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Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Washington DC...
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Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

My husband and I are traveling from Barcelona to San Sebastian on Sept. 15. We think flying looks like the best option, which means a 6:50 am flight into SS, or a 9:55 am flight into Bilboa. We'd rather take the later flight if it isn't too crazy to get to SS from Bilboa. I know there are buses (I've read the common questions pages) that take a little more than an hour, and drop you at the SS bus station, where we'd then have to get a cab to our hotel (Hotel de Londres).

I'm wondering if it's feasible to just rent a car instead and drive? Then maybe just return it in SS upon our arrival there. I haven't really seen anyone discuss the option of driving, but maybe that's bc it's dumb to try and do. And I assume a taxi would be crazy expensive.

Bilbao, Spain
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for Bilbao, San Sebastian - Donostia, Basque Country, La Rioja
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1. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Don´t take me wrong, but still wondering why (I even open a post in Fodor´s) Bilbao, with such an easy spelling, is 9 out of 10 times misspelled...

A taxi transfer costs about 160 euros...more or less the cost of a car plus gas and tolls...highly recommended if you don´t like the bus. If you want to save money, bus is THE option...12 eur one way plus a 6 eur taxi to Hotel de Londres. And driving takes a good hour...

Washington DC...
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2. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Thanks! Yeah I realized after I posted that I spelled it wrong. "Balboa" is more familiar to me than Bilbao, so I conflated the two. That's my excuse, not sure of others.

I was thinking it might be nice to have a car in case we want to stop, or use it later. But it also seems that parking in SS in expensive, so it may not be worth to keep it while we're there.

Biarritz, France
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for Biarritz, San Sebastian - Donostia, Basque Country
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3. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

As you have said parking is difficult in San Sebastian so don't bother if you can help it.

If you decide to walk from the bus station it is only about 1.5km (I don't know how much luggage you have): https://goo.gl/maps/qcss0 If when you arrive it is raining then the taxi rank is right next to the bus station.

Brussels, Belgium
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4. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

I also think the wrong spelling is due to the common use of Balboa in the USA.

Out of curiosity, most Balboa parks and squares in the US are named after Vasco Nuñez de Balboa, a Spanish shipman and conquistador of the americas.

Bilbao, Spain
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5. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Portuguese, wasn´t him? I have a post on Fodor´s on this issue...dozens of answers! fodors.com/community/europe/why-so-many-peop… And that was 8 years ago!!!

Edited: 13 August 2014, 14:25
London, United...
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6. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

No. Its that Rocky guy Sylvester Stallone. lol

If it was me, I would just take the early train at 07.30 from Sants station and be in San Sebastian in time for lunch. The ALVIA train is perfectly comfortable and what is more if I booked on RENFE today I can buy tickets called PROMO+ for the princely sum of €28.85

Or go on the late afternoon train leaving Sants Barcelona at 15.30.

Brussels, Belgium
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7. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

…wikipedia.org/wiki/…B1ez_de_Balboa from extremadura.

@Mikel : maybe you mix it with Vasco da Gama? Nevertheless both are "Vascos", hence appropiate for a San Sebastian forum :)

Barcelona, Spain
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8. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Train sounds a good option to me too, to get to Sants means leaving the hotel about the same time as for the Bilbao flight AND you get to see the countryside en route

Bilbao, Spain
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9. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

ooopssss...correct, he was from Extremadura, I got it wrong with Vasco da Gama!! Thanks!

Washington DC...
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10. Re: Drive from Bilboa to San Sebastian?

Thanks, all!

Sorry I have not much to contribute to the Balboa conversation, other than starting it I guess :) We are taking the train from SS to Madrid, so we decided to try flying from Barcelona to SS, and we liked the flight time into Bilbao best, even with the extra trouble of getting from there to SS. Seems our best bet is to just do the bus.

Follow-up of sorts (though maybe I should start a new thread): We are only in SS for 2 nights, Mon. Sept. 15 - Wed. Sept. 17, and I know a lot of places are closed Mondays. With such a short time, do you think it's worth it to make a reservation somewhere like Kokotxa for the Tuesday night, or with our limited days, just do pintxo bars both nights?

Thanks again!

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