What are Pintxos in San Sebastián?

What are Pintxos in San Sebastián?

We recently descended on the beautiful city of San Sebastian in Spain and were pleasantly surprised to discover Pintxos culture!

What is Pintxos then? Pintxos (pronounced “peen-chos”) are the Basque Country’s version of tapas – small, savoury bites served on slices of bread or skewered with a toothpick. While similar to tapas, pintxos have their own unique style and traditions that set them apart.

Pintxos are typically prepared with high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients and presented as visually stunning small plates. They can range from classic combinations like anchovy, olive, and roasted red pepper to more creative, chef-driven compositions. The variety is endless, making pintxo hopping a thrilling way to sample the vibrant flavours of Basque cuisine.

Unlike tapas which are often served complimentary with a drink, pintxos are generally individually priced, allowing diners to custom-build their own tasting experience as they hop from bar to bar. This dynamic pintxo culture is a beloved tradition that is deeply ingrained in the social fabric of the Basque region.

Pintxos in San Sebastián


Why San Sebastián for Pintxos?

San Sebastián, a picturesque coastal city in northern Spain, is widely regarded as the pintxo capital of the world. Pintxos are not just a snack here – they are a way of life, an art form, and a point of pride for the Basque people.

The sheer density of high-quality pintxo bars in San Sebastián is staggering. The old town (Parte Vieja) alone is home to over 100 establishments serving innovative, meticulously-crafted pintxos.

San Sebastian Old Town

Venture outside the historic centre and you’ll find even more pintxo hotspots, each with their own unique culinary personality.

What sets San Sebastián apart is the city’s deep reverence for culinary excellence. As the home of numerous Michelin-starred restaurants, San Sebastián has established itself as one of the world’s great gastronomic destinations. This culture of culinary mastery extends to the humble pintxo, elevating it to an art form.

La Concha San Sebastian


How Much Are Pintxos?

Pintxos in San Sebastián are generally very affordable, typically ranging from €2 to €4 per piece. This makes it easy to sample a wide variety of dishes as you bar hop through the city.

Some of the more elaborate or premium pintxos may cost a bit more, up to around €6-€8. But even at the higher end, pintxos remain a remarkably good value considering the quality of the ingredients and the skill required to prepare them.

Many bars also offer set “menu del día” options, where you can get a selection of 3-5 pintxos for a fixed price, usually around €10-€15. This is a great way to experience a broader cross-section of a bar’s pintxo offerings.

The low cost of pintxos allows you to indulge in as many or as few as you’d like without breaking the bank. This flexibility is part of what makes the pintxo crawl such a fun and social dining experience.

Pintxos in San Sebastián Old Town


When to Eat Pintxos

Pintxos are traditionally enjoyed during two main times of day in San Sebastián:

Siesta Time (around 1-4pm): This is the prime pintxo eating window when locals take a break from work to socialize over a few plates of pintxos and drinks. Many bars will have their best and most creative offerings available during this period.

Evening (around 8pm-midnight): As the sun sets, the pintxo bars come alive again as people gather to enjoy the vibrant nightlife. The vibe is lively and convivial, with both locals and tourists mingling over plates of pintxos and glasses of txakoli (the local sparkling white wine).

Cooper and fun in San Sebastian TBEX

While you can certainly find pintxos available throughout the day, these two time slots are when the experience is at its most authentic and energetic. Timing your pintxo crawl around these prime windows will allow you to soak up the full cultural atmosphere.


Where to Eat Pintxos

The Parte Vieja (Old Town) of San Sebastián is the epicenter of the city’s pintxo culture, with bar after bar serving up inventive and delicious bites. Some of the must-visit pintxo spots in this area include:

  • Bar Sport
  • Borda Berri
  • Bar Martinez
  • Casa Vergara
  • Gandarias
  • Txepetxa
  • La Viña for the Basque cheesecake :)
  • Bar Antonio for the BEST tortilla you’ll ever have!
Beyond the Old Town, you’ll also find excellent pintxo bars sprinkled throughout San Sebastián‘s neighbourhoods.

pintxos in San Sebastian


A few other top picks include:

  • Ganbara (Gros neighbourhood)
  • Rekondo (Ondarreta Beach area)
  • Zeruko (Parte Vieja)


No matter where you go, the key is to embrace the ritual of the pintxo crawl – hopping from bar to bar, sampling the unique offerings at each establishment. This allows you to fully immerse yourself in San Sebastián‘s vibrant food culture.


The 3 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in San Sebastian, Spain

The 3 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in San Sebastian, Spain

San Sebastian is one of Spain’s most alluring destinations. It is renowned for a stunning coastal setting, vibrant pintxo culture, and exceptional cuisine. But what are the best neighbourhoods to stay in San Sebastian and the Basque Country then?
When planning a visit, choosing the right neighbourhood to stay in can greatly enhance your experience.
Here are the three best areas to consider for your San Sebastian accommodation.


Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in San Sebastian Spain


Parte Vieja (Old Town)

If you want to be at the heart of the action, the Parte Vieja, or Old Town, is the place to be. This historic district is the epicentre of San Sebastian‘s famous pintxo scene. It’s brimming with an array of bars and restaurants serving up wonderful and innovative small plates.

Wandering the charming, narrow streets of the Parte Vieja, you’ll be surrounded by beautiful Basque architecture, local boutiques, and lively plazas. It’s an absolutely captivating neighbourhood, with a tangible sense of history and community. Many of the best pintxo bars, such as Borda Berri and Gandarias, are located right in the heart of the Parte Vieja.

San Sebastian Old Town

The trade-off is that this lively atmosphere can mean the area gets quite crowded, especially in the evenings when the pintxo crawl is in full swing. Accommodation options may also be more limited and pricier in the Old Town. But for those who want to fully immerse in San Sebastian‘s vibrant culture, the Parte Vieja is the ideal choice.



Located just across the River Urumea from the Old Town, the Gros neighbourhood offers a slightly more laid-back alternative. We stayed in this area in an Airbnb opposite the Kursaal Convention Centre where we attended TBEX Europe. This trendy, up-and-coming district is known for its dynamic food and art scene. We would also advocate for staying here – the Old Town is just a short stroll away – very accessible.

Sarah and Cooper TBEX San Sebastian

In Gros, you’ll find excellent pintxo bars like Ganbara, as well as an increasing number of innovative restaurants. The area also has a thriving creative community, with independent boutiques, art galleries, and design studios. It has a youthful, bohemian vibe that contrasts nicely with the historic charm of the Parte Vieja.

Accommodation options in Gros tend to be a bit more affordable than the Old Town. You’ll often get more space and modern amenities here. The area is well-connected via public transport, making it easy to hop over the river to explore the Parte Vieja. For those seeking a slightly quieter yet still very vibrant neighbourhood, Gros is an excellent choice.

Top tip: visit Abba Hotel rooftop bar in this area :)

Neighbourhoods to Stay in San Sebastian, Spain



For a more tranquil, residential feel, consider basing yourself in the Ondarreta area, situated along San Sebastian‘s picturesque beachfront. This upscale neighbourhood is home to the Ondarreta Beach, one of the city’s most beautiful stretches of golden sand.

While Ondarreta may lack the frenetic energy of the Old Town or Gros, it offers a serene and luxurious setting, with elegant hotels, chic boutiques, and excellent dining options. You’ll find refined pintxo bars like Rekondo, as well as some of San Sebastian‘s celebrated Michelin-starred restaurants.

Cooper filming San Sebastian

The appeal of Ondarreta lies in its ability to provide a peaceful respite from the bustling city centre, while still keeping you within easy reach of all the top sights and culinary delights. It’s an ideal choice for those who want to experience San Sebastian at a more relaxed pace, perhaps combined with a day or two exploring the vibrant neighbourhoods closer to the heart of the action.

Marina San Sebastian Spain


Choosing Your Perfect San Sebastian Neighbourhood

Ultimately, the best neighbourhood for you in San Sebastian will depend on the type of experience you’re seeking. Are you drawn to the historic charm and lively social scene of the Parte Vieja? The trendy, creative vibe of Gros? Or the serene luxury of Ondarreta?

No matter which you choose, you’re sure to be captivated by San Sebastian‘s unique blend of natural beauty, architectural splendour, and world-class gastronomy. With this guide to the city’s top neighbourhoods, you can find the perfect home base to explore all that this Basque gem has to offer.

TBEX fun San Sebastian


Here’s something I’ve never told anyone before…

Here’s something I’ve never told anyone before…

It was our first travel trip abroad, and the excitement was palpable for my brother and I. We had journeyed to North America from Australia – we were naïve (and very young) to say the least. Our itinerary of five major cities in six weeks had been inspired by our individual cultural and historical interests. Vancouver, British Columbia (BC) with its urban Canadian charm and wild, natural landscapes, was my pick. Why? Well, it was 1999 and I was in my 6th year of dedicated worship of The X-Files. This was ground zero for filming!

As a true fan who could name each of the 161 episodes to date, of course I had a list of obscure and far-flung filming destinations I insisted upon tracing. And while I did have access to the internet for my research, we certainly did not have Google Maps at our fingertips to get us around in the wintery outskirts of BC.

Still, off we went into the wilderness. Little did we know, this adventure would teach us more about the magic of serendipity than any guidebook ever could.

Armed with vague directions gleaned from an online forum, we set out on a chilly, dark winter afternoon, on a bus that I thought would take an hour, but it took two to reach our destination.

The sky was a steel grey, and the air crisp with the promise of snow. As the bus dropped us off on the edge of the forest, the real journey began. The path, initially clear and inviting, soon twisted into a maze of undergrowth and towering trees, shrouded in mist.

Winter scene at Bunzten Lake

As daylight began to fade, the realisation hit us: we were lost in the woods. The trail markers had disappeared as quickly as the light, and every turn looked ominously similar. Panic was just about to set in when we stumbled upon a clearing. Our frustrations faded away, replaced by awe, as the trees parted to reveal a scene so serene it seemed otherworldly. We had reached a place called Buntzen Lake (pictured above), a frequent filming location for The X-Files but particularly well known for two episodes I loved, One Breath and Quagmire.

Before us lay a silent lake, its surface a perfect mirror reflecting the snow-capped mountains and the deepening twilight sky. It was a scene of untouched tranquillity, the kind of place that didn’t seem like it should exist so near to a bustling city. No signs of X-Files or human presence; just pure, majestic nature.

We spent what felt like hours there in the hush of the evening, the only sounds the soft rustling of the trees and our own breaths, visible in the cold air. It was a moment of unexpected magic, a gift from the universe at a time we felt most vulnerable. We found more than what we were looking for – an enchanting spot that was the complete opposite of anything we’d known in Queensland. To us, it felt like a secret kept from the rest of the world.

The experience was so profound that we ventured back the next day, this time in the full light of day. The magic of the lake was different under the sun’s rays, but equally captivating. We explored the surrounding area, finding quaint trails and scenic vistas, each step filled with the fresh exhilaration of discovery.

Returning home, the lesson was clear: sometimes, getting lost is not a misstep, but a path to the most spectacular finds. We had set out in search of a piece of television history and ended up with a personal landmark in our hearts, a reminder of the surprises waiting off the beaten path.

Now, I share this story to remind us all: embrace the unknown with open arms. Particularly if you’re feeling unsure right now – know that the path will become clear, and sometimes the best memories – travel or otherwise – are the ones you never planned for.

48 Hours in Whitstable: Oysters, Art, and the Allure of the Sea

48 Hours in Whitstable: Oysters, Art, and the Allure of the Sea

What can we say, it’s worth spending 48 hours in Whitstable, Kent! :)

Stepping off the train, we were greeted by the radiant sun shining over Whitstable, a picturesque seaside town on the coast of Kent in Southern England. We had been here once before, and it was so nice to be able to return! Just an hour’s train ride from London, we were eager to dive back into the wonders of this renowned fishing town, adorned with pastel-coloured fishing cottages, expansive pebbled beaches, and an array of quirky shops.

Every corner of Whitstable whispered tales of its rich maritime heritage, a legacy that stretches back to Roman times.

Take a look:


The Oyster Experience

The town’s pride in its oyster farming is palpable, and we learned of the annual Whitstable Oyster Festival, a grand celebration complete with parades, performances, and, naturally, oyster-eating competitions. Tasting the famed Whitstable oysters was the crowning jewel. The taste was a harmonious blend of saline, a touch of saltiness, complemented by a creamy sweetness. One was simply not enough.


Artistic Flair and Coastal Pubs

Our stroll down Harbour Street was nothing short of enchanting. The street, alive with energy, was a tapestry of quirky boutiques, unique shops, and a delightful mix of colourful weatherboard houses, historic edifices, and charming cottages. Our exploration led us to the intriguing street art by Catman, Whitstable’s answer to Banksy. For those in search of a unique coastal pub experience, “Neppies” or Old Neptunes is the place to be.


A Culinary Finale

As our 48 hours neared its end, we decided to indulge in the town’s best fish and chips at Ossie’s. The generous servings and the golden, flaky fish were the perfect culmination to our Whitstable adventure. Sitting on the beach, watching the sun dip below the horizon and the waves gently caress the shore, we reflected on our time in Whitstable.


A town that seamlessly marries its rich history with modern allure. If the Kent Coast is on your radar, Whitstable is a must-visit. A town that’s not just picturesque but also dog-friendly. And remember, the oysters are a must-try!



Best Beaches in Ibiza + Unforgettable Boat Tours: A 2024 Guide

Best Beaches in Ibiza + Unforgettable Boat Tours: A 2024 Guide

Ibiza, an island renowned for its vibrant nightlife, stunning beaches, and rich history, has always been a top destination for travellers. But there’s a unique way to experience the island’s magic that many might overlook: boat tours. We recently embarked on such a journey, and our experience was nothing short of magical.


Setting Sail in Ibiza

The moment we set sail, the atmosphere was electric. The Mediterranean’s crystal-clear waters stretched endlessly, with the sun casting a shimmering trail across the waves. The boat was filled with an enthusiastic crowd, all eager to experience Ibiza’s magic. Laughter, dancing, and the clinking of glasses set the tone for the day.

One of the boat’s standout features was a slide that plunged directly into the refreshing waters of the Mediterranean. Imagine the thrill of diving into the sapphire sea right off the deck of a party boat. It’s an experience that’s hard to replicate.

Discovering Hidden Gems

The boat tour wasn’t just about partying and enjoying the sea. It was also an opportunity to explore parts of the island that aren’t easily accessible by land. The stunning rock formations, hidden coves, and pristine beaches were a sight to behold.

One of the highlights of our journey was a visit to Cala Bassa Beach. Known for its luxe beach clubs, outstanding DJs, cozy sunbeds, and top-notch restaurants, Cala Bassa is a must-visit. The beach’s atmosphere was described as vibrant, fun, and electric. It’s a place that truly needs to be seen to be believed.

During our time at Cala Bassa, I had a chance to chat with a German lady who visits Ibiza every season for work. We both agreed that the island’s magic is undeniable. The beach, with its golden sands and azure waters, was a testament to Ibiza’s natural beauty.


A Day to Remember

The boat cruise lasted for about five to six hours, covering some of the most popular beaches around Ibiza. It’s the best way to see the island! The experience was enhanced by the company of new friends, all excited to explore Ibiza’s hidden treasures. And of course, topped off by the magical Ibiza sunset.

For anyone planning a trip to Ibiza, we have this important piece of advice: don’t miss out on a boat cruise. It offers a unique perspective of the island, allowing travellers to discover spots you wouldn’t necessarily see otherwise.

Ibiza is more than just parties and nightlife. It’s an island filled with natural wonders, hidden gems, and unforgettable experiences. A boat tour is a perfect way to immerse oneself in its magic. So, the next time you find yourself in Ibiza, set sail and let the island’s beauty captivate you.

5 great reasons to work from Kalamata in Greece as a digital nomad

5 great reasons to work from Kalamata in Greece as a digital nomad

If you have been considering a new setting for your remote office, here’s why you should look no further than to work from Kalamata in Greece as a digital nomad! With its vibrant atmosphere, excellent amenities, and commitment to sustainability, Kalamata is ideal for digital nomads. After visiting recently and having a new-found interest in remote working ourselves, Cooper and I started imagining what it would be to like to live and work here. Following are are five of our insights as to why you should consider working from Kalamata as a digital nomad.


Kalamata, Greece

This wonderful spot is the economic, commercial and cultural centre of South Peloponnese in Greece. It is the capital city of the Messinia region and serves 100,000 people every day. Kalamata is a modern all-year round bustling destination with a rich history and a multitude of attractions. Nestled at the apex of the Messinian Bay, it is known for its stunning coastline, lush mountains, and delicious local produce.

Why work from Kalamata in Greece as a digital nomad?

Kalamata is renowned for its Mediterranean climate, with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. This creates a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. You can enjoy hiking, swimming, or simply relaxing on the beautiful beaches. Kalamata’s beach, a long stretch of sand and pebbles, is one of the city’s main attractions. It is frequently awarded the Blue Flag for its cleanliness and the quality of its facilities.

The cityscape is a fascinating blend of old and new, where contemporary architecture coexists with historic buildings. The Old Town of Kalamata, situated at the foot of the Kalathi Mountain, is a must-visit area. Its narrow alleys, traditional houses, Byzantine churches, and the imposing Kalamata Castle, offer a trip back in time. The modern city, on the other hand, is vibrant and lively, brimming with shops, cafes, and eateries.

Culture and history

Kalamata is also a city of culture, hosting a variety of events throughout the year. It is home to the International Dance Festival, which is held every summer and attracts performers from all over the world. The city also houses a range of museums. These include the excellent Archaeological Museum of Messinia and the Folklore and History Museum.

Find out more about all that’s on offer in Kalamata. Visit the Municipality of Kalamata’s website here. Start by browsing the ‘visitors’ section.

Kalamata’s famous foodie delights!

Kalamata is known worldwide for its olives and olive oil. This produce is considered some of the best in the world. We would agree – especially after having the chance to attend the city’s annual Food Stories event (pictured below)!

The local cuisine is a gastronomic delight. Traditional tavernas serve a multitude of dishes made from fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. Food lovers will particularly enjoy the local markets on every Wednesday to Saturday. Score deals on the famed Kalamata olives, local honey, figs, and the region’s renowned wines.

Kalamata is a city that charms its visitors with its diverse offerings. These include beautiful natural scenery and vibrant lifestyle, rich history and cultural heritage. And let’s not forget its delectable local cuisine. Whether you are a history buff, a nature lover, a foodie, or a culture enthusiast, Kalamata has something for everyone.


5 great reasons to work remotely from Kalamata in Greece

Which brings me back to why you might want to work from Kalamata in Greece as a digital nomad! Obviously before planning to move here to live and work, you need to check your eligibility. If you’re not being sponsored to move, you may be eligible for a digital nomad visa in Greece. Here’s more info on that.

Our five picks for why this is a secret gem on the digital nomad map:

Awesome lifestyle opportunities in Kalamata for digital nomads

Kalamata offers an amazing quality of life – great weather and a lively atmosphere year-round. The cost of living is reasonable, making it easy for digital nomads to enjoy the many attractions and activities here. Whether you prefer spending your days lounging on the beach, hiking in the nearby Taygetos Mountains, or exploring the bustling city centre, Kalamata has something for everyone.


Terrific remote working amenities

Kalamata is well-equipped for digital nomads, offering top-notch remote working facilities, such as the fantastic co-working space Phaos ΚΟΙΝΣΕΠ (House by Phaos). The city is continuously investing in its internet and infrastructure, ensuring that you’ll always be connected and able to work efficiently. With reliable Wi-Fi and plenty of cafes and public spaces to work from, you’ll find it easy to stay productive in Kalamata.

The Work From Kalamata website is quite new too. Browse it here for more information about working remotely in this region.


Sustainable focus

This wonderful place is committed to environmental sustainability. Its people and leaders are passionate about taking care of their own backyard. The municipality is actively involved in European initiatives to make a real impact on the environment. Kalamata is one of the European Commission’s 100 ‘smart cities’ across the EU that have committed commit to a goal of climate-neutrality by 2030.

By choosing Kalamata as your remote work location, you’ll be supporting a community that is taking active steps towards a greener future.

Getting around in Kalamata, Greece

Navigating Kalamata is a breeze, as the city is compact and easily walkable or cyclable. If you prefer public transportation, the city’s bus system is efficient and regular, making it simple to get around. Need to travel further? There’s a quick bus to Athens (pictured below) that runs along a new highway, getting you to the capital in under three hours. And with an international airport located in Kalamata, exploring the rest of Greece or Europe is just a flight away.


History and culture – what can a digital nomad immerse in while living in Kalamata?

Kalamata is rich in history and culture, offering an abundance of attractions for you to explore during your downtime. Discover thousands of years of history as you visit ancient ruins, historic castles, and archaeological sites. The local food and wine scene is also incredible, with an emphasis on fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Immerse yourself in Greek culture and cuisine while you work remotely in this stunning city.


Kalamata offers an unparalleled experience for digital nomads, combining a fantastic lifestyle, excellent remote working amenities, and a commitment to sustainability. With easy access to both the city’s attractions and the rest of Greece, Kalamata is the perfect destination for those seeking a unique and fulfilling remote work experience.

Got questions or comments? Let us know in the space below or get in touch on social media :)