Rafting downhill on the Nive in the NetherlandsItxassou
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The Nive, or Errobi in Basque, is a river flowing in the Atlantic Pyrenees. The 79-kilometre long river originates in the Orion forest, south of Esterençuby. It continues its course until it reaches Bayonne, where it conflicted with the Adour before flowing into the ocean a few kilometres further. Despite its abundance, it has a low altitude difference, which makes it an ideal place to practice whitewater sports with your family or to learn about them.
Although it is navigable all year round by canoe/kayak, in the spring, the Nive offers some 35 kilometres of whitewater on which it is possible to sail in an adapted boat. Bidarray has the most water sports bases for rafting or canoeing. This is the best spot if you want to practice a whitewater sport on the Nive. You can choose to board a mini-raft, which only accommodates 3 to 5 paddlers on board or a raft that accommodates up to 8. Sitting in your boat, you can enjoy the abundant waters of the Nive and its various rapids and planiols that will follow one another to make you live a maximum of sensations. The rafting or mini-rafting descents on the Nive are accessible to beginners as well as advanced riders. If you want to get into the water, try hydrospeed or swimming in white water to be in the heart of the river. With the help of a float and fins, you will learn how to use the currents to propel yourself and thus make your descent from the Nive.
Don't you want to get wet? No worries! You can find hikes to do by bike or on foot all along the Nive. This is the case, for example, of the Nive Greenway, which runs from Bayonne to Ustaritz and takes you on a 13-kilometre walk through the heart of nature. This greenway is closed to all motor vehicles, which allows you to enjoy the calm and observe the fauna and flora of the Nive.
Located in the heart of the Basque Country, La Nive crosses the department of Pyrénées Atlantiques. All along its way to flow into the Adour, the Nive flows through twenty municipalities. If you want to see the source of this river, it is in Estérençuby that you will have to go. Then go to Saint Jean Pied de Port, to visit this charming little town bordered by the Nive. On your way you will find Bidarray and Louhossoa before arriving in the town of Itxassou where there is a curiosity: the Pas de Roland, so called thanks to a legend. Your red will then continue to arrive at Cambo les Bains and its spa. Ustaritz is your next stop. This city has several castles on its land and has a very interesting cultural and natural heritage. Your route then ends in Bayonne, which is a must visit.
The Nive is also the river near which the famous Petit Nicolas de Sempé and Goscinny spend their holidays.