Senior Food Lovers Search Out San Sebastián

San Sebastián is the capital of the Gipuzko (seniors, can you say that twice?) province, located in the Basque country of North Spain off the coast of the Bay of Biscay. It is called Donostia in the local language and lies just 12 miles from the French border.

Many call the city La Joya del Norte (Jewel of the North) and tourists flock to San Sebastián by the thousands year round. Senior visitors have found this city to be a great discovery for a host of reasons.  

It’s a Food Mecca destination with 150,000 residents. This colorful seaside city is well-loved for its excellent beaches and outstanding culinary tradition. Although it is divided into several districts, San Sebastián is a small, cozy city crammed with restaurants, pintxos bars, designer shops and an enclosed mall.

The Old Town features many historic buildings reconstructed in the 19th century after the city was nearly destroyed during the Napoleonic Wars.

San Sebastián boasts some of the best beaches in Europe with the most popular of these being Playa de la Concha, which offers sunbathing and water activities like swimming, kayaking and water skiing.

Seniors Smile At Tapas

Overlooking the city are two lofty hills, Monte Urgell and Mount Igueldo, which offer hiking, funicular rides, amusement parks, remarkable statues and fantastic views. San Sebastián is widely appreciated in Spain for its pintxos…appetizers (tapas) prepared with a wide variety of fresh vegetables, meats and seafood.

Many of the bars in the city feature buffets displaying a range of these pintxos. The local tradition is to go from one bar to the next, sampling one or two pintxos with a bit of wine or beer.

The Old Quarter’s narrow, winding streets are full of bars and restaurants, and in the modern city, sidewalk cafes are everywhere.

La Concha is one of the best beaches in Europe. Senior visitors can surf, walk along the promenade to find a good restaurant and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

The beach is surrounded by steep cliffs and islands. La Playa de la Concha, situated in a huge bay,  is a principal attraction in all of Spain.

By now you have surmised that San Sebastián is a chief town in the Basque province of Guipúzcoa as well as  Spain’s most fashionable bathing resort. So bring along your favorite swimming gear.

This YouTube video features my travel hero Rick Steves who provides us with a nice overview of the city. Hope to see you up there in Basque Country.  jeb

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