and gastronomic activities with routes, guided tastings, etc.

The beach is a good excuse to visit Gorliz. Everything else is a gift. Make the most of it.

Good communications with Bilbao and the surrounding area

Gorliz enjoys good road communications with the main nearby towns: Getxo, Bakio, Mungia and is only 20 minutes from the airport. A bus line connects the municipality with the Metro Bilbao Line 1 station every 20 minutes in coordination with the underground line.

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