Aramaio         Arrazua-Ubarrundia         Legutiano         Urkabustaiz         Zigoitia         Zuia        
Hemen zaude:   Inicio »  Villages »  Zuia

Zuia

Zuia is the municipality from which the whole district or "Cuadrilla" takes its name, and Murgia, its chief town, is the administrative centre of the district. Covering 123 km2 it is the biggest municipality in the area.

A large part of the Gorbeia massif lies within its borders, including all its major peaks: Gorbeia, 1482 m; Nafakorta, 1017 m; Burbona, 932 m; and Berretin, 1226 m. It contains the sources of the rivers Baias, Larreakorta and Ugalde, which flow from north to south. Several steep courses have been carved out by the waters over the centuries, and they come together at the bottom of the Zuia valley to form the larger river Baias.

Much of the original vegetation of the Gorbeia hills has been cut down and replaced by heather and pine woods, but magnificent beech woods still stand in Berretín (Larreakorta), Arlobi and Ilunbe. There is also a broad stretch of oaks on the steep slopes above the river Ugalde (Aldamiz, Arazo, south east of Berretin) and an alder wood along the banks of the Baias. But the best conserved area is without doubt the beech wood of Altube. The part that lies within the borders of Zuia covers steep slopes running down from Burbona through Bortal/Rekandi and Katxandiano.

In the Zuia valley some extraordinary oak groves remain along the Baias in Bitoriano, Ametzaga and as far as Lukiano and Gilierna in Basubitxi and San Fausto, in the form of scattered islets standing out above the meadow land that covers the valley bottom.

The craggy peaks of Oro/Atxabal (896 m) and Ganalto (Badaia hills, 900 m), close off the Zuia valley, and their slopes are dotted with beautiful beech and oak groves from which fine views can be seen. Oro in particular is a site of special botanical and geological interest (an island of chalk in the Murgia diapir) and artistic value (for the shrine of Oro).

As in the rest of the region, cattle farming and forestry are the traditional mainstays of the local economy. Although their importance has declined, there are still several large sheep and cattle farms, at some of which Idiazabal cheese is made (in Sarria and Markina). Bee-keeping is increasingly important, with the production of honey and other articles being promoted from the Honey Museum in Murgia.

Industrial companies are based on estates in Murgia and Islarra (next to the A-68 motorway), where there is more than 100,000 m2 of land classed as industrial.

But the biggest employer in Zuia is the service sector. The municipality has always had a strong tourist tradition, and the trend towards sports and recreational activities in contact with nature has given a boost to the tourist trade. Murgia has become a centre for services with an area of influence extending beyond the limits of the municipality. It boasts numerous shops, bars, restaurants, hotels, a sports centre, technical services and a tourist information office, among other features.

Other areas of the valley also have services to offer: there are rural guest-houses in Sarria and Markina, bars and restaurants in Bitoriano, Ametzaga and Sarria, a the Zuia Golf Club in Altube, service areas on the motorway (restaurant and hotel in Altube), etc.