Prepared for the weather, we stepped out into the rain and began our 6km walk to board the bus for Bilbao, where Jane wanted to see and visit the Guggenheim Museum. It is a museum of modern and contemporary art housing major 20th-century artworks and was designed by Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry. The museum was inaugurated on 18 October 1997 by King Juan Carlos I of Spain. The building is gleaming titanium and glass.
Apart from the last few kilometres the complete journey to Bilbao was in rain, very low cloud and thick mist. The road wound its way into, over and down the mountains, through scores of tunnels and bridges. The valleys were deep, the rivers frequent, the vegetation lush green, the farmhouses were neat and clinging to the valley sides, the small towns silently asking you to stay and discover them more. Time did not permit. The bane of travelling … and … sitting in a bus!
A few kilometres out from Bilbao the sky was suddenly clear and the sun shone strong even though that disappeared on occasions whilst we wandered Bilbao. A little background about Bilbao, in northern Spain, is that it is surrounded by
green mountains. It’s the de facto capital of the Basque Country. The Bilbao River winds its way through the town with the Guggenheim Museum situated on its banks. The museum was the town’s saviour as it sparked revitalization when it opened in 1997. We were taken by the curvy, titanium-clad building. We were not allowed to take photos of the art, however a few were inexplicably found on my camera.
We ‘looked over’ another of Bilbao’s modern architecture, the tied-arch Zubizuri footbridge. Most of all we enjoyed walking the streets and marvelling at the old and new architecture of the buildings and how nothing was out-of-place. Of course, the culinary and liquid delights were also sampled!
Before we knew it we were back on the bus bound for San Sebastian. Sunshine the whole way. We got to see the countryside even more. To put it simply, breath-takingly beautiful.
San Sebastian was humming. People were out in force. Young, old, families, all happily intermingling wandering, eating, drinking, singing and laughing. A “mobile” rock band on the back of a truck was entertaining the people too. The restaurants, cafes and the numerous small bars were overflowing. We joined them.
By the time we hit-the-sack it was nearing 12. A long day and we were feeling it!
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