Mundaka: land of lefts

This intimate coastal town in Basque Country has one of the best left-breaking waves in Europe, and possibly the world.  A river mouth’s sandbar meets the ocean in just the perfect way to create a long, clean, and powerful left-breaking wave – just the kind Ryan loves to surf.  We reserved possibly the most perfect AirBnB that was situated on a keyhole with direct access to the wave.  Ryan literally paddled in from our backyard while I watched from the balcony, sipping Txakoli, or sunbathed on the rocks below at low tide.  The AirBnB had no actual address but was next to an easy to find church from the 11th century, so we had to walk through the courtyard of the church to get there.  It was also elevated on stilts so that at high tide, the ocean crashed directly beneath our room, which made for the most peaceful sounds to drift off to sleep.

When Ryan wasn’t surfing, we wandered through the cobblestone streets, ate tapas next to the harbor, and stumbled upon a pear orchard that led to another very old church overlooking the ocean with a half pipe skate ramp in its front yard.  There were so many pears, we were kicking them as we walked.  Could this be heaven?

I was also impressed by the food in Mundaka.  My expectations were low as there seemed to be about 5 restaurants in the whole town, and we were there for surf, not culinary adventures.  The tastiest croissant and cappuccino of our entire Spain trip came for 3 euros from Restaurante la Fonda de Mundaka.  (I came back for a second croissant while Ryan surfed)  We also returned for dinner.  Although the kitchen serving burgers was closed, the owner went back and whipped us up the most spectacular dinner – whole roasted flounder with scalloped potatoes, shishito peppers, and an incredible salad of cured tuna, olives, tomatoes, greens, white asparagus, corn, and balsamic vinegar.  We saw versions of this salad all over Basque, but this was the best one.  The meal with a bottle of wine was ~25 euros, and when I asked if I could take some bread home (to enjoy with the cheese in my room), they sent me home with an entire baguette.

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