Spain has so much to offer in so many ways. You can lie on some of the best beaches in the world with some of the most perfect sunshine. You can wander around some of the coolest back streets with some of the coolest bars and you can see some of the most impressive and important architecture in Western Europe. What’s actually quite amazing is that the sometimes-unlooked Basque city of San Sebastian has all of that and more.
Best San Sebastian Beaches
Although a city, San Sebastian boasts three for the price of one in terms of beaches. There’s Playa de la Concha, Playa Ondaretta and Playa de Gros. Although it’s a lot less crowded, Playa de Gros isn’t the prettiest or cleanest. Nearby rivers tend to bring with them murky waters etc, but if peace and quiet is what you’re after then head there. Playa de la Ondaretta is the next in terms of business but it’s a little small in terms of sand-space, therefore best if you’re only after a swim. Playa Concha is the biggest, most famous and therefore the most crowded. It arches around the bay and is literally swimming with both foreign and Spanish tourists, especially those from Madrid. Expect all the usual loungers-for-hire, surfing-for-hire and probably sun-burns-for-hire, as it gets hotter than you think with very little shade!
Best San Sebastian Bars
The name of the game in San Sebastian is the Pintxos Bars, which to you and me would be Tapas Bars. San Sebastian prides itself with having some of the best tapas in Spain and in the world for that matter. When you drift from the immaculately clean streets to some of these welcoming little hides you will be greeted by men or women behind the bars who seem to have better memories than your home computer. Order as much as you like, from familiar olives and chorizo to something more alien like a raw sea urchin, and somehow they remember exactly what you’ve eaten…even if you don’t. Officially though, you are asked to be honest and let them know what you’ve had. Luckily most things cost the same price so it’s easier. One of the best Pintxos bars in the whole city is called Txepetxa on Pescadería, 5. If you didn’t like anchovies before, you will do after this.
Best San Sebastian Architecture
It’s hard to miss some of the beautiful churches and monuments when pacing around the city but before you think about heading anywhere else, make sure you are herded to the famous Catedral del Buen Pastor, or the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd. The neo-gothic building finished in 1897 is the highest church in the city and will bowl you over with its needle-like shape and height. If churches aren’t your thing, then check out pretty much all of the Old Part in the eastern area of the city and you’ll be more than satisfied with the buildings all around this district.