You guys know how much I love San Sebastián. The city makes me feel alive, more so than I’ve ever been. I walked and combed and prowled the streets everyday on my lazy legs. I should have been awfully tired. I should have wanted to stay in to nurse the blisters and massage my calves. But there was so much to take in at San Sebastián that every step made me want to do more.
We explored the quaint green carpets at Parque di Alderdi Eder, took in the breathtaking sights of the bay (Bahia de La Concha), and admired Monte Urgull from afar. We sat on benches and people-watched. Children ran after cute puppies, the sun was high, and the sky impossibly blue, a couple got married by the bay. We also saw an unusually high number of twins and reckoned there’s something in the water or food at San Sebastián.
In the morning, the tide was low at Playa de La Concha, and boys ran out to play football, ever so skillful for their tender age. When the tide came in, the mustard sand was replaced by blue-green water. Boys ran back to land for safety. The landscape changes, yet not so much because it is still beautiful.
I especially loved walking through the streets and stumbling upon different textures in San Sebastián. We saw concrete walls splattered with graffiti, and metres away stood walls of stone caked with mud and moss, evidence of new blood running through ancient veins in the city. There was so much to see, so much to ponder, and so much history to steep in.
We also conquered a fair number of steps to get to Monte Urgull, where the Statue of Jesus looks over the city. It was there, where I learnt the gravity of aging. Four years ago, I used to be able to climb up all sorts of buildings, fortresses without falling apart. In particular, I made it up to the Palamidi Fortress in Nafplio under the blazing sun in one piece, a mean feat for a sedentary person like me. Monte Urgull is a lot less vertically challenged, and yet I almost fell apart. I was huffing and puffing and scared shitless with the heights, but it was worth going up there to share the view of Playa de La Concha with the Statue of Jesus. We even discovered a secret spot where we could admire the beautiful horizon at Bay of Biscay. Here, blue blends imperceptibly with blue-r, and I think heaven might look like this.
When we were exhausted and famished from all the climbing, we descended to terrorise the bars at Parte Vieja. We also had one of the best churros and Spanish hot chocolate, ever. If you’re planning for a trip here, I beseech you to return for a second visit, and a third, because you can’t find better churros outside of Spain.
After feasting on everything delicious that could possibly exist in the world, we strolled along Playa de La Concha, found ourselves a decent spot for a spot of sunbathing with our clothes on, and marvelled at how San Sebastián was so much more than we could ever ask for. Every once in a while, beautiful lace curtains billowed up the beach. I was rather hypnotised.
The tide began to come in, and we removed our comfortably seated selves from the beach. We forged on west and found ourselves at Parque de Miramar, another beautifully manicured vantage point that overlooks the bay. When the sun set, we unleashed the inner vampire, ran back to Parte Vieja, and stalked the bartenders till our tummies were blissfully filled. What a gorgeous holiday, in every way possible. The sights are beautiful, the people friendly, the food pretty fricking amazing and possibly the best in the world. I was happy, M was happy, our foodie friends were happy. It was a perfect vacation, one that I cannot wait to replicate.
And here’s us, saying goodbye with Maman by Louise Bourgeois at Bilbao’s Guggenheim Museum, before we headed back to reality. I wonder why we looked so happy to leave…..we shouldn’t be!!
The churros can be found at Santa Lucia, which is located at:
Calle Puerto, 6, San Sebastián 20003