San Sebastián

Spain’s Basque Country

I have two eighth graders who wanted to practice their Spanish before entering high school. We figured we would kill two birds with one stone: My wife and I would get to hang out in one of the best foodie cities in Europe and the kids would go to Spanish school. Works for me! The kids loved it and we loved it. Mission accomplished! More info about Spanish immersion school can be found here:


San Sebastián (“Donostia” in the Basque language) is an old city. Very old. There is evidence of human presence there as far back as 24k BC. The city was ruled by the Romans and the monarchs of Navarre and Pamplona, among others. In 1489 the city burned to the ground and soon thereafter San Sebastian began a Renaissance. The city was rebuilt with stone rather than bare timber. After numerous wars and turmoil in the 16th-19th centuries, the city became the summer destination of monarchs. Parisian-style buildings and bridges were constructed, and most remain there today. Today San Sebastián is known as a cultural center and a major epicurean destination. The beaches are nice too!

When in San Sebastián do as the locals do. We decided that we wanted to learn how to make authentic pintxos - the tapas of the Basque country. Awesome experience. You can get more info here: in Mimo Food

Classic Pintxos Bar

The culture of San Sebastián is so cool and laid back. It’s hard to find a restaurant that isn’t amazingly good. This particular place is called Atari and is in “old town”. It’s also worth watching this trailer by the late Anthony Bourdain about his love of San Sebastián

We decided to rent an apartment rather than stay in a hotel. It was perfect. We found it on Feel Free Rentals.

View from our apartment

Paddle Boarding anyone?

The kids went to school every day until 2:00 and then did activities until dinner (usually around 7:00). It was the perfect combo of study and having fun. One of the things that they enjoyed the most was the freedom. They were always with other kids (mostly from Europe) and they loved the fact that they had so much independence.

We loved walking on the promenade every night. This is a rare shot without anyone in the picture. Every night it would fill up with locals out for a stroll..... Afterwards have a glass of local wine like a crisp Verdejo or a rich Rioja. Cheers!

Hiking on the Camino de Santiago trail. This was a view as we left San Sebastián headed towards Pasajes. This was a really cool hike..... maybe 5 or 6 miles.

Although we didn’t come to San Sebastián for the beaches, they nevertheless turned out great. Good surfing 🏄‍♀️ and plenty of sun ☀️

Well that’s it for now. Next stop Mallorca!

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