Explore Bilbao

Discover the gateway to the Basque cultural universe

Bilbao is the capital of Basque Country, and one of the most cosmopolitan cities in northern Spain. The number of cultural activities in Bilbao are endless, with two of the best art galleries in all of Spain, along with theme museums, contemporary art exhibitions, and a continuous programme of shows such as opera, symphony orchestras, theatre, dance, and more!

Discover the gateway to the Basque cultural universe

The Guggenheim Museum

This museum is Bilbao’s most popular attraction and is necessary to see while visiting. There are several ways to tour the collection. The exterior and interior parts can be explored on a guided, but small group tour, but private and customized tours are also an option.

Fine Arts Museum

The Fine Arts Museum is said to be one of the best museums in Spain and is complete with an art gallery featuring three different collections: old art (El Greco, Zurbarán, Goya or Van Dyck), contemporary art (Gauguin, Bacon or Tàpies), and Basque art (Regoyos, Zuloaga or Iturrino).

Sunday Market

If you’re looking for an authentic shopping experience in Bilbao, then look no further than the Sunday Market. This market is held approximately once a month on a Sunday. Like the style of London’s markets, this market supports local brands and designers and creates a platform where they can sell their products. Lately, they have been organizing several thematic markets, and the most recent editions have been devoted to gastronomy and decoration. The location of the market also changes, so check out their Facebook page for more information.

Santiago Cathedral

What is known today as a Gothic church is built on the site of an old shrine that dates to the time of the Jacobean pilgrimages, which is a must if you enjoy exploring ancient cathedrals. Although the cathedral’s motif is Gothic, the façade and tower visible today were originally constructed during the 19th century. It also features a crypt that is located where the original shrine stood and incorporates its walls as part of the construction.

Hanging Bridge

If you venture out of the city centre, you can use the opportunity to cross the Nervión via the extraordinary Puente Colgante or Hanging Bridge. It was built in 1893 and comprises of a gondola suspended on cables from 61m towers – the idea was to link the suburb of Getxo with the old port of Portugalete without obstructing the passage of big ships. You can travel across the bridge for 40 cents or pay for the tour which is €9 and includes a long walk along the 45m-high walkway.

Plaza Nueva

In the centre of the Caso Viejo, Bilbao’s main plaza is a characteristically Spanish monumental square and an ideal spot to meet up with friends in the evening. The Plaza Nueva as we see it now was completed in 1851 and has an arcade that runs along all four sides, under four-story buildings. Euskaltzaindia is on the north side of the square, the institution that governs the Basque language. On Sunday mornings a collectors’ market is held on Plaza Nueva selling antique stamps and coins, in addition to an array of artisan arts and crafts.