The Unconquered North

A Little History

Although the Basque Country finds its home within the Spanish borders, like many other Spanish regions, the Basques have their own language spoken right along Spanish. Euskera, which is spoken by about 37% of the Basque people, is thought to be the oldest language in Europe. The main cities that make up the Basque Country in Spain are Bilbao, Victoria Gasteiz, and Donastia-San Sebastian.

The Unconquered North, as it is commonly known, is a region that was never conquered by the many different people who once invaded Spain. Because of this, it has preserved an almost unchanged cultural identity that has remained strong through the millenniums, within it, it’s unique and long-lasting language.

Although only spoken in the Basque country, this language is not a dying one, and every day more and more people pass on this tradition. Even though all of the citizens of this region speak Spanish, its predicted that the number of people speaking Euskera will increase in the coming years!

If you visit the Basque country, here are some useful phrases you could learn to fit right into this special community.


Useful Phrases:

Kaixo  ⇔ Hello

Agur  ⇔ Goodbye

Egun on  ⇔ Good morning

Gabon ⇔ Good night

Egun on izan dezala  ⇔ Have a nice day

Ez dut ulertzen  ⇔ I don’t understand

Bai  ⇔ Yes

Ez ⇔ No

Eskerrik asko  ⇔ Thank you

Komuna, non dago? ⇔Where are the toilets?

Ba al dakizu inglesez? ⇔ Do you speak English?

Ez dakit euskaraz  ⇔ I do not speak Basque

Zenbat balio du? ⇔ How much is this?


Putting Them to Use

If you decide to put some of these phrases to use and experience a culture and a region like no other, join Be Madrid for a weekend at the Basque Country. It will be a time like no other where you will get to taste the incredible flavors the North of Spain has to offer and practice your Euskera!

Bertan ikusiko zaitut!! (See you there!! )


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