Standing in a privileged spot, deep in the countryside at less than 10 km from San Sebastian, the San Marko Fort is most certainly the best vantage point in Errenteria, Lezo, Oiartzun and Pasaia.
It is an ideal place to spend the day with kids and friends either walking, riding a horse or mountain-biking. It is also a great place to be in the open air with good weather and its bicentenaries stones forming the thick walls of almost two meters will shelter you from the rain.
It was designed by the engineer Luis Nieva to face a new possible Carlist uprising, and the fort was opened on August 25th 1888. Its purpose was to defend a strategic area formed by the Port of Pasaia, the links by road and rail to the frontier of France, as well as roads leading to the capital of Gipuzkoa. This fort, along with the other of Txoritokieta and Guadeloupe, was part of the called "Oiartzun entrenched camp". San Marko Fort was oriented to the east in order to cope with possible invasions coming from the border. However, these invasions never occurred.
Nowadays it has no military use; it was occupied by the army until 1970, and today is integrated into the Nature Park of "Lau Haizeta", forming part of a Park and a Cultural Area. Its perfect location makes it an important and privileged vantage point of Gipuzkoa's coast, where you can admire the famous bays of La Concha, Pasaia and Txingudi among other places of interest.
The fort is very well preserved and the rehabilitation of its fosse, the Parade ground, its drawbridge and the upper terrace allow the visitor to discover and enjoy it, as did the soldiers in 1888.
Furthermore, in 2008, it has been made the 1st phase of the Museum Project, which has allowed to reproduce the original activity of the fortress, so the visitor of the 21st century may be transported to the 19th century. Different zones of the fortress have been restored and adapted and, in addition, museum elements have been introduced.