Rough city of San Sebastian

For a long time I kept thinking what to write about San Sebastian. There is nothing wrong with the city in particular, but it just didn’t grow close to our hearts as Girona did. However, there are a few things worth mentioning. The Belle Epoque architecture is omnipresent and creates a nice feeling, particularly when the setting sun touches the facades.

Saint Vincent church is the oldest one in the city and dates to the 16th c. It features a nice gothic architecture and a very well made model.

Saint Vincent church

Plaza de la Constitution is interestingly surrounded by numbered balconies. These were sold as “theater places” during corrida.

Numbered balconies at Plaza de la Constitution

You can also take a stroll on the promenade along the La Concha beach, taking in the breeze and maybe stopping for a coffee in the aptly named Café de La Concha.

La Concha beach
La Concha beach

On one end of the beach, there is a nice park with a carousel, on the other, the Miramar castle built for the queen Maria Cristina. She fell in love with San Sebastian and wanted to spend as much time as possible there, so she had the castle built for her and her children. It has an interesting history which is written on panels around the property, but nowadays is a bit tired and used only occasionally for events.

Miramar castle

The climb to the Urgull hill is definitely worth the effort, as you will get rewarded by splendid views of the city and both beaches. It is also possible to grab a drink up there on a nice terrace overlooking La Concha, but bear in mind the only food they have are olives and chips.

View of the Santa Clara island
View of the Miramar castle
View of the square by the San Telmo museum
View of the statue at the top of the hill

Cristina Enea park is beatiful for a walk on a nice day, and also has a nice playground for children. It borders the Tabakalera, where various exhibitions take place. There is also a nice view from the terrace on the last floor. I would just not recommend the LABe restaurant there, from my experience it is pretentious, with cheeky staff.

Cristina Enea park
Playground at the park

And our favourite places to eat or drink?

  • Kelly’s Irish pub
  • Ondarra bar
  • Urkabe (neighbourhood bar with nice owner)
  • Alabama café (such a delicious breakfast)
  • Portaletas (great pinchos and wine, otherwise a but pricey for regular meals)
Pinchos at Portaletas
The beggining of the central boulevard
A Belle Epoque palace on the central boulevard
View of the cathedral through the streets of the city center
Library at the other end of the boulevard and Urgull hill



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