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Calella Holidays

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Three golden, sandy beaches and a sun-drenched Catalan town, just 30 minutes’ drive from Barcelona.

Beach living

This slice of Spanish coast has always been a favourite with Barcelona’s weekend-away crowd. Calella revolves around its trio of fantastic Blue Flag beaches, and most days here consist of lying on a sunbed, or snorkelling through sparkly shoals of fish. Along the tree-lined promenade, there are ice cream parlours and gift shops, and a few bars to liven up the evenings.

Exploring the Costa Maresme

Calella’s right in the middle of Catalonia’s famous Costa Maresme, all turquoise waters and sweeping mountain vistas. You’re well placed to see it all – just 10 minutes’ drive away is Pineda de Mar, which has a great set of beaches and an 18th-century castle. The same distance away, Canet de Mar has serious wow factor with its modernist architecture and 15th-century gothic church.

Day trips into Barcelona

It’s easy to get into the city from here – half an hour by car, or 90 minutes on the train. The Catalan capital is a favourite for shopping and sightseeing, with Gaudi’s quirky Parc Guell on the tick-list, and his famous cathedral. Kids love the aquarium and the cable car with views over a castle.

Insider Tip

Along the streets away from the beachfront, there are a few pretty, flower-filled parks, which are great for cooling off after a few hours on the beach. Dalmau Park is the best, and it has a children’s play area too.

Best beaches

Gran Playa is the crowd pleaser – a wide, kilometre-long sandy beach, with lots of watersports to try. You have all the facilities you need here: showers, changing rooms, and cafés on tap. South of the town you’ll find Garbi Beach, a narrower portion of sand dotted with sunbeds, where the water’s really shallow for snorkelling.

Top sights

The Lighthouse of Calella is worth seeing. It’s impressively ornate, and still in use. From its platform you get views across the whole of the Costa Maresme, and Barcelona’s visible in the distance.

Out and about

Europe’s biggest waterpark is only half an hour away by road. It’s in two parts: at Marineland, you can watch spectacular dolphin shows, while Aqualand gets your adrenaline pumping with a great choice of slides. PortAventura – Universal’s theme park – is a 90-minute drive away.

Eating and drinking

You’ve got lots of restaurants to pick from in Calella, from tapas joints on the beachfront to burger bars and smart fine-dining affairs. La Llar de Foc does a fantastic grill, infused with spicy Catalan flavours. Pizzeria Don Carlo is well-rated, too, and serves up superb Italian-style pizza.

Shopping

Souvenir shops line the pedestrianised streets away from the waterfront, where you can buy things like traditional Catalan shawls and fans. There’s a shopping mall in the town, with fashion boutiques and handbag shops inside, as well as a supermarket. And up the road in Pineda you’ll find a great crafts market.

Nightlife

Sink a Spanish beer or two in view of the sunset at one of the bars on the seafront. The night doesn’t end there – things get lively later on with bingo nights and plenty of discos. The Golden Gloves Hard Rock Pub is a real institution, with rock’n’roll tribute acts and a ‘metal karaoke’ night… so bring your best Ozzy Osbourne impression!

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Calella

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Where is it?

Calella is a town on the Costa Maresme, on the north-eastern coast of Spain. It’s half-an-hour’s drive from Girona-Costa Brava Airport.

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