The group arrived safely on Saturday and since then we have been running a mile a minute!

Saturday students met their host families for the first time and truly began their immersion experience.

Sunday the group reconnected and had their first official tour of beautiful San Sebastian. Knowing this was their home for the next few weeks brought excitement to the entire group. San Sebastian is not only beautiful but chock full of things to do and culture to experience.

Monday we  had our first day of class that included a placement exam for students.  Following class, we took a tour of La Parte Vieja famous for the pintxo (tapa) spots and Basque favorite Mosto (non-alcoholic apple juice drink). Although it was a rainy afternoon, all enjoyed indulging in these delectable treats.

Tuesday after class the group walked along the beach and la Concha to take the funicular up to Monte Igueldo. This local attraction has the most amazing views of San Sebastian. Once on top, the group experienced the famed ‘atracciones’ of Monte Igueldo — roller coasters, bumper cars, trampolines etc..

Wednesday classes continue and continues to advance and review our knowledge of Spanish 🙂 In the afternoon we took a boat ride and visited Pasajes San Juan. We walked through the quaint Basque town and finished with an amazing cooking class. We made a fantastic meal that included some of the incredible pintxos we tasted on Monday.

Thursday afternoon and evening we spent as a group at the Microteatro in Farandula Theater for the play “Su EX’.  Post activity, students attended an optional dinner at the Tabakalara to taste the ‘Pizza del dia’.

Friday was a rainy day so we enjoyed some comfort food (churros y chocolate at the famous Santa Lucia) and visited the movie theater for a Spanish film. The film was called ‘El Mejor Verano de Mi Vida’ — The Best Summer of My Life — and told the story of a father and son who, with no plans or funds for an epic adventure, ended up with just that and so much more. The students loved it!

Saturday – Full day excursion! We met in the morning and traveled as a group to Biarritz, France! We stopped in the historic town of St. Jean de Luz where we stopped at historical sites, walked the promenade and shopped the quaint street called Rue Gambetta. We continued on to Biarritz, the elegant seaside town on France’s southwest Basque coast. Students took in the sites, enjoyed the food and this gorgeous resort town made popular in the 1800’s when European royalty began visiting.

Sundays are meant for rest and free days …. Not for this group! The students opted to take a walk to the top of Mt. Urgull on this gorgeous day!

Monday – Class then off to Zumaia! We had the opportunity to hike and find some of the Game of Thrones landscape and also enjoy the gorgeous beach!

Tuesday – Time to Dance! After class, the entire group attended a dance lesson. We learned (and laughed alot) bachata and merengue with freestyle time as well. We were impressed to see how engaged all of the students were!

Wednesday – We are loving our new routine in San Sebastian and getting to know the surrounding areas! Today we are spending our full afternoon in Hondarribia! Hondarribia is a coastal town in northern Spain on the French border. We learned about the history including visiting the Santa Maria gate (the entry to the old walled town). After we toured this beautiful spot, we took time to get snacks and explored the shops in the town.

Thursday – Surfs up! Another morning of classes and students are really improving their Spanish! After class, we took a surfing lesson on Zurriola, San Sebastian’s main surfing beach. We started with some really funny warm up waves and then hit the waves. Many students were surprised how naturally surfing came to them!

Friday – Is it really our last day?!?! We enjoyed our last day of classes and recognized the real progress we have made linguistically during this immersion. Many students used the afternoon to enjoy the beauty of San Sebastian with friends. We met back up as a group for our farewell party – Fiesta de Despedida – at Bsiete restaurant in Gros by our school. We visit with friends, directors, teacher and our homestays even attended. It was a great night. All will be sad to leave our fantastic group and incredible San Sebastian tomorrow.