What to pack for San Fermin!

What to pack for San Fermin!

What to pack when you visit Pamplona during San Fermin? Only White and red! Seriously! It’s not a joke! And it’s not a myth! You must wear only white and red when in San Fermin. 24/7. But why?! a lot of friends and clients ask me! Doesn’t this “fashion rule” only...

Tickets to San Fermin Bullfights – where, when and how!

Tickets to San Fermin Bullfights – where, when and how!

No, I’m not going to get into that old debate. Cruelty or tradition? Tradition or cruelty? I talked about it in What About Bullfighting and I think that’s it for me. There’s a history. There’s a tradition. And yes, animals get killed. That’s the reality of this very...

San Fermin in  24 hours!!

San Fermin in 24 hours!!

This is what the perfect 24 hours in Pamplona during San Fermin look like! If there is one question that gets asked repeatedly by our clients is this: What are the best activities to do during San Fermin if we only have 24 hours? So much so, that we’ve decided to give...

Hotel Maisonnave

Hotel Maisonnave

Hotel Maisonnave is one of the best located hotels in Town. 4 stars and very conbinient.  It was 1850 when the Maisonnave family opened a small hostel in the center of town. It was not too long after this year when everybody understood that it was the best place to...

great memories of San Fermin 2019 (vol. 2)

great memories of San Fermin 2019 (vol. 2)

Here are some more of these amazing San Fermin stories. NEVER TOO LATE We all think that San Fermin is just for young kids. And you are right, it is for young people, but for young people at heart.This year we have lived one of those incredible San Fermin experiences,...

great memories of San Fermin 2019 (vol. 1)

great memories of San Fermin 2019 (vol. 1)

Every year we live some extraordinary experiences during San Fermin. Some are happy, others are fun, and others nerve breaking. Here are some of them from this year.   BUCKET LIST KIND OF TICKED We know that for a lot of people,  San Fermin and specially, running...

and, that is a wrap for this year!!!

and, that is a wrap for this year!!!

This is it. This year San Fermin festivities have finished. Every year, San Fermin starts and it is incredible how fast it goes.  We prepare all year for this week. And when it is over, we have a strange feeling. On one hand we are happy that the party ends. But on...

Yes, I am exhausted!!!! Viva San Fermin!!

Yes, I am exhausted!!!! Viva San Fermin!!

We are have way through San Fermin, and we are going strong.... So the first part of San Fermin has already gone through. And it seems as if July 6th was a decade ago. So far it has been super fun. We have made new friends. We have danced a lot. I am not going to let...

This is it. Just 4 days away!!!

This is it. Just 4 days away!!!

Just 4 days and  everything will change here. STRESSSS!!!! I am trying to be calmed. But come on it is just 4 days!!! AAAAHHHHHH!!!! Here everything is ready. The bulls are in town, the barricades are set. The fire works are arriving. All the bars are overstocking...

It is the time to look for last years white clothes

It is the time to look for last years white clothes

Here we go again!! It is mid June, and we have to look for our white clothes!!! Every year, us the locals we fear this moment of the year. You might ask yourself why. Well it is simple. One year ago, we all packed our white clothes at the back of our closets, and...

Hotel La Perla

Hotel La Perla

If there is a historical hotel in town, that has to be La Perla. Kings, artists, singers, everybody has stayed at this incredible family run hotel. Hotel La Perla is by far, the best hotel in town. If we talk about location, it is unbeatible, It is in Plaza del...

Talking with Rick Steves about “Jamón”

Talking with Rick Steves about “Jamón”

Jamón, is almost a sacred word in Spanish cuisine. Find out about it! Jamón, is probably, not the first thing  that pops in your brain when we talk about Spanish food. You might think about PAELLA, or TAPAS, some people will think about WINE or SANGRIA. But trust in...

Otazu winery

Otazu winery

If you are like me, and love wine, there is an amazing winery called Otazu just 20 minutes away from Pamplona. Great wine, incredible archiquetture, breathtaking sights and much more.... Here in Navarra, since Roman times, we have produced wine. Today I want to talk...

Which one is the best balcony in San Fermin 2020?

Which one is the best balcony in San Fermin 2020?

If you are a first comer to San Fermin, you might have no clue about the different style balconies in town. Let me explain you a bit of it. Have you ever wondered which one is the best balcony in town? First things first. What style of balcony you want. There are...

The bullfighters dress.

The bullfighters dress.

The bullfighters dress is called “el traje de luces” which means the suit of lights. This extremely beautiful dress take hours to manufacture. They are made to mesure. The bullfighter chooses the color, the embroideries, all the small details. This dresses are made of...

Las Peñas at the bullring

Las Peñas at the bullring

Las Peñas is part of the San Fermin tradition. It is one of the funnest things you can enjoy in Pamplona.   if you come to the bullring to watch a bullfight, you will have a close encounter with the Peñas. What are the Peñas? They are groups of young kids from...

How to run with the bulls

How to run with the bulls

So you are going to run with the bulls!!! Here is a small post telling you what to do. First of all, you need to know that you will not be able to  complete all the  half a mile (875 meters) of the run. Not because you can not run that long at a speed of 10 miles per...

July 6th

July 6th

It all starts on July 6th. The world stops to watch what is going on in Pamplona. It is the moment to party and have fun. But do you know what is going on? Here is a list of the things you have to do during July 6th. I personally wake up very early this day. About...

NO means NO. Sexual harassment in Pamplona

NO means NO. Sexual harassment in Pamplona

Sexual harassment was out of the equation during San Fermin. But in 2015, unfortunately, all changed.   One of the things that shocks most of the tourists when you come to San Fermin is that although there is a lot of alcohol involved in the party, there is...

Opening ceremony from a different angle.

Opening ceremony from a different angle.

The opening ceremony is one of the better known celebrations during San Fermín. Everybody wants to watch at the city hall. But there are other places.   City hall square Watching the  opening ceremony at the city hall is sooooo much fun. But lets face it. You...

Where to party during San Fermin 2020

Where to party during San Fermin 2020

Let´s face it, you come to Pamplona 2020 to party hard. But where can you go? Is every place Safe? Where do you belong according to your age group? I know that everybody believes that Pamplona (during San Fermin) is a non stop party. Well infact it is!! One of the...

Fire works international contest.

Fire works international contest.

Everyday we have fire works in town. It is an international contest. And it is the most watched venue during San Fermin. In Spain we have something with  fire works. In almost all the main celebrations there are fireworks. The most impressive ones take place in...

BILBAO IS A MUST VISIT!!

BILBAO IS A MUST VISIT!!

Just 2 hours away from Pamplona you will find Bilbao. The most modern Basque city. On the XVIII century Bilbao became the economical motor of the Basque Country. Heavy industry was placed by the river. The iron coming from the western part of Spain. The wood from the...

What are San Fermin dates ?

What are San Fermin dates ?

A lot of people ask us , what are San Fermin dates? San Fermin festivities  2020 start on July 6th at noon, and ends July 14th at mid night. So then you now know the dates of the running of the bulls 2020 are July 7 – 14, 2020 in Pamplona, Spain For us (locals) it...

Rick Steves talks about food in the  Basque Country

Rick Steves talks about food in the Basque Country

Today we are talking with Rick Stevesabout the Basque culture and specially our food. This time a great friend of mine Agustín Ciriza, local guide in San Sebastian and expert in active tourism goins in. When Rick Steve´s comes to the north of Spain, he loves to eat...

Why should you Come to Pamplona?

Why should you Come to Pamplona?

Why should you come to Pamplona during the running of the bulls? Probably you have it in the back of your brain, and it has always been in your bucket list. This year should be the year for you!!!! Come on It is January first. You have promised yourself that this is...

The barricades of the running of the bulls

The barricades of the running of the bulls

When you arrive to Pamplona during the San Fermin festival, you will find this very rustic barricades all around the city center. They are the ones that protect the runners during the Running of the bulls. Long time ago (17th century) there were no barricades in the...

San Sebastian tapas experience is top in the world.

San Sebastian tapas experience is top in the world.

Eating tapas is one of my favorite ways to meet with friends and make new ones. All around the world now it is fashionable to go to tapas bars. Guess what!! It all started here in the Basque Country and Navarra. Tapas is not just food, it is sooooo much more. Lonely...

Is Pamplona a safe city?

Is Pamplona a safe city?

When a city goes from 200000 people up to 1,5 million, of course some bad people  come. So please be safe here while San Fermin. I don´t want to freak you out with this post. San Fermin is a safe party. I have been here all my life and nothing has happened to me or...

Bayonne will charge to Party

Bayonne will charge to Party

One hour away from Pamplona, you can find Bayonne. This amazing French-Basque city have the second best parties in the BAsque Region. This year Bayonne will charge for the first time to access the city center during the Bayonne festivities. One of the big questions...

Rick Steve´s radio show about  Running of the Bulls

Rick Steve´s radio show about Running of the Bulls

Rick Steve´s is a world leader in the traveling industry. He knows so much about traveling, that it is always a great learning lesson being near him.   To me there is a great traveling Guru / Mentor. He is Rick Steve´s. I have been working for him for the last 8...

Churros, Spain at its best.

Churros, Spain at its best.

Churros is a must when in Spain.   When in Spain you need to try churros. It is a fried dough with sugar, never cinnamon, that is the Mexican way, also good, but not our way. The question is: where can you find good churros in Pamplona? In town there are many...

Is San Fermín expensive?

Is San Fermín expensive?

During San Fermín, you can go cheap or expensive. Money will not buy you fun, but it will help. It is not easy to say if the party is expensive or not. I persoanlly believe that you don´t need much money to have fun in Pamplona. The most expensive issue you need to...

What you need to know before you run with the bulls

What you need to know before you run with the bulls

What you need to know before you run with the bulls So you are thinking in running with the bulls in 2020. Well, I should say don´t do it. You can die out of this. But who am I to say anything? I have run all my life and now that I don´t do it, Or at least that is...

Pamplona with children

Pamplona with children

The question is: is Pamplona a city during San Fermín for children? The answer is YES.  The San Fermin Festival is a family event as you can tell by all the strollers and child-friendly events which are found until late at night. Just go to the Tourist Information...

What are we talking about when we say “Spanish sobremesa” ?

What are we talking about when we say “Spanish sobremesa” ?

Everybody knows about the passion Spaniards have with food. But the food is only part of the fun. After the meals we have what we call "sobremesa" So what on earth is a SOBREMESA? leterally it means "on top of the table". But what it really means talks about the...

The perfect San Fermin picture is not an easy thing to take.

The perfect San Fermin picture is not an easy thing to take.

It is easy to take a good picture during San Fermin, even a very good one, but the perfect one, is not as easy as it might seam. Many times during San Fermin, we get to work with international press. If I have to tell you the truth, working with a photographer is...

Pamplona´s Cathedral

Pamplona´s Cathedral

In the highest point of town we find our magnificent cathedral, an amazing temple from15th century. Although during San Fermin the cathedral remains closed for visits, it will be open in the mornings for several services, do not doubt to go in to take a look. It is...

Giants and Big-heads during San Fermin

Giants and Big-heads during San Fermin

  Every morning during San Fermin 2020 we have one of the most heart-warming parades in town. It is the parade of the Giants and the Big Heads, or, as we call them, Gigantes y  Cabezudos. This parade starts and ends at the Central Bus Station, just in front of...

Some of my GUIDE friends around Europe

Some of my GUIDE friends around Europe

In this post I am going to introduce to  you some of the best guide s here in Europe. Working as a local guide  you have the chance to meet some of the best guides in the world. Here is a list of friends from all over Europe and part of the world, that can help you...

A special caffe in town “El Caballo Blanco”

A special caffe in town “El Caballo Blanco”

There is a small hidden caffe in Pamplona that I love. It is called “El Caballo Blanco” referring to Saint James’ white horse. It is not easy to find,  but it is worth going there. Place yourself at Death Man’s  corner. Look to your left and up the hill you will see...

No te vayas de Navarra

No te vayas de Navarra

“ No the vayas de Navarra “ is probably the most important of our popular songs here in Pamplona. There are about 10000 different versions. You will listen to this song yes or yes when you come to Pamplona during San Fermin. It will be played in bars. In the streets...

Bezeq TV commercial from Israel

Bezeq TV commercial from Israel

The biggest phone company in Israel BEZEQ, made this fun commercial to sell telephones over there. I have no idea what they are saying, it is in Hebrew, and unfortunately, I don´t speak it. But a very fun couple from Tel Aviv have told me that it is a fun commercial....

Top 10 National parks in Spain

Top 10 National parks in Spain

Spain is an amazing country. I  just love it!!!  It is full of history, castles, monasteries, etc... But if you love nature, you have to visit some of our National parks. What does it come to your mind if I ask you about Spain? Probably paella, bulls, wine, party,...

San Lorenzo church in Pamplona

San Lorenzo church in Pamplona

San Lorenzo is the most loved church in town, not because of San Lorenzo (that we love) but because the chapel of San Fermin is there. For us San Fermin is our main saint. We love him. We worship him, and we celebrate with him, but it is incredible that he doesn’t...

Pamplona,s City Hall

Pamplona,s City Hall

Pamplon´s city hall is one of the most recognizable buildings in town. I personally love it!! The big building in the City Hall Square is, as you can imagine, the City Hall, LOL. This beautiful baroque building was constructed in the XVII century in order to replace...

VOGUE loves Rioja wine region, and I know why!!

VOGUE loves Rioja wine region, and I know why!!

I have just found that when Anna Wintour (Vogue editor) says anything about anything, it is because it is trendy yes or yes. So guess what! American Vogue has edited an article talking about La rioja wine region. I must say that I agree with the article, La Rioja is a...

Jumping from the fountain

Jumping from the fountain

This issue of jumping from the Navarreriá Fountain is not a thing that we use to do. It is a thing that Australians started about 10 years ago.  Let me tell you about it. In XVIII century we had running water for the first time in Pamplona. Before this we used the...

Pamplona´s Bull ring

Pamplona´s Bull ring

Come visit the bull ring. After the “mysterious” fire that collapsed the old bull ring in 1921 we find this arena. Inaugurated in 1923 and enlarged in 1966 it is the 3rd largest bull ring in the world after Mexico DC and Madrid. It can host almost 20.000 people. In...

What about bullfighting ?

What about bullfighting ?

A lot of people ask me if bullfighting is really a tradition or simple animal cruelty. Well, let me give you my point of view. I know that by the time you finish reading this, you will still think that bullfighting is wrong. But let me thank you for the time you are...

Tortilla de patatas

Tortilla de patatas

Among all the tapas in Spain, there is one that you will find in all the bars. It is the tortilla de patatas. You have to know that the word tortilla in Spain has nothing to do with the corn flour tortilla from Mexico. For us a tortilla is an omelette, or as italians...

SANGRIA VERSUS KALIMOTXO

SANGRIA VERSUS KALIMOTXO

When tourists come to Spain some of them think that Sangria is one of our national drinks. They are right, but there is a local one called Kalimotxo, that if you try it you will love it too. What is a sangria? The base of sangría is red wine, orange juice and sugar,...

Café Iruña

Café Iruña

At the end of XIX century Pamplona was a small town ready to grow. The economy was boosting. Modern times were coming. New ideas spread around Europe. It was the moment to watch and to be watched. This is the moment when fancy cafés around Europe were created as a...

Sociedad gastronómica

Sociedad gastronómica

A Sociedad is not just a gastronomic society for men. It is definitely not a British gentlemen’s club. So what on earth is it?. Let’s go back 400 years. The economy in Navarre and the Basque Country was based mainly in farming and fishing. This jobs would make the men...

Pamplona parkings

Pamplona parkings

One of the big questions we receive from tourists is, do you have parkings in Pamplona? Is it easy to park in town? Are parkings safe? First of all, I would recomend to park in one of our parkings, and not leave the car parked at the street. If you park in the street,...

Running of the bulls for children

Running of the bulls for children

Long time ago when I was a little boy (that was long time ago), we used to  have the tradition of running with baby bulls with us, the kids. It was right after the real running of the bulls. I remember my dad, running the real run and we would be watching him and my...

Do you want to be a local?  Try our Pacharán

Do you want to be a local? Try our Pacharán

One of our local drinks, and when I mean local I do not mean Spanish, I mean from the region of Navarre, is the Pacharan. You can write it pacharan or patxaran if you say it in Basque. This spirit is made of 9/10 of anis liquor and 1/10 of blackthorn (sloe berries)....

The perfect selfie by USA TODAY

The perfect selfie by USA TODAY

THE PERFECT SELFIE         Smart phones are changing the way we watch the world. Now most of the people do not watch events, everybody films them. This has changed the way we watch the tunning of the bulls. We used to believe that the best...

Why did we create  pamplonafiesta.com ?

Why did we create pamplonafiesta.com ?

  FROM NOVOTUR TO PAMPLONAFIESTA.COM I have been asked why we have created www.pamplonafiesta.com Let’s start from the beginning. It was 1996 when Pamplona started to welcome tourists and the Government of Navarre realized that tourism was an important part of...

Game of thrones filmed last season in Navarra

Game of thrones filmed last season in Navarra

I don´t know if you are as much of a fan as I am about Game of thrones. I say “fan” not to say “frik” that is what I am. Well the issue is that last year they came to Navarra to shoot part of this season.  If you are a fan, you will understand that we all went crazy....

Talking with Rick Steves about Catalunia

Talking with Rick Steves about Catalunia

These days everybody is talking about Catalunia all over the world. What is going on with this issue? Is it safe to travel to Catalunia? Lets start with history. You need to understand that Spain bacame a Country with the Catholic Kings in the 15th Century. Before...

The best way to drink wine is with Botas ZZZ

The best way to drink wine is with Botas ZZZ

  BOTAS ZZZ When people think about Pamplona they tend to imagine everybody dressed in white drinking  from a pig skin. Well I guess it is mostly true. The outfit is correct but the pig skin ( we call it “bota”) is more of a myth. We do not use them during this...

Spanish siesta

Spanish siesta

  There is a national sport here in Spain that everybody loves, it is what we call Spanish siesta, or as you say POWER NAP. Personally I don´t like taking siesta time, it really stops my day, and for many of my friends they think the same. Our working schedules...

Heredad Beragu hotel

Heredad Beragu hotel

  I have just been hosted at an amazing hotel here en Navarra. It is called Heredad Beragu. And it is just 50 minutes away from Pamplona. A year and a half ago Patxi and Ramón opened this breathtaking 9 room hotel. One of the things that attracted me is that they...

Opening Ceremony

Opening Ceremony

Opening Ceremony Pamplona is a very quiet and small city, in fact we are just 200.000 people. In Spain we are known to be a bit conservative and a little bit shy, but all of this changes on July 6th at noon. It is the opening ceremony for San Fermín or as we call it...

Talking with Rick Steves about the  Basque Country

Talking with Rick Steves about the Basque Country

Every year a big group of European tour guides are invited by travel guru Rick Steves. We participate in an amazing guide summit in Edmonds (30 minutes away from Seattle) where he was borned, lives and also has the head quarters of his company. If you have the...

BACK HOME FOR SAN FERMIN

BACK HOME FOR SAN FERMIN

Modern times are all around the world and Pamplona is not an exception even during San Fermin. For many centuries the people from Pamplona were born in Pamplona. Grew up in Pamplona. Got married in Pamplona, had a family in Pamplona and died in Pamplona. The feeling...

The best Jazz festivals in Europe

The best Jazz festivals in Europe

If you are into good music, and specially jazz music, you need to check this festival here in the north of Spain. Every year in Vitoria-Gasteiz, there is great Jazz festival  around  the days of San Fermín. This year it  goes from July 17th...

Alpargata dance

Alpargata dance

The dress code at the end of XIX century was very strict. You would never see a lady in the street without her hat and gloves, a gentleman would always wear a suit and leather shoes. By the way, not very comfortable  shoes. This dress code was OK for your everyday...

Almuerzo (brunch) in the street.

Almuerzo (brunch) in the street.

If you have been following this blog/newsletter, by now you have probably figured out that food in Pamplona is a major thing. And here is another food post. This time I am going to talk about “Almuerzos” in the street, you  would call it an informal brunch. The...

Basque cuisine by The New York Times

Basque cuisine by The New York Times

I love this article from The New York Times talking about the Basque cuisine and the camaradery among all the chefs. The Basque cuisine movement, strated in the 60´s with Juan Mari ARZAK. This 3 Michelin start awarded chef, comes from a family of tradicional cooks...

The most beautiful church in Pamplona is San Saturninos´

The most beautiful church in Pamplona is San Saturninos´

When you are facing the City Hall and the City Hall square turn your head to the left and you will see 2 medieval towers, that is San Saturnino’s church or San Cernin’s church (yes, it has 2 names). First of all, who was San Saturnino?. On the 4th century AC, was when...

Watch and beeing watch (Hemingway)

Watch and beeing watch (Hemingway)

  When Ernest Hemingway came to Pamplona for his very first time in 1923, he wrote many articles for the Toronto Star trying to explain what goes on in here during this time. In one of his articles he said: “If you try to understand San Fermin, you have to watch...

Foodies alert!! the perfect chocolate croissants

Foodies alert!! the perfect chocolate croissants

In the middle of Estafeta street, at number 22, you will find one of Pamplona’s favorites foodies place, and chocolate paradise. It is called “Beatriz”. If you are like me, a chocolate freak, you need to stop at this tiny (very tiny) chocolate piece of heaven. This...

5 rules to follow when running

5 rules to follow when running

It seems as if the running with the bulls is one of those everything goes thing. Don ´t be confused, there are some rules you need to follow to be able to run the bulls in 2020. They all look too basic, but every day we see people risking their lives because they...

11 Tips to know how to run with the bulls

11 Tips to know how to run with the bulls

Ok let´s face it, you have come to Pamplona for the party and also to run with the bulls. You don´t need any advice in knowing how to party, but running with bulls, it is a bit different than running back at home and there are some things, you need to know before,...

Pamplona in white and red

Pamplona in white and red

All of my friends when they come to San Fermín for their very first time, they never believe in me and they think that this issue of wearing everything in white and red is BULS---, Guess what, If you do not want to stand out in the crowd, you should be wearing “all...

Pamplona for foodies

Pamplona for foodies

Food is a major thing in Spain, and specially here in Pamplona by the time you leave Spain, you will understand why….  In the meanwhile, let me give you some tips for a 24-hour food-extravaganza here in town. 7:00 AM If you are in a Balcony you are going to have a...

How do I get to Pamplona?

How do I get to Pamplona?

I understand that if you are coming from overseas, Pamplona seems to be at the end of the world, but getting over here is not that difficult, trust me! First things first, Get yourself in Spain!!! There are many flights coming to Madrid or Barcelona. If you want to...

Where can I stay in Pamplona 2020?

Where can I stay in Pamplona 2020?

One of the big issues during San Fermín, is getting a place to stay in town or nearby. A lot of people think that they can come to Pamplona without a hotel room and find one in the spot. Well it is not that simple, remember that we welcome over a million tourists in a...

10 Top tips for San Fermin’s 2020 opening ceremony

10 Top tips for San Fermin’s 2020 opening ceremony

Pamplona is a very quiet and small city, in fact we are just 200.000 people. In Spain, we are known to be a bit conservative and a little bit shy, but all of this changes on July 6th at noon. It is the opening ceremony for San Fermín 2020 or as we call it El...

Who should you contact when in need for help.

Who should you contact when in need for help.

Pamplona is a very safe city, but during Sam Fermín, unfortunately we welcome some undesirables…This post is about who you have to contact when you need help!!!  Let me show you who can give you a hand, I am going to post them in order from basic to serious staff....

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