BILBAO

The astounding Guggenheim museum
A stroll in the old quarter
Between the ocean and the mountains

Find Northern Europe Cruises

Bilbao

A city in transformation

Stretching for some 14km beside the Río Nervión, Bilbao (Bilbo) is a large city that seldom feels like one.


Even though its urban sprawl now fills the narrow valley, you can always see the green slopes of the mountains to either side beyond the high-rise buildings of the city centre. You can make Bilbao a stop-off on your MSC Cruises holiday in the Northern Europe.


The biggest city in the Basque Country, serving as the capital of Bizkaia province, it has plenty to offer, from its exuberant cutting-edge architecture and stimulating museums to its friendly inhabitants. 


Despite its name, the Casco Viejo (“old town”), is not in fact the oldest part of Bilbao. The city started out as a cluster of small fishing villages on the left bank of the river, whereas the Casco Viejo grew up across the river between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries. All the oldest buildings that still survive, however, are now concentrated here, and during a shore excursion it’s the most enjoyable area to explore on foot. 

This tight-knit labyrinth of old stone lanes, filled with bars and restaurants and cradling the delightful arcaded main square, the Plaza Nueva, also holds some interesting museums.

Frank Gehry’s astounding Museo Guggenheim looms over the left bank of the Río Nervión, ten minutes’ walk west of the Casco Viejo. Completed in 1997, it was hailed by architect Philip Johnson as “the greatest building of our time”.


MSC Cruises also offer excursions to San Sebastián, which ranks among the great resort cities in Europe. While the superb sheltered beach on its very doorstep is the biggest attraction of all and an ideal cruise excursion, San Sebastián also boasts a charming old-town core, the Casco Viejo, squeezed up against the foot of verdant Monte Urgull.

Must see places in Bilbao

Discover our excursions

4 resultat hittades

  • GUGGENHEIM & OLD QUARTER (approx. 4 hours)

    KULTUR OCH HISTORIA

    BIO02

    Great art and architecture converge on this tour that takes in the Guggenheim Museum and the historic sights of Bilbao. The fabulous Guggenheim collection is distributed across three museums managed by the Foundation: the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Guggenheim Museum SoHo, both in New York, and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, in Venice. The permanent collection of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao includes works by the most prominent artists of the last forty years, and is supplemented by works from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. Exhibited are significant examples of Pop Art, Minimalism, Arte Povera, Conceptual Art and Abstract Expressionism among others, together with special exhibitions sponsored by the Foundation. After the Museum visit we will head to El Arenal, Bilbao's old town for a walking tour; you will see the famous Cathedral of Santiago, reputedly the oldest building in Bilbao. The cathedral was formerly the center of Bilbao, and all the city's main streets converged here. Today, the cathedral is dedicated to the city's patron saint and features a beautiful Neo-Gothic tower. Please note: each guide can give explanations inside the Guggenheim Museum to a maximum of 20 guests. This tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties as it involves almost 3 hours' walking; comfortable shoes are recommended. Limited number of guides in languages other than Spanish. Should a tour guide for your language be unavailable, the tour will be provided in Spanish only.
    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK622per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK469per person

  • BILBAO WALKING TOUR (approx. 4 hours)

    STADSUTFLYKT

    BIO01

    Our tour kicks off with a drive to the architecturally stunning Guggenheim Museum where we'll have time for a photo stop before boarding the bus to Bilbao's Old Quarter. We will access the city and admire the Calatrava bridge, a pedestrian bridge that spans the Nervión River and which is part of an enterprising plan to reinvigorate the city and the riverside district around the Guggenheim Museum. If you wish to take photos, note that there is a great view of the museum from this bridge. Once in the city, we will enjoy a walking tour through El Arenal, the old town. We will pass the famous Cathedral of Santiago, reputedly the oldest building in Bilbao. In former times, the Cathedral was the centre of Bilbao, and all the city's main streets converged here. Today the cathedral is dedicated to the city's patron saint, St James, and boasts a beautiful Neo-Gothic tower. We will then take the bus to Moyúa Square populated with exclusive boutiques and from there, return to the pier. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties as it involves almost 3 hours' walking; comfortable shoes are recommended. Limited number of guides in languages other than Spanish. Should a tour guide for your language be unavailable, the tour will be provided in Spanish only.
    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK379per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK289per person

  • OLD BILBAO & GEXTO (approx. 4 hours)

    STADSUTFLYKT

    BIO04

    Bilbao is over 700 years old and was founded by the nobleman D. Diego López de Haro. We will begin our tour with a panoramic view of the city from the top of Mount Artxanda. You will enjoy a scenic drive through the city, passing the famous Guggenheim museum before reaching the Old Quarter, the most important area of the city. Enjoy free time walking through the pedestrian area of the city: shop for bargains or relax with a meal, sampling local wine and tapas (not included). We will leave Bilbao for a short drive to Getxo (pronounced Get-cho) an elegant residential marina set on the bank of the Nervion River with large palaces and mansions. You can enjoy a panoramic driving tour of the city before proceeding to Hanging Bridge, or "Bizkaia Bridge” for a photo stop. The Bridge joins the riverbanks at Portugalete and Las Arenas, allowing for free-flowing maritime traffic. Similar in style to the Eiffel Tower, due to its black iron structure, this amazing feat of engineering is now over 100 years old and is the oldest transporter bridge in the world. Return to pier. Please note: limited number of guides in languages other than Spanish. Should a tour guide for your language be unavailable, the tour will be provided in Spanish only. Shopping is not foreseen on calls falling on Sundays.
    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK405per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK315per person

  • SAN SEBASTIÁN  (full day, lunch not included)

    STADSUTFLYKT

    BIO03

    After boarding a coach at the port, your scenic all-day tour begins with a 1-hour drive through the beautiful Basque countryside to San Sebastián, a relatively small town situated on the coast of the Bay of Biscay that is the capital of the Gipuzkoa province. Your tour of this lovely city will take you to see all the main sights, such as the late-19th-century Miramar Palace, which was built as a summer residence for Queen Maria Cristina, as well as the Gothic Revival Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, whose construction was completed in 1897. Also on the drive-by itinerary are the Victoria Eugenia Theatre and the elegant Hotel Maria Cristina, both of which were inaugurated in 1912. San Sebastián's glorious old quarter, the so-called Parte Vieja, and port will then be explored on foot - the best way to soak up the special atmosphere of these history-laden streets. Time permitting, you can also do some shopping or have a bite to eat (not included in the price of the tour). Your return journey to Bilbao will also take you to visit Mount Igueldo for superb views of the city and a chance to take some memorable photos to show your friends and family at home. Please note: limited number of guides in languages other than Spanish. Should a tour guide for your language be unavailable, the tour will be provided in Spanish only. Shopping is not foreseen on calls falling on Sundays.
      • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

        Svårighetsgrad
        Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      • Längd
        6 h

      • Frånpris för vuxenSEK712per person

      • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK532per person

    Utflyktsprogram och rutter kan ändras beroende på lokala förhållanden och/eller oförutsedda händelser med hänsyn till tidpunkten för utflykten. Information om utflykterna uppdateras löpande på webbsidan men vi reserverar oss för ändringar i programmen. Detaljerat program finns alltid att tillgå på fartyget. Vissa utflykter är mycket populära och därför kan tillgängligheten inte alltid garanteras. Observera att vi endast garanterar engelskspråkig guide. Guidade turer på andra språk än engelska beror på vilka guider som finns tillgängliga. Information om tillgängliga språk för guidade turer kommer att bekräftas ombord under kryssningen. Du rekommenderas att boka din utflykt i förväg. Barnpriser på utflykter gäller för barn upp till 13 år.

    Reach the port

    Port of Bilbao

    This section contains information on how to reach the port.

    Cruise Terminal:

    Campo de Volatín, 37 Getxo 
    48007 - Bilbao

    Reach the port by

    • Car

      From the centre of Bilbao, starting from Plaza Moyua, take the Recalde Zumarkalea and then Salbeko Zubia roads to and through the Artxanda-Salbe tunnel north of the city. Exiting the tunnel, take the N-637 (Txorierri) north-west to the junction with the BI-637, taking the exit for the BI-637 towards Avavanzada and Getxo. At the Artatza roundabout, take the second exit, signposted "Kruzeroen kaia / Cruise pier".
      After 600 metres, turn right, following the same signposting, and position yourself in the left-hand lane. After a further 67 metres, you will come to a junction where you need to turn left.
      After 650 metres, you will reach a roundabout. Take the second exit towards the Marina and 400 metres down this road you will reach the entrance to the Cruise Terminal, with a parking area alongside.
      Car
    • Train

      The main Train Station in Bilbao is Abando Station on Plaza Biribila, 2, 48008, Bilbao. The station is served by long-distance lines from all over Spain and offers direct access to the Abando Bilbao Metro station, which you can use for your onward journey to the port. Take line 1 towards Bidezabal and Plentzia and get off at Gobela or Neguri station, which are 1 km and 1.5km respectively from Getxo, where the Cruise Terminal is located. You can take a taxi from either of these Metro stations to the cruise terminal. Alternatively the port is a 20-25 minute walk from the stations. You can also take a taxi from the taxi rank outside the station direct to the Cruise Terminal.
      Train
    • Plane

      Bilbao airport is located just 5 km from the city centre and offers several convenient options for you to complete your journey to the port.
      There is a taxi rank immediately outside the terminal and a bus service into the centre. The 3247 bus service to Bilbao goes to Plaza Moyua in the city centre and Bilbao Bus Terminal every half hour between 6:15 and 24:00. You can then take the Metro to finish your journey to the Cruise Terminal.

      If travelling by bus from the Airport to the Cruise Terminal, you can take the Metro to finish your journey, whichever of the stops you get off at on the 3247 bus route in Bilbao City Centre (see above). The Metro will take you to Getxo where the Cruise Terminal is located. Take line 1 towards Bidezabal and Plentzia and get off at Gobela or Neguri station, which are 1 km and 1.5km respectively from Getxo. The port is a 20-25 minute walk away, but you can also take a taxi from either of these Metro stations to the Cruise Terminal.
      Plane

    Spain

    Love at first sight
    Love at first sight

    From the land of the windmills to the caliente Spain. An MSC cruise to Northern Europe is an excellent opportunity to visit some of the most fascinating cities of the Atlantic coast of Spain and the North Sea.

    The Spanish leg of the cruise will take you to the port of Bilbao, one of the most important cities in Basque Country, and to Vigo and Ferrol, cities of the colourful Galizia. Bilbao will enchant you with its historic centre, a maze of alleyways in which delicious cups of coffee are a continuous temptation, and the extraordinary lines of the Guggenheim Museum, a museum of contemporary art. Vigo is an extremely scenic natural port enlivened by the restaurants, shops and kiosks lining its seafront. Ferrol is also a very old city. A short distance away, close to La Coruña, there is one of the few light houses built by ancient Romans still standing, the Tower of Hercules.  A cruise along northern Spain also has spiritual appeal.

    Along the Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula, there are setting off points for Santiago de Compostela, the destination of pilgrims from around the world anxious to visit the city’s great cathedral with its altar dedicated to Apostle James.