Saturday, May 7, 2011

San Sebastian, optional excursion from Biarritz

One tour site tells us this about the picturesque bay:

La Concha (Seashell Bay) lies off San Sebastian on the shores of the Cantabric Sea of Biscay Bay. It is possibly the most famous beach in the Basque Country of Spain.

La Concha beach (Playa de la Concha) is 1350 meters long by 40 meters wide on average. It is lined with about 40 public showers, toilets and changing rooms and is a very popular attraction in the local area. Beach chairs can be rented from various points along La Concha and there are also numerous refreshment kiosks nearby.

La Concha is named for the seashell shape, which is clearly visible in aerial photos of the bay. It is a beautiful beach with fine, golden sand set in luscious green landscape. This panorama was taken from the southern side of La Concha, another panorama shows the view from the maria on the north side of La Concha Bay.

Behind La Concha is San Sebastian, the center of tourism in the region, set amidst ancient and medieval buildings on the harbour-front. The beach front is heavily developed with holiday apartments and hotels. In the surrounding town are various castles, military fortifications and ancient buildings telling the story of San Sebastian as a thousand year old military port and trading town.

Besides the beaches and ocean view, we are told by the San Sebastian Travel Guide:

"San Sebastian's charming old quarter is bursting with cafés, bars, clubs, and restaurants where you can try their tasty tapas. Other attractions include the Baroque Church of Santa Maria , the Gothic Church of San Vicente, and the Museo de San Telemo , a former 16 th century convent. For spectacular views of the bay and town, climb atop Mount Urgull and Mount Igueldo . At the base of Mount Igeldo is a beach where visitors can take a ride to the peak to witness the breathtaking view, or go for a spin at the neighboring family fun fair.

"Miramar Palace, [above] also known as the Royal Country House of Miramar , is another attraction in San Sebastián. It is located above the " Pico del Loro", marking the strategic junction of La Concha Beach and Ondarreta Beach, and also the dividing point in the long promenade between two city districts: " El Antiguo " and " Miraconcha ". The Palace marks the city's historical origin, because it is based on the plan of the old church of San Sebastián, the original urban center of the town. The magnificent palace complex, with its park, gardens, several buildings and outbuildings, is a quintessential summer place.

"At present, the heart of the city is Constitution Square. One of the first things you'll notice upon visiting is the numbers on the balconies that date back to the Middle Ages when the Square was used for bullfighting. These numbered rooms were rented by spectators to get a bird's eye view of the action."

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1 Response
  1. Charity Says:

    This place looks amazing! I really hope we get to visit here.

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