Pick up your rent a car in Barcelona and head north to the gastronomic gems of San Sebastian and Bilbao in Basque Country, stopping in the historic city of Zaragaza and the town of Pamplona, known for the San Fermin bull running, enroute. The route continues to the majestic Pyrenees mountains, where a few nights are spent exploring the Ordesa y Monte Perdido national park before heading back to the city.
Arrive at Barcelona El Prat airport. Overnight in Barcelona.
Leave the city lights and drive to Zaragoza (309 kms/3 hrs), capital of the Aragon region and a melting pot of Jewish, Roman, Christian & Islamic cultures. Visit the beautiful Cathedral of Our Lady of Pillar, the Aljafería Palace, one of the best preserved Moorish architectures outside Andalucia and sample the city’s unique cuisine. Overnight in Zaragoza.
Today, head to Basque country onto the city of San Sebastian (267 kms /2.5 hrs). Enroute, stop at Pamplona (178 kms/1 hr 45 mins), world famous for the San Fermin running of the bulls event that takes place in July. Outside of the festival dates, the city is a quiet place with cobbled streets and a historic city centre for a rest stop – don’t forget to walk the Estafeta street, where the bulls run along. Overnight in San Sebastian.
Also known as Donostia, this city is a gastronomic jewel that boasts a significant number of Michelin stars. Eating at one of these restaurants is a simply unique experience. Visit the Old Town (Parte Vieja), sample Pintxos (tapas) in Casco Viejo (Downtown), stroll around La Concha Beach, one of the most beautiful bays in the world or take the funicular to Monte Igueldo for fantastic views of the city.
If there is time, drive 23 kms (30 mins) near the French border to the lovely town of Hondarribia, known for its seafaring tradition and a must visit. Overnight in San Sebastian.
Drive along the dramatic coastline of the Basque Country to Bilbao (102 kms/1 hr 10 mins), also famous for multiple Michelin star restaurants and the Guggenheim Museum. Visit the Ribera market, one of Europe´s largest indoor food market, sample the pintxos in the Old Town and admire its unique architecture found all over the city.
Enroute to Bilbao, you can also choose to stop by at the colourful coastal village of Bermeo, the surfer’s paradise of Mundaca, the lovely islet of San Juan de Gaztelugaxte or the charming town of Lekeitio. Overnight in San Sebastian.
Leave the coast today and head to the majestic Pyrenees mountains which runs across the Spanish regions of Catalonia, Aragon and Navarra. The most famous point in the Aragon Pyreness is the Ordesa y Monte Perdido national park and you can base yourself in any of the villages surrounding the park.
Bilbao – Torla – 324 kms/3 hrs 40 mins
Bilbao – Boltaña: 333 kms/3.5 hrs
Bilbao – Bielsa: 374 kms/4 hrs 15 mins
Enroute, you can also take a break in the Pyrenees town of Jaca. Overnight in Pyrenees.
Head to the national park known for its spectacular scenery, beautiful lakes and wildlife. You can enjoy hiking, trekking, biking or any of its walking trails. Overnight in Pyrenees.
Today, head back to Barcelona (288-325 kms/3-3.5 hrs). You may wish to extend your stay and spend more time visiting this iconic city or depart to Barcelona El Prat airport for your flight back home.