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History, culture and architecture on the old “Ruta de los contrabandistas”, Day hike near Bilbao

Ruta de los Contrabandistas
Ruta de los Contrabandistas
Ruta de los Contrabandistas

Join UIMLA-certified Mountain Leader Antoni on this great day hike, walking the Ruta de los Contrabandistas, from Bilbao to Llodio, discovering rich history, architecture and natural beauty.

Private and Group

1 Day





  • Hike along a beautiful trail used by smugglers on ancient times
  • Cover a distance of 20 kilometers between Bilbao and Llodio
  • Discover a rich historical and architectural heritage along the way


We propose you to join us on a day hike facing the challenge of completing the “Ruta de los Contrabandistas” (“Smugglers Route”). This 20- kilometer long trail separates Llodio and Bilbao, in the Basque Country,  and will take us six hours of march. The route was once used by bandits and black marketeers, since the XVl century,for the illegal transport of goods.

This route combines the appeal of a beautiful landscape of mountains and valleys, and the historical interest of the remains of the fortifications and trenches that were built during the Spanish Civil War to defend Bilbao.The military infrastructure was built between 1936 and 1937, although curiously it did not host any combat.

Along the itinerary, informative panels situated in diverse points allow us to know more about the history of the place and to visit trenches and machine guns nests. This is a beautiful area, with a great richness in history, nature and architectural heritage.

Typical construcions of caleros, ericeras and neveros are present along the route along with posters that explain what for and how they were used. We will also pass through Santa María del Yermo and the hermitage of Santa Lucía, where we will make a stop to recover forces and continue the hike.

This is a hiking tour open to everyone. You don’t need previous hiking experience to join us, just a normal physical condition and being used to walk.

So what are you waiting for? Just send us a request if you want to enjoy a great day hike near Bilbao! Let me guide you through a historical trail, discovering beautiful green landscapes. 

If you are looking for more adventures in Spain, make sure to check out  all the hiking and canyoning trips I offer here.

Prices per person

Group of 1

EUR 190 Each

Group of 2

EUR 95 Each

Group of 3

EUR 65 Each

Group of 4

EUR 50 Each

Group of 5

EUR 50 Each

Group of 6

EUR 50 Each

Group of 7

EUR 50 Each

Group of 8

EUR 50 Each

Want a different number of travellers?

Price includes

- Guiding fee

Price details

The price includes guiding fee and accident and RC insurance. The price does not include transportation (we will use the train).


More info


  • Appropriate clothing for mountain activity according to the weather

  • Trekking shoes / Boots

-Water and some food/snack for the hike

-You need to be in normal physical condition.

-Minors must complete the authorization and deliver it before carrying out the activity, otherwise you will not be able to join the tour.

Meeting point

Miribilla train station. Santiago de Compostela Kalea, 12, 48003 Bilbao, Bizkaia

About the guide

I am a Mountain Leader Sports Technician and Canyoning Guide, certified by AEGM and UIMLA. Being a guide has allowed me to turn my hobbies into my profession. I love conveying my passion for adventure sports and nature to each one of my clients and look forward to welcoming you on my tours.






Bilbao, Basque Country

What people are saying about Explore-Share

Kumari Selvakumar


Sept 14, 2022

I’m extremely happy with the ease with which I could book via your site reliable and experienced guide. Thank you so very much, and I’ve started to recommend your site to my friends. Dimitris is not only an awesome guide, but a wonderful person who was always looking out to give me the best experience I can have when he found out how much I love climbing! He is the Best!

Niklas Warren


Sept 6, 2022

I am very pleased with Explore-Share! This was my first international climb, and the communication and response time were great. Herbie is a very skilled guide and very efficient. The entire booking process & payment was smooth. I will definitely use Explore-Share again. Thank you.



Aug 23, 2022

I was looking for a local guide for a hike I was planning and came across Explore-Share. They seemed to have good reviews and so decided to give them a try. The experience was very positive and completely happy with their service. I will be using them again for next trip.

Colin Finnegan


Aug 17, 2022

Easy to set up and find the perfect trip. Informative site that is easy to use. Guides are all great to work with and communicate all arrangements needed. As simple as can be!

Lesley Weber


July 16th, 2022

Thank you explore-share for a wonderful via feratta experience. We have been wanting to learn for a long time but don't have the facilities in Scotland. The guide Mitja was extremely helpful and knowledgeable, answering all my many questions and providing advice. On the day head to take another group but he quickly arranged another guide Borut, who was brilliant. We had a fantastic morning learning via ferrata at Hvadnik in the gorge. It gave us the confidence to later hire our own equipment and go out in Mojstrana. Altogether a five star + experience. Thank you.

Richard Scrivener


July 20, 2022

Hello! I have been thoroughly impressed by the service and assistance that explore-share have provided the past couple years in helping to plan my trip to the High Tatras in Poland. I really appreciated the flexibility that they provided in allowing me to rearrange my trip twice owing to covid. They were responsive and communicative throughout. This trip was part of my Stag weekend celebrations and explore-share connected me with an outstanding guide in the form of Marcel - he was an excellent recommendation and we really enjoyed our guided hike in the High Tatras with him. Marcel was an outstanding professional, placed a high focus on preparing well and staying safe, and was also a great guy! Highly recommend. Many thanks and best wishes - Richard

Yvonne Morrison


May 8, 2022

Our first time with Explore-Share. An absolutely fantastic experience from start to finish. Extremely good value, very well organised with attention to detail. We travel widely and this has by far been the best of experiences. Well done to all concerned. We are already looking at booking another trip!

Mark Stone


April 14, 2022

Great service by explore share. Our guide, Fred, gave us a fantastic day. Totally wild adventure that would be impossible on our own. I’m really impressed. Thank you very much.

James Dempster


March 9, 2022

I can’t recommend this enough. Great service, great price and the on the ground team was top notch. Top marks all round.

Leonardo Rodriguez


March 4, 2022

Everything went very well! Above our expectations! Thanks Explore-Share and Thanks Kiliholidays! Great support from all you! Thanks for the hard work and excellent level of commitment.

Daniel Martinez


Feb 2, 2022

Excellent job making your platform available to all mountain lovers. Our guide Gabrielle was an excellent companion




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