Go to Sanfermin with enthusiasm is the most important thing. As you get closer to Pamplona you will meet people who, like you, come to the great festival of San Fermín and situations are created on the trips that are as worthwhile as the festival itself. As Karen Blumenthal said, “The important thing is the path, not the goal”, although in this case it fails because the goal is very worthwhile, but you should not despise the way to the party. When you live it you will know what we mean.
Pamplona is the capital of the Navarra region, in northern Spain, 450 kilometers from Madrid and 100 from the French border. It is a small capital well connected to which you can come in any way, except by boat.
To Pamplona by coach
To Pamplona by car
To Pamplona by motor home
To Pamplona by plane
To Pamplona by taxi
Parking in Pamplona
Around Pamplona by city coach
To Pamplona by train
Pamplona is comfortably reached by Alvia. train from both Madrid and Barcelona. They are very fast trains that reach 250 kilometers per hour. They make the entire route along the AVE lines, except for the last 100 kilometers, where the road is not high-speed and the journey slows down a bit, without giving you time to feel like partying. There are regular routes from Malaga and, passing through Madrid, from Seville and any other point. Renfe reinforces its lines for the festivities for the Open Ceremony, the weekend and the last day. You must bear in mind that many people go to Sanfermin and on the train there is usually an atmosphere such that they cannot sleep.
The train station is located in the San Jorge neighborhood of Pamplona. You have to go up a good hill to the center or take public transport. Line 9 brings you to the center. Here you can see the route and where it is in real time.
From Madrid to Pamplona
The journey can be made on an Alvia train which takes three hours. From Madrid, from Monday to Sunday, the Alvia 601 leaves at 07.40 and the Alvia 609 leaves for Pamplona at 15.05. It is likely that Renfe, the train company, will provide extra trains for the Sanfermines so it is a good idea to check the Renfe web page.
From Barcelona to Pamplona
When you are reserving your tickets bear in mind the kind of train bring used (Direct or regional -more stops-). The journey can be as short as four hours. The Alvia is the fastest model. To check the Arco train model which leaves Barcelona in the afternoons, click here. A round trip costs more than 50 euro in tourist class and more than 0 in first. The schedule is not very intense. Tickets can be obtained through Internet and you can check out the latest prices at RENFE.es
To Pamplona by coach
Pamplona Coach Station is located close to the center of the city in Yanguas y Miranda Street. All the coach companies arriving to or leaving Pamplona pass through this station (See routes). This coach station is quite new and state-of-the-art and is subterranean. It is linked with the train station and airport by the urban bus service. It has an automatic left luggage service but during Sanfermin fiestas it is too small to satisfy demand. Remember that there is a special left luggage service for Sanfermin located at the plaza San Francisco square which is located close by. (five – minute walk).
Estación de Autobuses de Pamplona. Sanfermin.com
To Pamplona by car
Coming from Madrid
Take the A-2 (main road) as far as Medinaceli: Change to the N-111 for Soria: Then take the N-122 as far as Tudela, and from there you can choose between taking either the N-121, or the motorway AP-15, straight to Pamplona. The motorway has a toll and it costs more than 11€ for the 83 klm. stretch. The whole journey from Madrid to Pamplona takes about four hours. (About 400 klms.)
Coming from Barcelona:
The easiest route is to take the Motorway AP-2 as far as Zaragoza (Alfajarín), then the Motorway AP-68 to connection with AP-15 and then switching to the AP-15 straight to Pamplona. There is a toll and the total price from Barcelona is +36 €. If you come from Lleida it is a little bit cheaper: +25 €.
If you come from Europe by car
The most convenient place to cross into the Spanish State is from IRUN. However, if you want to do some sightseeing along the way, there are more picturesque mountain crossings at Ibardin, Dantxarinea, Valcarlos or Eugi. Coming from IRUN the shortest and best route is the N-121 over the Belate pass. However, if you are in a big hurry, then go to San Sebastian and take the motorway A-15. This is a fast and comfortable route which takes about one hour. If you go by Belate, it takes about one and a half hours.
To Pamplona by motor home
A motor home may park just like any other vehicle in those places where it is permitted to do so as long as the volume measurements are not exceeded. However, these motor homes CANNOT BE INHABITED if they are parked within the municipal area.
You could look for different options to park in Pamplona that only exists during San Fermín. One option is to park next to the fire station, close to the Discosa gas station. Recently, has been enabled a payment parking in the school of María Ana Sanz, located in the Chantrea. You can find it on their website Parking San Fermín.
However, in the outlying neighborhood of Berriozar there is a special area designated for motor homes. (See information on the web page of Berriozar Town Hall). Berriozar lies on the outskirts of Pamplona on the north side and during Sanfermin there is an urban bus service every ten minutes which can reach the downtown area in several minutes. The designated area for motor homes in Berriozar is located in Plazaola Street, which is an easily accessible street. See map in Google maps. Coordinates (42.83827180477689,-1.6660594940185547). It has garbage facilities and electricity and running water connections. Since 2013, from the 5th to the 15th of July, Berriozar Town Hall now charges 8 euros for parking in this area. Some workers from the Berrikilan unit call round twice a day to collect the charge.
Parking de autocaravanas de Berriozar. Vía Berriozar.es
To Pamplona by plane
Noáin airport is situated seven kilometers outside Pamplona. On weekdays there are seven flights to and from Madrid and five to and from Barcelona. There are also flights at the weekends. It takes one hour to arrive from both cities. From these two cities you can find connections to the main airports worldwide.
You can make your bookings with travel.sanfermin.com, powered by Findor & Orbitz with live chat 24 hours.
Pamplona by taxi
Traveling by taxi in Sanfermin could be a sound idea as it is an especially versatile form of transport in a period when traffic flow is complicated in the city throughout the fiestas period. The taxi in Sanfermin could be a sound idea thanks to its versatility at a time when the traffic flow gets rather complicated throughout the fiestas week. It should be borne in mind that many streets in the downtown and old quarter are closed to traffic during fiestas and other streets may be temporarily cut off along the day due to fiestas events such as the running of the bulls, the kiddies firebull or even the nightly setting off of fireworks, not to mention the daily parade of the Giants and their Entourage – the Comparsa de Gigantes y Cabezudos. Taxi drivers, thanks to their professionalism, will know the quickest routes and short cuts to take in these cases and, in addition, they are sometimes allowed access to some streets which are closed to normal traffic.
To hire a taxi it is necessary to make a phone call (Teletaxi Sanfermin 948 23 23 00 / 948 35 13 35 or Ecotaxi +34 609 45 21 91), although sometimes if the green light to indicate that the taxi is free is lit you can hail down the taxi with your hand from the street sidewalk. There are also some taxi sites located around the city (Check a local city map or consult the web page of the body responsible for taxi management) – the Mancomunidad de la Comarca de Pamplona. There are different kinds of taxis in use; in large size or for cases of disabled people, etc.
If your place of stay during Sanfermin is located outside the city of Pamplona, this is a list of taxi services available issued by the Navarra Government which may be of help.
Parking in Pamplona
Parking is no longer free in many streets of Pamplona in Sanfermin
The best way to get around during fiestas is by walking. There is also a good all-night-long public transport service. If you have made some previous visits to Sanfermin, it is now important to realize that this year, from the 4th to the 14th of July, the blue zone will be active during fiestas and it is necessary to pay to park vehicles in the street. In addition, you can no longer park in the median strip of the roadways and if you commit a misdemeanor like that, the towaway truck will take the vehicle off to the compound and a fine of 80 euro is imposed before the vehicle can be released.
Bearing this information in mind, there are three possible parking options: a parking lot (underground car parks are located at the plaza de toros, plaza Del Castillo, parking de hospitals, Carlos III and some other points around the city). These are safe and secure parkings but a little more expense and they do not allow people to sleep in the parked cars; pay the street parking meters (in the blue lined streets. The cost works out at a maximum of 8,70 euros per day); the third possibility is to look for “deterrent parking places” such as in the outlying neighborhoods of Lezkairu, Buztintxuri, Rochapea or San Jorge.
There is easy access to the downtown areas from these places on urban buses. And indeed, most are within an acceptable walking distance of the center. Pamplona is not a large city and most places lie within a walking distance. As a tip: if you park in the outlying areas, take note of the name of the Street just in case. Remember that most streets have bilingual names (Basque and Spanish) and Calle (Spanish) or kalea (Basque) mean the same – Street.
Aparcar en Pamplona generalmente no es gratis. Atiende a la señalización. Sanfermin.com
For those who wish to park in the neighborhood of Lezkairu there exists a shuttle bus to the center available from Friday to Sunday. Bus tickets cost 1,50 euros and there is a bus every 20 minutes. The stops in the Lezkairu zone are at Avenida Juan Pablo II beside the roundabout with calle Adela Bazo and on the same avenue, near the roundabout with avenida de Cataluña.
Download a city bus map of Pamplona here.
Remember that there are also some places in Pamplona during Sanfermin that may allow parking for local residents but not for any other vehicles. Such areas as the bullring, and other part of the downtown have these kind of restrictions. A green line on the ground or some other indication will be found in these areas.
The towaway truck
If you return to your vehicle to find that it is not there, one of two things has occurred – it has been stolen (unlikely) or it has been towed away by the municipal authorities. If you think it was taken away for illegal parking, you should phone 948 17 40 00 (24 hours) in order to confirm that it is in the city compound. You must then pay an 80 euros fine to retrieve.
Check here to see if you vehicle has been towed away
Be care parking in Pamplona with:
May park within the urban area in permitted parking areas but they CANNOT BE USED FOR LIVING IN in these areas.
2-Loading and Unloading zones
During the morning, the bar zones have a busy time with the loading and unloading of goods and beverages. These area tend to be closely watched by the local police and as can be imaged vehicles blocking such areas will create a lot of tension about the delivery vans and trucks over these days. Check the signs carefully to learn what hours are available for parking at these loading and unloading areas.
There are some parts of the downtown that might be a parking zone during some hours of the day and then become parking only for residents of the area. Check the street signs for the permissible hours to ensure that the towaway truck is not going to be called in.
4-No parking is allowed on the sidewalks
Even if you see that some other vehicles have done so. Sooner or later, the towaway truck will appear and a fine will be imposed.
Around Pamplona by city coach
The urban bus or “villavesa” network is fairly efficient, although at certain times there is certain “piling up” because everyone tries to catch the bus at the same time. Their frequency is very reasonable, and ranges from ten-fifteen minutes to half an hour on the longest routes. It is important to remember that there are special buses throughout the night that go to the districts and municipalities of the local region. It is also important to check the names of the destinations, as, for example, the bus that goes to the railway station puts (RENFE) and not the railway station itself. It passes through the centre of the festival next to paseo de Sarasate and goes to the station. You can do a streaming search and look for your villavesa here.
If you are staying in a district, these buses will save you awful strolls multiplied by the winding you will have to do. Sometimes there are also very amusing scenes on these buses, live theatre put on by the passengers themselves. We recommend you use this service. Oh, and by the way, in Pamplona we call the urban buses “villavesas”. There is a customer attention telephone with the Urban Transport Service of the Pamplona Region Association (+34 901 50 25 03).