Secrets of Spain: Calella de Palafrugell – Catalonia’s prettiest resort?

 

Considered to be Spain’s prettiest resort by some British travel journalists, Calella de Palafrugell is an idyllic, ancient fishing village, with crystalline water that laps up against the sandy shores, where fishing boats lie on the sand, just as they have done for centuries. Whitewashed and pastel coloured buildings watch over the Mediterranean, silhouetted by tall, verdant trees. The aroma wafting from the trees mingles with the fresh sea smell, that invigorates and relaxes at the same time.

Calella de Palafrugell views from sea
Located on the Costa Brava (Wild Coast) Calella de Palafrugell is a typical fishing village of this area, turned into kind of a resort. Of course without getting into politics, it is situated in Catalonia, along with a numerous other beautiful spots. So strictly speaking we need to decide if it is Catalonia’s prettiest resort (all comments welcome at the end).

Romantic, intimate coves

Calella de Palafrugell is located on a rocky coastline which is sprinkled with gorgeous, romantic intimate coves for you to explore, to the north of the Castle Cap Roig.

Calella de Palafrugell at dusk

Beautiful beaches

Around the village centre there are a few beautiful, small beaches to choose from, with the main one being El Canadell beach. This was featured in the British Telegraph newspaper as perhaps being one of the best beaches on the Costa Brava. And the Costa Brava has is fair share of lovely beaches. Naturally enough this is the busiest beach during the season.

To be a little more secluded however, all you need to do is head south on the footpath that goes along the shoreline, to find more intimacy on a lovely beach called Platja del Golfet.

See the fishing boats going out to sea

In the early morning, you can still see the fishing boats going out to sea, as they have done for centuries. The port was the main arrival and departure area for a range of products in the early 19th century, such as beans, wheat, flour, cork, wine and bullets.

Calella de Palafrugell fishing boats

Typical cobbled streets filled with character

Even though tourists love this fishing village, and flock there during the season, it still retains plenty of charm, with typical cobbled streets and whitewashed houses. It’s still possible to see some of the the traditional fishermen’s houses as well.

Visit the Mediterranean’s best botanical gardens

Overlooking the sea, are the botanical gardens that some consider to be the most important in the Mediterranean. The location alone is superb, with the striking natural landscape of the Costa Brava, right by the edge of the sea. The Cap Roig Botanical Gardens are a unique space, that blend a fantastic mix of characteristic plant and tree species together, with history, art and culture. In fact this 17 hectare space is home to more than a thousand plant species that have originated both locally as well as from different places around the world. These plants and trees sit comfortably alongside sculptures by Internationally renowned artists.

Cap Roig Botanical Gardens

See the likes of Sting, Bryan Adams, Elton John….

In this amazing setting, where the botanical gardens and Cap Roig Castle are located, you can also see some seriously good headline acts every year in July at the Cap Roig Music Festival. The Cap Roig Garden Music Festival attracts some great artists every year, which have included the likes of Sir Elton John, Bryan Adams, Sting, Alicia Keys and Bob Dylan.

Try to go for the Habaneras in early July

Also in July, you can go to the special Habaneras concert. This dates back to 1966, and the style of music is connected to those who brought it back from Cuba, where people from a variety of villages and towns went to make their fortune. The Habaneras concert originates from when a group met in a pub, in 1966, and the event was so successful that it has been organised every year since. These days it is held in Port Bo Square.

Idyllic views

Whether you decide to loll around for the day or be a bit more energetic and do a coastal walk, which you won’t regret because the views are truly spectacular, Calella de Palafrugell has plenty of idyllic views on offer.

Calella de Palafrugell idyllic views

Fresh, delicious food

From simple, traditional dishes to the more avant-garde offerings, there’s one thing that the food of this area has in common, which is that it is fresh, generally locally sourced and delicious.

You may not want to leave, but just in case ….

Calella de Palafrugell and the local area is an easy spot to fall in love with, and not feel the need to travel further afield. However for those of you who like to take in what you can when in a different country, the gorgeous city of Girona is only 52 km (32 miles) away, which is around a 45 minute drive. Going further afield, you can head south to the buzz of Barcelona, at a distance of 127 km (79 miles).

Or you could just kick back and relax on the sparkling shores of the Costa Brava!

Calella de Palafrugell Costa Brava shore

Jackieáde Burca is Co-owner ofáCatalonia Valencia.

If you would like to be a guest blogger onáA Luxury Travel Blogáin order to raise your profile, pleaseácontact us.

Comments (12)

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  1. Louise says:

    This resort really is beautiful! some of those coves and views are perfect! This is a must visit now for me

  2. It is Louise. It’s a very special place. I am so glad that you are going to make Calella de Palafrugell somewhere that you must visit.

  3. liam says:

    Planning our next vacation on this place, Beautiful pictures are attracting me and I’m excited to visit
    Thanks for the post

  4. Jackie De Burca says:

    Many thanks to you Liam. I am so glad that my article has inspired you to go there, I am sure you will love it. Have a wonderful trip.

  5. Anna Parker says:

    It really is picture perfect – I love somewhere that is so on the coast that the sea comes right up to the buildings, such an important part of the villages life

  6. Kathryn says:

    Sounds fabulous! Would love to visit out of season before the crowds arrive and photograph those cobbled streets, hidden coves and fishing boats. Picture perfect!

  7. Jackie De Burca says:

    Thanks Anna & Kathryn, it is funny that you both use the same phrase – picture perfect, but 100% correct. I hope you can both get the chance to visit.

  8. Suzanne says:

    I like nothing more than sitting by the water’s edge in a pretty taverna and it looks as though Calella de Palafrugell is the perfect spot for that – and for a freshly caught fish supper.

  9. It is wonderful indeed, Suzanne, to sit by the water’s edge, listening to the lapping waves and seeing the light playing on the sea. Calella de Palafrugell is definitely one of the loveliest places to do this, and enjoy a freshly caught fish supper.

  10. With winter closing in on New England, this lovely resort is calling my name. I visited the Cap Roig gardens off season and can only imagine how great it would be to see the Music Festival there. It would be hard for me to pick a favorite in Costa Brava, but seeing the beauty Calella de Palafrugell from the water in your photo pushes it over the top!

  11. Jonny says:

    The walk from Callela around to Llafranc is stunning – the azure water and the Dr Seuss-like succulents sticking out at odd angles. I forget the name but there is a church in Llafranc with a tiny icon over the door that looks like Jesus holding a phone to his ear.

  12. Hi Jonny,
    Your comment brought a smile to my face this morning :) So well worded and with an injection of humour…your own blog is great.
    Thanks
    Jackie

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