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.

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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.

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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.

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Next stop: Paris, France

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2 Comments, RSS

  1. Stephanie Sears September 4, 2016 @ 9:02 pm

    I do so enjoy your travel log- It makes me feel like I am there- My sister loved Spain too- she studied in Madrid- ended up going to Portugal, where as fate would have it, she met her 1st husband- Joao Leal- She met him at the Matuse Winery in Lisbon- BUT before that, she was smitten with a Spaniard that she almost married- Jose Luis- He was Basque, and she LOVED him… can’t remember why they never got married? At any rate, she still speaks of Spain… sort of like your mom loves Paris- Ahhh to be young and travel- So happy for you… Hasta Luego- Adios! Stephanie

  2. tim pappas September 4, 2016 @ 10:18 pm

    I loved the tight cobblestone streets of San Sebastian, but what i really enjoyed was going out at night for tapas, i like how spaniards go from restaurant to restaurant and have a favorite tapa at each one.. I think i paid about 80 euros for a tin of sardines at a small market, best sardines i ever had!

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