San Sebastián

Basque Country, Spain

San Sebastián, a modern and dynamic city known for its beautiful beaches and its famous Film Festival, has several buildings such as The School of Arts and Crafts, the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, the Victoria Eugenia Theatre and its churches in San Vicente and Santa María, that give the city a cosmopolitan atmosphere. The Easo Square with its bars and restaurants, is an ideal place to taste the marmitako and other typical dishes.

It is situated on the coast of the Gulf of Vizcaya in the Basque Country. It has 186.370 inhabitants. Its climate is temperate and warm and its annual average temperature is 14,5ºC.

San Sebastián has officially been a city since the eleventh century. Through time it has become dynamic and beautiful, with many things to offer to the visitor, guaranteeing an agreeable stay to him.

Since then, the Monastery of Saint Sebastian has become the center of its social, administrative and spiritual activities. It became the official port of the Crown of Navarra. This was a situation which gave San Sebastián the opportunity to grow and develop itself.

Due to adversity, San Sebastián lost its protagonism during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, being converted into a military bastion. That is why it has buildings which are walled and fortified.

In the nineteenth century, a reconstruction of the city took place. The Province of Guipuzcoa took the leading role, but the commercial harbor opened again. San Sebastián turned down its walls because they constituted a barrier against the growth of the city.

The period of “Belle Epoque” arrived. Due to the fact that Queen Maria Cristina spent her vacation in that city, the Palace of Miramar became famous and was converted into the emblem of the city. New buildings were built such as the Casino of the city. San Sebastián became a distinguished summer resort again.

The Cathedral of the Good Shepherd (“Catedral del Buen Pastor”), the School of Arts and professions, the Institute Peña Florida and the Theater Victoria Eugenia and many more buildings will give the city a cosmopolitan atmoshere and will convert it to a meeting point of many politicians, bull-fighters, writers, philosophers and others.

In 1953 the city is expanded. The first Cinema Festival takes place. The old part of the city is the door of Access to Mount Urgull, the churches of San Vicente, Santa Maria, and the Museum of San Telmo, among others. San Sebastián is the host of more old buildings and innumerable bars and restaurants.

La Concha is the most desireable beach of San Sebastián. Easo Square is a perfect initial point to get to know the romantic and gastromonical offer of the city, where we can taste typical dishes such as “pinchos”, “changurro”, “marmitako” and the cod-pil-pil. Some of its famous persons are the cooks Juan Mari Arzak, the writer Baroja, the jounralist Iñaki Gabilondo and the movie-maker Borja Cobeaga.

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