Mediterranee Tamariua a small paradise from the sea to only 2h of Barcelona. Apartment for 2/4 adults with plenty of charm, bright and with magnificent views of the Parc Natural Cap de Creus. Comfortable and tasteful. more info...
The Costa Brava, or "rugged coast", is one of the most beautiful coastal areas of the Mediterranean. The cove-like beaches, rocky cliffs, and crystal blue waters here make the Costa Brava ideal for a seaside holiday, but the area offers much more than beaches and sunshine. The Costa Brava is also known for excellent golf, great hiking trails and the best scuba diving in the Mediterranean. Ancient Greek and Roman ruins, romantic medieval towns, the bustling provincial capital of Girona and an important art and artisan community mean that the Costa Brava is a fascinating cultural centre too.
The Costa Brava stretches 160km from the town of Blanes, just north of Barcelona, to Spain's border with France. Strung along the coast you'll find popular seaside resorts, like Tossa de Mar, Calella or Cadaqu?s, while inland are numerous well-preserved historic towns like Peretallada and Pals. Though each has a unique history and personality, these towns tend centre around a picturesque centre with shops and restaurants. Many have seaside promenades or walking trails that border the rocky coast. Nearly all have golden beaches popular with families.
Some 30km inland is the provincial capital, Girona, a lively city with a beautiful medieval centre. This is the most important city in the Costa Brava and, as home to the region's only airport, it is also your likely point of entry. In Girona you can stroll the narrow streets of the Call (the medieval Jewish quarter) or take a walk atop restored Roman defence walls. While you're here also be sure to visit the cathedral and stop to admire the view across the Onyar River that cuts through the old city.
The Costa Brava's second city is Figueres, home of the famed Dal? Museum. Artist Salvador Dal? grew up near here, and he founded the unique museum that bears his name and contains some of his most unusual works, like "Rainy Cadillac", a bizarre sculpture of a Cadillac whose interior is constantly drenched with rain. Other Dali sites, like his home in Portlligat and P?bol - a castle he bought and decorated for his lover and muse, Gala - are scattered around the Costa Brava as well.
Throughout the Costa Brava are ancient ruins that tell the story of the region's long and often turbulent history. In Emp?ries, visit the ruins of a Greek settlement that dates to 600BC. At the same site you can wander over the stones of the later Roman settlement (one of the first on the Iberian peninsula), which dates to 100BC. Nearby are the even older ruins of Ullastret, which are the remains of an early Iberian settlement.
The Costa Brava enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate, with long, hot, summers and short, mild winters. The sun shines most of the time, and the temperatures are mild throughout the year, though the strong 'Tramontana' winds, common in autumn and winter, do bring chill.
In summer, highs are in the 80s (?F) and there is usually limited rainfall. Autumn and Spring are wetter seasons, though extended rainfall is unlikely. Winter lows hover between 40?-50? (?F), though warm, sunny afternoons can surprise you at any time of the year.
The Girona airport provides easy access to towns throughout the Costa Brava. Ryan Air flies here from the UK, and the flight takes about two hours. Alternatively, you could fly into Barcelona's airport (also a two hours' flight from the UK) and then drive or take the train to the Costa Brava. The car or train trip would take anywhere from one to four hours, depending on your destination.
Once in the Costa Brava, you'll find that it's handy to have a car if you plan to explore much on your own. If you're staying in one town for the entire trip, a car is probably unnecessary since you can easily move about on foot. However, if you'd like the freedom to head into natural parks and explore the historic towns and ruins of the region without having to rely on the oftentimes limited bus and train services, then a hired car is ideal.
The Costa Brava offers unlimited activities. As a coastal region, swimming, sunbathing and boating are all popular, and both snorkelling and scuba diving are common too. The Illes Medes, seven tiny islets off the Costa Brava, near the town of L'Estartit, are considered the best place in the Mediterranean for scuba diving, and divers come from throughout Europe to wet their fins here.
Walkers and hikers will be overjoyed with the abundance of trails in the Costa Brava. For an easy walk, try one of the breathtaking costal trails, like the one that runs from Calella to Llafranc. For a challenge, head inland where there is rougher terrain. The Parc Natural de Cap del Creus, in the far northern corner of the Costa Brava, is a great place to wander. A 9th-century monastery, Monestir de Sant Pere de Ribes, provides the perfect resting spot.
Biking is also popular, especially because of the long Greenway that runs from Sant Feliu de Guixols up to Girona and on to Olot and the Pyrenees. This flat trail follows an abandoned rail line and is a scenic place for a long and leisurely bike ride. The more adventurous can try mountainous trails found all over the Costa Brava.
Golf is another big sport here, and the Costa Brava is known as one of the premier golfing areas of Spain. You'll find several high-quality courses, most of them in close proximity to the coastal resort towns.
To get a birds-eye view of the Costa Brava, try taking a trip in hot air balloon or helicopter. There are several companies offering flights for individuals or groups. Daredevils can go parachuting, another great way to see the landscape from above.