Friday, July 31, 2009

EUSKADI: BILBAO



After spending two lovely days in Cantabria visiting Santander, Comillas and Santillana del Mar, we went to Basque Country for three days. In this post I would like to show you some pictures of the places we visited in Bilbo (Bilbao), which were:


  • Portugalete
  • Santurtzi
  • Guggenheim Museum in Bilbo
  • Old city of Bilbo


We spent the following two days in Gipuzkoa, visiting Donostia (San Sebastián) and Hondarribi (Hondarribia).

Monday, the 27th july 2009



We began our first day in the Basque Country walking along the Bilbao ria. We had our hotel in Portugalete, next to a famous suspension bridge


Portugalete



The Bizkaia transporter bridge links Portugalete with the town of Getxo, on the Right Bank of the estuary. This impressive iron construction is still the most popular method used for crossing the 160 metres from bank to bank, and has been declared World Industrial Heritage Monument

Santurtzi


Oriol Palace is without any doubt the most beautiful building of Santurtzi. Built in 1902, this building is now a hotel


We saw this mirror and we couldn't help taking a photo :)


This is the Bilbao ria. In the background, the town of Santurtzi. There is a promenade which led us to this fishing town


Portugalete

This semicircular arch in the old quarter of Portugalete was part of a Renaissance palace


Another picture of the transporter bridge from the old town. Built in1893, it was the first of its kind to be built in the world as the need to allow large ships upriver meant that a conventional bridge could not be built. Indeed, today, there are only nine still working throughout the world


The colourful Tourism office of Portugalete and Santa Maria Churh on the right in the old quarter. The old quarter is still home to unique buildings and interesting relics of the past


A panoramic view of Portugalete. The yellow building on the right was our hotel


Our hotel was really close to the transporter bridge :) We used it to go to Getxo, just in the other bank of the ria, and I was really surprised because you don't feel at all that you are almost flying over the ria


Bilbo (Bilbao)


The Guggenheim museum is the main cultural visit to do in Bilbao


This huge spider is next to the museum and the ria of Bilbao


The ria is a really suitable environment to walk from the Guggenheim to the old quarter of Bilbao. In this picture, the bridge of Zubi Zuri


The New Square in the old quarter of Bilbao



Clicking on the next link you will find more pictures of the beautiful places and villages we visited in Guipúzcoa, like Donostia (San Sebastián) o Hondarribi (Hondarribia).




Finally, other beautiful places you can visit in Spain are:


- Catalonia

- Basque Country

- Cantabria

- Granada

- Sevilla, Córdoba, Cádiz and Costa de la Luz

Thursday, July 30, 2009

SPAIN - CANTABRIA: COMILLAS AND SANTILLANA DEL MAR


Cantabria was the first stage of our trip, where we spent two days. The second one was the Basque Country, where we visited Bilbo (Bilbao) and Donostia (San Sebastián). In Cantabria we visited Santander and the lovely villages of Comillas and Santillana del Mar.

Below I would like to show you some pictures of Comillas and Santillana del Mar, the two beautiful villages of Cantabria I had time to visit.



Sunday, 26th july 2009

Comillas and Santillana del Mar


Comillas




Modernist white fountain in ComillasHere, in front of this modernist white fountain built by Lluis Doménech i Muntaner, we started our flying visit in Comillas. Unfortunately we only could spend less than three hours in this lovely small town full of modernist monuments because of coach timetables. So we had to hurry up :)


El Capricho de Gaudi in Comillas
El Capricho, a house built by the brilliant modernist architect Antoni Gaudi, is the most beautiful modernist building in Comillas. So we spent some minutes to take some photos

El Capricho de Gaudi in Comillas
Amongst the trees we could admire better the rounded and curving forms of this beautiful modernist house

El Capricho de Gaudi in Comillas
Chimneys contribute also to the beauty of this building of this building and show us that all in this house is a decorative element


Comillas from Sobrellano Palace
The day was really lovely and it was very hot. The sun gave us generously its heat all day. In front of Sobrellano Palace we seized the opportunity to immortalize this lovely day in Comillas


Sobrellano Palace in Comillas
Another image of the Sobrellano Palace in Comillas. However its surroundings were really lovely with wide green areas and a park for children


Pontificia University in Comillas
The intense red color of this gate, which leads to the Pontificia University, surprised me as soon as I saw it


View point from which we enjoyed a beautiful view of Comillas beach

Beach of Comillas
Another view image of the crowded beach of Comillas, but this time from another view point


Old town of Comillas
Comillas has, as well as a fantastic beach, a beautiful old town. Here, an image of the main square and the church


Santillana del Mar



Santillana del Mar is a small village of Cantabria which has conserved its medieval look. I found this village really lovely


Main Street of Santillana del MarThe high street of Santillana del Mar which leads to the Collegiate church

Collegiate church of Santa Juliana in Santillana del MarThe Collegiate church of Santa Juliana in Santillana del Mar

Main square of Santillana del Mar
The main square of Santillana del Mar

Romanesque Collegiate of Santa Juliana in Santillana del Mar
Another picture of the romanesque Collegiate of Santa Juliana in Santillana del Mar



Apart from the city of Santander, other beautiful villages and places you can visit in Cantabria are:

  • Laredo
  • San Vicente de la Barquera
  • Castro Urdiales
  • Cuevas de Altamira (Altamira Caves)
  • Reinosa
  • Picos de Europa National Park

Finally, other beautiful places you can visit in Spain are:



- Catalonia

- Basque Country


- Granada

- Sevilla, Córdoba, Cádiz and Costa de la Luz

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

SPAIN - CANTABRIA: SANTANDER


Cantabria was the first stage of our trip, where we spent two days. The second one was the Basque Country, where we visited Bilbo (Bilbao) and Donostia (San Sebastián). In Cantabria we visited Santander and the lovely villages of Comillas and Santillana del Mar.

Below I would like to show you some pictures of Santander, of which I liked a lot Sardinero Beach, Magdalena Palace and its gardens


Saturday, 25th july 2009


Santander




Pereda gardens in Santander
Pereda gardens was our first stop in Santander. It's a little garden near the seafront and the Chico harbour

Puerto Chico in SantanderThis picture of fishing boats in the Puerto Chico reminds us that, originally, Santander was mainly a fishing town

Magdalena beach in Santander
Magdalena beach lead us to Magdalena peninsula, a wide park located in the north of Santander


Zoo in Magdalena peninsula in Santander

In this peninsula there is even a little zoo with seals, sea lions and penguins. Here, two seals with the Sardinero beach in the background

Magdalena palace in Santander
The Magdalena Palace is a really beautiful building and, thanks to its privileged location, the views of Cantabric sea are magnificent. Nowadays this building is Menéndez Pelayo University headquarters and it has been a summer residence of the spanish monarchy


Sardinero beach in Santander
From Magdalena Peninsula we went to Sardinero beach. As the day was lovely, the beach was really crowded. Here we ate a delicious big icecream in Regma ice-cream parlor


Casino of Santander

The casino, located next to Piquio gardens and the Sardinero beach, belongs to one of the most beautiful places of Santander


Piquio gardens in Santander
Piquio gardens, located between the two Sardinero beaches, were an ideal place to eat a wonderful Regma ice-cream before coming back


Pereda Gardens in Santander

There was town fiesta in Santander the weekend we spent there, so there were a lot of people walking, as it can be seen in this picture

City Hall of Santander
The city hall of Santander at night. I liked this building but it was a pity that there were works in front of it



Apart from the city of Santander, other beautiful villages and places you can visit in Cantabria are:

  • Comillas and Santillana del Mar
  • Laredo
  • San Vicente de la Barquera
  • Castro Urdiales
  • Cuevas de Altamira (Altamira Caves)
  • Reinosa
  • Picos de Europa National Park


Finally, other beautiful places you can visit in Spain are:



- Catalonia

- Basque Country

- Granada

- Sevilla, Córdoba, Cádiz and Costa de la Luz

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

SPAIN - CANTABRIA: SANTANDER, COMILLAS AND SANTILLANA DEL MAR


Cantabria was the first stage of our trip, where we spent two days. The second one was the Basque Country, where we visited Bilbo (Bilbao) and Donostia (San Sebastián). In Cantabria we visited Santander and the lovely villages of Comillas and Santillana del Mar.



Saturday, 25th july 2009


Santander




Puerto Chico in Santander
This picture of fishing boats in the Puerto Chico reminds us that, originally, Santander was mainly a fishing town


Magdalena beach in Santander
Walking along the seafront under a lovely day we reached the Magdalena beach. Santander is completelly opened to the sea, with impeccable gardens and seafronts, a perfect places to walk


Magdalena peninsula in Santander
From Magdalena peninsula the view of Sardinero beach and the Santander coast is really beautiful. This peninsula is one of the more charming places of Santander and, of coure, one of the places I liked the most


Zoo in Magdalena peninsula in Santander

Now two seals also, but with the Magdalena peninsula in the background. We spent a really good time walking around in this place

Magdalena Palace in Santander
The Magdalena Palace is a really beautiful building and, thanks to its privileged location, the views of Cantabric sea are magnificent. Nowadays this building is Menéndez Pelayo University headquarters and it has been a summer residence of the spanish monarchy


Sardinero beach in Santander
A great view of Santander, taken from Piquio gardens, of Sardinero beach with the Magdalena peninsula in the background


Piquio gardens in Santander

Piquio gardens, located between the two Sardinero beach, were an ideal place to eat a wonderful Regma ice-cream before coming back


Pereda gardens in Santander
Here we have already came back to Pereda gardens, where there were some funny sculptures


Santander Cathedral
The Santander Cathedral at night. Before we had visited the cloister, which is opened to visitors


Sunday, 26th july 2009

Comillas and Santillana del Mar



Landscape of Cantabria
We went from Santander to Comillas by coach. The Santander bus station is big and pretty functional because most of trips in Cantabria are by coach. Sceneries like this one are very usual in Cantabria


Landscape of Cantabria
Comillas is 40km away from Santander. For almost one hour we were sitting enjoying landscapes like this one


Comillas




Modernist fountain in Comillas
Here, in front of this modernist white fountain built by Lluis Doménech i Muntaner, we started our flying visit in Comillas. Unfortunately we only could spend less than three hours in this lovely small town full of modernist monuments because of coach timetables. So we had to hurry up :)


El Capricho de Gaudí in ComillasThe combination of spanish and arabic elements decorate the whole ensemble. All these colorful elements give a cheerful look to this building


Sunflowers of El Capricho de Gaudí in Comillas
Sunflowers decorate the exterior façade, the tower and the porch of El Capricho. Natural decorative motifs appear always in Modernist architechture


Sobrellano palace in Comillas
The Sobrellano Palace has a look a bit gloomy



View point from which we enjoyed a beautiful view of Comillas beach


Beach of Comillas
This is the view I spoke of in the previous picture. As the day was so lovely, there was a lot of people getting a tan



Santillana del Mar



Santillana del Mar is a small village of Cantabria which has conserved its medieval look. I found this village really lovely


Main Street in Santillana del Mar
The main street of Santillana del Mar leads to the Collegiate church

Collegiate of Santillana del Mar
The Collegiate church of Santa Juliana in Santillana del Mar


Landscape in Cantabria
Already inside our coach on the way to Bilbao we enjoyed this beautiful landscape of Cantabria




Apart from Santander, Comillas and Santillana del Mar other beautiful villages and places you can visit in Cantabria are:

  • Laredo
  • San Vicente de la Barquera
  • Castro Urdiales
  • Cuevas de Altamira (Altamira Caves)
  • Reinosa
  • Picos de Europa National Park


Finally, other beautiful places you can visit in Spain are:


- Catalonia

- Basque Country

- Granada

- Sevilla, Córdoba, Cádiz and Costa de la Luz