Our second family camping road trip from Spain to Poland and back is coming to a close. Here’s a quick stop in pictures to see where the bulls run during the world famous San Fermin festival (in Pamplona, Spain) that separates man from those who risk their manhood to the horns of the beasts. P.S. there are women runners too! Enjoy your trip!
Calle Estafeta Street
Estafeta Street (calle or “kaleta” in Basque language) is the most famous street in Pamplona, known around the world for this is where the “encierros” (or the runners) of the San Fermin festival are chased by the angry bulls.
It’s name comes from the first post office in Pamplona in the 19th century.
The street has two distinct parts. The first is where Estafeta curves with Merchant street (about 270 meters into the San Fermin running with the bulls) where the bulls usually collide spectacularly, to the Bajada de Javier. There are small local shops here selling “Pastas Beatriz”, “Churrero Gomez” and knives.
The second part is from the “Fall of Javier” all the way to the Plaza del Toros which is filled with bars and restaurant lined up with flags.
In all, it’s a 500-meter run-for-your-lives-bacause-the-bull-that-is-running-after-you-wants-payback-for-cutting-off-his-balls. . . from the curve at the beginning of Estafeta to the turn to the Plaza de Toros.
What else is there to see in Pamplona?
If we had a day (or more) in Pamplona, here’s likely what else we’d like to see in the city center. With young kids in tow, consider an overnight stay to give the city a proper visit.
Plaza del Castillo–Pamplona’s “living room” where everybody hangs out, or so it seems. It is a wide open urban plaza with a central pavilion and, of course, lots of restaurants & bars surrounding it. This square of the castle is where the Old Town with the modern part of the city. Houses from the 18th century overlook this square. Located about 4-minute walk (300 meters) northeast of Plaza de Toros.
Jardines de la Taconera–a beautoful walk along the city’s old northern wall with views from top of the wall. Lots of beautiful verdant greeneries and trees, even free-roaming chickens, roosters, deer in the protected area. . . even the rare peacocks! Located about 10-minutes walk from Plaza de Toros.
Parque de la Medina— It looks like Pamplona is already an incredibly green city with its parks and open spaces. This particular one is small but well-designed park with great views over the Arga river and the farming lands in the plains below. Located less than 10-minute walk from Plaza de Toros.
Hemingway monument and route: Bust of the famous writer Ernest Hemingway. You know, a Pulitzer Prize winner-writer of novels like A Farewell to Arms, For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea. Why is it here? The BULLS! The route: visit the places frequented by Hemingway in his time, who was in love with the city of Pamplona. Both are located at Plaza de Toros.
A Blurb About Our Family camping road trip 2 . . . from Spain to Poland and Back
From a restful camping in the south of France, in a small village in the Pyrenees mountains, we move our modern gypsy caravan southwards.
On the other side of the mountain, on the French highway N134 and the Spanish E-7 through the tunnel pass, you’ll know you’re in Spain. You’ll quickly notice the dryness of the landscape as you come down the mountain and head west towards Pamplona.
The tunnel on highway N-330 on the Spanish side opens up into kilometer 666. So, if you are superstitious; best NOT to look.
You’ll also see Camino de Santiago road signs for pilgrims walking to Santiago de Compostela seemingly everywhere you drive in this part of Spain.
From Aragon to Navarra, you’ll pass by small charming hilltop villages, like Anso, and the lake amidst the dryness–places that you almost wished you had more time to stop by. “More time?,” the angelic tone of my wife notes. I get it. I get her point. After all we have been on the road for 38 days (with a break in Poland for about 3 weeks in between).
Then you go through an interestingly named “Tunel del Perdon” (or Erreniegako tunela in the language of the Basque/Basco)–1,050 meters long with modern windmills on top. In Spanish, it looks like it means the tunnel of forgiveness/sorry while in Basque “renegade tunnel”. Hmmmm.
NEXT STOP: Salamanca, Spain. . . the city of Cervantes?
Then, onwards, southwards. . . to home. . . a mere 988-something kilometers to go!
But first, we’ve gotta park our gypsy caravan and pitch tent, somewhere near Salamanca…
Thanks for checking us out!