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  7. Madariaga Tower. Basque Biodiversity Centre

Ekoetxea Urdaibai

The Basque Biodiversity Centre was created with the fundamental objective of promoting the dissemination of nature and biodiversity in the Basque Autonomous Community, as well as for the need to give value to biodiversity; or, what is the same, to inform of the benefits that biodiversity brings to human beings and what we lose when species become extinct.

It is located in Busturia (Biscay), in the Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve. This is one of the areas in the Basque Country with the largest number of ecosystems; which also means that there is greater biodiversity.

The territory of Urdaibai was declared Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1984 and, five years later, the Basque Government approved Law 5/1989 on the Protection and Ordering of said space, in order to protect and promote the recovery of the ecosystems for their natural and scientific interest and for environmental education. We thus aim to establish a model for territorial development that allows us to conserve natural and cultural values in a way that is compatible with economic and social development.

The Madariaga Tower is a unique building, situated at a geostrategic place from which the Urdaibai estuary area can be made out. It was built in the 15th century, most probable as a Flag Tower house, with the purpose of defending the surroundings.

In the 17th century, the nearby palace was built to foster residential areas. As time went by, the tower-house integrated to the farming activity and the farmhouses were enlarged to lodge the families in charge of the farming and caring activities of the five hectares surrounding the building.

The Clock Tower dates back to 1851 and was built by an inhabitant of San Bartolomé for the population of Busturia. The Madariaga Tower has recently been restored to become the venue for the Euskadi Biodiversity Centre.


San Bartolomé Auzoa, 34 48350 Busturia

Teléfono: 94 687 04 02 - Fax: 94 617 12 94 - Email: info@torremadariaga.org

Hours of opening:

  • September to June: Tuesday to Sunday: from 10am to 7pm 
  • July and August: Tuesday to Sunday: from 10am to 8pm (Monday: Closed)


  • General: 3€
  • Reduced: 1€
  • Children under 8: Free