Oñati is a town located in the province of Guipúzcoa, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country, in the north of Spain. It has a population of approximately 10,500. The name in Basque translates roughly as “place of many hills,” reflecting the beautiful landscape of the area.
Oñati is a town of many monuments. The Ancient University of the Basque Country, which is in the town’s centre, is one of the oldest university buildings on the Iberian peninsula. Today it houses the International Institute for the Sociology of Law. Other important sites include the monastery and hospice of Bidaurreta and the Church of Saint Michael.
Above the city lies the Sanctuary of Arantzazu. Onati is also known for having hosted the Boise State University Campus in the Basque Country program at ETEO. Between about 1974 and 1980 many Idahoans and other Americans of Basque ancestry or not, enjoyed a tremendous education for two semesters on the Basque language, Basque politics and other official leaders and other topics. The time was very volatile politically, and mirrored Northern Ireland in many ways, since it saw the death of Franco and the transition to a non dictatorial political system.