Part of the Province of Girona in Catalonia, Costa Brava stretches along Spain’s northeastern coastline, from Blanes, 60 km north of Barcelona, to the French border. Along with the moderate Mediterranean climate, the region’s stunning beaches, culture-filled towns and endless opportunities for outdoor adventures, have made it one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe. Plus, there are an array of luxury villas in Costa Brava where visitors can can be sure of a peaceful and exclusive holiday experience, no matter the time of year.
Thanks to their sprawling sandy beaches and lively nightlife, Lloret de Mar and Platja d’Aro are the busiest holiday resorts on Costa Brava, whilst Calella de Palafrugell, Llafranc and Tamariu in the north are among the chicest and most exclusive. Sant Feliu de Guixols and nearby Tossa de Mar are slightly quieter, with lovely beaches, interesting architecture and lots of activities to keep visitors entertained.
Once an artists’ hangout, the whitewashed seaside town of Cadaques still oozes a bohemian, creative vibe, with a thriving cultural life, refined eateries and breathtaking vistas of the Cap de Creus Natural Park. If you are a fan of Surrealism and Salvador Dali, head to Figueres, the artist’s birthplace, and pay a visit to the Dalí Theatre-Museum. Girona, with its extraordinary Jewish Quarter and hip eating scene, makes for a wonderful trip as well.
Although Costa Brava is the place that gave birth to Spanish mass tourism, many of its tiny calas, whitewashed fishing ports and medieval hilltop towns have remained gloriously untouched. Fortified medieval towns such as Begur, Peratallada and Pals have managed to keep their charm almost intact, fascinating visitors with their meandering cobbled streets lined with stone arches, pretty plazas and superb restaurants serving outstanding Catalan fare.
Costa Brava’s outdoor activities are centred around the beaches and include superb sailing and kayaking, as well as water skiing, windsurfing and kitesurfing. Additionally, this 200-km-long stretch of Catalan coastline is home to 17 marinas and more than 30 diving centres, with some truly astonishing diving sites.
The Greco-Roman ruins at Empúries are a regular draw for archaeology buffs; the protected Medes Islands marine reserve is teeming with underwater treasures and the scenic coastal trails reward hikers and cyclists with unforgettable vistas.