The British writer Aldous Huxley once said: “to travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.” Something like that happens in the Basque Country; or at least the impression that outsiders usually have after visiting the region is typically more positive than expected. There are small details that go unnoticed by locals yet call the attention of foreigners. To have the vision of an outsider can be a privilege because it allows one to explore the destination with the same enthusiasm with which a child discovers a new taste or an unknown smell. It is also important to be familiar with the local customs, the events that occur on a daily basis in different villages, and the history of every stone with which the local culture has been built. In that sense, being able to have someone who has a deep knowledge of the place and who at the same time admires it with novice excitement is a true luxury. That is the case of Emma Moyseychenko, director of Mir Baskov, a company that offers private guide services in the Basque Country to tourists who speak English, Spanish, and Russian.
Emma was born in Russia but fell in love with San Sebastián, where she has resided for years. She is one of the most sought after guides by visitors, and it is common to find her welcoming guests in the best hotels. Her passion for transmitting the local customs and her fascination with Basque cuisine have made her popular among tourists from all over the world. While her tours can be fully customized, there are some destinations that are highly demanded by most of her clients: the Urdaibai Nature Reserve, La Rioja, the French Basque Country, Bilbao, Pamplona, San Sebastián, the French Way (part of the Way of St. James which begins in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port), and the route through medieval Aquitaine, among others.
In addition to visits to villages and cities, Emma and her team at Mir Baskov also organize a range of culinary experiences that are tailored to each and every individual client: “chef for a day” cooking workshops for amateurs, as well as cooking courses for professionals, meals at cider houses, wine tastings, visits to cheese factories, txakoli wineries, and the La Rioja wine region. In addition, there are personalized gastronomic tours that include stops at the best bars, restaurants with Michelin Stars, and tastings of local specialties.
As well as culinary experiences, Moyseychenko’s team also offers outings in motorboats, sailing boats, and hot air balloons – and they even coordinate transportation in luxury vehicles and take care of visitors’ special requests, such as booking a balcony for San Fermín and organizing language courses for those who want to delve more deeply into the local culture.
Having a professional that can take charge of organizing all aspects of a high-class trip is important anywhere you may go in the world, but especially so in the Basque Country because of the unique way in which it is divided between France and Spain and its cultural richness and diversity. And, the fact of the matter is that there are very few guides like Emma who are able to truly transmit everything offered by this brave new world known as the Basque Country.
Tel.: +34 671 251 843