Last winter, I fell in love. It was the kind of love that made you stop, stare and ask yourself “is this real life?!”. It was the type of town characterised by the simplicity of living. Upon driving into San Sebastian, you’d feel a little awkward riding a car on the road and seeing everyone else (locals & tourists alike) biking, walking or running to their destinations whether it be to work, the local market or the beach. It was that kind of town. No frills, just beautiful in it’s natural state.
I fell in love with the people, the culture, the food (okay, fine, maybe mostly the food). Who wouldn’t?! San Sebastian is one of the gastronomical capitals of the world. For those who are ready to splurge, take your pick with the countless Michelin Starred restaurants. If you’re feeling more of the adventurous side, take your pick with any small alley and I assure you, you will find a hole-in-the-wall that’ll leave you salivating for more. San Sebastian is every enthusiastic eater’s dream.
The perimeters of “la playa”, as they would say, is lined by a boardwalk where locals and tourists eat & drink their day away as they watch the sunset. The town’s shops close mid-day since everyone in Spain needs their daily dose of “siesta”. At night, everyone is up & about ready to eat and drink yet again. Alley ways will lead you to even skinnier alley ways that take you to all the best hole-in-the-walls to get your “pintxos” fix. In the basque country, tapas are called “pintxos”.
Every week, the city hosts a local event called “Pintxo y Vino”. This event is held in a different neighbourhood each week. It is the happiest hour I have ever witnessed. During the time span of this event, you can get one pinxto and an alcoholic beverage of your choice for less than 6 euros. Every bar changes the rules up a little but basically, you always end up with a pretty sweet deal.
My family & I visited during the end of September to early October. Locals say the ber months are an ideal time to visit as opposed to the earlier months of the year which is considered to be their rainy season. We stayed for four days and throughout our stay, the sky was the prettiest shade of blue I have ever seen. I kid you not.
Eating, drinking and sleeping (or as they say siesta) all day repetitively is certainly my kind of vacay.
It was an incredibly fun and memorable family trip that I would definitely do a thousand times over. I’m pretty sure we went home with empty wallets but it was definitely well worth it as we went home with our hearts full (and tummies!).