Xacobeo 2021 - 2022
Camino del Norte (The Northern Way)
Stage

Irún - Donostia/San Sebastián

Donostia/San Sebastián - Zarautz
27’5 km

The first section of the Northern Way starts in Gipuzkoa, on the French border, at the international bridge of Santiago crossing the River Bidasoa and linking Basque towns of Irún and Hendaya. After you go past the church of Nuestra Señora del Juncal, you need to continue to the Town Hall and then follow the Calle Mayor, where there is a detour signposted for the Northern Road.

After the Paseo de Colón you have to cross the railway line and the N-638 until you find a diversion to the right of the Visitor’s Centre (Centro de Interpretación) of the marshland of Jaitzubia. This is where the climb to the chapel of Guadalupe begins. This is a 16th–century church with wonderful views over the Txingudi Bay.

From here you start going around Mount Jaizkibel, some ten kilometres away from Pasaia until you reach Pasai Donibane-Pasajes de San Juan, a fishing village and historical enclave where the French writer Victor Hugo used to live*. This is the time to go down to the harbour and take a boat to the other side of the ria for a reasonable price.

While you go towards Faro de la Plata you can enjoy the wonderful views of San Sebastian. The capital of Gipuzkoa is world-renowned for its cultural life, its architecture and its esplanade all along the Playa de la Concha.

* You can travel from Pasajes de San Pedro-Pasai Donibane to San Sebastian through the city but the walk is a bit dull in comparison to the coastal route. This path is recommended for cyclists but not for those on foot.

How to get to Irún

The nearest airport to Irún is that of San Sebastian (+34 943 668 500). It does not offer many destinations but it has daily flights to Madrid and Barcelona, as well as an interesting list of city buses that take passengers to Irún for an affordable price.
 Alsa connects Irún with Madrid, and also other cities in Spain such as Oviedo, Santander, Burgos or Vitoria. Those who want to come from Valencia, Murcia or Teruel have bus lines with Bilmanbus. From Barcelona, you can come with Vibasa -Monbús.

There are long-distance trains to Irún from Madrid and Barcelona with a stopover in Saragossa and connections to other Spanish cities such as Pamplona, Segovia, Burgos, Valladolid or Lleida, for example. You can check the timetables at Renfe (+34 934 61 67 08). Besides, there are non-stop trains from Donostia-San Sebastián at Euskotren (+34 943 450 131). To check the trains from France to Irún, go to SNCF (+33 0892 353 535).
There are some 470 kilometres from Madrid to Irún, it takes at least 4 and a half hours to get there using the toll-free motorway A-1 (autovía) and then the toll highway AP1 (autopista), which you can avoid using toll-free alternatives such as other autovías or regular roads, but they increase the distance and duration of the drive.

Tips from our postmen and women

What to do and see in Donostia / San Sebastian?

Jesús Antonio Velasco
Jesús Antonio Velasco Correos San Sebastian / Donostia

"Look for the old, as we say here, referring to the old town of Donostia, a perfect way to finish this day. You must not miss the pintxos and the delicacies you can enjoy in one mouthful in all the bars in the area. The fishing harbour and the Kursaal are close by, it is therefore quite easy to see all interesting spots in one go”. 


Accommodations Irún - Donostia/San Sebastián

Image gallery

Camino del Norte desde Irún
Camino del Norte desde Irún
Vistas de San Juan, en el Camino del Norte
Vistas de San Juan, en el Camino del Norte
Primera etapa del Camino del Norte entre Irún y San Sebastián
Primera etapa del Camino del Norte entre Irún y San Sebastián
Camino del Norte entre Irún y San Sebastián
Camino del Norte entre Irún y San Sebastián
Bahía de San Sebastián con el Kursaal
Bahía de San Sebastián con el Kursaal
Casco viejo de San Sebastián
Casco viejo de San Sebastián
Peine del Viento de Chillida en San Sebastián
Peine del Viento de Chillida en San Sebastián
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