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A driving tour of northern Spain

Having lived and worked in Barcelona for 3 years, it was time to say goodbye to the capital of Catalonia and start again at home in the UK….but before going I wanted one last chance to discover more of Spain.

It was only two weeks before I would catch my low cost flight back home, and so I decided to organise a road trip with one of my best friends. We had always wanted to experience life in other Spanish cities and so we decided to tour the north of Spain. Due to time constraints it would have to be a short trip, but it would be fun and it didn’t need a lot of organisation. All we would have to do is plan the route, have an idea of where to stay, pack, and hire a car.

We decided to hire a car at Sants train station in the centre of Barcelona and from there we set off. Our first stop was Zaragoza. On arrival in the city we were immediately struck by the beautiful architecture of the famous Basílica de Nuestra Señora del Pilar. Having parked the car we wandered around the city for a while before lunch and then we checked in at our hotel. Zaragoza is a beautiful city with lots to see and great restaurants.

The next day we set off again en route to Pamplona. I was particularly excited about visiting this city because it is where they have the famous San Fermin fiesta every year. We had missed it, but the city is fascinating at any time of the year. We spent one night there and enjoyed seeing the bullring, trying pintxos and buying souvenirs to take home. The following day we went to San Sebastian, which is most renowned for its beautiful beach. We stayed here for a few days and enjoyed relaxing, sightseeing and experiencing life in a truly Basque city.

Our last stop was Burgos where we admired its beautiful Gothic cathedral and enjoyed seeing parts of the famous St. James’ Way (Camino de Santiago). We arrived back in Barcelona five days before I was due to leave. I was glad I had a few days to enjoy the city and in the end I had to re-book my flight due to a strike at the airport….so I had even more time left in the city.

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