The city of Bilbao is the capital of Vizcaya, which can be found in Spain’s Basque Country region. This charming city is famous for its magnificent architecture and rich history. Although driving is a great way for independent travellers to really get to know Bilbao, this isn’t always the easiest destination for motorists. Here are a few things that you should take into consideration if you are planning to drive in Bilbao.
Follow the rules of the road
Like the rest of Spain, people drive on the right hand side of the road in Bilbao. It is important to be aware of this is you are not used to driving on the right hand side of the road and take things a little slowly at first, especially when driving around roundabouts and turning into other roads. Driving on the right hand side of the road may take a little getting used to at first, but after a while it will feel natural and smooth.
Make sure you are insured
Many insurance companies only insure drivers to drive their vehicles in their own country. If this is your first time driving abroad, it is a good idea to make sure that your car hire insurance covers you to drive in Bilbao and if it doubt, consider renting a car vehicle when you get there.
Planning road trips
Be aware that road signs will be written in Spanish and you may have a little trouble translating them unless you are fluent in Spanish. It is a good idea to pick up a road map and take along a reliable dictionary in case you need to stop to ask for directions along the way.
Bilbao features a number of hilly, one-way streets that can be a little difficult to navigate at first. Frequent construction projects tend to cause traffic jams, so make sure you allow extra time to get to your chosen destination if you have an appointment. However, the roads in and around Bilbao are generally in excellent condition and with a little practice and patience driving here can be a rewarding experience.
Where to visit by car
Driving through the 64 Graceful Arches that can be found in the old quarter of the city is an experience that motorists are sure to love, while attractions such as the Basilica de Begona, the Cathedral de Santiago and the Guggenheim can also be appreciated by car.
One of the best things about choosing to drive in Bilbao is that you will be able to use your car to explore the surrounding area. The area’s top daytrip destinations include the towns of Balmaseda, Guernica, Plentzia and Sopelana.