We were now in the Basque region of Spain where drinking beer and eating pintxos is a way of life, and here we tried our best to sample as many as time would allow.
Vitoria – Gasteiz
From our park next to the canal it was a 200 kilometer drive on the excellent Spanish roads. A carpark next to the sports ground was only a couple of kilometres from the old town. As the old town is on a small hill there are a series of escalators which makes it easy for getting up. Vitoria – Gasteiz is the capital of the Basque region and the town centre has many bars,which of course have pintxos. Apparently the way to have pintxos is to go to a bar order a drink and have a couple of pintxos then move to another bar and repeat the process. As it was lunch time we managed to visit only 2 bars before we had had our fill. The 2 kilometer walk back through parks and gardens helped to work off our lunch.
Some of the street art in Vitoria – Gasteiz
We drove another 100 kms that day to San Sebastian to a carpark next to an arena, which allows motorhomes to park overnight for free. Along with about a dozen other motorhomes we spent a quiet night. A friendly English couple explained how to catch the bus into town and back.
We left for sightseeing relatively early for us, just after nine, it was a few minutes walk to the bus stop where a bus appeared less than a minute after us. The centre of town is about 4 kilometers away from where we parked. At the top of the centre peak between two of the beaches is the Sagrado Corazon de Jesus. This is a statue of Jesus overlooking the city, a bit like the one in Rio but smaller. The climb was steep but worth it, as there was excellent views of the city. Pity the sun was not in a good spot for taking photos. Apart from Jesus at the top there was a free museum which explained many aspects of San Sebastian, included was a free audio guide. The walk down after was much easier.
It was coffee time and we noticed that for a week day (by the way today’s blog is on the 12th of October) there were loads of people in town as well as families and children. We asked our waiter and he told us it was Hispanic Day, to celebrate Christopher Columbus discovering the new world. We strolled along the promenade next to the beach. Many locals were swimming and sunbathing, a few of the ladies were very forgetful as they must have left their bikini tops at home.
Time for some Pintxos and beer.
We had built up an appetite and a thirst and in the new part of town we found our first bar where we had some beer and a couple of pintxos. From here it was a short stroll to the old part of town where we were lucky to get a seat in a crowded bar. You are supposed to get only 2 pintxos and move on but this place had atmosphere and the food was great so we had 3 pintxos’s each. Calamari in squid ink was also on the counter and we shared a bowl with some crusty bread, yummy!
Today would definitely not be a weight watchers day. We continued strolling through the old town and saw that nearly everyone was eating ice cream, it was a warm day and we decided that if it was good enough for the locals it was good enough for us. Anyway any excuse to get an icecream. We then walked to the next beach. Here the fire department was either rescuing someone in the rocks or conducting a training drill. They seemed to be taking a long time and we didn’t stay to find out. This beach was a surf beach and there were plenty of surfers out catching the waves. On this beach there was a very forgetful man, he must have left his bathers at home as he was totally naked on the beach. I think he must have done it a few times as he was tanned “all” over, if you get my drift!!
We decided to walk back to the “Bunyip “, it was still early and we wanted to visit a couple of bars in the suburbs, out of the tourist areas. It was a 4 kilometer walk and most of it was flat until the last steep climb. After two more bars with yet again beers and pintxos we returned about 8.30, a full day out.
San Sebastian was a place well worth the visit, we explored, saw many interesting sights and some we didn’t really need to see. We will remember the place fondly especially the many beers and pintxos. Now we head back into France.