Madrid, san sebastian, rioja

Sep 8th, 2017, 11:16 AM
  #1  
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Madrid, san sebastian, rioja

Right now we're in a little town in rioja. LaGuardia. Posada miguelena. It's a very pretty town. Narrow streets. No cars. Sadly, no gelato. But nice places to eat. A church tower you can climb where, without warning, the bells start ringing loudly. A plaza where you can have tapas and wine and watch the evening shadows creep up the wall of the church, sol y sombra.

We left madrid this morning. Terrific 3 bedroom apartment on atocha. Big showers. Romeo and Juliet balconies. You can put a pillow down on the balcony floor, eat breakfast, and watch some of the world go by. Noisy motor cycles. I rented a bici (city bike), after a little trouble finding a screen that worked, and rode around retiro park, which is big and fun. We saw guernica at reina Sofia and Goya at the Prado. We had shrimp at abuelo's. Last night I fixed spaghetti carbonara for our friends.

Tomorrow we go to our rental house near san sebastian. I hope we have fun. I want to go to hondaribia and bilbao and swim at pretty beaches.

We're a group of twelve. Forty years ago we played volleyball and went skinny dipping together. Some of us still play volleyball.

Please share your suggestions or comments if you'd like to.
santamonica is online now  
Sep 8th, 2017, 12:25 PM
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Gelato maybe the wrong country then?
ribeirasacra is offline  
Sep 8th, 2017, 01:27 PM
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And do you still skinny dip?

Have you been to Bilbao? It was such a pleasant surprise for me.

Enjoy your journey.
catcrazyaf is offline  
Sep 8th, 2017, 01:31 PM
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Italy might be a better bet, but the raspberry gelato in Madrid was quite tasty. I settled for a nestle popcicle.
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Sep 8th, 2017, 02:44 PM
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LaGuardia is an airport in New York City, not the Rioja Alavesa. It's called Laguardia for "La Guardia de Navarra", or simply Guardia in Basque.

Note: there are no 'tapas' in the Basque country, pintxos only.

San Sebastián-Donostia has three beautiful beaches, but you can still go to Hondarribia for a beach day if you want. No beaches in Bilbao. For that you'll have to go Playa de Ereaga in Getxo, or up the coast to Sopelana.

While in Donostia, and still hungering for some delicious ice cream, stop by Oiartzun Gozotegia in the old quarter (www.pasteleriaoiartzun.com/heladeria.php)

For more outstanding artisan flavors, hop over to Saint-Jean-de-Luz and stop by Txomin at 54 Rue Gambetta (www.glacier-txomin.com).
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Sep 9th, 2017, 01:15 AM
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The three beaches in San Sebastián, some of the finest city beaches on the continent: https://www.sansebastianturismo.com/...o-to-the-beach

All about going for the famous pintxos in San Sebastián: http://www.todopintxos.com/home/home.php?lang=en

And see if you can get a table at Casa Urola, my favourite restaurant since the late 80's. Voted best restaurant in the region in 2015 by El Diario Vasco, ahead of all the many Michelin restaurants in San Sebastián and the rest of the Basque Country: http://www.casaurolajatetxea.es/es/portada/

Have fun!
kimhe is offline  
Sep 9th, 2017, 08:05 AM
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Robert...No tapas in The Basque lands?
I am horrified to report that The great city of SS advertises the fact they have tapas bars. https://www.sansebastianturismo.com/...eat/tapas-bars
I could not find so much on the Gelato front.
https://www.sansebastianturismo.com/...elato+&buscar=
So I went looking for something on line.
http://www.emyrent.com/en_blog/2012/...san-sebastian/
ribeirasacra is offline  
Sep 9th, 2017, 08:42 AM
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I believe that's to deal with the "English only" speaking visitors who have no clue as to the language and cultural differences between the País Vasco and Andalucia, or just another case of "dumbing down".
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Sep 9th, 2017, 08:54 AM
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There is some very very good gelato in SS. I had it last fall.

ARNOLDO HELADERIA
ekscrunchy is online now  
Sep 9th, 2017, 11:48 AM
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Thanks all for your good suggestions. It's raining like crazy. Rain most of this week. Twelve of us. It's a big house but still...
santamonica is online now  
Sep 9th, 2017, 10:33 PM
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Weather warning for the amount of rain in Basque country. Not here on the opposite side of Northern Spain.

Robert. I agree, dumming down it may be but the question is why? If one is proud of your culture one should not change it to suit the non Europeans.
Galicians (on the officla tourist website) do not write Pie when they mean Empanada. They never use Grappa when they mean Aguardiente. However the usage of Galician and Spanish is often mixed up when it comes to this drink.
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Sep 10th, 2017, 01:07 AM
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Today we explore for little beach towns. We are in oriartzun (spelling is doubtful). We had a big lunch at Mateo and shopped for dinner at Campo, which is Spain's version of Wal-Mart. We were in San sebastian 2 years ago and went to the film festival. This year we're a week early. Around here there are church bells and guns going off every now and then. It must be sunday and hunting season. I rode a bike along a trail by the house this morning. Went through a tunnel. Havent been on the camino yet. I mustn't complain about the rain since its not a hurricane. Pretty disjointed trip report, eh?
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Sep 10th, 2017, 03:32 AM
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If you hurry into San Sebastián, you can catch the final hours of the week long Euskal Jaiak festival. A great celebration of Basque culture, thousands of neighbours from across the region come into town to compete, sing, dance, eat, drink and have a great time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1t50eHoBqu0
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Sep 10th, 2017, 12:35 PM
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Kim, we saw some of the festival, others in our group saw the rowing competitions. Tomorrow dw has us walking a coastal trail between san sebastian and pasajes (I think). Details to follow.
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Sep 10th, 2017, 01:05 PM
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The Basque country, It's called Green Spain for a reason.

RB, it might have something to do with whoever does their web page, certainly not a local.
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Sep 10th, 2017, 10:54 PM
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The coastal trail to Pasai Donibane is excellent, have done it many, many times, and we've always ended it with a great lunch in one of the several seafront restaurant in tiny and beautiful Donibane/Pasajes San Juan.
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Sep 10th, 2017, 11:07 PM
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... and Txulotxo is one of the best restaurant in Donibane, a great value about 22€ lunch deal, three courses, wine included, and it comes recommended by the Michelin guide. http://www.restaurantetxulotxo.com/es/
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Sep 11th, 2017, 08:44 AM
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Thanks Kim. We had a beautiful walk, two very short boat rides, and a lot of fun.
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Sep 11th, 2017, 09:05 PM
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Good to hear, both the boat ride and Donibane itself is something special!
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Sep 12th, 2017, 11:17 PM
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It stopped raining. Some of us went to bilbao, some of us to the beach in hondarribia. Dw and I spent most of the day at the beach, some of the day eating pinxtos. Then back to san sebastian for more pinxtos (sardines, etc) then home to bed. Here's the rental for the twelve of us.

www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p480374
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