Puntos de interés > Atalaya
This astonishing overlook is situated in the higher part of the village. What in it’s day was the watch guard’s house is now an unrivalled area to view the ocean
In the Basque Country, the municipality of Bermeo has had the privilege of access to a observatory system for centuries. This observation point provides a view from Izaro island to the cape of Matxitxako. Thanks to these natural watchtowers Bermeo was always able to control an ample part of the costal zone along the Gulf of Biscay. To the west, they could keep watch of Bizkaian coast all the way to the mouth of the river of Bilbao. To the east they could look after the rest of the Bizkaian coast, as well as the Guipuzcoan coast. On clear days, it’s even possible to make out the mountains of Lapurdi.
Each look out point had their own watchman, who was selected by the fishermen’s association. This person/position was required to serve the following funcitons: meteorological forecasts, observation and location of whales and fish as well as collecting information about the boats that arrived to the port. At one point Bermeo had access to 5 observation points: the church of the friars on Izaro island, Lamiaran point, Talakoetxea de Bastarre street, the cape of Matxitxako and Tala park.
From this beautiful overlook we can see Bermeo’s itsalabarra, the Gaviota oil platform, the beginning of the Urdaibai river as well as the port.
The park is a calm place, where you can breathe in peace. During the summer there are a few celebrations here. In the middle of August, people cook marmitako with fresh bonito tuna and during the town’s local festival they have sukalki eguna, or the stew day, which usually has a big turnout.
In this same park that looks out to the sea, you can also take a moment to contemplate the beautiful sculpture of the painter Benito Barrueta, done by Nestor Basterretxea. Both were from Bermeo. Behind this stands an eclectically styled hospital designed by Severino Atxukarro and Federico Borda. On it’s north wall you can see and learn about whaling in the middle ages by looking at an educational mural 60 meters long.