Here at Spain Savvy, when someone asks us where they should take a day trip from Barcelona, our first answer is always the beautiful Costa Brava. There are many different ways to visit this beautiful coastline, and below are just a couple we suggest – consulting with our guests first on their specific interests, activity level and the ever-present travel bucket list. We work with local travel professionals who accompany our clients on private tours, and can also arrange small or larger group excursions, depending on budget and availability. Some clients will also be adventurous and rent a car to explore the terrain on their own with our tips and customized Google maps. We can make your dream trip a reality!
The Dalí Triangle: Figueres-Cadaqués-Portlligat
Hitting up all the major spots in the life of the famous Spanish surrealist artist Salvador Dalí, on this longer day trip (or 2-day jaunt if you wish to have more time) from Barcelona, we would recommend you start in Figueres. Here, you can visit the famous Dalí Theatre Museum (click here for visit details) inaugurated in 1974 with the aim of “giving visitors a tangible experience of being inside his unique, captivating world”. He is buried in the crypt here and there are other works featured from the likes of Pujol, Duchamp and even El Greco.
Next, in coastal Cadaquès, visit Dalí’s Portlligat home (click here for visit details), where he lived and worked from 1930 to 1982. Dalí’s family summered here and his parents built Salvador’s first art studio here. There is another home nearby that you can visit, called Pubol Castle (click here for visit details), which Dalí bought for his controversial wife and muse, Gala Dalí. To read more about Gala, click here for the engrossing Vanity Fair article, “Dali’s Demon Bride”.
Girona: Cultural Jewel of Catalonia
Girona, original Roman city Gerunda on the Via Augusta, is a collection of cultural riches, featuring a gorgeous walkable city center, the biggest Jewish ghetto in all of Europe, memorializing the community that was eventually ousted in 1492 during the Inquisition, and a beautiful Gothic church, featuring the Romanesque treasure, Tapestry of the Creation.
If you’re driving to Girona from Barcelona, we will also recommend that you swing by gorgeous Besalú, where you will truly feel like you have stepped into a time machine to medieval times. For the foodies among us, we recommend trying to get a reservation at Michelin-starred Celler de Can Roca (remember, this is the area where the famous El Bullí was born!) or L’Alquería for amazing seafood rice dishes.
There are many different ways to experience the Costa Brava with Barcelona as your base, including a day at the beach (Sitges, Blanes and Tossa del Mar are all popular beaches), an excursion to Palamòs to experience fishing village life, or to beautiful Calella de Parafrugell with a stop at the gorgeous Cap Roig Botanical Gardens, which also hosts a popular summer music festival. This year you can see Wilco, Ben Harper, Andrea Bocelli, Norah Jones and many big Spanish musicians as well.
Contact us today to plan your amazing Costa Brava experience!