Playa de La Concha (La Concha Beach), San Sebastian

Playa de La Concha (La Concha Beach), San Sebastian (must see)

La Concha Beach (La Playa de La Concha) has been called the crown jewel of San Sebastian. The beach is often called the best in Europe. Queen Isabel II started the whole thing back in 1845. The monarch moved her court to San Sebastián in the summer, where she could bathe in the sea to treat her skin problems. The high-society aristocrats called La Concha Beach the "Pearl of the Cantabrian Sea." Tourists today feel the same.

The bay itself is relatively shallow. The high tides will limit space on the beach. Even so, there is always room enough for events. On the 15th of August, Virgin's Day, the "Big Week" Festival explodes. It is the International Fireworks Competition. A cannon is fired at 7 pm in the Alderdi Eder Gardens, and the party begins.

While international companies compete with fireworks, a music festival is held in the city. There is swimming from Getaria to San Sebastian, horse races, beach-volleyball tournaments, Cabezudos (Big Heads) parades, disco, fire bulls, and Basque rural sports exhibitions. And, oh yes, there are regattas.

The 4,270 feet of fine golden sand invites barefoot walking. One can walk to Ondarreta Beach by crossing a rocky path called Parrot's Beak (Pico del Loro). The hills shelter the bay. Canoeing, paddle-boarding, yachting, and diving are ideal here. A boat goes to Santa Clara Island. No one lives there except the lighthouse keeper.

The Nautical Club on the far right of the beach is a gem of Architectural Rationalism. It has the form of a boat moored to the quay. It is a perfect spot for sunsets. The old Gran Casino is next door. In front are the Alderdi Eder Gardens. Bronze images of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza hide among the Tamarisk trees. There is a merry-go-round.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in San Sebastian. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Playa de La Concha (La Concha Beach) on Map

Sight Name: Playa de La Concha (La Concha Beach)
Sight Location: San Sebastian, Spain (See walking tours in San Sebastian)
Sight Type: Park/Outdoor
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in San Sebastian, Spain

Create Your Own Walk in San Sebastian

Create Your Own Walk in San Sebastian

Creating your own self-guided walk in San Sebastian is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
San Sebastian Introduction Walking Tour

San Sebastian Introduction Walking Tour

San Sebastian has long been well-known as a popular tourist destination thanks to its beautiful crescent-shaped urban beach, delicious Basque cuisine, and lively nightlife. The scenic La Concha Bay is like a perfectly shaped spa sitting beside the city.

Named after the monastery of San Sebastian, the city traces its history back to 1181, when the King of Navarre, Sancho VI Garces, granted the...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 Km or 1.9 Miles
Mount Urgull Walking Tour

Mount Urgull Walking Tour

Mount Urgull is a promontory stretching out at the eastern end of La Concha Bay, surrounded by water on all sides, except the one linking it to the Old Town of San Sebastian. Historically, this mount, rising 123 meters above sea level, served as a strategic defense point for the city, attesting to which now are the remnants of old fortifications with cannons still in place.

From its elevated...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 Miles