Art and creativity in the streets of Bilbao

Last June 7th streets and plazas of Bilbao making them a gigantic outdoor art studio. It was a bright, sunshiny day and a fantastic opportunity to meet artists in a casual atmosphere. There was art to purchase. You could see the artists interpret what they were seeing and talk with them about their work. More specifically, you were able to listen to them about brushes, watercolor paints, the texture of paper while watching their creativity to flourish on the canvases. How delightful it all was! A big thank to all of the artists and in particular to watercolor painters: Gloria Cortina, Mari Mar González and Alfredo Gómez, for their attention and kindness. We hope to attend more events like this one. Here I leave some pictures.

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Did you know Basques love Mushrooms?

If you are interested in the world of mushrooms, then you must know that the Basque Country is a recommended place.

The world of mushrooms is fascinating and it has a long tradition among Basque people. It begins in the forest and finishes at the dinner table.

It is a common practice here, during the autumn when rains come, that large numbers of people go into the forests to enjoy a pleasant walk while filling their baskets with mushrooms.

Boletus edulis, Cantharellus, Milk Caps and many more have a special place in our gastronomy.

At Bilbao Greeters, none of us are experts or claim to be experts. We simply want to shareour passion for them with you.

If you are considering visiting the Basque Country, and you love mushrooms too, let us know. We will be happy to help you find good local places where to eat them.

Stuffed, grilled, with eggs…… well, mushrooms are delicious! You can eat them at restaurants as a main dish (grilled mushrooms, served with an egg yolk, or with scrambled eggs), as a side dish (sautéed in mixtures with garlic and parsley) or at the bars displayed on the counters as “pintxos” (delicious small snacks).

I do like mushrooms. I must confess that I much prefer the eating to the hunting. The season is now, so a few days ago, I visited my friend at his local bar. He likes foraging for fungi and other wild edibles and enjoys cooking them later. He is really good!

Here are some pictures. What’s more, the food was incredible, the Rioja wine superb and the “Sobremesa” (the talk after the meal in Spanish) great! Of course!

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“Fiestas” in the Basque Country

Vitoria-Gasteiz, Basque Country, Spain, Plaza ...

Image via Wikipedia

If you like “Fiestas”, August is indeed the best month to visit the three Basque capitals: Vitoria-Gasteiz, Donostia-San Sebastian and Bilbao. Why? Because for three weeks, local festivities are celebrated, one after another, in the three cities: the fiesta of the “Virgen Blanca” of Gasteiz-Vitoria, the “Aste Nagusia” in Donostia-San Sebastian and in Bilbao. During that period of time, all three have a lot of activities and lots of fun in the streets for people of all ages.

After all year preparing for this, we are ready for 3 weeks’ celebrations. Come and join us! You will not regret it!

The 2011 fiesta programmes:

Today, August 4th, “La Blanca” in Vitoria-Gasteiz

Next week, August 13th, “Aste Nagusia”, the Great Week of Donostia-San Sebastian

The following week, August 20th, “Aste Nagusia”, the Great Week of Bilbao

for more info on the programmes,I leave here some links:

Vitoria-Gasteiz http://especiales.elcorreo.com/la-blanca/programa/programa.html

Donostia-San Sebastian http://www.semanagrande.com/

Bilbao http://www.astenagusia.com/programa/

We look forward to seeing each and everyone one of you at the Basque Country’s fiestas

and hope you enjoy as much as we do.

See you soon in the Basque Country, Spain!

Bilbao’s 711th Birthday – The Old Quarter

Yesterday, Bilbao celebrated its 711th anniversary. It was in 1300 when Don Diego López de Haro, Lord of Vizcaya, gave the city the title of “Villa de Bilbao”.

What better way to celebrate it than walking in the streets of the Old Quarter, called “Las Siete Calles” – Seven Streets -. It was the place to be yesterday and experience all of the excitement a journey back through history has to offer.

For those of you less familiar with the area, a great way to visit it is simply to wander through the narrow, winding streets full of color and life, and discover alleys, squares, monuments at the cathedral, beautiful fountains, doors, old Balconies, buildings, bridges and so on dating back over the centuries.

But the old quarter is more than that, it is the lively heart of the city where we meet our friends and have a glass of wine and a pintxo –small appetizers-. It is a place to socialize, full of cozy bars with big selection of pintxos on the counters and lots of small shops selling clothes, food, gifts, traditional Basque items, and just about anything you might need.

Yesterday, I felt proud of being part of the history of Bilbao!

Please enjoy some pictures of my visit.

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Our first greeting!

Our first visitor to Bilbao is finally here!

Ongi Etorri, Bienvenido, Welcome, Bienvenu!

Yesterday was a great day for Bilbao Greeters. After months of hard work, we were ready to take on the world. Our first visitor from Brussels, Brahim, was here and we couldn’t be happier.

We were very excited and proud of Bilbao Greeters, but, as we were waiting for Brahim, these feelings were overshadowed by a growing sense of nervousness and anxiety.  To be honest, the feelings didn’t last too long.

As Brahim is also a greeter in Brussels, we decided to do something special for him and divided the visit into two parts. First Marta and I meet him at Moyua Plaza and walked with him along the new part of the city to experience the urban development in Bilbao through its buildings. Afterwards, we met Nati, one of our greeters, in an old cafe. She took care of the second part of the visit and showed him the old quarters of the city.

Thanks Brahim for visiting us!

We toured with our first visitor and we had a wonderful time. Now it is your turn!

If you are visiting Bilbao and you are interested in booking a greeter, please click here, and don’t forget to wear comfortable walking shoes.

If you are interested in welcoming visitors, please click here

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