What to do and see in San Sebastián

I spent the last weekend of September in San Sebastián, in Spain’s Basque Country region. Donostia, as it is called in Basque language, is capital of the province of Guipuzcoa and tops a number of lists: it’s one of Iberian Peninsula’s most beautiful cities, with one of the most beautiful beaches, one of Spain’s most stylish places and one of the world’s most important gastronomic destinations. With so many superlatives, there was no way I was not going to have a taste of it!

What to do and see in San Sebastián

What to do and see in San SebastiánWith less than 200,000 inhabitants, it is the only city in the world, along with Paris, with three restaurants rated 3 Michelin stars (the highest level). Good food is part of any Basque’s every day life and apart from the Michelin resturants, there are options to suit all budgets. Better than any sit down meal are the famous pintxos, the local answer to tapas, served in many bars in the Parte Vieja (Old Quarter).

What to do and see in San Sebastián

A “pintxos crawl” should be on every visitor’s list

Unlike most of Spain, the region is rainy most of the year. I was lucky to have a perfect weather so I could go for a stroll on the sidewalk by La Concha beach one day and go for a swim the other. Located on the bay with the same name this beach is famous for its fine sand and picture perfect setting.

What to do and see in San Sebastián

Santa Clara Island seen from La Concha

What to do and see in San Sebastián

Not beach time… yet!

What to do and see in San Sebastián

La Concha beach

After taking lots of pictures of La Concha, I went for a walk in the Parte Vieja and bumped into a huge crowd of supporters of the local Real Sociedad and Atlético de Bilbao, the football teams playing in town that day. To my surprise, the atmosphere was of joy. Both sides were drinking and chanting for their respective teams and sometimes against their rivals. I was even offered a drink by a small group of Real Sociedad supporters and we met later for more drinks and party – something for another post!

What to do and see in San Sebastián

After the first drink I was introduced to the local night life… and do the Basques know how to have a good time!

What to do and see in San Sebastián

What to do and see in San SebastiánSo be it for the beautiful setting, food to die for, great night life or the friendly Donostiarras, I’ve already decided to go back sooner than later! 

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13 Responses

  1. Pedro

    Hi Lindsey, thanks for your visit. Yes, it's a beautiful city, full of life. I'm glad I finally came round to visit it.

    Reply
  2. How to Travel from Buenos Aires to Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay

    […] Did you find this information useful? Do you have any questions? Feel free to let me know! Like Travel with Pedro on Facebook. Follow Travel with Pedro on Twitter. Follow Travel with Pedro on  Instagram. Follow Travel with Pedro on Google+. Other Posts: – How to Travel to Montevideo from Buenos Aires, Argentina – Discovering Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay – Review: Hotel Room Mate Carlos, Buenos Aires – Sun, Sea and San Sebastián […]

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  3. Megan Jerrard

    I’ve heard a lot about the weather and the food scene of San Sebastián, so I can’t wait to visit for the first time! Maybe we’ll bump into you if you plan to head back too!

    Reply
  4. Barb

    SAn Sebastian is one of my favorite places in Europe. Thank you for reminding me how awesome it is!

    Reply
  5. Vicki Louise

    San Sebastian is such a highlight in Spain. Awesome to hear the food scene has picked up too – when I was there 15+ years ago (as a teenager on a family holiday) – there really wasn’t up to much!

    Reply
  6. Jen Joslin

    San Sebastian looks fantastic! I love any place with great food, beautiful beaches and pretty architecture. Will add this to our growing list of places to visit in Spain!

    Reply
    • Pedro

      Hi Jen, it’s really a gorgeous place. I don’t understand why it doesn’t get more tourists.

      Reply
  7. Sandy N Vyjay

    San Sebastian is a beautiful place to spend a vacation at. Obviously the food there is amazing and add to the ratings …Plus you found a nice weather which is really awesome. The Photographs taken are really nice!!

    Reply
  8. Tami

    We once hosted foreign exchange students from the Basque region. I have always hoped we’d be able to visit them there. You describe San Sebastian so well, your photos are so beautiful, and it must have been quite fun to run into all the football fans.

    Reply

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