Style Guide for Pays Basque | The Wanderlust Effect

Travel Style Guide: Pays Basque, France

Where + Wear: Chic Sightseeing in Pays Basque

As a female traveler, I constantly find myself searching for the same information prior to a trip: what do I wear? The crux is this: what’s the appropriate travel style for the destination that I’m about to explore that will allow me to look decent in photos without being inappropriately dressed for the landscape and situation? There are cultural customs to keep in mind, climate, landscape and topography, general dressiness of a locale and practicality. Check out this guide – and other guides in this series – for packing inspiration.

Join me in sharing your thoughts and tips for packing and travel fashion with a series of destinations around the globe. Download this quickie cheat sheet of travel style inspiration for Pays Basque, including some tips on where to stay, where to dine, and what to do. Pin this guide for a quick reference before your European escape!

Pays Basque Travel Style - The Wanderlust EffectDownload the Pays Basque Travel Style Guide | The Wanderlust Effect for easy reading on iPad.

Vibe + Packing Tips

While most people’s minds drift to Spain when talking about Basque Country, that’s really only half the story. The French half of Basque Country, Pays Basque, is perhaps the lesser known neighbor which provides a contrasting experience replete with beautiful medieval French architecture and quaint towns out of a storybook. In the fall, expect perfect temperatures, in the low-70s on the coast, with warmer temperatures further inland. In the summer, prep for hot weather that will make the beach a serious draw.

Take a cue from the effortless French women that always look perfectly polished. Simplicity is key in Pays Basque.

Pays Basque captures the chic vibe that manages to permeate the whole of France. Think crisp button ups, perfect fitting pants, simple flats, and bed head that’s perfectly imperfect. For women, this is a near perfect uniform that will get you through days and nights in towns across the region. The resort town of Biarritz is one of the region’s exceptions, and a great opportunity to pull out your glitzier coastal wear for a five-star evening experience. A pair of chic shorts is a great add-on for particularly warm days of sightseeing.  Depending on where you’re focusing in the region, sandals (great for beach towns like Biarritz or St. Jean-de-Luz), boots or espadrilles will fit the bill. Expect lots of cobblestone and uneven roads so choose your footwear accordingly. If you want a heel for a dressier night out, opt for wedges over stilettos so you can navigate the terrain comfortably. A crossbody bag will be a practical and chic way to tote your must-haves by day or night. If you’re a hat wearer, a packable hat with a mid-brim will help mask bad hair days while providing a little protection from the sun on particularly warm days.

Shop The Look

Espelette, 4 Towns to Visit in Pays Basque
In the town of Espelette in Pays Basque, France

Destination Inspiration

Road trip in Pays Basque
Exploring the tiny town of Sare during a road trip in Pays Basque

Have you been to French Basque Country? What are your recommendations when packing for Pays Basque?


Shannon Kircher, The Wanderlust Effect

More about Shannon Kircher

Shannon Kircher is the founder and editor of The Wanderlust Effect. Founded in 2009, she has continued to document her international escapes as an expat in Europe and the Caribbean. Additionally, Shannon is the founder of Compass & Vine, a luxury boutique travel design firm, and is the Director of Marketing for the Frangipani Beach Resort. Shannon holds an MSc in Social Policy and Development from the London School of Economics and is a current candidate for WSET Level 3 in Wines & Spirits.