A Journey Outside Pamplona

The Irati River as it flows through Aribe / Matias Costa - ICEX

The Irati River as it flows through Aribe / Matias Costa – ICEX

The San Fermín Festival kicks off today in Pamplona, the capital city of Navarre. This festival is much more than the world-famous running of the bulls, it is also a celebration of tradition, history, culture and gastronomy.

However, it is also a time when the city of Pamplona is packed to the gills with locals and visitors alike, spilling out onto the streets and into crowded bars and restaurants. And with temperatures so hot in Spain right now, might I be so bold as to suggest leaving this time-honored festival behind for a day or two and heading for the peace and quiet of Navarre‘s countryside, particularly where it turns into the refreshingly cool foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains?

And although Ernest Hemingway was a big fan of the San Fermín Festival in Pamplona (he attended nine times), I’m sure he would understand if you spent a few days following in his footsteps through other areas of this stunningly picturesque region.

Need some tips on where to start? Look to Following Romance, Eating in Hemingway’s Footsteps in Navarre; on Foods and Wines from Spain.

I promise that San Fermín will still be going on when you get back (or at least until July 15th).

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