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Known for its historical sites and magical atmosphere, Bilbao’s old town Casco Viejo has a vibrant nightlife, with its many bars and taverns to explore. The most popular bars are concentrated around Plaza Nueva, but other interesting drinking spots can be found around the Siete Calles, the seven streets that compose this area. Read on for our list of the 10 best bars in the neighborhood.
Café Bar Bilbao is one of the most iconic bars in all Bilbao, located in Plaza Nueva in the heart of Casco Viejo. The traditional interior decor sets a warm tone for the atmosphere here, which is only made more welcoming by the friendliness of the staff. The first thing you’ll notice when entering this bar is the wide selection of pintxos, which completely cover the bar in a tempting spread. Many locals meet here for a drink while nibbling on these assorted little snacks, the Basque equivalent of Spanish tapas.
Café Bar Bilbao, Plaza Nueva, 6, Bilbao, Biscay, Spain, +34 944 15 16 71
Another temple of rock music in Bilbao’s Casco Viejo is Gure-Txoko, a small beer bar (or cerveria) where rock lovers can meet and share their passion for music in a great atmosphere. The lineup goes from classic rock to more modern hits of grunge and alternative rock, so there’s something to appeal to every taste in this musical spectrum. Gure-Txoko’s menu specializes in beer, and offers a great selection of local and international labels.
This is a prime example of a traditional Spanish bar, with a great mixed menu of tapas and pinxtos, a stellar wine selection, live music, and a wonderful ambience. You’ll find every side of Bilbao at Irrintzi, from tourists to students and families to lone locals, all drawn here for the friendly service, tasty food and drink options, and relaxed atmosphere. Though this bar is located along Santa Maria, one of the busiest streets in Casco Viejo, Irrintzi is the discerning traveler’s best alternative to the many tourist traps in this historic area.