Donostia-San Sebastián, España
Our next stop was San Sebastián, Spain, further along in the Basque Country. We had spare time before we bid farewell to my mom, so we decided to take the 7€ bus for a 5-night getaway in Spain. The city is famous for the calm turquoise waters of La Concha Bay, but thankfully there’s also the neighboring Zurriola Beach with surf for Shaun. A definite highlight of San Sebastián, or the Basque name Donostia, is the “Old Town” – Dozens of tiny cobblestone walkways squeezed between two iconic churches, packed full with standing-room only bars, tapas/pintxos restaurants, and unique shops with a gelateria on every corner.
A Frenchman told us San Sebastián is like a “Little Rio” (de Janeiro), because of the unmistakable statue of Jesus overlooking the entire town, atop Mount Urgull, surrounded by a twelfth century military fortress. Accessible by hike, the remains of the building from the Middle Ages has been transformed into a museum about the history of San Sebastián.
This is my fourth time to Europe, but my first time in Spain and I can’t wait to return. The mix of Basque and Spanish culture creates a refreshing environment with the locals enjoying their afternoon along the beach promenade or an evening with a picnic by the harbor. Everyone is outdoors. There’s no hurry, but doesn’t feel lazy. It feels artistic and relaxed, but vibrant and indulgent. I guess it’s hard to describe, but me gusta España!
The best part… the food is delicious and the wine is cheap! Coming soon, another post all about the food & drink we enjoyed in San Sebastián.
Next stop: Paris, France