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San SebastianSpain

Fabulous sandy beaches, historical buildings and Basque cuisine make this resort town in northern Spain a compelling place to visit.

The seaside resort of San Sebastián is one of the most popular summer destinations in Spain's Basque Country. The city sits on a circular bay made up of white-sand beaches. Its gorgeous mountain scenery encompasses a fascinating old town. Tour ancient churches, visit a hilltop 12th-century fortress and spend sunny days on a beach.

The shell-shaped Playa de la Concha in the center of the city is where many visitors chose to relax. Sunbathe on this long, pleasant stretch of sand and swim or take a boat to Santa Clara Island, which lies just offshore. San Sebastián has two other city beaches, Ondarreta and Zurriola, popular with surfers.

Behind the beaches lies the old town, where San Sebastian was born. Follow streets leading to churches, plazas, shops and boutiques. Visit the 16th-century San Vicente Church and the 18th-century Baroque Basilica of Santa Maria. Browse the exhibits of the Museo San Telmo, a former convent that now houses a Museum of Basque Society and Citizenship. Stop at one of the cafés in the old town's main square and sample a variety of pintxos. The city is renowned for these tapas-like dishes.

Continue your exploration of San Sebastián with a trip up Mount Urgull, a hill in the heart of the city. Walk to the summit, which is topped by a statue of Jesus Christ and a 12th-century fortress.

For more lofty views, take the 3-minute funicular railway ride from Ondarreta Beach to the top of Monte Igeldo. The journey’s end is the Monte Igueldo Amusement Park, which is filled with old-fashion rides and attractions.

Select from several ways to get to San Sebastián. Fly into the international airport at Bilbao, Spain or Biarritz, France, about 60 miles (100 kilometers) and 30 miles (50 kilometers) away respectively. Alternatively, travel by bus, train or car from other destinations in Europe. Take advantage of the seaside resort’s beaches, history, mountainous scenery and culinary delights.

Where to stay in San Sebastian

Maria Cristina Bridge featuring a river or creek, a bridge and a city

San Sebastian Centro

4.5/5Wonderful!(248 area reviews)

San Sebastian Centro is known for its stunning beaches, and with sights like Concha Beach and Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, you won't get bored spending a day wandering around this part of San Sebastian.

San Sebastian Centro
San Ignacio Church which includes a church or cathedral and heritage architecture

Gros

4.5/5Wonderful!(48 area reviews)

Travelers come to Gros for its beaches, and you can see top attractions like Zurriola Beach and Kursaal Congress Centre and Auditorium while you're in town.

Gros
Old Town which includes street scenes as well as a small group of people

Old Town

5/5Exceptional!(72 area reviews)

Unique features of Old Town include the historic sites and bars. Make a stop by Monte Urgull or Casino Kursaal while you're exploring the area.

Old Town
Miramar Palace showing general coastal views, flowers and a coastal town

Antiguo

5/5Exceptional!(46 area reviews)

Antiguo is popular for its pristine beaches, and you might make a stop by Ondarreta Beach, a top place to visit in the area.

Antiguo
Hondarribia which includes general coastal views

La Marina

4.5/5Wonderful!(3 area reviews)

Visitors to La Marina enjoy its restaurants, and if you want to do some exploring, Calle San Pedro is worth a stop.

La Marina
Plaza Gipuzkoa featuring heritage elements

Hondarribia Historic Center

5/5Exceptional!(8 area reviews)

Hondarribia Historic Center is noteworthy for its historic sites, and you can make a stop at top attractions like Plaza Gipuzkoa and Church of Nuestra Senora del Manzano.

Hondarribia Historic Center

Top Hotels in San Sebastian

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Hotel de Londres y de Inglaterra
Hotel de Londres y de Inglaterra
4 out of 5
Zubieta Kalea, 2, San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
$82
per night
Apr 27 - Apr 28

Located in San Sebastian Centro, this beachfront hotel is in the city center and within a 5-minute walk of Concha Promenade and Concha Beach. Ondarreta Beach ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (952 reviews)

"Espectacular!!! Súper!!!!"…"

Reviewed on Jan 4, 2020

Hotel de Londres y de Inglaterra
Room Mate Gorka
Room Mate Gorka
4 out of 5
Plaza Guipuzkoa 11, San Sebastian, Gipuzkoa
$121
per night
May 3 - May 4

Located in San Sebastian Centro, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Concha Beach, Casino Kursaal, and Cathedral of the Good Shepherd. Zurriola Beach and ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (195 reviews)

"Very good location, clean room and friendly staff."…"

Reviewed on Mar 12, 2020

Room Mate Gorka
Axel Hotel San Sebastián - Adults Only
Axel Hotel San Sebastián - Adults Only
4 out of 5
Calle Amara 26, San Sebastian
$97
per night
May 5 - May 6

Located in San Sebastian Centro, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Concha Promenade and Concha Beach. Ondarreta Beach and Basque Culinary Center are also ...

4.3/5Excellent! (17 reviews)

"A pleasant and relaxing hotel in a quiet area of the town. The staff at the front desk were always helpful and courteous. I would recommend the hotel but caution: at the time of our stay the Wi-fi was slower than drying paint!"…"

Reviewed on Mar 15, 2020

Axel Hotel San Sebastián - Adults Only

Popular things to do in San Sebastian

Concha Beach
Image for Concha Beach

Concha Beach

4.5/5(161 reviews)

Enjoy one of the best city beaches in Europe. This fantastic spot in San Sebastián has an extensive sandy area and clear waters. 

Monte Igueldo
Image for Monte Igueldo

Monte Igueldo

4.5/5(121 reviews)

Go to the top of this great mountain in San Sebastián and visit a traditional amusement park with spectacular views as a backdrop.

Ondarreta Beach
Image for Ondarreta Beach

Ondarreta Beach

4.5/5(75 reviews)

Bring your kids to this family-friendly beach and admire the vista of the outcrops, islands and verdant hills that sprout from beautiful Concha Bay.

Basque Culinary Center
Image for Basque Culinary Center

Basque Culinary Center

4.5/5(28 reviews)

Take a campus tour or just explore the area around Basque Culinary Center, a top college in San Sebastian. Wander the beautiful beaches and seaside in the area.

Donostia-San Sebastian Aquarium
Image for Donostia-San Sebastian Aquarium

Donostia-San Sebastian Aquarium

4.5/5(20 reviews)

See extraordinary marine creatures, learn about life under the sea and get insights into the local fishing history at this aquarium and oceanographic museum.

Miramar Palace
Image for Miramar Palace

Miramar Palace

4.5/5(27 reviews)

Explore a beautiful palace located in one of the best spots of San Sebastián. Enjoy its lavish gardens and fantastic panoramic views of the bay.

Top activities in San Sebastian

Charms of San Sebastián Day Trip
Image for Charms of San Sebastián Day Trip

Charms of San Sebastián Day Trip

76% of travellers recommend
$78
Per adult
San Sebastian and Basque Coast tour in small groups
Image for San Sebastian and Basque Coast tour in small groups

San Sebastian and Basque Coast tour in small groups

$139
Per adult
Biarritz and French Basque Coast tour in small groups
Image for Biarritz and French Basque Coast tour in small groups

Biarritz and French Basque Coast tour in small groups

$117
Per adult
Pintxos Bar Crawl
Image for Pintxos Bar Crawl

Pintxos Bar Crawl

80% of travellers recommend
$141
Per adult
BIARRITZ, SAINT JEAN DE LUZ, HONDARRIBIA & SAN SEBASTIAN
Image for BIARRITZ, SAINT JEAN DE LUZ, HONDARRIBIA & SAN SEBASTIAN

BIARRITZ, SAINT JEAN DE LUZ, HONDARRIBIA & SAN SEBASTIAN

100% of travellers recommend
$78
Per adult
GETARIA, WORKSHOP OF SEA PRODUCTS & SAN SEBASTIAN
Image for GETARIA, WORKSHOP OF SEA PRODUCTS & SAN SEBASTIAN

GETARIA, WORKSHOP OF SEA PRODUCTS & SAN SEBASTIAN

$78
Per adult

Reviews of San Sebastian

4.8

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
254
5 - Excellent 83.55263157894737%
4 - Good
46
4 - Good 15.131578947368421%
3 - Okay
3
3 - Okay 0.9868421052631579%
2 - Disappointing
1
2 - Disappointing 0.32894736842105265%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Feb 23, 2020

Beautiful city, gorgeous food!!!! Safe and friendly people.

5/5 - Excellent

yk841pink

Feb 22, 2020

Love this city. So much to offer, the view, food, people, culture we love it there!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Jan 5, 2020

Amazing city. A foodies paradise.Beautiful nature.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Jan 5, 2020

My cousin expressed how beautiful and he was right Very friendly people!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 29, 2019

It is a unique ecperience, the cleanness of the city, very kind and friendly people, beautiful city, to me is one of the nicest places I have travelled to.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 24, 2019

Culinary capital of the world

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