San Sebastian sits just thirty minutes over the border from France and is deep in the heart of the Basque Region. We hopped on the SNCF train at Bordeaux to the border town of Hendaye and from there jumped on the Euskotren train and another uneventful border crossing into Spain, how I miss the chaos of an African border crossing.
The town is one of those little gems, maybe not so well known around the world, just go and visit and you won’t be disappointed. Our daily run took us several kilometres around the bay to the castle on the hill top. Well don’t believe me, we only ran 2,5km there and the same back, it’s enough when travelling I have figured out, any further and I think I would get lost and the uphill parts can really take out of a weary body. Are you feeling sorry for us yet? I doubt it, but keeping reasonably fit and active is important for us both.
The views on our hike up via a 50 cent funicular ride were awesome, reminiscent of Rio de Janeiro, looking out across the bay and the stunning promenade. Whilst, the view when we hiked up the opposite side were like a mirror image from what we had seen the previous day. This time the hill armed with a fortress with canon’s aimed strategically out to sea and across the bay and where we chatted with two friends Carmina and Laine for an hour or so.
San Sebastian, like so many European towns has a sad past and it was here back in 1968 that the terrorist group ETA first killed a policeman and went on to kill and maim hundreds more since. However, our timing, like in Colombia with the FARC peace treaty agreement, was also coincidental with peace, as ETA finally surrendered all their military arms and munitions while we were in town. Note to self, perhaps we are unidentified peace envoys and the positive waves that we create are creating change for the better wherever we go. Let’s hope it is all positive change and being realistic the Spanish and French Governments have been waiting since 2011 for ETA to disband, so it’s one step closer now.