Where to Stay in San Sebastian – Best Hotels in San Sebastian & Pensions in San Sebastian

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Pensions in San Sebastian. Hotels in San Sebastian. Hostels in San Sebastian. If you’re looking for where to stay in San Sebastian Spain, then keep reading. Northern Spain is a fantastic place to explore. That’s why we’ve listed up some of the best hotels in San Sebastian, as well as some tips for making the most out of this incredible Spanish city.

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Where to Stay in San Sebastian Spain

Have you been to Northern Spain? It’s one of our favorite areas of the country and a great place to travel — especially in the warmer months. Whether you’re single, a couple, or family travelers like us, you’re going to love San Sebastian. On the coast, it’s easily one of the best cities in Europe that I’ve ever been to. The beaches are wonderful, the food is incredible, and the city itself is packed with interesting architecture and culture. San Sebastian hotels are many and varied. This list just scratches the surface of all the places to stay in San Sebastian. All of these places are great for any type of traveler, but I only choose to recommend places that can accommodate families as well.

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Best Hotels in San Sebastian Near the Beach

hotels in san sebastian on the beach

If you’re in Northern Spain for some summertime surf and sand, then check out some of these hotels in San Sebastian on the beach…or a short walk from it. Some of the best pensions in San Sebastian are close to the sea as well.

Hotel Niza

Looking down at Playa de la Concha, Hotel Niza is one of the best hotels in San Sebastian on the beach. Rooms on the upper floors have an unobstructed view of one of the most beautiful San Sebastian beaches. It’s less than a minute on foot to the sand. The beautiful building is old but charming (the elevator is small and from 1910). Rooms are clean and housekeeping is prompt and professional. If you’re looking for San Sebastian hotels on the beach, then it’s hard to go wrong here.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Right in front of Playa de la Concha
  • Room details: One kid under two stays free of charge in a cot/crib. Max number of extra beds/cots per room: 1.

Check Availability: Hotel Niza at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Hotel Niza at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Hotel Niza

NH Collection San Sebastián Aranzazu

Located close to Ondarreta Beach and Monte Igueldo, NH Collection makes our list of best hotels in San Sebastian thanks to comfy beds and a mellow location west of the old town. NH Collection is about two miles from the heart of San Sebastian. However, you’re minutes from the beach and the funicular up to the charming Monte Igueldo. Downtown is easily accessible on foot, by bikes from the hotel, or via bus from nearby stations: 2 euros & 10 minutes each way.

  • Pool: No 
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: 6 minutes to Ondarreta Beach on foot. 10 minutes on foot to the Funicular Monte Igueldo
  • Room details: Kids 11 and under stay free in existing bedding.  No extra beds available. 
  • Other Info: Rooms further from the elevator are quieter.

Check Availability: NH Collection San Sebastián Aranzazu at Booking.com

Compare Prices: NH Collection San Sebastián Aranzazu at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about NH Collection San Sebastián Aranzazu

Sercotel Codina

Sercotel Codina is located five minutes from the sand on foot. This is one of the best hotels in San Sebastian for families who want to be near the more kid-friendly Ondarreta Beach. Buses to the city center stop directly in front of the hotel. Rooms are spacious and clean with space for additional beds. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location:5-minute walk to Ondarreta Beach
  • Room details: Kids under two stay free in cots/cribs. Kids under sixteen cost EUR 30/night for extra beds. Additional kids/adults cost EUR 30 per night for extra beds. Max extra beds/cots per room: 1.
  • Other Info: Note that all extra costs may not be in the total you pay online. Pets allowed.

Check Availability: Sercotel Codina at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Sercotel Codina at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Sercotel Codina

Hotel Record

Clean and simple, Hotel Record is one of the best family hotels in San Sebastian thanks to the distance to the beach and value for money. Hotel Record is a short walk to Zurrolia Beach, and minutes into the hip Gros neighborhood. In fact, this is more like a home than a hotel. Where to stay in San Sebastian to be close to the old town and the beach. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location:6 minutes on foot to the beach or restaurants
  • Room details: Family rooms have 4 singles or 1 double & 2 singles.
  • Additional Info: Pets allowed (additional charge)

Check Availability: Hotel Record at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Hotel Record at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Hotel Record

Pensión Atxiki

This small and simple San Sebastian pension is minutes from Playa Zurriola (the surfer beach). Rooms are relatively large but simple and quite small showers and bathrooms. No breakfast available but there are chairs outside to eat and a fridge to keep a few items. The owner speaks English well and is happy to help. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: Less than 5 min on foot to Zurriola Beach
  • Room Details: One kid three & under stays free in existing bedding. One kid two and under stays free in cot/crib. Additional kids/adults cost 35 Euro/night.
  • Additional Info: Sheets changed every 3 days. Towels changed daily. 

Check Availability: Pensión Atxiki at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Pensión Atxiki at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Pensión Atxiki

Sercotel Hotel Europa

Set inside a lovely neoclassical building, the Sercotel Hotel Europa is one of the most recently renovated San Sebastian hotels on the beach (refurbished in June 2019). Many rooms have a balcony but don’t overlook the sea directly. Rooms are small but clean and around 30 meters from the sand of Playa de las Conchas, one of the most popular San Sebastian beaches. Old town is a 10-minute stroll down the boardwalk. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Minutes from the center of Playa de la Concha
  • Room Details: Kinds 12 and under stay free in existing bedding. Max # of kids varies by room. 
  • Additional Info: Pets not allowed. 

Check Availability: Sercotel Hotel Europa at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Sercotel Hotel Europa at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Sercotel Hotel Europa

Pensión Urkia

Fitted with small, simple white rooms with wooden trim, this is one of the best pensions in San Sebastian for those who want to be close to both the beach and old town. There isn’t a lot of elbow room here but large windows let in plenty of light. Rooms come with a small fridge. Good water pressure and small soaps provided. The eastern edge of Playa de las Conchas is a block away, and San Sebastian old town is 10 minutes on foot. One of the highest-ranked pensions in San Sebastian. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: One block from Playa de la Concha. A few blocks from San Sebastian old town
  • Room Details: Some rooms have 3 single beds. No additional beds/cots available. 
  • Additional Info: Pets allowed. 

Check Availability: Pensión Urkia at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Pensión Urkia at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Pensión Urkia

Hostal Alemana

This San Sebastian hotel is located inside a historic apartment building two small blocks from Playa Concha. Some rooms include balconies. Unlike many of the best hotels in San Sebastian, Hostal Alemana has air conditioning. On the other hand, what it doesn’t have is an elevator. You’re paying for location here, though. You’re minutes from the sand. For the price, you’d expect breakfast to be included, but it’s not. Either way, there are cafes nearby. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Minutes from Playa de las Conchas
  • Room Details: Kids 3 and under sleep in existing bedding for free. No cots/extra beds available
  • Additional Info: No pets

Check Availability: Hostal Alemana at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Hostal Alemana at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Hostal Alemana

Pensión Garibai

Where to stay in San Sebastian for old town tapas and Playa Concha. From the front door of Pension Garibai, you’re a 5-minute walk to the old town or the beach. Rooms have limited storage, but they’re air-conditioned, which many pensions in San Sebastian are not. They also have attached private bathrooms, too — something many pensions in San Sebastian old town lack. Coffee available 24-7, with a bakery & restaurant steps away.  

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: 5 minutes on foot from old town or Playa de las Concha. ATM across the street
  • Room Details: One kid under six sleeps free in existing bedding. No room for extra beds. 
  • Additional Info: No pets

Check Availability: Pensión Garibai at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Pensión Garibai at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Pensión Garibai

Hotel Ezeiza

On the far western side of Playa Ondarreta, you’ll find this small and simple San Sebastian hotel. And it is a genuine hotel in San Sebastian on the beach, with some rooms overlooking the water. Rooms are simple and clean. Breakfast is basic (coffee, juice, pastries) but included in most rates. If you want a San Sebastian hotel on the beach, this is about as close as it gets. However, Ezeiza is far from the center of the action. It’s well over 2 kilometers walking by the beach to get into San Sebastian old town, but there are restaurants along the way, and Ezeiza has its own restaurant as well. This is where to stay in San Sebastian when you want the beach but don’t want the crowds. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Far western edge of Playa de la Concha. 30-min walk to old town.
  • Room Details: Triple room has 2 single beds & sofa bed. Nor room for additional beds.
  • Additional Info: No pets.

Check Availability: Hotel Ezeiza at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Hotel Ezeiza

Best Hotels in San Sebastian Near Old Town

best hotels in san sebastian old town

For the culinary traveler, it’s worth staying at the best hotels in San Sebastian near old town. That’s where many of the city’s best tapas bars are, and choosing a hotel or one of the many pensions in San Sebastian’s old town is the best way to have access to the city’s tastiest district.

SANSEbay Hotel

One of a few lovely hotels in San Sebastian overlooking the harbor, and minutes from some of the best tapas bars in the city. The apartment rentals sleep two to four people and have a kitchen (with dishwasher) and washing machine. Towel rental available. Room and bathroom/shower is basic but clean and with soft beds. Many rooms face inward and have less natural light than most hotels in San Sebastian, but the location is where to stay in San Sebastian for tapas and quick access to old town.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: On a hill overlooking San Sebastian harbor and next to old town.
  • Room Details: Lots of bedding configurations from 2 to 4 beds.

Check Availability: SANSEbay Hotel at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about SANSEbay Hotel

Pensión Amaiur

Out of all the pensions in San Sebastian, Pension Amaiur claims to be the oldest house in town, renovating in 2013. The charm is irresistible, as is the location, surrounded by old town tapas bars and a traditional market/shopping center a few minutes away. The rooms are vintage-chic, with simple antique furniture and a small terrace overlooking the street. Rooms have either shared bathroom or private (external) bathroom. For those with mobility issues, remember there are cobblestones, then stairs to contend with. Some tubs are high to step into as well. Location-wise, this is where to stay in San Sebastian old town.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: In the middle of San Sebastian old town. A short walk from the Monte Urgull viewpoint
  • Room Details: One kid under six stays free in existing bedding. One kid under two stays free in crib/cot. Additional kids/adults are EUR 20/night. 
  • Additional Info: No pets

Check Availability: Pensión Amaiur at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Pensión Amaiur

Talaia Hospedaje / Talaia HT

One block from Saint Vicente Church, this great little San Sebastian hotel near old town has easy access to both tapas bars and the beach. From here you’re about a 10-minute walk from Playa de la Concha and Playa Zurriola, and seconds from all San Sebastian old town has to offer. Some rooms have a shared bathroom. Just keep in mind that like many San Sebastian hotels, Talaia HT isn’t air-conditioned. Being so close to tapas bars and a school there is street noise (evenings and mornings, respectively). 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: In San Sebastian old town. 10-minute walk to Playa de la Concha. 
  • Room Details: Kids 3 and under can use a cot for free. Kids 3-15 can sleep in an extra bed for EUR 15/night…kids 16 and older EUR 20/night. 

Check Availability: Talaia Hospedaje at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Talaia Hospedaje

Best Hotels in San Sebastian Near the Train & River

best pensions in san sebastian old town

Not all of the best hotels in San Sebastian are next to the beach or the old town. In fact, many great hotels and pensions in San Sebastian can be found near the river or close to the city’s train station.

Hotel Arrizul Congress

If you’re looking at the best luxury hotels in San Sebastian, then it’s hard to go wrong with Hotel Arrizul Congress. Its location alone makes it one of the best hotels in San Sebastian Hotel Arrizul Congress is two minutes from the beach and less than 10 minutes from the old town on foot. Here you have access to the city like few hotels in San Sebastian provide.

Extras include a free minibar, soundproofed rooms, and bike rentals. Bonuses like this send Arrizul Congress to the top of our list of best hotels in San Sebastian for families. When you want to head into town, you can walk or rent bikes from the hotel. The hotel is on the main boulevard with two bus routes into the main town center, 2 euros and 10 minutes away.

  • Pool: No (2 minutes from the beach)
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Two minutes to the beach on foot. The old town is less than a 10-minute walk.
  • Room Details: Some rooms with 3 singles. Suites have double beds and a sofa bed. One kid under six stays free using existing bedding. No room for extra beds.
  • Other info: Free minibar. Bike hire available

Check Availability: Hotel Arrizul Congress at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Hotel Arrizul Congress

Okako Hotel

Out of all the best hotels in San Sebastian for families, this is one the closest to the surf. Okako Hotel is minutes from Playa Zurroila beach, the liveliest of San Sebastian beaches. Tucked into a corner of the Gros neighborhood, great food and cafes are in every direction. Each room has a unique design and has original art by the owner’s son. Little touches like this make it where to stay in San Sebastian for design lovers. They can arrange tapas tours, as well.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Minutes from two beaches.
  • Room details: Kids under two stay free using cots/cribs. Maximum extra beds/cot per room: 1.
  • Other Info: 24-hour Breakfast station (free coffee, fruit & pastries).

Check Availability: Okako Hotel at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Okako Hotel

Welcome Gros Hotel y Apartamentos

For those who want more facilities, this is where to stay in San Sebastian. Welcome Gros has apartments and family rooms that also include a dishwasher and washing machine. This can be a huge help with keeping salt and sand from covering everything after a few days. Welcome Gros is minutes from Zurrolia beach and the center of the Gros neighborhood. This is one of the best hotels in San Sebastian for those who want to be walking distance from the action without sacrificing space and amenities.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: 5 minutes on foot to the beach or to town.
  • Room details: One kid under six stays free using existing beds. All kids under two stay free in cots/cribs. Additional kids/adults cost EUR 33/night for extra beds. Max extra beds: 1.

Check Availability: Welcome Gros Hotel y Apartamentos at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Welcome Gros Hotel y Apartamentos

Hotel Astoria7

Following a cinematic theme, Hotel Astoria7 is one of the best hotels in San Sebastian for movie lovers. Each room is dedicated to movie royalty who have stayed there. Themed rooms include the Dennis Hopper, the Elizabeth Taylor, and the Anjelica Houston. You’ll also find complimentary films in the lobby. Hotel Astoria7 is located is about a 20-minute walk by the river from the old town. If you’re not up for the stroll, then buses #26 or #29 can take you there from a stop just across from the hotel. (Confirm with the front desk in case the bus number change). Where to stay in San Sebastian for the traveling cinephile. 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: Yes
  • Location: Riverside. 20-minute walk/7-minute drive to Playa de la Concha
  • Room details: Some rooms have 1 double/2 singles and a sofa bed. No room for extra beds/cots.

Check Availability: Hotel Astoria7 at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Hotel Astoria7 at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Hotel Astoria7

Where to Stay in San Sebastian (Just Out of Town)

san sebastian hotels and pensions

Okay, here are our last two San Sebastian accommodation recommendations. Both are further from the center of town, but both offer incredible views of one of Spain’s most picturesque cities. These are where to stay in San Sebastian when you prefer to save some money and don’t mind taking a few extra minutes to get to the main San Sebastian attractions. 

Hotel Leku Eder

Perched on a cliff looking down at Playa de la Concha, Hotel Leku Eder is one of the best hotels in San Sebastian for families and other travelers who enjoy a good view. From here all of San Sebastian spreads out before you. For those driving, parking here is much easier/cheaper than in town. Buses stop right in front of the hotel and whisk you into town for 2 euros.

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: Up a steep hill from town, but 10-minutes walk from the park atop Monte Igueldo, De Igeldo. Easy bus access to town.
  • Room details: Triples & doubles available. Kids under two stay free using cots/cribs.
  • Additional kids/adults children cost EUR 16/night for extra beds. Max extra beds: 1.

Check Availability: Hotel Leku Eder at Booking.com

Compare Prices: Hotel Leku Eder at HotelsCombined

Read: What others say about Hotel Leku Eder

Albergue Juvenil Ulia

Last but not least, this isn’t one of the best hotels in San Sebastian, but it’s loved by many. For one, it’s not a hotel or pension in the first place. It’s a hostel. Secondly, it’s on a hillside overlooking San Sebastian down below. Albergue Juvenil Ulia is popular with people walking the Camino Santiago and travelers who are driving through Spain. It’s where to stay in San Sebastian when you’re keeping a tight budget and don’t mind a 15-downhill walk into town (30 minutes back up…take a taxi). 

  • Pool: No
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Aircon: No
  • Location: On the eastern hill overlooking the city. 15-20 minute walk (down) to town. Double that going back up. Taxis recommended.
  • Room Details: Multiple room configurations for families 4-6 people. 

Check Availability: Albergue Juvenil Ulia at Booking.com

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Read: What others say about Albergue Juvenil Ulia

San Sebastian Travel Tips

Places for Wild Swimming in Spain and Other Water Fun

Now that we’ve covered where to stay in San Sebastian, here are a few tips on how to make the most of San Sebastian attractions themselves. Keep in mind that the staff at our recommended hotels and pensions in San Sebastian will know more about what to do and where to eat than we ever will. Make sure to ask them, too. 

Things to Do in San Sebastian Spain

We’ve written an entire post on all the great San Sebastian attractions and activities. You can find that here. 

Read Our San Sebastian City Guide

San Sebastian Beaches

San Sebastian has three main playa (beaches).

  • Playa Ondarreta is on the west side and is considered the mellowest and most “family-friendly.” It’s also closest to the Monte Igueldo funicular and park that overlooks the city.
  • Playa de la Concha is the largest and most popular beach that backs up to the city center.
  • Finally, Playa Zurriola is the surfing beach and where most of the younger set hangs out.

We prefer Playa de la Concha because our kids love standup paddleboarding, and that’s where the main action is.

Getting Around San Sebastian

Public transportation is good and easy to use in San Sebastian with kids, but you’ll likely just do a lot of walking.  Are you driving? We love road trips in Northern Spain. Remember that Bilbao is an amazing city to explore. And it’s only 60-90 minutes away, depending on which route you take.

San Sebastian Food

Food in San Sebastian is amazing. After all, it’s one of Spain’s most dynamic culinary destinations. The best thing to try is pintxos, the Basque version of Spanish tapas. They are amazing, and there are pintxo bars & restaurants everywhere.

What to Expect in Hotels & Pensions in San Sebastian Spain

  • Size: Very few hotels and pensions in San Sebastian have large rooms, and storage space is often quite small. Even the best hotels in San Sebastian can feel a bit tight. 
  • Air Conditioning: It’s worth noting that even some of the best pensions in San Sebastian don’t have air conditioning — not a big deal most of the year, but in the hottest summer weeks, it can be hard to sleep for some people. Almost all of the best hotels in San Sebastian have aircon. 
  • Elevators: Some of the best hotels in San Sebastian are built into beautiful old buildings. Some of them don’t have elevators, which means you may have to climb a flight or two of steps. Many mansions in San Sebastian are stairs-only. 
  • Balconies: Lots of hotels and pensions in San Sebastian claim their rooms have balconies…but many of these are “Juliet Balconies,” where there’s room for one person to stand and not much else. Look for a terrace if you want outdoor space.
  • Pets: A surprising number of hotels and pensions in San Sebastian allow pets, but charges may apply.
  • Parking: Some of the best hotels in San Sebastian have their own parking, but more often than not, if you arrive by car you may have to park several blocks away. Parking is expensive in San Sebastian, and it’s frequently not included in the hotel rate. Expect daily fees from 15 to 30 euros a day. Possibly more.

Do You Know Where to Stay in San Sebastian?

san sebastian beaches - pensions in san sebastian

I’ve tried to list up as many great hotels, hostels, and pensions in San Sebastian as I can, but of course, our experience and research are incomplete. Do you know where to stay in San Sebastian? Are any of the best hotels in San Sebastian missing from this list? What San Sebastian pensions or hostels would you add to this list? Tell us in the comments below!

Further Reading:

Why Buy Travel Insurance: Family Travel Essentials

Choosing Travel Insurance: 14 Tips for Solo & Family Travelers

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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you,  we might receive a small commission if you book a pension in San Sebastian or a San Sebastian hotel using those links. My opinions are my own and I only recommend places/services that I believe will genuinely help you find the best hotels in San Sebastian Spain. Is this list of the best San Sebastian hotels missing anything? Tell us in the comments, or contact us directly!

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