Crossed France – Now in Donostia/San Sebastian


When I left from the Devil’s gorge on Monday after writing the last post, I almost immediately crossed over to Luxemburg. I really don’t have much to show for it unfortunately. The road was good but I needed to be very awake to navigate through the many exits and crossings that I had to take. I’m a little ashamed that I didn’t even stop for a picture at some point.

And then France

After Luxemburg I entered France. Since I hated the toll roads in Poland I decided to avoid toll roads in France. Because of that I got to see a lot of small towns but also some very rough roads. I ended up in Clamecy for the first night that I spent on a very pretty campsite on a long island between the Yonne river and the Canal du Nivernais.

While driving through all the small towns I really wondered that everything looked so quiet. I only realized the reason when I arrived in Clamecy and found no place to have dinner. Monday was a catholic holiday called the Assumption of Mary (or: Mary goes to heaven day as my mum calls it). But luckily Naranja has instant noodles as emergency rations just for situations like these.

The Yonne river in Clamecy

I had a quick run along the canal in the morning and then took a shower at the campsite before hitting the road again. I decided that I didn’t want to see bad roads two days in a row and discarded the Google maps setting that avoids toll roads. That meant the second day was mainly boring freeway riding. I made it a little bit more interesting by eating some bad fish I had on a salad bowl. It tasted ok, but I think it upset my stomach a bit.

The toll booths were as bad as I feared. On one I was supposed to have a card that I didn’t get on the booth before and had to call for assistance and tell them that I didn’t have it. That cost me 30€ extra… For the second night in France I stayed in Morcenx on a municipal camper spot. It wasn’t the prettiest place but it was free.

Entering Spain

In the morning I left early and got to San Sebastian (or Donostia in Basque) already around 10 AM. Thanks again to Park4night I found a cheap parking spot in the city. I wanted to stop here for a day, since I have such cool memories of the place from nine years ago. It didn’t fail me. This place is really one of the prettiest cities I’ve ever been to. I walked for hours, wore myself out in the sun and of course enjoyed plenty of pintxos (I’m using the Basque spelling because when in Euskadi, do as the Basques do). Below some snapshots from my walk.

Looking toward the Atlantic
Playa de la concha
Pintxos, I’ve missed you
People actually live here too
Some temporary art on the beach
Moving on from here

I’m now facing a dilemma. I could easily get to Baleal in two days, but I only have to be there on Sunday. Since I’m so close to where I actually want to end up, I’m thinking about taking a detour along the coast toward Galicia and then down to Porto. That would make it possible to check out the areas around San Vicente de Barquera and Aviles where I planned to spent the bulk of my trip. It would mean about 300 km extra, but I’d be riding along the coast most of the way. Now that I wrote this down, I don’t see a dilemma here at all. Detour it is.

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