When we first set eyes on San Sebastian, it was in magazines and guidebooks and photos taken by other travellers. The golden sand beach that curved around the glistening turquoise water, and the rocky outcrops that fashioned themselves as islands, immediately captivated us.
But as luck would have it, the weather conspired against us when we eventually made it there, and instead of these enticing views we were met with miserable grey skies, chill winds that whipped around us, and white peaks on rough seas – weather that was certainly not conducive to leisurely walks on the beach and lazy days reading in the sun.
Each night, rain – ranging from a light trickle to downright bucketing – attempted to hamper our plans of tasting the city’s best pintxos.
So it was very exciting when the sun finally peeked out from behind the clouds and we were able to make our way up to the city’s famous lookout point for some lovely vistas.
A rickety red funicular creakily pulled us up to the top of Monte Igueldo, the train carriage passing houses so closely that you could peer inside peoples’ living rooms. Once at the top, the views were stunning – the beach hugged the water, with the town stretching out from the sea in a mass of green treetops and terracotta roofs.
Once we had our fill of the view, we turned away to explore the rest of the mountaintop, surprised to find an amusement park. Closed down because it wasn’t yet the high season, it reminded us of a strange ghost town. A creepy open-mouthed ape welcomed brave people inside “Casa del Terror” and a seemingly rotting rollercoaster hugged the edge of amusement park, the other side a steep drop to the rocky coastline below.
Certainly not a rollercoaster ride I’d be brave enough to take.