The stunning La Concha Beach in San Sebastian… It’s just one of four fab beaches in the Basque city and has been ranked Europe’s best beach in the 2018 Travellers Choice Awards.
The votes are in for Europe’s best beach according to TripAdvisor’s 2018 Travellers Choice Awards. And taking the crown for the second year in a row is the stunning La Concha Beach in San Sebastian. Votes are based on the quality and quantity of reviews and ratings given by travellers over a 12-month period. Travellers praised the beach for its city centre location, the calm waters and spectacular views.
Playa des Ses Illetes in Formentera and Playa de Las Canteras in Gran Canaria also made the Top 10 best beaches in Europe. You can see more of Spain’s best beaches from the Travellers Choice Awards in: Spain’s 10 best beaches.
La Concha Beach: A deserving winner
Spanning over 1.3 kms, La Concha features lovely golden sand and clear blue waters. But what makes La Concha really special is its picturesque setting in Concha Bay. Flanked by two green hills with Santa Clara Island sitting in the middle of the bay, there aren’t many beaches that can boast such spectacular views! La Concha’s location also means it’s a sheltered beach where you can often enjoy calm waters. And if that wasn’t enough, the beach is located just a short stroll from the city centre and San Sebastian’s fabulous old town.
La Concha is one of four beaches in the Basque city. To La Concha’s west is Onderatta, which is also in the bay. East of La Concha and popular with surfers, Zurriola beach is on the other side of Monte Urgull. And the city’s fourth and smallest beach is on Santa Clara Island. If you’re a strong swimmer, you could even swim from La Concha to Santa Clara! The island is a few hundred metres from La Concha.
San Sebastian is also a top foodie destination
As well as its beaches, San Sebastian is also famous for its food. The city boasts more Michelin stars per square metre than anywhere else in Europe and is second only to Kyoto in the world. San Sebastian is also one of the best cities to enjoy the Basque tradition of pintxos. If you’re not already familiar with the concept, you can see our guide to pintxos in our blog.
Best time to go
Want to make the most of beach activities whether that’s sunbathing or swimming in the sea? Then, the summer (June to September) is the best time to go. And for a week every August, there is a fantastic fireworks festival that’s definitely worth heading to San Sebastian for. Naturally, this is also the busiest time the Basque city!
San Sebastian, fortunately, is picturesque all year around and whilst the sea may be too cold to swim in for most during the winter months, you’ll still be treated to glorious views from the beach.
How to get to San Sebastian
The nearest international airport to San Sebastian is Bilbao Airport, 100 kms away. You can pick up a Bilbao Airport car hire and reach San Sebastian in about an hour. There are also regular buses that run from the airport to the city throughout the day. If you do fly to Bilbao Airport, it’s worth spending some time in Bilbao too… See our blog for our travel highlights in Bilbao.
San Sebastian Airport is the closest airport to the city but only has flights from domestic destinations including Madrid and Barcelona.