Places to See in San Sebastian: Main Sights, Top Spots, Districts

San Sebastian is a charming coastal city famous for its stunning beaches, rich cultural heritage, and exquisite cuisine. Here you can find our insider guide on the places to visit and see in San Sebastian (Donostia), including top sights, points of interest, beaches, museums, plus local expert advice.

Main Sights

With its picturesque streets, elegant architecture, and lively vibe, San Sebastian is a must-visit destination for travelers looking for a unique experience. Here are some of the top places to visit and see in San Sebastian:


  1. La Concha Beach: This stunning beach is considered one of the best urban beaches in Europe. With its clear waters and fine sand, La Concha is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and relaxing. The beach is surrounded by some of the city’s most iconic landmarks, such as the Miramar Palace and the Urgull and Igueldo hills.
  2. Old Town (Parte Vieja): The Old Town of San Sebastian is a historic neighborhood known for its charming atmosphere, narrow streets, and traditional architecture. The area is home to some of the city’s oldest and most important buildings, such as the San Vicente Church and the Constitution Square. Visitors can also enjoy the many bars, restaurants, and shops in the area.
  3. Mount Urgull: This hill located at the eastern end of La Concha beach offers stunning panoramic views of the city and the surrounding mountains. The top of the hill is home to the Castle of La Mota, a fortress that was built in the 12th century. Visitors can also explore the many walking trails and natural areas in the park.
  4. Miramar Palace: This stunning palace was built in the 19th century for the Spanish royal family. Today, the palace is open to the public and serves as a cultural center and exhibition space. The palace is surrounded by beautiful gardens and offers panoramic views of La Concha bay.
  5. San Telmo Museum: This museum is dedicated to the history and culture of the Basque Country. It is housed in a former 16th-century convent and features a collection of over 26,000 objects, including art, artifacts, and documents. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions and cultural events throughout the year.
  6. Aquarium: San Sebastian’s aquarium is home to over 200 species of marine life. The aquarium’s main attraction is the 360-degree tunnel, which allows visitors to walk through a giant tank and see sharks, rays, and other marine animals up close.
  7. Kursaal: The Kursaal is a modern architectural masterpiece that is home to a large auditorium, exhibition spaces, and a terrace with stunning views of the sea. The building is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks and hosts cultural events throughout the year.
  8. Monte Igueldo: This hill offers some of the best views of the city and the surrounding countryside. Visitors can reach the top of the hill by a funicular railway, which was built in 1912. At the top, there is an amusement park with rides and attractions, as well as a restaurant and a terrace with panoramic views.
  9. Paseo Nuevo: This promenade is located along the edge of Monte Urgull and offers stunning views of the sea and the city. The promenade is lined with bars, restaurants, and shops, and is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.

Top Areas & Districts

There are six famous districts of San Sebastian that worth a visit and see. All districts has variety of great sights and attractions.

The Old Town

The San Sebastian Old Town is a must-visit place for anyone visiting the city. From its winding streets and historic buildings to its delicious food and charming markets, there’s something for everyone in this place.

The Center & Romantic Area

San Sebastian’s Center and Romantic Area are two of the most picturesque and vibrant parts of the city. Located between the Bay of La Concha and the River Urumea, these neighborhoods are known for their elegant architecture, chic boutiques, and world-class dining options.


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The Gros district

The Gros district is a vibrant and diverse neighborhood located just east of the city center. With its beautiful beaches, trendy bars and restaurants, and cultural attractions, Gros is a must-visit place. Gros district offers a great mix of cultural attractions, outdoor activities, and dining and drinking options.

The Egia district

Egia is a lively and diverse district of San Sebastian, located just south of the city center. With its bustling streets, trendy shops and restaurants, and cultural attractions, Egia is a must-visit place. The Egia district of San Sebastian is a dynamic and exciting neighborhood that offers a little bit of everything for visitors.

The Amara district

The Amara district is a vibrant and cosmopolitan neighborhood located in the heart of San Sebastian, just a short walk from the city center. The area is known for its excellent shopping, dining, and entertainment options, making it a popular destination for visitors and locals alike.

The Riberas district

The Riberas district is a beautiful and unique area located on the banks of the River Urumea. The district is known for its picturesque architecture, tranquil parks, and stunning river views, making it a popular destination for visitors looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city center.

The Antiguo district

The Antiguo district is a vibrant and historic area that offers a mix of local charm and modern amenities. Located in the eastern part of the city, the Antiguo district is home to some of the city’s most popular tourist attractions, as well as a range of restaurants, cafes, and shops.

The Igeldo district

The Igeldo district is a scenic and charming area located on a hill overlooking the city. The district is home to several popular tourist attractions, including the Monte Igueldo Amusement Park, the lighthouse, and several historic buildings.


The Aiete district

The Aiete district is a beautiful and tranquil area that is perfect for visitors looking for a break from the hustle and bustle of the city center. Located to the south of the city, Aiete is known for its peaceful green spaces, elegant residential areas, and stunning hilltop views.

The Miramon district

The Miramon district is a beautiful and peaceful area that is perfect for visitors looking to escape the crowds and immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the city. Located to the east of the city center, Miramon is known for its stunning parklands, state-of-the-art cultural centers, and excellent sports facilities.

Beaches

San Sebastian is famous for its beautiful beaches and stunning coastline. With its crystal-clear waters and soft sand, the beautiful beaches of San Sebastian are also some of the most popular in Spain.

Whether you are looking for a relaxing day at the beach, a place to surf, or a rugged, natural experience, beaches in San Sebastian have something for everyone.

Museums

Visitors may find variety of nice museums in San Sebastian and enjoy the history and arts. From art and sculpture to maritime history and royal residences, these best museums in the city offer something for everyone.

Theme Parks

From classic amusement parks to indoor play areas, there is something for everyone in San Sebastian. Mount Igeldo Attraction & Amusement ParkAquarium Donostia-San Sebastian and the Science Museum are some of most popular and most visited theme parks in San Sebastian. They all offer great attractions and fun day out to its visitors.

Hikes

Hiking in San Sebastian is a wonderful way to experience the natural beauty and cultural heritage of the Basque Country. Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a casual nature lover, there’s a trail in San Sebastian that will suit your needs.

San Sebastian’s hiking trails offer stunning views of the city and the surrounding landscape, from lush forests to rocky cliffs and stunning coastlines. The trails are generally well-marked and vary in difficulty, from easy strolls to challenging hikes.


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