The Spanish City of Bilbao is something that you may have been dreaming about thinking that it’s a fantasy, when in fact it actually exists. Bilbao is a vibrant and culturally dynamic city which has somehow managed to stay stress-free while also highly civilized.
Bilbao is located in a region of Spain known as the Basque Country – you may have heard of it – and it’s the largest and busiest city in said region, being located on the Ria Nervion and settled into the green hills of Vizcaya province.
Bilbao is divided into two by the rather murky waters of the Ria de Bilbao which links the Nervion with the sea, and for interesting reasons it is called by its residents the ‘orifice’. This is more of an ironic name referring both to the city’s topography as well as its older industrial sprawl, which made it look rather ugly.
The decline that ensued after its industrial period started declining created an ever deeper ‘hole’, and for some it seemed that that would be the end of Bilbao, destined to subsist, however the city managed to spring back up. Thanks to a combination of visionary planning and a very hard-working attitude, the city reinvented itself as something of a 21st century metropolis.
Nowadays the iconic Museo Guggenheim gives it an internationally known cultural status, and the residents appreciate its existence of course, but they also know that they were taking their city to new heights even without it. The Museum was opened in 1997 and it came at the right time to boost the city’s regeneration.
The present-day sees Bilbao filled with sophisticated but still down-to-earth locals, which feature cuisine that is absolutely wonderful, the nightlife is constantly buzzing and the rich culture of the Basque region intertwined easily with the internationalism that the past couple of decades have brought forward.
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