Whenever we come to this unique town, we are fascinated anew by the whitewashed Old Town, its warped, huddled buildings and the steep, winding alleyways leading up to a church called Santa Maria.
There, you have a great view over the houses and the sea, especially in the time just before sunset, when a pink veil lies over the picturesque scenery: small boats lie at anchor in the bay, swaying slightly in the breeze, the sea reflects the light of the drowning sun, and the rocks on the shore form a bizarre contrast, framing the white houses and their red and ochre coloured tiled roofs.
Green plants spread over balconies and terraces. One would like to capture the romantic scene on canvas. Perhaps it is the special light, which still causes painters and other creative persons from all around the world to come to Cadaqués. The list of painters, musicians and authors who have come to Cadaqués for inspiration is long. For example, there are Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Max Ernst, André Breton, Paul Eluard, Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray and Gabriel García Márquez. And one should always keep another artist in mind: Salvador Dalí .
The master of surrealism never could escape the magic of this speccial place. Most of the time, he lived, worked and celebrated in his house in Port Lligat, which is about one kilometre from Cadaqués. His house lies in a small bay, which is now a hot spot for international visitors.
When tourism started to boom in the Costa Brava, the eccentric painter averted the building of large hotel complexes in Cadaqués and Port Lligat, using his relations. Thus, Dalí’s white city remained as charming as it used to be, and the church is still the highest building in the town. Even nowadays, Dalí dominates the city – all in black and white he is enthroned on a huge placard, looking down onto Cadaqués. On cups and smaller placards, and out of display windows, he looks at the people passing by. Appropriate to his ego, nobody will lose sight of him. Maybe he will watch over his city, even in the far future, averting the construction of ugly buildings. Presently, the community wants to enlarge the quayside.
All those searching for a charming residence close to the sea in Cadaqués should hurry up. Prices are increasing, the place is famous among creatives and investors from all over the world, the offer limited and villas with sea view in great demand. Only few real estate agents offer luxury villas, charming town houses or well-located apartments combined with individuality.
Cadaqués is nowadays one of the most sought-after places along the Costa Brava and the Spanish Mediterranean Sea.
During the last years many small fashion boutiques, galleries, bars and restaurants have been established in the alleyways, halls and renovated fishermen’s houses of Cadaqués. Apart from kitsch and trash you will find exotic jewellery, crafts and arts and fancy artwork by young artists.
The evenings are the time to meet in coffee shops and bars. In front of and in the casino close to see, old and young people meet, tourists and inhabitants of the city chatter unceasingly, and not even the casual crackling of mopeds - property of youths racing through the town - can disturb them.
Dali used to dwell among the guests in a coffee shop called El Jardin, in the middle of exotic plants and under the Mediterranean sky. The jazz club, which is located close to the Ramba, was one of his preferred places to spend the evening, too. However, we do not know if he loved the tapa-bar at the shore just as much as we do.
Still, it is almost impossible to find a place there. We strongly recommend you find your own way through the gastronomy of Cadaqués.
Who manages to get up early in the morning, to drink a first cup of coffee close to the harbour, who listens to the cry of the gulls on the shore and to the steady rhythm of the waves, will find the enchanting Mediterranean ambience.