Collected by Susi Buho
Peña y Goñi Kalea, 13, 20002 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
This bar in Gros is one, as the locals say, 'de toda la vida'. A lifelong place to stop and enjoy one of their spectacular anchovy and tuna pintxos (I recommend the one that looks like a mountain of mayonnaise) or a pintxo moruno, a hanging kebab...
Calle de Nagusia, 96, 20115 Astigarraga, Guipúzcoa, Spain
December to May is cider season in the Basque Country. Basque cider is quite different (drier, more bitter) than its American and English counterparts. The real magic in Basque cider, however, happens when it is consumed. Groups of friends head in...
Bretxa Plaza, 3, 20003 San Sebastián, Guipúzcoa, Spain
La Bretxa shopping center houses the usual trappings of a modern-day shopping mall, but below ground one can find the city's largest and best market for the fruits of the sea. Cold, wet and crowded, this is the spot where you will find both...
Arrandegi Kalea, 5, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
When Christopher Hall reported his "57 Small Bites of Spain" story about tapas in four Spanish cities, he visited Bar Txepetxa in San Sebastian's old quarter. We brought the December/January 2010 issue of AFAR with us and shared it with the pintxo...
46, 31 de Agosto Kalea, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Santa María del Coro is San Sebastián's token beautiful European church. It has the quiet, sunlit beauty that one comes to expect in European churches. It also is the site of several of the city's unique celebrations, organ concerts, and the...
San Sebastián, Gipuzkoa, Spain
When someone tells me they're traveling to Spain and looking for recommendations, San Sebastian (Donostia, in Basque) is my first thought for city destinations in the northern part of the country. It's charming, beautiful, and steeped in history....
Salamanca Pasealekua, 3, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Be Bop is a staple in the San Sebastián night scene. If you are with a diverse group and uncertain how to reconcile their tastes, take them to Be Bop. Be Bop plays a wide range of music, from Michael Jackson to The Band to Bruno Mars. Drinks are...
Arrandegi Kalea, 11, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Gernikako Arbola Pasealekua, 8, 20006 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Botanika is one of San Sebastián's best local spots to just BE. Especially if you consider yourself slightly hip, ride a fixed gear, are a NOLA-phile, or enjoy café food with a vegetarian bent. The private garden overlooks the river that runs...
Bengoetxea Kalea, 2, 20004 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
This is the neighborhood spot for the entire town of San Sebastián under the age of 40. Whether it's an 8 o'clock shot of espresso, a mid-morning toast with tomato and olive oil, or a beer at 7pm, this place is always hopping with people. It's the...
Andia Kalea, 11, 20004 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Soraluze Kalea, 1 bajo, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Café Artess is one of the city's best people-watching spots. It's spacious, with high ceilings, and locals flock there to play cards in the afternoon. It also has ample outdoor seating that looks out onto an agreeable plaza. A wide selection of...
Aldamar Kalea, 1, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
If authenticity is what you're searching for, look no further than Rekalde Taberna. It's an Old Town spot without Old Town prices, with a menu that is tailored toward the younger Basque patriots (typical food mixed with vegan and vegetarian...
Calle de Embeltrán, 6, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
The bocadillo is an art form. Crusty bread encloses fillings of your choice: usually tortilla española or thinly sliced cured meats. It's also a patriotic symbol and staple of daily life. What else would you carry to the Real Sociedad soccer game?...
Guipuzkoa Plaza, 14, 20004 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Bideluze hits all the right notes. There's nothing artisan or hoity-toity about it. Just a good, comfortable Irish pub style vibe, with pintxos that are big enough to qualify as sandwiches and a kitchen open all day long. Mornings in Bideluze are...
Boulevard Zumardia, 14, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
Va Bene has a couple things going for it. They know how to cook a beef hamburger patty, leaving it reddish on the inside. They have an endless variety of sandwiches, numbered on their simple menus. My favorite is number 13, two patties with bacon,...
Constitución Plaza, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
The Constitution Square (Plaza de la Constitución) is the very heart of the Old Part of San Sebastián. The biggest celebrations take place here: the Tamborrada, Santo Tomás, you name the party, and it probably starts here. Built in 1817, the...
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