When most people think of Spain, they think of the Cheetah Girls Barcelona scene, paella and long sprawling fields of grape vines ready to be turned into wine. While those things are all amazing, from that viewpoint you tend to miss out on the other amazing things Spain has to offer. For example, San Sebastian!
San Sebastian is a wonderful town in the Basque region of Spain just 30 minutes south of the border to France! Basque? What’s that? Well it’s both the area (north west corner) and the language! No one knows the exact origins of the language however, because it dates so far back.
Being so far north, we were able to get a much appreciated reprieve from the Madrid heat! In San Sebastian it dipped as low as the 60″s at night and barely got into the high 80’s during the day. Even the beach was cold (that didn’t stop my friends from getting sunburned tho)!
Let’s just say I’d HIGHLY recommend taking the path less traveled and going ot San Sebastian for your next European get away!
Here are the 5 Things I’d Recommend:
- La Concha Beach! La Concha is a beautiful beach surrounded by big mountains on either side. The water is a deep blue, and for those who need a nice reprieve from the typical hot beaches of Florida, you will enjoy a nice cool dip in the water at La Concha! I only dared to go in to my ankles personally. The beach gets busy by mid-day… REALY busy. So I would recommend going earlier if you can. Also, BEWARE – the rumor is true…. most women in Europe go topless. So be careful who you bring with you on this particular trip!
- Mount Igueldo/ Mount Urgell (Castillo de la Mota) I would recommend doing AT LEAST one of these if not both.
- Mount Igueldo has a really awesome Funicular (sort of like a Cable Car) that takes you up the side of the Mountain! When you get to the top, there are spectacular views and a mini-amusement park set up by the Queen that created this park.
- Mount Urguell (Castillo de la Mota) is more of a “Hike for a View” activity. As an outdoor, nature lover this was probably more my style honestly. The view from the top was AMAZING not to mention we LITERALLY saw Jesus. This hike is not for the super wary however, according to my friends step counter, between walking from our apartment and going up the mountain we did close to 10,000 steps and climbed roughly 35 flights of stairs. The view was DEFINITELY worth it.
- Cathedrals! San Sebastian is home to some of the most beautiful Basilicas and Cathedrals I have ever seen! They are literally within a 10 minute walk from each other, and between them and Jesus watching over me, I’d have to say it was a very spiritual experience.
Spain is not usually the top tourist destination. San Sebastian isn’t either. But if I were to rewind to a year ago and be faced with deciding where I wanted to Study Abroad all over again – I’D PICK SPAIN!!!! The food is amazing. The music is amazing. The sights and the language is amazing. Everything is just PERFECT! And I look forward to spending the next several weeks continuing to showing all of you why YOU should take your next trip here – to Spain!!