Boise is Idaho’s largest city and the capital. It is also home to Boise State University, the largest University in Idaho.
With the Boise River on one side and the foothills of the Rocky Mountains on the other, there is no shortage of outdoor activities for international students in Idaho to do.
Float down the river, ski majestic slopes and bike the Boise River Greenbelt. Idaho is a state of natural beauty.
But if international students in Idaho stray from the outdoor splendor, within the concrete streets of the city lays another interesting aspect of a predominantly white state.
On Grove Street in Boise is “The Basque Block.” The majority of Basques living in the Boise area came from the province of Bizkaia in Spain. There is a tight knit community of Basques in Boise and their culture is evident.
The Cyruse Jacobs-Uberuaga Boarding House is the oldest surviving brick building still in existence in Boise. Built in 1864, it was used as a boarding house which rented to Basques.
Now the house is used as the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, where exhibits educate visitors on Basque culture and display artifacts and photographs.
The Basques are among the oldest peoples of Europe and their language has survived over hundreds of years. The Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Basque language classes are offered two times per week.
After visitors are done exploring Grove Street, they can stop at Gernika, where they can enjoy great food and wine.
The biggest celebration the Basques throw is the feast day of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, patron saint of the Basques and founder of the Jesuit religious order. It is in July and includes exhibitions of music, dance, and sports, a Mass, picnic, and both indoor and outdoor dances.
The “Sheepherder’s Ball” takes place in December.