All posts tagged: Begur

sea

Camí de Ronda – Walking between rugged rocks and the deep blue sea

 

sea colours

Sea: play of colours on the Camí de Ronda

Sea, sun and hiking boots: With a length of 200 km, the Spanish coastal trail reaches from Portbou near the French boarder to Blanes in the South. If you decided to take on the whole trail you would definitely be en route for quite some time. Ranging from 140 km in 8 days to 43 km in 2 days – everything is possible.

 

First stop on the coastal trail: Pals

beach

Broad sandy beach of Pals

We decided to take a more moderate route – at least for now. One beautiful summer afternoon – the sun is high in the sky but doesn’t burn down as strongly anymore and a gentle breeze is coming from the sea – we tie up our hiking boots and start our tour in Pals. Having arrived at the beach, we can’t help ourselves… We have to indulge our sweet tooth and get an ice cream. Don’t be too hard on us though, we did our fair share of walking afterwards!

Away from the hustle and bustle

We start our hike on the wide sandy beach of Pals where the waves are towering up today. Walking up a small staircase we reach the first part of our trail and all of the sudden we find ourselves away from the hustle and bustle of the beach. The waves splashing against the rocks, almost reaching us, captivate us. The power of the Mediterranean on the Catalan coast is definitely not to be underestimated!

waves

Splashing waves on the Camí de Ronda

Playa Illsa Roja – tropical feeling on the Costa Brava

 

Tropical feeling on the Playa Illa Roja

We move along between the rugged rocks and the deep blue sea to the next small – but charming – bay. With its huge lump of rock rising from the sea and the almost tropical looking rock face covered with trees, Playa Illa Roja reminds us slightly of Thailands famous beaches. Once again the waves are towering up in front of us making us wanting to jump in!

 

 

atmosphere

Dreamlike atmosphere at the Playa Illa Roja

High above the Playa Illa Roja

After capturing the atmosphere of this magnificent little bay with our camera, we take on the steepest part of our hike – only to discover a spectacular view of the Costa Brava.  We are looking at broad parts of the coast and the seemingly endless dark blue sea and think to ourselves: „How rewarding hiking can be!“

 

 

 

Enjoying the peak and the turquoise sea

After a short moment of enjoying the view, we continue our walk on a beautifully paved way to our next and at the same time last stop. The view is once again heavenly and the many seaside mansions that are surrounding us, make us (slightly enviously) dream.

rock

Lump of rock at the Plaja Illa Roja

Last bay: Sa Riera

sea

Almost there: Sa Riera

While the sun is slowly setting behind the mountain, the last part of the path leads us through a small group of trees appearing almost mystical in the dim evening light. One last step around the corner and we have almost reached the last stop of our tour: Sa Riera in the small coastal town Begur. Sailing ships are gently floating in the turquoise water and the last swimmers of the day are jumping in the waves. Situated directly at the beach of Sa Riera, a few charming little cafés offer us refreshments including a beautiful view of the sea.

sea

Sailing ships in Sa Riera

Only the beginning…

sea rocks

Camí de Ronda – between rugged rocks and the sea

We are sure: this small part of the Spanish coastal trail was only the beginning. And that is also one of the big advantages of the Camí de Ronda – you can choose and adapt your route however you like. Young or old, fit as a fiddle or rather slow-moving – everyone has the chance to make their way through the Spanish nature at their own pace. And what could be more relaxing than to ditch your car for once and discover Catalonias beauty by hiking along the coast?

First time: Costa Brava

Until now, I’ve only been to Mallorca a few times. The island manages to fascinate me all over again every time. The Spanish continent – especially the Costa Brava – is virgin territory to me. During my internship, I would love to explore the other part of Spain – or rather of Catalonia.
At the very beginning of my internship, we took our first exploratory trip – with the Costa Live in the trunk.

Costa Brava - Begur - views to the sea

Fantastic sea view – Costa Brava

First stop: L’Estartit

Our first destination was the small resort L’Estartit near to Torroella de Montgrí.
On our way there, the views were already spectacular: The combination of sea and mountains was simply overwhelming. On site, a beautiful beach, small bustling shopping streets, a manageable yacht harbour and many welcoming coffee shops and restaurants with sea view amazed me. The place wasn’t flooded by mass tourism at all.

Costa Brava - Harbour - L'Estartit

L’Estartit Harbour

A tiny coffee shop between beach and harbour drew us to quietly enjoy the panorama of boats and water while sipping a refresher. The beach wasn’t overcrowded at all and the water was quite calm – although the waves were raging in many places this day.

After that, we made a little walk along the new promenade until the end of the town to admire the small islands “Illes Medes“ – the landmark of L’Estartit – from there. Wild waves were crashing against rock faces which were steeply rising out of the sea. The power of the open sea – we had it right in front of us.

Costa Brava - L'Estartit - View - rocks

Pretty view in L’Estartit

Tapas in Begur

Next, we made our way to Begur, a popular resort which has a lot to offer. Whether you like to go shopping, make a trip to the beautiful bays or enjoy the fascinating views from the castle hill over city, countryside and sea – Begur’s got it all.

Church and restaurants in Begur

Meanwhile, it was siesta time and our stomachs were growling. So we struck off to the town centre to eat a little something. Fortunately, we found a free table in the shadow of an olive tree in the famous restaurant “El Tapas de Begur“, which seduces with a lot of little treats. Without having to wait for the waiter to take the order, you can take the tapas yourself from the bar. It is important to keep the sticks which grace the tapas and not to throw them away! They are necessary for cashing up. Until then, this practical system, which is perfectly simple and is based on trust, wasn’t familiar to me. The tapas were very delicious and are definitely recommendable.

 

Shopping & Sightseeing

Nice boutiques in Begur

As the restaurant is located in the heart of the city, we had already spotted some nice boutiques next door while eating that we had to visit afterwards. Especially if you’re a big fan of pastel colours and Ibiza-style summer clothes, guaranteed you will fall in love with some pieces!

 

Fantastic view – Begur

Later, we couldn’t miss the chance to enjoy the view from the top of the castle. The steep ascent is rewarded with an unique view over the coast of the Costa Brava up until the Pyrenees. Time to take some pictures! Instantly, I had found a bay that I have to visit in the next couple of weeks: The bay Sa Riera!

 

Medieval charm

Stone houses of Pals

Finally, it led us to Pals: a perfectly restored medieval village, which had been build on a hill. As the old town from Pals is car-free, I would recommend you to leave your car beneath the historical centre and enjoy the walk.

 

 

Having reached the top, I understood why Pals is considered one of the most beautiful medieval villages of the Costa Brava: narrow streets, charming stone houses which are build closely to each other and again an unbelievable view of the surroundings from the Mirador de Josep Pla. In the distance, we could also spot the islands “Illes Medes“ which I mentioned before. If you want to drink a coffee or buy a small souvenir before leaving, the alleys of Pals will not disappoint you.

Diversity of the Costa Brava

The Costa Brava swept me off my feet on the very first trip: there is so much more to see and explore than I had expected! I’m very curious about what lies ahead in the next couple of months …

Begur- beautiful facades and a perfect day in october

It is the end of october, the last chance to visit the popular crafts market and little shops in beautiful Begur which open for the last time of the season. After the winter break takes place in the region.

Towards the sun

Already my way up from Torroella de Fluvià to the historic village is fantastic. Sun shines insatiable today. The sky is gloriously blue. I open the sunroof of the car. Heat surrounds me and I take a deep breath to feel the warm wind. The winding roads are lined with pine-trees. At the horizon mountains melt into the sea. October couldn’t give me a more perfect day.

enlighted lanes in Begur

sunshine enlightens every little lane

Reaching the parking-lot, leave my car and enter the almost deserted streets.It makes me feel good. Shafts of sunlight blaze a trail between the houses. I’m on my way to Plaça de la Vila- the historic center.

Historical center in a perfect location

Perhaps the most popular town’s landmark are defense towers which are up to twelve metre. They were originally built in the Middle Ages.

defence tower

defence tower behind the Plaça de la Vila

Obviously, the centre of Begur has been spruced up for tourism through the years. But it didn’t decrease the historical character of the village. While nowadays the more exclusive tourism is dominating the economic, locals form the past primarily lived by the sale of corals. Later it was cork.  After the cork industry collapsed many locals were forced to displace their lives to South America. By coming into economic wealth they decided to come back to Spain. The so called „Indianos“ influenced the contemporary architecture in Begur by building mansions in a colonial caribbean style. “Casas de Indianos“ are already decorating the cityscape.

Once in Begur you should make the effort and climb up the castle hill. The fantastic view up to the point of the coast recovers all damages. The most obvious advantage of Begur is its perfect position. Surrounded by numerous hills – Massís de Begur – and a long coastal path it is a comfortable location above the Cap de Begur and Cap sa Sal.

The smell of cotton candy

caramelized nuts and cotton candy

smell of caramelized nuts and cotton candy sugars the air

Plaça de la Vila blazes in the sunshine. A market stand sweetens the air with caramelized nuts and cotton candy. Families are strolling around. Halloween is near by. The perfect occasion for children to put on some creepy make-up masks and enjoy the various sweets to the fullest. Market stands are rarely spread this weekend. But those few attended offer pretty little things from clothes to cosmetics and natural foods. Some of the little stores open for the last time during this season and give a special sale to their product line.

jewellery in Begur

different types of jewellery on the market stands

But the real attention on this day applies to only one: the sun. Almost everywhere people bask in the warming sunshine. Talking, laughing and drinking coffee. The small cafes are completely filled. Taking this opportunity to stock on some souvenirs for family and friends. The charming little lanes cry out to be explored. Baroque lanterns. Caribbean colonial style decorate faces of buildings .Olive trees dancing in the sunshine. Who doesn’t get enough of beautiful villages à la Begur should visit the nearby Pals. Similarly to Begur you will find nice houses and streets, cafes and shops.

floating people in Begur

people floating through the pretty little alleys

I enjoy the bustle of the market. Enjoying an iced coffee in the sun is my personal topping on an already perfect day …

¡Viva Cuba! in Catalonia – Fira D’Indians

Begur towers high above a hill with its medieval castle and the city centre, which today should turn into a Cuban place. Many Spanish people had emigrated to Cuba between the 16th an the 19th century when it was a Spanish colony and returned wealthy. The architecture of the city still reflects the wealth and today you celebrate the “Fira D’Indians“ annually in honor to the closeness to Cuba.

The city, its inhabitants and the visitors adorn themselves with Cuban flair. Every first weekend of September, whitely dressed people romp about the narrow streets, smoke cigars in cafés, drink cold Mojitos and stroll around those many small stands which sell Cuban treasures. An elderly man is extolling his Cuban pipes, a woman from Central America is rolling cigars behind a cluster of people and a man wearing a straw hat is sitting at the piano and creates Cuban rhythm.

The guests got carried away by the music, they were dancing and clapping on the village square, their white dresses blowing in the wind and the atmosphere is so contagious, that even more guests start to join.
Small streets meander through the city, starting at the village square, decorated  with garlands of blue, white, and red. Our gaze is wandering from left to right and again and again we discover new things, whether it where stands selling chocolate of any kind, decorated between aromatically smelling cocoa beans, or herbage arranged in baskets made of raffia, which offer relief for any slight pain.

Fiery Spanish barmen are mixing Mojitos, which already have made some of the visitors feeling tipsy beneath the burning sun. Leather straps, white clothes and dresses for those who have forgotten about the dress code, delicious somethings like cake or Magdalena, which should sweeten the event, and palm leaves on every wall of the buildings, which create a feeling of being on the island – everything is available here.

Attractions like a lesson in mixing cocktails, in learning Latin dances or weaving a basket – entertainment is guaranteed for young and old.
Cuban music inspiring us, cigarette smoke surrounding us, and the Mojito got us going – this is how we were strolling through the hubbub and were feeling it authentically, feeling the enthusiasm for the distant country in the Caribbean which was the home of many Catalans for a long time.