The Green Hills of Spain

Bilbao - © Ray Smith
Gijón
Fishing port of Bermeo near Bilbao - © Jose Ignacio Soto/www.shutterstock.com
Leon - © Ray Smith
Leon Cathedral
San Sebastian
Santiago De Compostela
View of the city from above. Bilbao - © photobeginner/Shutterstock.com

Holiday Highlights

  • Scenic journey between San Sebastian and Bilbao
  • Journey on the metre gauge FEVE network
  • Time to explore Bilbao, Santander, Gijon, Santiago de Compostela and Leon
  • A mix of coastal, moorland and mountain scenery
  • 15 Days from £2,060pp
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Combine the most scenic railway journeys of the “Green” coast of North Spain with its vibrant cities. Travel by rail on many metre gauge lines and explore Bilbao, Leon and Santiago de Compostela. This tailor made tour is entirely by train and is a wonderful way to see this beautiful part of Spain and its stunning beaches. The itinerary below can be adapted to suit your own personal journey.

Itinerary

Day 1 – By Eurostar to France

Morning departure from London St. Pancras to Paris then TGV to Poitiers for an overnight stay.

Day 2 – San Sebastian

Continue your journey and reach the Spanish border at Hendaye. Change here to the metre gauge EuskoTren for the short journey to San Sebastian, a thriving coastal town. Tickets for the EuskoTren can be purchased locally – stay overnight in San Sebastian.

Day 3 – San Sebastian to Bilbao

A scenic journey on the electrified metre gauge EuskoTren links San Sebastian with Bilbao and a morning train will get you there around lunchtime. Spend the afternoon relaxing and exploring this famous city using its excellent metro system. Tickets for the EuskoTren must again be purchased locally.

Day 4 – Bilbao

A day at leisure to explore Bilbao.

Day 5 – West to Santander

The FEVE metre gauge rail network performs all the functions you would normally expect of a busy standard gauge main line – suburban lines around the cities, longer distance passenger routes and lots of freight. Today take a morning train journey from the splendid Bilbao Concordia station to Santander in time to spend the afternoon exploring this busy resort or take an optional trip inland into the mountains on the RENFE main line towards Madrid.

Day 6 – Santander to Gijon

Morning departure from Santander to Gijon. Change trains at the busy junction of El Barron.

Day 7 – Free day in Gijon

A free day in Gijon with its wide beach and historic old town. Alternatively, use your rail pass to visit nearby Oviedo.

Day 8 – More Coastal Scenery

Today continue by local train to Pravia and change to take the train to Ferrol. En route you will enjoy more superb coastal scenery and fishing villages. Ferrol is the western extremity of FEVE - enjoy an overnight stay here.

Day 9 – Santiago de Compostela

An afternoon train will take you south to Santiago de Compostela for a 2-night stay.

Day 10 – Santiago de Compostela

A day at leisure to wander the narrow streets and piazzas of this historic pilgrimage city. A visit to the famous cathedral is well worthwhile.

Day 11 – Santiago to Leon

Take a cross country main line train from Santiago to Leon.

Day 12 – FEVE train to Bilbao

There is just one train per day on this recently reopened cross country line – over 150 miles of wild moorland and mountain scenery. As this doesn’t leave until early afternoon, you have a free morning to relax and take in the sights of historic Leon.

Day 13 – Bilbao to San Sebastian

Another chance to enjoy the metre gauge EuskoTren line to San Sebastian. Trains run hourly so you can choose to spend time in Bilbao, San Sebastian or both today. Tickets must be purchased for the EuskoTren locally.

Day 14 – San Sebastian

A day at leisure in San Sebastian.

Day 15 – Journey home

Continue on the EuskoTren (purchase a ticket locally) from San Sebastian to Hendaye and make the connection to a TGV service to Paris to take the Eurostar back to London, arriving at St. Pancras late afternoon.

Selected Hotels

Best Western Poitiers Centre Le Grand Hotel, Poitiers

Silken Amara Plaza Hotel, San Sebastian

Barceló Bilbao Nervión, Bilbao

NH Ciudad de Santander, Santander

Hotel Silken Ciudad, Gijon

Parador de Ferrol, Ferrol

NH Hesperia Peregrino, Santiago de Compostela

Hotel Real Colegiata, León

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • All rail travel as stated in standard class with reservations where possible
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a bed and breakfast basis
  • Paris Metro transfers
  • 15 day Global InterRail pass in standard class
  • Excursions as indicated

Price per person

From £2,060 per person sharing

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