We were so ready for Spain. After struggling with French all we could think about was getting to a place where we understood what was going on again. I fell asleep on the Rideshare from Bordeaux and awoke to hills and green trees and houses with tiled rooftops. We had made it! San Sebastian was small and came out of nowhere, the ocean bright blue and full of surfers. The surf wasn’t good, but it was nice to be in a slightly more familiar setting.
Our Couchsurfing hosts welcomed us into their house but had to run back to work so we relaxed for awhile then headed out to grab some of the famous “pintos”, the Basque word for tapas-style small bites of food. San Sebastian is very famous for its cuisine, having more Michelin stars (14) per capita than any other city in the world. The pintxos are served for lunch (around 1-4pm) and dinner (approx 7-11pm). They cost between 1 and 4 euros each so it can add up if you are stuffing your face like we did. I was in heaven.
After having one of the most amazing eating frenzies of our lives, we needed to burn some calories so we could eat more for dinner. We headed up the trail to Monte Urgull to where an old castle and a large statue of Jesus looked down on the city. The city appeared even more beautiful than we first thought. Two beaches were split in half by the peninsula with the fortress and Jesus sculpture atop it, complemented by a large bay with a pretty little island, and bright blue water that reminded me of the Caribbean. We were ready to find jobs and move in, seriously.
We got a long nap along with everyone else in town (the Spanish do love their “siestas”), then headed out for more pinxtos. I was obsessed. My inner chef kept telling me to eat eat eat until I could eat no more. Did I mention that La Rioja, one of the premier wine regions in the world was right down the road? This meant amazing wine at amazing prices. “How much is rent here?”
Coming soon… All about Basque cuisine.