Information Irún - San Sebastián
The Camino del Norte is not an easy route and does not give us a truce even on the first stage; From now on, the continuous ascents and descents begin.
Let’s begin the Camino del Norte!
The Camino del Norte begins on the International Bridge of Santiago, on the River Bidasoa estuary. Ahead, we expect more than 800 kilometres in the company of the Cantabrian and Basque landscapes, then Cantabrian, Asturian and, finally, Galician.
The journey of this first stage will not be easy, but it helps us to assess the weight of our backpacks On the countless slopes today. However, the beauty of the landscapes that we will go through today will help us to cope with the effort.
Itinerary Irún - San Sebastián
The first stage on the Camino del Norte is a stretch full of wonderful landscapes, but along the 26.8 kilometres on the route, you'll face terrain characterized by the frequent presence of slopes, both positive and negative.
Puente de Santiago (Km. 0). Beginning of the Camino del Norte
Practical tips for this section: Many pilgrims choose to make the two-kilometre journey that separates the bridge from the centre of Irún the previous afternoon and start the following morning directly from the centre. We'll explain the route and you can decide. Buen Camino!
The pilgrim path on the journey through the Camino del Norte begins on the border bridge of Santiago that crosses the River Bidasoa estuary. From there you have to continue until the first roundabout, where you continue on the left until the Real Unión promenade, on the banks of the river.
On a pleasant walk, we arrive at the district of Santiago and we continue until the Church of Nuestra Señora del Juncal. We go around the temple and from the square, we climb the stairs located in Calle Eskoleta. After these, turn left to cross the Paseo de Colón, passing by the palace of Arbelaix and towards the Irún Town Hall.
Leaving the façade of the town hall on our left, we enter the Calle Mayor (Nagusia, in Basque) and at the first crossroads we find a fork with the paths of the Camino de Santiago: the Camino del Norte (or Coastal) and the Camino del Interior. To follow the Camino del Norte stay on the right.
Irún (Km. 2)
Practical tips for this section: between Irún and Pasaia Donibane there is a little more than 16 kilometres and there is only one restaurant bar on the route. This is the one behind the Chapel of Guadalupe, but it opens from 10:30 or 11:00, so it is advisable to bring water and food for the route to Pasaia.
On the other hand, the ascent to the Sanctuary of Guadalupe implies an ascent of 155 metres, in little more than a kilometre. take it easy on this first climb because the stage is hard enough, even for being the first one. Buen Camino!
We set a course for the railway tracks and cross them by a footbridge to access Calle Fuenterrabía. After passing a roundabout and under the road bridge GI-636, turn left on a paved road to the crossroads with the national road N-638.
We cross, with caution, the dangerous intersection and followed by an asphalted track towards the Txingudi Marshes, a wetland which is inhabited by a multitude of migratory birds. Next to the Centro de Interpretación, we turn ninety degrees to the right to continue along a pedestrian walkway on which we find several bridges.
At the exit of the road, we turn left, advancing in ascent to a neighbourhood track. In this one, we turn left again, next to the hamlets of the Arkolla district of Hobarribia, where we can visit the Santiagotxo Chapel.
At the crossroads of the chapel, we continue on the left and, half a kilometre later, we take the road that goes up to the Sanctuary of Guadalupe. On the last climbs, the shrine's peaked tower begins to be seen.
Santuario de Guadalupe (Km. 6,7)
Practical tips for this section: next to the Sanctuary of Guadalupe you will find a fountain, although it is not suitable for consumption. Within walking distance of the sanctuary, you will find a fort from 1900, if you wish to visit it. Buen Camino!
From the sanctuary, we have an unbeatable panoramic view of the Bay of Txingudi. On the farthest shore, we can see Hendaye and in the next, Hondarribia and Irun. Next to the Casa Forestal de Jaizkibel, located next to the sanctuary, we take a track that borders Mount Jaizkibel.
Within walking distance, and after a few stairs, we find a fork. A path follows the GR-11, rising to higher altitude and, therefore, much more spectacular. It is designed for mountaineers and links to the pilgrim path at 3 kilometres. The other is the official path of the Camino del Norte.
We continue on the latter, a spacious track surrounded by conifers and chestnut trees. We pass by a fountain with the inscription from the year 1940 (Km 8.9) and then we start another ascent.
After a while walking, we cross a cattle grid and turn right to take the course to Pasaia (Km 11.8). We move up a couple of kilometres to circumvent another cattle grid. Then the path descends for many kilometres through a beautiful forest.
We go beyond the indication of Pasai Donibane 3.4 km and reach the GI-3440 (km 16.2), to take straight, in ascent. At kilometre point 4, we leave it on the left, not without first enjoying the view of the lighthouse and Pasaia Cove. We start a steep descent to Pasai Donibane, passing through the district of Larrabide.
Pasai Donibane (Km. 18,7)
Practical tips for this section: On this section, you will enter the urban area of San Sebastián, be attentive to the signalling in the city, which is easy to miss. Buen Camino!
The steep descent will have led us to the pier, in this, we take a small motorboat that will help us to cross the distance that separates us from Pasai San Pedro. We disembark and take Calle Torreatze, on the right. We are advancing along the estuary and passing by the Maritime Cultural Centre.
On an endless flight of stairs, we go onto the road to the La Plata lighthouse (km. 20.9). 150 metres before reaching the building, turn left on a coastal path, heading for San Sebastián. The beautiful, but undulating route, passes by the ruins of an old water conduct and to a picnic area, leading to Paseo de Ulía (km. 22.5).
We pass by a parking area and descend by a nice setting to a viewpoint over San Sebastián. In the foreground, we see the beach of the Zurriola and the Kursaal; And after the mouth of the River Urumea you can see the La Concha Beach and Mount Igueldo. At the viewpoint, we turn right to start a pronounced descent to Calle Zemoria de San Sebastián (km. 25.4).
We continue down to the right, along Avenida de Navarra, and we lead to the promenade that runs parallel to the beach of La Zurriola. We pass by the Kursaal, cross the River Urumea and the Alameda del Boulevard. We immediately arrive at the Town Hall, from where we turn on the right-hand side to access the old town.
San Sebastián (Km. 26,8). End of stage
Practical tips for this section: San Sebastián is the first end of stage on the Camino del Norte and maybe it's too much to ask you to spend two nights in the city, but definitely the place deserves it. See you tomorrow!
In San Sebastián you won't be bored for a moment. The city offers a multitude of places to visit and activities. If you feel like enjoying the outdoors, you can go to La Concha beach or, organize a boat trip to the Island of Santa Clara. Or you can also simply tour the Paseo Nuevo.
If you prefer to discover the architecture of the city, you should know that both on the promenade in its historic district, you will find samples of civil architecture, both classic and modern.
Some of the most visited constructions are the Castillo de Santa Cruz de la Mota, the Diputación Foral de Gipuzkoa, the Hotel Maria Cristina, Cubos de Kursaal, Los Palacios de Aiete, Miramar and the Duque de Mandas, the Maria Cristina Bridge, La Tabakera or La Perla.
If you feel like visiting temples, you can visit the Church of St. Vincent, the Buen Pastor Cathedral and the Basilica of Santa Maria.
If you choose to spend two days in the city and you still have time left, we recommend that you visit the Mount Igueldo Amusement Park, taking the city's emblematic funicular railway, the Eureka Science Museums, Cemento Rezola or San Telmo or get lost in the corridors of the Koldo Mitxelena Library, one of the best in Basque culture.
Whatever plan you choose, between places, do not forget to enjoy the excellent gastronomy that the city has to offer and to lose you in its historic centre to enjoy an afternoon of txakolí and pintxos.
Comments Irún - San Sebastián
Below you will find useful information to enjoy the first stage of the Camino del Norte.
How to get to Irún
Irún is well connected with the main cities of Spain and with some French cities too, and it is easy to access it by train or bus. If you want to arrive by plane, the fastest is to fly to San Sebastián, the nearest airport, and from there link to Irún.
However, if you do not want to worry about the travel and logistics associated with the tour, remember that if you get in touch with us we can take care of everything.
Precautions stage Irún - San Sebastián
Today's stage is quite hard to be the first one, considered as a hard day, facing continuous ascents and descents. The ascent to Guadalupe, although short, is one of the first slopes that the pilgrim will face, so it is advisable to measure your efforts.
Food stage Irún - San Sebastián
Here are some recommendations for you to enjoy Basque cuisine, on this first stage of the Camino del Norte.
- Basque style Hake
- Hake cheeks in green sauce
- Baby squid in its ink
- Baked Crab
- Clams in Marinara sauce
- Baked Sea Bream
- Aguinaga Eels
- Basque gateau
- San Marcos Cake
- Txakolí, a famous local wine
You should know that in addition to the traditional cuisine, the Donosti cuisine is famous for its pintxos. The pilgrim can taste countless combinations, such as the popular Gilda, made with olive, anchovy and chilli, among many others.
What to do Irún - San Sebastián
Here you will get information about points of interest in Irun, during the tour and at the end of the stage, San Sebastián.
Irún, on the border with France, is the starting point for the pilgrims who start the Camino de Santiago on its northern slope. The municipality belongs to the Spanish province of Guipúzcoa and has more than 61,000 inhabitants.
On its streets, you can visit examples of religious architecture, such as the Chapel of San Marcial, the Church of Nuestra Señora del Juncal and the Chapel of Santa Elena. As samples of civil architecture, the visitor will find the Town Hall, the column of San Juan de Harri, the Fountain of St. Helena and the palaces of Arbelaiz and Urbanibia. You can also visit the Roman Museum of Oiasso.
On the way out of the locality, the pilgrim will be able to enjoy the natural surroundings of great beauty like the Island of the Pheasants or the Peñas de Aia Natural Park.
Ermita de San Marcial
The Chapel of San Marcial is located in Irún. The temple dates from 1804, although its tower is later, from 1920. The chapel was built with the aim of commemorating the victory of the French army in the Battle of 1522. The original chapel was devastated by a fire, therefore the building that is currently seen is the result of the later construction.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From Tuesday to Sunday (from 11:00 to 23:00).
Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Juncal
The Church of Our Lady of Juncal is located in the town of Irún. The temple began to be built in the 16th century and took 100 years to complete. For that reason in the construction, you can see a mixture of styles like the oldest gothic and the Basque Gothic. In 1973 it was declared National Artistic Historical Monument.
The temple, with a rectangular plan, is made up of three naves with a flat apse and a stone tower. From its exterior, the façade made with ashlars and in Baroque style stands out. Inside it, stands the main altarpiece, which houses the image of the Virgin of Juncal, from the 12th century and in Byzantine style.
Isla de los Faisanes
Pheasant Island, with an extension of 2,000 square metres, belongs to both Irún and Hendaye. The island has been the scene of many historical landmarks, among them the most outstanding is the signing of the Peace Treaty of the Pyrenees. In the centre of the island stands a monolith with an inscription that commemorates this event.
The Town Hall, or the seat of the Irún City Council, is housed in a baroque-style 18th-century building. In 1936 it had to be rebuilt because during the Civil War it was burned.
The main façade of the building stands out because of its simplicity and symmetry, as well as the portico, formed by five half-point arches made of upholstered ashlars and with groined vaults inside. The façade is topped by a balustrade decorated with several finishes, two bells and the coat of arms.
Inside the Town Hall, stands a large central staircase, made of Oak, and a dome made up of 8 stained glass windows representing the ancient territories of Euskal Herria.
Timetable: Closes on Sundays. From Monday to Friday (from 8:30 to 14:00 and from 16:00 to 19:00) and Saturdays (from 9:30 to 13:00).
Columna de San Juan de Harri
The column of San Juan de Harri, located in the town of Irún, was declared an Artistic Historical Monument in 1964. The date of its construction is not known exactly.
The monument is made of stone and raised on a pedestal. It has a striated stem topped by a capital that rests on the coats of arms of the House of Austria in Gipuzkoa and the University of Irún. The column is crowned with a small statue.
Museo Romano Oiasso
The Oiasso Roman Museum is located in Irún. This is a museum space created to guard and disseminate the Roman remains found in the municipality, in the area known as "La Antigua Oiasso". A part of the museum is equipped to develop cultural activities related to history and archaeology.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From April to August, from Tuesday to Saturday (from 10:00 to 20:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00). From September to March, from Tuesday to Thursday (from 10:00 to 14:00), Fridays and Saturdays (from 10:00 to 14:00 and from 16:00 to 19:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Palacio de Arbelaiz
The Arbelaiz Palace is located in the city of Irún and was declared a Provincial Historic Artistic Monument in 1964. The palace was the dwelling of the lineage of the Arbelaiz family and many other illustrious persons such as Catherine de Médici, Henri II of France or Charles IV, among others.
In 1936, the building suffered a fire and had to be completely rebuilt, giving the appearance it presents today. However, the baroque façade is preserved from the original construction with a door and Doric columns to the sides, on which a frieze adorned with triglyphs and metopes rests; And the divided pediment that frames the shield.
Ermita de Santa Elena
The Chapel of Santa Elena de Irún is the only temple of the 10th century in Guipúzcoa. It was built on the remains of an ancient Roman one dating back to the 1st century, and the vestiges of an indigenous cemetery.
The chapel now houses part of the Oiasso Roman Museum. Inside, you can visit a sample of tools used by the people of the village on a daily basis.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From April to August, from Tuesday to Saturday (from 10:00 to 20:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00). From September to March, from Tuesday to Thursday (from 10:00 to 14:00), Fridays and Saturdays (from 10:00 to 14:00 and from 16:00 to 19:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
The Urdanibia Palace is located in Irún and was declared a Monumental Complex in 2000, next to the mill and a forge, adjoining. The property has a rectangular floor and is divided into three floors protected by a four-sloped roof.
On the ground floor, are two windows with edges and in the middle, a door with two pilasters topped with a ledge on each side. On the upper floors, windows are seen, which are similar to the lower windows, but with moulded bannisters. Between 1992 and 2003 the building hosted the International Basque Pelota Federation.
Fuente de Santa Elena
The fountain of Santa Elena de Irún is located in a small Baroque-style building, built in 1667. The fountain, formed by a pool and two banks, is covered by a barrel vault. In the central part of is located a shell-shaped niche that houses the image of Santa Elena.
Parque Natural de Peñas de Aia
The Natural Park of Peñas de Aia is a massif of the Paleolithic period, which extends for 6,913 hectares in surface area, reaching a height of 800 metres. Inside the park is located the Urdaburu, the shores of the reservoir of Añarbe and Arditurr and gold mine, exploited more than two hundred years ago, which has great archaeological and mineral richness.
Timetable: From Monday to Saturday (from 10:00 to 13:00 and from 15:30 to 19:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Conjunto de hornos de Irugurutzeta
The Irugurutzeta furnace collection is located in the Natural Park of Las Peñas de Aia, between Irún and San Sebastián. The group of furnaces dates back to Roman times and its function was to transform iron into rust. Its variety of forms (brick, circular, squares, etc.) make them considered one of the best examples of industrial archaeology in the country.
In one of the warehouses has been installed, for some years, the Interpretation Centre of the Mining Environment with the aim of informing visitors about the industrial processes that were once carried out there.
Hospital de Sancho de Urdanibia
Sancho de Urdanibia Hospital is located in Irún. The building was constructed in 1644 with the money donated by Sancho de Urdanibia. The building is made of masonry and ashlars, and its structure is formed by a rectangular plant divided into three parts.
On the main façade is a niche that houses the image of the Virgin and is ornamented with pilasters and topped in a pediment with the shield of the House of Urdanibia. The hospital currently houses the Euskaltegi Municipal and the Menchu Gal Exhibition Hall.
Santuario de Guadalupe
The Sanctuary of Guadalupe is located in the municipality of Hondarribia, on the top of Mount Jaizkibel, at 545 metres above sea level. The temple dates from the 16th century, although it has been destroyed and rebuilt on several occasions throughout history. The current construction is from the 19th century.
The temple is consecrated to the Virgin of Guadalupe, patron of the municipality. Inside is preserved a polychrome carving of the Virgin, which is believed to have belonged to the bow of some Basque ship, and around it can be seen replicas of ships and marine objects donated by sailors.
From the outside of the temple you can enjoy an excellent panoramic view of the Bay of Txingudi and various fortresses located in the vicinity of the sanctuary.
San Sebastián, also known as Donostia, is a municipality in the province of Guipúzcoa that has more than 186,000 inhabitants. The city has a rich cultural heritage; its origins are documented in a donation from King Sancho the Elder of the Monastery of San Sebastián to Leire.
The strategic location of this coastal city caused it to be besieged by invading troops on various occasions, falling on several occasions under French rule.
In 1813, after the liberation by the Anglo-Portuguese soldiers, the city burned down almost completely and had to be rebuilt.
Shortly thereafter, it became the summer resort of Queen Elizabeth II and, later, Queen Maria Cristina. It is currently an important holiday destination.
Today, San Sebastián combines tradition and modernity, offering visitors many places of interest. In the city, the visitor can enjoy the sun and the sea, approaching the famous La Concha beach or, by boat, to the Island of Santa Clara.
You will find an old centre full of civil architecture, both classic and modern. Some of the most emblematic constructions are the Castillo de Santa Cruz de la Mota, the Diputación Floal de Gipuzkoa, the Hotel Maria Cristina, Los Cubos de Kursaal, the Palaces of Aiete, Miramar and the Duque de Mandas, the Maria Cristina Bridge, La Tabakera or La Perla.
As examples of religious architecture, you can visit the Church of St. Vincent, the Buen Pastor Cathedral and the Basilica of Santa Maria.
In addition to the above, you can enjoy the Mount Igueldo Amusement Park, which is accessed by an emblematic funicular railway; Or the Eureka Science Museums, San Telmo or the Cemento Rezola Museum.
If you want to delve into Basque culture, you can spend the afternoon in the halls of the Koldo Mitxelena Library, one of the best in Basque culture.
And to refresh yourself, there is nothing better than touring the new promenade and strolling to Peine de Los Vientos, a sculpture by Eduardo Chillida that defies the Cantabrian Sea every day.
Castillo de Santa Cruz de la Mota
The Santa Cruz de la Mota Castle is located on Mount Urgull, in the vicinity of San Sebastián. The construction dates from the 12th century and was carried out by the command of the King Don Sancho the Elder of Navarre.
Throughout history, and as a result of successive wars, it has been rebuilt on several occasions. Inside there are three chapels, one of which is dedicated to the Cristo de la Mota, and an impressive statue of the Sacred Heart, from 1950.
Opening hours: open every day. From Monday to Sunday (from 10:00 to 19:00).
Diputación Foral de Gipuzkoa
The Diputación Foral de Guipúzcoa is located in San Sebastián (Donostia), in a building built in the year 1885 designed by Goicoa. The construction, divided into three parts, is the work of different professionals. The right wing is attributed to Ramon Múgica, the left to Manuel de Urcola and the central part to Lorenzo de Arteaga and Manuel de Urcola.
However, the same year that the construction was completed, the building was devastated by a fire and only the façades and foundations were kept standing. The architects Luis Aladrén and Adolfo Morales were in charge of rebuilding it, but they respected the design of Goicoa. The reconstruction was completed in 1890.
Timetable: Closes Saturdays and Sundays. Monday to Thursday (from 8:30 to 19:00) and Friday (from 8:30 to 15:00). In August, from Monday to Friday (from 8:30 to 15:00).
The new San Sebastián promenade was inaugurated in 1916 and surrounds Mount Urgull, from the port to Calle Salamanca. The most striking part of the walk is its beautiful views, with the waves breaking on the promenade itself.
The funicular railway that facilitates the access to the tourist complex of Mount Igueldo was inaugurated in the year 1912 and is maintained, operating today, with the same equipment and original vehicles. During the trip, you can enjoy excellent views of the city.
Hotel María Cristina
The Hotel Maria Cristina of San Sebastián was built in 1920, by Charles Mewes. Since its inauguration, it quickly became an accommodation chosen by royalty and the aristocracy to enjoy the sun and the sea that the city offered.
At present, the building is considered a gem and, in it, have stayed celebrities like Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts or Woody Allen, during the famous Film Festival that takes place in the city.
Iglesia de San Vicente
The Church of San Vicente is located in the city of San Sebastián. The temple dates from the 16th century and is in the Basque Gothic style. In 1984 was declared a building of Cultural Interest.
Throughout history, it has undergone numerous modifications, in which elements have been added, such as the rosettes on the façades, the Baroque portico, the choir staircase, the sacristy, a baptistery on the eastern façade, the southern gate and the atrium.
Inside, it is made up of three naves. The most notable of its decoration is the main altarpiece, considered one of the most beautiful of the Roman era.
Timetable: Closes Saturdays and Sundays. From Monday to Friday (from 9:00 to 13:00 and from 17:00 to 20:00).
Isla de Santa Clara
The Island of Santa Clara is located in the heart of the Bay of La Concha. On the island, there is a pier and a small beach with an extension of 30 metres. The only building inside is the lighthouse on its summit. In summer you can access the island from the port of San Sebastián by a boat service that leaves every half hour.
Cubos del Kursaal
The Kursaal cubes are located in the city of San Sebastián. This is an extraordinary glass structure, designed by architect Rafael Moneo. The building tries to highlight the harmony between the artificial and the natural. The building has the prize for contemporary architecture Mies van der Rohe and houses the Congress Palace.
Museo de Ciencia Eureka
The Museum of Eureka Science of Donostia (San Sebastián) aims to disseminate knowledge of the world of science and technology among people of all ages. The museum centre houses the Permanent Exhibition of HIPATIA, formed by more than one hundred sixty interactive modules distributed in eight thematic rooms.
Inside, there is also a planetarium that shows astronomy and immersive cinema screenings, as well as a Foucault pendulum and a wide variety of animations, spectacles and roller coaster simulators. In the outdoor gardens, you can visit a set of models of patrimonial buildings in Guipúzcoa and a small botanical garden.
Opening hours: Open daily (from 10:00 to 20:00).
Museo San Telmo
The San Telmo Museum is located at number 1 on the Zuloaga Square in San Sebastián, in a Dominican convent. The museum space was inaugurated in 1902 and the particular contributions were so many, that in 1911, they had to inaugurate a new building. Even so, space problems continued to be present, so in 1934 the museum was installed in the Dominican Convent of San Telmo.
The convent, designed by Fray Martín de Santiago, is from the middle of the 16th century. The building presents the classic aspect of the time, similar to the Salamanca Convent of San Esteban, sporting elements of Gothic and Renaissance art. The tower and the cloister were declared a national monument in 1913.
The Monastic collection, in addition to hosting the museum's exhibitions, has a church, clad, by José María Sert, with 17 canvases representing the history of Guipúzcoa, and a hall of events.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From Tuesday to Sunday (from 10:00 to 20:00).
Palacio de Aiete
The Palace of Aiete of San Sebastián and its gardens were built in 1878 at the request of the Dukes of Bailen. It is a residential complex, designed by the architect Adolfo Ombrech, and declared a building of Cultural Interest. The palace currently houses the House of Peace and Human Rights. In the northern part of the gardens, new facilities were built, destined for the House of Culture.
Opening hours: open every day. From Monday to Friday (from 10:00 to 14:00), Saturdays (from 10:00 to 14:00 and from 16:30 to 20:00), Sundays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Palacio de Miramar
The Miramar Palace is located between Playas de La Concha and Ondarreta de San Sebastián. The building was projected in 1888 by the English architect Selden Wornun and looks like a Queen Anne English cottage style. The palace was the royal family's holiday home.
The building is made of brick, sandstone and a lattice of wood. The building is surrounded by huge gardens, designed by Pierre Ducasse. At present, the building is the headquarters of the Basque Country's Superior Music Centre and it also develops the summer courses of the University of the Basque Country.
Opening hours: open every day. From Monday to Saturday (from 9:00 to 13:30 and from 15:30 to 19:00), Sundays and public holidays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Palacio del Duque de Mandas
The Palace of the Duke of Mandas is located in the Cristina Enea Park. Its name is owed to the fact that it was the principal residence of the Duke of Mandas. The property is currently home to the Centre for Environmental Resources.
Opening hours: open every day. From Monday to Saturday (from 9:30 to 13:30), Sundays and public holidays (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Parque de Atracciones del Monte Igueldo
The Monte Igueldo Amusement Park is located on the San Sebastián Lighthouse Promenade. The park has several attractions, such as a maze, a carousel, a roller coaster, bumper cars, trampolines, a house of terror, etc. To access the park you can take the funicular railway.
Opening hours: During winter, spring and autumn only open on weekends. In summer it opens every day (from 11:00 to 14:00 and from 15:30 to 20:15).
Museum Cemento Rezola
The Cemento Rezola Museum in San Sebastián is based inside a building that until 2000 functioned as a cement factory. The refurbishment to adapt the factory to the necessities respected the whole original structure of the building, so that at present it still looks like a façade covered with cement mortar.
The museum has three rooms, in one the auditorium was installed, in which Congresses and meetings are held, in another the permanent exhibition hall, in which it is possible to take a tour of the world of cement, and in the third one, the temporary exhibition area is installed.
Timetable: Closed on Sundays and Mondays. From Tuesday to Saturday (from 10:00 to 14:00).
Playa de la Concha
La Concha Beach is the main symbol of the identity of San Sebastián. The central beach, with more than a kilometre and a half of white sand, is considered one of the best urban beaches in Europe.
On the coastline of the beach, different elements stand out, such as the Island of Santa Clara, the ornate Barandilla de la Concha, the streetlights, used as a prize in the Film Festival, the Clocks area, the pearl zone, etc.
Puente de María Cristina
The Maria Cristina Bridge connects both slopes of the river that crosses San Sebastián. The structure has four monumental obelisks, located at the entrances of the bridge and topped with sculptural groups.
The Tabakalera received its name because between 1913 and 2003 it was the headquarters of the Tobacco factory in San Sebastián. From this date, the building became the property of the City Council of San Sebastián, the Diputación de Guipúzcoa and the government, turning it into the current International Centre of Contemporary Culture.
Between 2011 and 2015, the building was remodelled to adapt it to the needs of its new use. To this end, the fences and surrounding walls were eliminated and a glass prism was installed to provide greater luminosity and visibility to the building.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From Tuesday to Thursday (from 12:00 to 20:00), Friday (from 12:00 to 21:00), Saturdays (from 10:00 to 21:00) and Sundays (from 10:00 to 20:00).
Biblioteca Koldo Mitxelena
Koldo Mitxelena Kulturunea is the building of the library headquarters of the Diputación Foral de Guipúzcoa and is currently considered one of the best libraries in Humanities and Basque culture. The library is divided into two rooms with exhibitions, the first focuses on visual arts and the second is a multi-purpose space, where exhibitions of up-to-date topics are installed.
Timetable: Closes on Sundays. Monday to Friday (from 8:30 to 20:30) and Saturdays (from 8:30 to 14:00).
La Perla is located on the beach of La Concha de San Sebastián. The building is part of a set of buildings belonging to the ' Belle Époque '. Originally, the building was made of wood, until in 1912 it was remodelled to give it the appearance that we observe today.
In the past, the property was the holiday resort of the Royal family. Today it houses a Talao-Sport centre, which takes advantage of the sea water, and offers therapeutic treatments.
Catedral del Buen Pastor
The Buen Pastor Cathedral of San Sebastián is situated in the heart of Ensanche de Amara. The temple was inaugurated in 1897, although it is not until 1953 that it acquired the category of Cathedral. The work is attributed to Manuel Echave, who designed it following the aesthetic standards of German Gothic cathedrals, although throughout history, it has undergone numerous remodelling.
The cathedral has a Latin cross-shaped plant formed by three naves topped by the presbytery. At the top of its naves, the stained glass windows made by Juan Bautista, representing the Twelve Apostles with Jesus and Mary, stand out.
On the outside, its tower of more than 75 meters of height stands out, and is visible from all the city. Inside, the main altarpiece houses the carvings of Our Lady of Carmen, Santa Teresa, San Antonio and the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Opening hours: Monday to Friday (from 8:30 to 12:30 and from 17:00 to 20:00), Saturdays and Sundays only opens during worshipping hours.
Peine del Viento
The Peine del Viento, located at the end of the Ondarreta beach, is one of the most famous monuments in San Sebastián. It was designed by Eduardo Chillida, being one of his most recognized works, in 1977.
The structure consists of terraces of pink granite and formed by three pieces of steel on the rocks of the sea. A tube system allows the wave-driven air to come to the surface emitting a peculiar sound.
The Chillida Museum is situated in a Zabalaga (Country house). The place was created by Eduardo Chillida himself and his wife Pilar Belzunce with the aim of having a space to exhibit the sculptures of the author.
The museum exhibits the evolution and trajectory of Chillida for 50 years and is divided into three collections. The garden collection, which houses more than 40 sculptures of the author, the auditorium, with images of the sculptor in his work, and the space located in the house, which exhibits smaller works made of plaster, granite, paper, steel, etc.
Today, and after 10 years of operation, the museum is closed to the public.
Plaza de la Constitución
The Plaza de la Constitución is located in the centre of the historic town of San Sebastián.
In the past, before the space acquired the character of a square, it was used as a bullfighting arena, leaving testimony to the numbers of the balconies of the buildings that surround it. The space also housed, until the first half of the 20th century, the seat of the Town Hall, hence it was also known as Town Hall Square.
Lourdes Txiki is a replica of the caves of Lourdes, made by a congregation of Dominican friars who, fleeing from France, settled in a farm in Donostia (the Majorcan one). The structure that can be seen today goes back to 1933 and is the work of a renovation made by a congregation of Capuchins.
Basílica de Santa María
The Basilica of Santa Maria in San Sebastián dates from the 18th century and is Baroque in style, although it shows Churrigueresque, gothic and neoclassical elements. On its façade, you can see a large sculpture of San Sebastián the Martyr. In the interior stands out the Virgin, located in the altarpiece major.
Mass Schedule: Monday to Saturday (9:00, 11:00 and 19:30) and Sundays (9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00 and 20:00).