Bilbao's Top Ten
Collected by Chris Ciolli, AFAR Local Expert
Ramón de la Sota Kaia, 1, 48011 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Learn about Bilbao’s shipbuilding industry and seafaring heritage at the Ria de Bilbao Maritime Museum, located under Euskalduna Bridge. Once you're done, head outside to explore the Pump House, where the machinery for filling and draining the...
Pío Baroja Plaza, 1, 48001 Bilbao, Vizcaya, Spain
Hop on a boat tour down the Nervión estuary to get a new perspective on the city’s most iconic edifices. Spot large-scale art installations at the Guggenheim and look out for other ultramodern structures around town, like the Euskalduna Palace...
Quintana Kalea, 6, 48007 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Starting at the Paseo del Arenal in the Old Quarter, stroll riverside towards City Hall, people-watching along the way. Check out the exterior of the late-19th-century Baroque building before heading inside to find the Arab Hall, decorated to...
Plaza de Santiago, 1, 48005 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Take in the curious mixture of architectural styles at Bilbao’s oldest church—a Gothic cloister, Renaissance portico and neo-Gothic facade and spire. Although it has long been a stop along the northern route of the Camino de Santiago, this temple...
Okendo Kalea, 1, 20004 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
San Sebastián, or Donostia in the Basque language, is a Belle Époque resort town built around the Bay of La Concha. Stroll the cobblestone Old Town streets in search of cozy shops, the city’s oldest church (San Vicente) and celebrated restaurants...
Museo Plaza, 2, 48009 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Feed the ducks and stroll in the shade of centenary tree species in this English-style garden in Bilbao’s main public park. On a column in the middle of the pond, a bronze bust of the park’s donor and namesake, Doña Casilda, presides. In the...
Funikularreko Plaza, s/n, 48007 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Make your way up Mount Artxanda the fast way—via funicular railway. Built to make the mountaintop accessible to locals, this little red train has been in operation since 1915, although it closed briefly after being bombed during the Spanish Civil...
Goikoibarra Kalea, 3, 48300 Gernika-Lumo, Bizkaia, Spain
Located 35 kilometers (22 miles) northeast of Bilbao, Guernica (Gernika in Basque) is home to the sacred site of the old oak tree Gernika Arbola, where the Basques were granted independence in the middle ages and where they've continued to meet...
Abandoibarra Etorb., 2, 48009 Bilbo, Bizkaia, Spain
Modern, mind bending, and mentally interactive, the Guggenheim Museum is one of the must-do experiences of Spain. You could easily spend an hour getting lost in the beauty of the facade, with the monstrous tarantula, the skyscraper of a flowered...
Bilbao, Biscay, Spain
Take a self-guided walking tour through the architectural styles of the Old Town, from the blue-and-white Baroque mansion, Mazarredo House (Heros Kalea, 18), to the Bank of Bilbao (Plazuela San Nicolás, 4) to admire the Beaux-Arts arched, square...
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