Cadaques - the paradise in the north of Catalunya
January 1, 1970
by Ella Dunav
The perfect escape for one day or more in the north of Spain
I work as a children´s entertainer in La Pineda, Tarragona and in my day off I was looking for a short escapade. Last year, some local friends told me about this small fishing town, which is considered to be the pearl of the Costa Brava. I never had the chance to get there, as it’s quite far, but this time, I decided to go for it, so I went to Cadaques. Cadaques is a small village in Alt Emporda, extreme north of Costa Brava, province of Girona, Spain. It took us quite a while to get there as it´s about 3 hours away from Tarragona (and about 2 hours away from Barcelona). However, it is the perfect place if you seek tranquility or even more active things to do.
How to get there
By car: So even if you go from Barcelona, or Girona or any other city, this is definitely the easiest way to get there. What we did is just let Google Maps take us to our destination.
By bus/train/taxi: So I actually didn´t go there by public transportation, but I looked it up and it seems you can take the train from Barcelona to Figueres. From Figueres, walk across the square outside the train station to the bus station and buy a bus ticket for the ¨Sarfa bus¨ to Cadaques. Or you can get a taxi for about 50 euros.
As we went on a weekday, in September, there were lots of good offers very close to the old town and Playa Gran. We chose to stay in L’Hostalet de Cadaques for one night. The room was clean, the staff was hospitable and nice and the location was perfect. However, if you plan to visit Cadaques during the high season, I strongly advise you to book your accommodation in advance. You can get deals from 20 euros a night in the low season and even from 50 euros a night during high season. If you do your homework, you can find really cheap deals in very good places, even during the high season.
First day: Relaxing day in Cadaques
We arrived around 11 am. We checked in, then we went for a coffee in one of the cafes nearby the hotel (there are plenty of them in the area). As the town is really small, you don´t need any transportation, even if you want to go from one corner to the other. You can visit this incredible town and all its amazing places by foot. From the old town, facing the sea, we went to the right, which took us directly to the Church of Santa Maria (Iglesia de Santa Maria de Cadaques). For 1 euro, you can see its amazing architecture, with the white chapels on the sides and the stunning Baroque altarpiece. As it is situated on the highest point of Cadaques, you have the paradisiacal view just in front of you and some benches to enjoy it. As you are there, you can wander around the tiny streets of the Old Town, full of souvenir shops. There is also a small Museum of Cadaques on one of the streets. Then, you can have lunch in any of the restaurants of the Passeig Maritim, or the ones along the coast, with the view of this enchanted town. After lunch, you can go for a swim and enjoy the small beaches and calas with transparent turquoise water as Playa Gran, Playa Sa Conca, Playa es Sortell. If you continue walking in the opposite direction of the church along the coast, you will get to Playa de la Confitera, which has a special charm, as you can see S´Arenella from there, or even go on a boat trip or rent a kayak to get there. As we were in the low season, the boat shop was already closed, but I am sure that in the high season is one of the most popular things to do in Cadaques.
The view from the Iglesia de Santa Maria
Playa de Sa Confitera, and S´Arenella in the back
Second day: Casa-Museu Salvador Dali and Cap de Creus
If you travel by car, in just 10 minutes you can get to Portlligat, where you can find the House-Museum of Salvador Dali, the labyrinthine seafront house where the painter lived and worked for years. You can also get there by foot, as Portlligat is the neighboring village, connected by a stone-walled trail with cacti and olive groves. You will see the directions easily on the street signs and in just 20 minutes you can be there. Really important: if you want to visit the House-Museum of Salvador Dali, you have to book in advance on its official website: www.salvador-dali.orgAs we didn´t know that we had to buy our tickets in advance, unfortunately we couldn´t go in. So, we decided to go on another spontaneous destination which is really close: Cap de Creus.
Now, this is a destination you can´t miss if you are in that part of Catalunya. It is a place that simply can not be described with words. The Cap de Creus Peninsular is a nature reserve and marks the eastern end of the Pyrenees, as they dip into the Med. It is the most extreme point of the province of Girona, surrounded by turquoise waters and mountains, with amazing views and landscapes. I think I could stay there forever, and even more as a travelling yogi I could feel a deep calmness and tranquility feeling all my body and my inner self.
I definitely recommend Cadaques, either it´s a short escape for a day or it is vacations for one or two weeks. For the people who like more adventures, there are plenty of water activities, hiking trips and nearby destinations you could go walking. And for those who like partying, just 14,6 km away you have Roses, which is another incredible town, but known more for its nightlife.