The Best Places to Visit in San Sebastian, Spain for 2016 Rates

The Best Places to Visit in San Sebastian, Spain for 2016

La Concha beach, San Sebastian. Photo ©Paul Allen

View of La Concha beach, San Sebastian. Photo ©Paul Allen

See & Do

As this year’s European Capital of Culture, San Sebastian is bound to see more visitors strolling the long boardwalk beside La Concha, the largest of the sandy beaches in the city. San Sebastian (also known as Donostia in the Basque language) is a lovely town with tree-lined boulevards and a river leading to the sea.

The Monte Iguela funicular. Photo ©Ane Gaztelumendi

The Monte Iguelda funicular. Photo ©Ane Gaztelumendi

An excellent way to start a visit to the city is with a trip up Monte Iguelda in the original 19th-century funicular railway. From the top you’re rewarded with panoramic views of the harbor and beaches on one side and the stunning Basque coastline on the other. After descending in the funicular, stroll down the hill past the main beach and the harbor into the quaint old town which is basically three main streets packed with shops, cafes and ‘pinxto’ bars which serve the Basque equivalent of tapas. Of note is Calle 31 de Agosto which commemorates the date that the English joined forces with the Spanish to successfully fight off Napoleon and maintain San Sebastian’s independence.

Semi-derilect mansion on San Sebastians most exclusive street

Semi-derilect mansion on San Sebastian’s most expensive street, Paseo de Miraconcha ©Joanne Shurvell

San Sebastian has been a favorite holiday destination of wealthy Spanish families since the 19th century. While on a walking tour with Ane and Lorea, from the brilliant tour company Basque Destination, we were shown a beautiful, partly derilect mansion on the seafront avenue Paseo de Miraconcha, once owned by an affluent Madrid family. As the family had no heirs, their former staff now live there with their chickens and turkeys. The house is on a street which apparently has the highest property prices in Spain so it’s surprising the current residents haven’t been tempted by an offer to sell.

Forbes / Lifestyle