How to get to the Camino de Santiago northern route

There are many travel options to get to the first night’s accommodation in Hondarribia on the Camino de Santiago Northern route.

Either head directly to Hondarribia or to San Sebastian where our Basque guide – Javier – offers a free transfer service to your first night hotel San Nikolas in Hondarribia.

The nearest airports to fly to are San Sebastian, Biarritz and Bilbao. Please note these airports haven’t got flights from outside Europe but you can also get to the area by public transport from Madrid or Barcelona.

Below we list all of the travel options to get to the Basque Country – if you have any questions or would like further help just drop us an email at [email protected]

From Barcelona

5 1/2 hrs driving time or flights, train and bus links.

From Madrid

4 1/2 hrs driving time or flights, train and bus links

Hondarribia

First night on the Camino de Santiago Coastal Route

From Pyrenees

2 1/2 hrs driving time or train and bus links

Bilbao

Direct buses from Bilbao airport or city centre.

From Bilbao or Biarritz – the nearest airports

From Bilbao

By Bus

From Bilbao there is an excellent bus service either direct from the Bilbao airport or from the city centre to San Sebastian where our Basque guide – Javier – offers a free transfer service to your first hotel San Nikolas in Hondarribia.

The bus costs roughly 17€ per person and takes around 1 hour and there are buses each hour.

More information about buses on PESA.

By taxi

If you are flying to Bilbao Airport we can book you a private taxi transfer to the first night’s hotel in Hondarribia. It takes about 1 hour and the price is from 190€ per trip.

From Biarritz

By bus

There are two buses a day from Biarritz airport to San Sebastian bus station – where our guide Javier will pick you up and take you to Hondarribia. These buses are operated by PESA.

There are also buses from Biearritz to Hendaye (just on the French side of the border from Hondarribia) and from there you can take a taxi to Hondarrbia. The bus company is Transport 74.

By taxi

If you are flying to Biarritz Airport, you can book a taxi to Hotel San Nikolas in Hondarribia. It’s a 45 min trip and the price is approximately 95€.

From Barcelona

Barcelona is one of the main interantional airports in Spain and many of our guests come from Barcelona. Below you can see the diferent options to get to San Sebastian/Bilbao from Barcelona. If you want to get here quickly the best idea is taking a flight to Bilbao.

Self drive – 5 1/2 hrs

It’s quite a long drive from Barcelona to San Sebastian but it is perfectly doable. It’s a good idea to discover some places in the route, for example a stopover in Alquézar.

View driving directions on Google Maps.

Public transport

By bus

There are no direct buses from Barcelona to San Sebastian/Bilbao, you need to change in Zaragoza. There are several buses each day but we’ve listed only the buses which have good connections.

Bus stop: Barcelona Nord

Duration: 8 hours – one hour stop in Zaragoza.

Prices: roughly 40€ per person and way.

Timetables: Depart Barcelona – 7:00 am; 10:30 am and 1:00 pm.

Arrival place: San Sebastian bus station

View bus information on ALSA.

 

By train

There is a direct train from Barcelona to San Sebastian.

Train station: Barcelona Sants

Duration: 5 1/2 hours.

Prices: roughly 40€ per person and way.

Timetables: Depart Barcelona – 7:30 am and 3:30 pm.

Arrival place: San Sebastian train station.

View train information on RENFE.

 

By plane

Although is not the most common way to arrive in there is flights from either Madrid and Barcelona.

Barcelona to San Sebastian roughly one hour and from 50€ the flight ticket. You can see more information in VUELING

From Madrid

Madrid is of the main international airports in Spain and all of the major rent a car companies have offices at the airport or in the city. There are also different options to travel to the Basque Country by public transport and here we suggest the better routes.

Self drive – 4 1/4 hrs

Please note that the directions are from Madrid airport. It’s a fairly long drive from Madrid to San Sebastian, so you may want to discover some places in the route as an stopover in Burgos – with it amazing gothic cathedral.

View driving directions on Google Maps.

Public transport

By bus

There are direct buses each hour from Madrid to San Sebastian.

Bus stop: Avenida de América bus station – please note that most of the buses have a stop in the airport.

Duration: 6 hours.

Prices: roughly 40€ per person and way.

Timetables: there are buses each hour from 7:30 am to 9:30 pm.

Arrival place: San Sebastian bus station

View bus information on ALSA.

By train

There is a direct train from Madrid to San Sebastian.

Train station: Madrid Chamartin

Duration: 5 1/2 hours.

Prices: roughly 40€ per person and way.

Timetables: 8:00 am; 4:05 pm and 5:35 pm.

Arrival place: San Sebastian train station.

View train information on RENFE.

 

By plane

Although is not the most common way to arrive in there is flights from either Madrid and Barcelona.

Madrid to San Sebastian roughly one hour and from 150€ the flight ticket. You can see more information in IBERIA

From the Pyrenees

Many guests do a week hiking in the Pyrenees with some time in the Basque Country either at the beggining or at the end of their hiking holidays. So here you’ll find how to get to the Basque Country from our bases in the Pyrenees – Biescas, Sallent de Gállego, Torla.

Self drive – 3 hrs

There is a fairly good east-west road along the southern side of the Pyrenees. It’s being upgraded all of the time and the majority of the route is now on two-lane roads (dual carriageways). Although it’s not that far to drive, if time allows, there are quite a few good spots to visit on the way such as Pamplona, Jaca and the castle of Javier.

View driving directions on Google Maps.

 

Private transfer

We can offer our guests a private transfer either to/from Pamplona, where is easier arrange public transport to Basque Country, or directly all the way to/from San Sebastian.

Pyrenees (Biescas or Sallent de Gállego) to Pamplona: 200€ per trip – roughly 1 3/4 hours.
Pyrenees  (Torla) to Pamplona: 250€ per trip – 2 1/4 hours.

Pyrenees (Biescas or Sallent de Gállego) to San Sebastian: 300€ per trip – roughly 2 3/4 hours.
Pyrenees  (Torla) to San Sebastian: 350€ per trip – 3 1/4 hours.

 

Public transport

By bus

Unfortunately, there are no direct buses or trains from the Pyrenees to the Basque Country. However if you get the timings right the journey can be made fairly easily – you first get to Jaca and from there to Pamplona where you’ll catch a bus to the Basque Country, Below we explain the diferent options you have:

Stage 1: Biescas – Jaca

Bus stop: Biescas main square

Duration: 30 min.

Prices: roughly 4€ per person and way.

Timetables: 8:20 am and 4:35 pm.

Arrival place: Jaca bus station. Where you’ll catch a bus to Pamplona.

View bus information on ALOSA.

Quicker option: we’ll organise a taxi for you which picks you up at the hotel and drop you off at Jaca bus station – 20 min and 30€ per trip (from Biescas, Torla and Sallent a little more).

Stage 2: Jaca – Pamplona

Bus stop: Jaca bus station.

Duration: 1 3/4 hours.

Prices: roughly 8€ per person and way.

Timetables: 9:00 am and 4:00 pm.

Arrival place: Pamplona bus station. Where you’ll catch a bus to either Bilbao and San Sebastian.

View bus information on La Burundesa. Please note this website is not in English, don’t hesitate in contacting us if you need help.

Stage 3A: Pamplona – Bilbao

Bus stop: Pamplona bus station.

Duration: 2 hours.

Prices: roughly 15€ per person and way.

Timetables: 7:00 am; 10:00 am; 1:00 pm; 3:30 pm; 6:00 pm and 8:30 pm.

Arrival place: Bilbao bus station.

View bus information on La Unión.

Stage 3B: Pamplona – San Sebastian

Bus stop: Pamplona bus station.

Duration: 1 1/4 hours.

Prices: roughly 8€ per person and way.

Timetables: 8:30 am; 9:30 am; 11:00 am; 11:30 am; 1:45 pm; 2:00 pm; 3:30 pm; 5:30 pm and 6:30 pm.

Arrival place: San Sebastian bus station.

View bus information on ALSA.

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