A family bike outing, packed with art!
- 2022 Dec 12
We propose a fun route with lots of art taking you to some of San Sebastian’s prettiest spots; you’ll discover sculptures well worth a look not only for their beauty, but also for their settings. And to make this the perfect activity… the art route is designed for biking and takes you along some of our city’s cycle paths! Are you ready? Grab your helmet, your water bottle, a snack… and off you go!
Don Quixote and Sancho Panza – Author: Lorenzo Coullaut Valera
The route starts in the Plaza Cervantes, on the Concha promenade. Here you’ll be met by Don Quixote and Sancho Panza in the shape of a bronze sculpture dating back to 1929. By way of an anecdote, note that the author of the sculpture was also responsible for one of the city’s most iconic statues, the Monument to Christ of the Sacred Heart standing atop Mount Urgull, which you will see ahead of you if you’re facing the sea.
If you’re up for it you can climb up for a closer look, although in that case you’d have to leave the bike in the Alderdi Eder gardens, as it’s quite a way… That said, the views are well worth the effort!
Monument to Fleming – Author: Autor Eduardo Chillida
From the Plaza Cervantes, follow the cycle path towards El Antiguo, wending your way round the whole bay. It’s a pleasure to ride beside the sea with your family. At one point you’ll come to the Monument to Fleming, the work of Eduardo Chillida in homage to the discoverer of penicillin. The panoramic views of the sculpture and the bay are spectacular.
Monument to Queen Maria Cristina – Author: José Díaz Bueno
Continuing your bike ride until coming to Ondarreta gardens, you’ll find this bronze statue, a local token of gratitude to the queen who started the court tradition of spending summer in the city. The monument to the queen is a common meeting point for groups of youngsters who go to the beach together in summer.
The Wind Comb – Author: Autor Eduardo Chillida
From here, we recommend that you leave the bikes and walk (the cycle path stops at the end of the beach) to visit one of San Sebastian’s most iconic spots, the Wind Comb. These iron structures, in symbiosis with the sea and the waves, make this corner, designed by the sculptor Eduardo Chillida and the architect Luis Peña Ganchegui (both from San Sebastian) one of the most special and magical in the city.
If the sea is rough and the wind is blowing, you’ll see air shooting out of the spouts in the ground at the end of the promenade. The kids love it. It’s also a perfect place to sit on the stairs and tuck into your snack.
Back to the centre
Grab your bike and cycle back along the path to the centre. At the other side of the Plaza de Gipuzkoa you’ll come to the Plaza Okendo, between the María Cristina Hotel and the Victoria Eugenia Theatre. These two buildings, which closer inspection reveals to be a work of art in themselves, bookend the sculpture paying homage to Antonio de Oquendo, work of the sculptor from Bergara, Marcial Aguirre.
Monument to the Drummer – Author: José Lopetegui
From here, after taking a break on one of the benches and enjoying the gardens, you can make your way to the Plaza Sarriegi and visit the Monument to the Drummer. Work of the sculptor from San Sebastian, José Lopetegui, the ensemble boasts a bust of local composer Raimundo Sarriegi and the figure of a drummer, together with a plaque bearing the words of the march written by Sarriegi, which is considered to be the city’s anthem and is played on San Sebastian Day. In 2022 this group of sculptures was joined by the statue of a woman water carrier, work of the artist Nino Barriuso symbolising equality during the San Sebastian Day festivities. A fantastic homage to the ‘tamborrada’ drum fest, our favourite celebration! Don’t you feel like grabbing a drum and joining in?
Returning to the cycle path, pedal along the seaside Paseo Nuevo, where you’ll come to one of the city’s most recent sculptures, Jorge Oteiza’s Empty Construction. The views from here are spectacular and you can feel the immensity of the sea.
Empty Construction – Author: Jorge Oteiza
It was Oteiza himself who chose this spectacular location for his impressive work, winner of an award at the Sao Paulo Biennial fifty years ago and now standing in the Paseo Nuevo, an impressive example of contemporary art.
Back in the saddle, continue along the Paseo Nuevo, across the Kursaal Bridge and past the Zurriola beach, until coming to Sagües, home to another splendid sculpture, this time by Nestor Basterretxea.
Dove Of Peace – Author: Autor Nestor Basterretxea
The symbol of San Sebastian’s pledge to peace, this impressive 7-metre sculpture stands at the far end of the Paseo de la Zurriola, in Sagües. You’ve now come to the end of your tour and can enjoy a rest on the esplanade while the kids play in the park, or have a drink on one of the bustling terraces. We hope you enjoyed the outing.
Thanks for coming! Eskerrik asko!