As well as a day trip to Biarritz on my recent surf trip to France, we also travelled across the Spanish border into San Sebastian. Set amid rolling green hills and a picturesque beach on the beautiful Bay of Biscay coast, the views from the city are surreal; I was half expecting to spot the Christ the Redeemer statue of Rio de Janeiro perched on top of one of the hills.
We arrived late in the afternoon and hurried off in search of the many streets of tapas taverns, embarking on a pincho crawl through the Old Town. Pincho (or pintxo in the Basque) means ‘spike’, and is the name given to the little tapas bites spiked with a toothpick that are piled up on plates along bars. At first sight they resemble scenes from a French patisserie, and I mistook them for tiny cakes and pastries as I peered through the entrances to the bars. But at a closer look, the toothpicks spike through small slices of bread, fastening toppings such as salmon, octopus and stuffed peppers.
Three bars and a jug of ‘super sangria’ later, we were ready to make the climb up to a mountainside viewpoint to watch the sunset and consume copious amounts of sangria (when in Spain… right?). The view was breath-taking, and I could have stayed for hours after the sunset to watch the twinkling lights of the city light up the bay. But we had one last thing on our Spanish agenda… Dance the night away to techno European music at a local club with, you guessed it, more sangria.
I don’t have many photos of the city as I only had my disposable camera on me, but don’t let that put you off visiting – just search ‘pinchos’ on Google and I’m sure that will get your tastebuds going.