Costa Brava: unspoilt and perfect for beach breaks
Seaside resort:
Costa Brava
Map:

Costa Brava in brief

 

Visit Costa Brava for spotless beaches, rugged landscapes, historic attractions, delicious Spanish food, sports and attractions relating to Salvador Dali.

Location:

Girona, Catalonia, north-east Spain

Nearest airport:

Barcelona and Girona

Key resorts & areas:

Lloret de Mar, Tossa de Mar, Calella de la Costa, Cadaqués, El Port de la Selva, Llançà, Portbou, Roses

Major sights & activities:

Swimming, walking, sailing, diving, windsurfing, historic ruins, art, wine tasting

Best time to go

May to September; July and August is the peak season

Did you know?

The province of Girona has 17 Michelin stars split across 13 restaurants. Local delicacies include Emporda olive oil, anchovies and botifarra, a type of sausage.

 

Beach holidays in Costa Brava

 

The Costa Brava is a stretch of coastline in north-eastern Spain lying in the province of Girona in Catalonia. It’s perhaps the most attractive out of all of Spain’s coasts, as it’s not quite as built up as other parts of the country’s coastline, making it appealing for nature lovers and anyone wanting some peace and quiet.

Food lovers will be in their element here, thanks to the plethora of Michelin-starred restaurants and the veritable riches created by local food producers, including olive oil, beef, anchovies, sausages and Denomination of Origin Emporda wines.

Some of the main beach destinations along the Costa Brava include:

 

Lloret de Mar

Located in the southern Costa Brava, Lloret de Mar is perhaps the most well-known seaside resort in the area. It’s a lively resort with numerous beaches spread across 7 km of coastline, including Treumal, Santa Cristina, Lloret, Fenals and Canyelles Beach, among others.

Other attractions in Lloret de Mar include Santa Clotilde Gardens, Sant Roma parish church, the maritime museum and Sant Joan’s castle. There are plenty of water sports to indulge in by the beaches, as well as family attractions such as Water World.

 

Tossa de Mar

Tossa de Mar is a former fishing village turned holiday resort with plenty of beaches to enjoy. The main beach is known as Platja Gran and has a Blue Flag. Other beaches close by include the family-friendly Mar Menuda to the north and the secluded Platja d’es Codolar to the south.

Sights include the nearby Cadiretes Massif nature reserve, Roman villas such as Els Ametllers, the medieval old town and the 18th century Church of Sant Vicenç.

 

Calella de la Costa

This section of the Costa Brava has 3 km of golden sand beaches, a historic quarter and a good selection of shops and bars, many of which are fairly laidback. The main beaches are Platja Gran, Les Roques and Garbi, although there are quieter beaches a little further away.

Notable attractions in Calella include a number of buildings dating back to the 14th century. It’s easy to visit Barcelona, which is a 30-minute drive away and offers all the history and culture you could possibly want.

 

Cadaqués

Cadaqués is famous for providing inspiration for Salvador Dali and Picasso, but there’s more to the destination than its art associations. The town is a beautiful seaside destination, with most of the beaches being a combination of pebbles and sand.

The old town is perfect for a leisurely stroll and there are festivals and events to enjoy throughout the year, including a boat procession in July and an international music festival in August.

 

El Port de la Selva

Located in the northern Costa Brava, El Port de la Selva is a medieval village boasting some of the finest beaches in Catalonia. It has a golden sand beach set in a natural bay, while another bay, Cala Tamariu, is located close by.

El Port de la Selva is ideal for an active beach holiday - pursuits here include sailing, windsurfing, kayaking, hiking and cycling. You can also go on a day trip to the Dali Museum in nearby Figueres, or the painter’s house in Portlligat.

 

Llançà

Llançà is a peaceful destination with 7 km of coastline, including the 2 Blue Flag beaches of El Port and Grifeu. El Port is 425 m long and 30 m wide, while Grifeu is the same width and 170 m long. There are further small beaches and coves elsewhere along the coast.

Other things to see include the Watercolour Museum, the remains of the 11th century abbot’s palace and a Romanesque tower. Local activities range from kayaking and diving to snorkelling and windsurfing.

 

Portbou

This is another quiet beach destination on the Costa Brava and is located close to the border with France.

Portbou has a beautiful pebbled beach that is usually uncrowded, with more beaches available further along the coast. The crystal clear waters lend themselves well to swimming and snorkelling.

 

Roses

Roses is an ideal Costa Brava beach destination for families thanks to its spotless beaches and beautifully clear waters.

The resort can get busy during the peak summer season, but there are plenty of quieter beaches to choose from away from the town, including Platja Palangres, Canyelles Petites and Canyelles Almadrava Grosses.

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