A Guide to the Costa Brava and Girona: exclusive coastline, home to beautiful coves, secret beaches and discerning residents

Costa Brava means “rugged coast” and whilst this is an area of mass tourism, it also boasts some of Spain’s most beautiful scenery, including many unspoilt rocky coves and delightful beaches.

Girona itself is an ancient city with an attractive old quarter set on a hillside to the east of the river Onyar which is spanned by a series of pedestrian bridges.

Food markets full of fresh produce are a plenty and the region continues to consolidate its reputation for a rich gastronomy combined with modern flair, reflected in the fact that it now boasts the number one restaurant in the world, El Celler de Can Roca.


Platja de Castell, Palamós

The only beach on this part of the coast to have escaped development, Platja de Castell boasts some beautiful little coves concealed by pine forests.

Calella de Palafrugell

Just a few minutes’ drive from the town of Palafrugell, the bay of Calella de Palafrugell spreads along half a dozen sandy coves connected to each other by car-free promenades. With many cafés and restaurants under the arches of the pastel-coloured buildings, this pretty resort is popular with both locals and tourists.

Platja de Santa Cristina, Blanes

Platja de Santa Cristina is worth a visit for its breathtaking landscape alone. A small, often deserted cove, it is surrounded by lush woodland and boasts fine, pale, dusty sands.

Sa Tuna

Sa Tuna is a small pebble beach in front of some charming converted fishermen’s houses set in a deep cove with a backdrop of pine clad hills.


An idyllic cove at the end of a winding road through a hillside of pine trees and villas, AIguablava’s shallow and crystal clear waters make it an ideal beach for families.

Restaurants (Coastal)

Tragamar, Calella de Palafrugell

Tragamar, in the charming village of Calella de Palafrugell, offers Mediterannean cuisine prepared with delicious local produce. Situated on the sea front, the restaurant boasts breathtaking views of the sea and a terrace for outdoor dining.

Platja de Canadell s/n
17210 Calella de Palafrugell
+34 972 614 336


Es Dofi, Tamariu

Just metres from the sea in the small bay of Tamariu, Es Dofi’s delicious food and wide selection of wines combined with ocean views and a pleasant seaside atmosphere create the perfect dining experience.

Passeig Mar 21
17212 Palafrugell
+34 972 620 043

Casamar, Llafranc

This Michelin starred restaurant is very popular for its exceptional yet simple and modern cooking. The food has its roots in Catalan tradition but is served in an interesting and innovative way.

C/Nero 3
17211 Llafranc
34 972 300 104


Can Climent Platillos, Begur

This small, cosy restaurant located in the charming town of Begur offers an excellent fusion of traditional Catalan cuisine and modern, contemporary style tapas, together with an extensive wine list.

C/Pi i Rallo 8
17255 Begur
+34 972 622 502


Toc al Mar, Aiguablava

Located on one of the most beautiful beaches of the Costa Brava, Aiguablava, Toc al Mar is much more than your average chiringuito, or beachside bar, offering exquisite Mediterranean cuisine with ingredients sourced from local fishermen.

C/Platja d’Aiguablava 6
17255 Begur
+34 972 113 232


Restaurants (Inland)

El Celler de Can Roca, Girona

Founded in 1986 by the Roca brothers, the three Michelin starred El Cellar de Can Roca was named the best restaurant in the world in 2013. The cuisine is traditional Catalan but with a contemporary, creative twist and the restaurant boasts a large wine cellar with some 60,000 bottles.

Can Sunyer 48
17007 Girona
+34 972 222 157


Bo.Tic, Corça

Situated in a former flour mill, Bo.Tic offers a surrealist terrace, a bright neo-rustic style dining room, and interesting and imaginative cuisine.

Ctra C-66 Girona a Palamós Km 11,5
17121 Corçà
+34 972 630 869


Castell d’Empordà, La Bisbal

Castell d’Empordà offers a mix a mix of classic Catalan and international cuisine served in a fairytale medieval castle in the heart of the Costa Brava.

Castell d’Empordà s/n
17115 La Bisbal
+34 972 646 254


Els Tinars, Solius

Founded in 1918, the current generation of this family run restaurant has transformed it into a contemporary, modern country house with high quality cuisine using local and seasonal produce.

Ctra de St Feliu a Girona Km 7,2
17240 Llagostera
+34 972 830 626


Can Dolç, Sant Feliu de Boada

Can Dolç is a wonderful restaurant in the heart of the Baix Empordà offering fine, Mediterranean cuisine in a charming rural setting.

C/La Font 9
17256 Sant Feliu de Boada
+34 972 635 003



Merci, Begur

Situated in an old colonial house, Merci’s beautiful decor and outdoor patio create the perfect location for an after dinner drink or a light meal of tapas and sushi.

C/Pi i Rallo 12
17255 Begur
+34 674 100 607

Vintage Lounge, Aiguafreda

Costa Brava & Girona (Bars) Vintage Lounge

This hip, wood-and-glass, cabin-style bar overlooking the bay of Aiguafreda boasts an extensive cocktail list and a beautiful outdoor terrace.

Ctra de Cap sa Sal s/n
17255 Begur
+34 972 622 130


Villa Mas, S’Agaró

Situated In a beautiful 19th Century country house, Villa Mas in S’Agaró provides a lovely setting by the beach and an extensive wine list.

Passeig de Sant Pol 95
17220 Sant Feliu de Guíxols
+34 972 822 526


Hotel Llafranch, Llafranc

The prime location of this family run hotel terrace bar, overlooking the bay, is the perfect place to sit back with a tinto de verano (chilled red wine and lemonade).

Passeig Cipsela 16
17211 Llafranc
+34 972 300 208


Croak, Begur

Tucked away down one of Begur’s many winding streets, with its gravelled walled garden and hanging lanterns, Croak has become a longstanding Begur institution.


Mas Sorrer, Gualta

Mas Sorrer is located in the Baix Empordà region just outside the medieval town of Torroella. There is a restaurant located in an old stone farmhouse next to a large area which in summer hosts an outdoor bar with dancing, live jazz performances and a film festival in late July.

Ctra GI-643 Km 0.5
17257 Gualta
+34 677 458 854


Les Teules, Pals

Costa Brava & Girona (Nightclubs) Les Teules, Pals

Set in a 17th Century farmhouse in Pals, Les Teules offers an exclusive setting to enjoy your late-summer nights. There is a large terrace, a chill-out area and a spacious dance floor where you can get into the groove until 7am.

Mas Gelabert 2/n
Serres de Pals
17256 Pals
+34 972 667 318


Zsa Zsa, Platja d’Aro

This new nightclub opened its doors for the first time in the summer of 2013. A tribute to the glamourous actress Zsa Zsa Gabor, the club boasts elegant decor, high ceilings and a private VIP area.

Avingude S’Agaró 66
17250 Platja d’Aro
+34 635 849 593


La Davesa de Tor, Tor

Located in a beautiful old farmhouse in the heart of the Empordà region of the Costa Brava, La Davesa de Tor offers several rooms, each with a different atmosphere. There is also a huge terrace where you can enjoy drinks until the early hours of the morning.

Mar 3
17134 Tor
+34 972 780 623


Costa Este, Calella de Palafrugell

Located on the old highway from Palafrugell to Calella, Costa Este is one of the most famous nightclubs in the region. This new concept of outdoor entertainment is open every weekend in July and every day in August offering salsa, latin and house music.

Ctra de Palafrugell a Calella-Llafranc
17211 Calella de Palafrugell
+34 93 414 63 62


Events (from Jan 14)

La Fira d’Indians, Begur

Costa Brava & Girona (Events) La Fira d'Indians

La Fira d’Indians celebrates the relationship between Cuba and Begur whose origin lies in the emigration of many people from Begur to the island in the 19th Century. On their return to the town, those who had prospered built ostentatious houses that still grace the streets of Begur today. For three days Begur offers a wide range of leisure and cultural activities reliving a period of history that has left a profound mark on the town and its identity.

5 – 7 September 2014


Festival de Cap Roig, Calella de Palafrugell

Every summer since 2001 in Calella de Palafrugell, the Festival de Cap Roig draws music lovers of all kinds when the Cap Roig Castle and its Botanic Gardens opens their doors to some of the biggest acts in the world.

4 July – 15 August 2014


Cantada d’Havaneres, Calella de Palafrugell

On the first Saturday of July the coastal town of Calella de Palafrugell hosts the annual Cantada d’Havaneres, celebrating the music genre brought back by sailors when they returned from Cuba in the 19th Century. Beginning in 1966 the Cantada d’Havaneres has grown enormously and today attracts more than 40,000 people who come to watch the groups perform under the clear summer night sky on the Port Bo beach.

4 – 6 July 2014


Festival Casetell de Peralada

The Festival Castell de Peralada is a showcase of music, theatre and dance spanning all genres including jazz, pop and opera. Set in the grounds of Peralada Castle it is one of the summer’s premier musical events.

July and August 2014


Temporada Alta, Girona & Salt

Temporada Alta is a festival of performing arts that takes place in the cities of Girona and Salt during October, November and December. The festival’s focus on staging major acts from the international scene together with its goal to be a springboard for fresh talent has turned Temporada Alta into a must-see event.

October, November and December 2014


Shopping Areas/Centres

Espai Gironès, Girona

Espai Gironès is located in an urban area of the municipality of Salt, near Girona. Covering an area of over 46,000m², it is home to numerous leading brands including Massimo Dutti, Springfield and Zara as well as an Odeon Multiplex.

Camei dels Carlins s/n
17190 Salt
+34 972 239 012


La Roca Village, La Roca del Vallès

Chic shopping outlet La Roca Village is located just outside Barcelona and offers the leading designer brands at exceptional prices unrivalled elsewhere. Designed in the style of a turn-of-the-century Catalan town, La Roca Village allows you to stroll casually between the shops, all handily located in the same boulevard, making it a pleasurable shopping experience. There is also a children’s play area and many restaurants and cafés serving traditional Catalan cuisine.

08430 Santa Agnès de Malanyes (La Roca del Vallès)
+34 93 842 39 39


Vins i Licors Grau, Palafrugell

Vins i Licors Grau is a family run business with a long tradition in the wine and spirit distribution. An industry leader since 1951, the distributor offers over 9,000 products to its customers, including Spanish and international still wines, sparkling wines, cider and sangria.

Torroella 163
17200 Palafrugell
+34 972 301 835


Platja d’Aro Town Centre

Platja d’Aro offers a wide range of shops and brands in one of the largest open air shopping areas in the Mediterranean.

Lloret de Mar town centre

All kinds of products can be found in the town’s extensive and varied commercial offering, which comprises 1,000 retail outlets. Commercial fairs and activities are held throughout the year, including the Botiga al Carrer festival, where the local shops sell their wares from outdoor stalls.

Sports Centres/Activities

Club Tennis Llafranc

Considered one of the best tennis clubs in Spain, Llafranc Tennis Club is located in a privileged area of the Costa Brava. Certified coaches give classes for all abilities and tournaments are organized at local, municipal, provincial and national levels. The club also offers a gym and fitness club.

Paratge dels Torrents 8
17200 Palafrugell
34 972 30 23 08


Water World, Lloret de Mar

Costa Brava & Girona (Sports CentresActivities) Water World, Lloret de Mar

Water World is an aqua park located close to the sea and not far from the centre of Lloret de Mar. A city of water attractions, it hosts a large number of water slides, a swimming pool that imitates sea waves, a jacuzzi pool, a mini golf terrain and one of the world’s tallest towers for bungee jumping. The park has attractions for all ages and a special site for picnics as well as numerous cafés and restaurants.

Ctra Vidreres Km 1,2
17310 Lloret de Mar
+34 972 368 613


Aeroclub Empordà, Torroella de Montgrí

Aeroclub Empordà offers the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful natural parks, medieval villages, coves and beaches of the Costa Brava from the sky. Back on the ground there is also a chill out social club to catch up with other flying enthusiasts in a relaxed setting.

Ctra de Pals a Torroella de Montgrí Km 4
17257 Torroella de Montgrí
+34 619 709 026


Aiguablava Dive Centre

Aiguablava Dive Centre provides access to exceptional dive sites, considered some of the best on the Costa Brava. With 15 years’ experience, it provides an ideal place to learn scuba diving, do a specialist course or to continue to train.

Ctra Begur-Aiguablava Km 3,6
17255 Begur
+34 607 599 336


Kayaking Costa Brava, L’Escala

Kayaking Costa Brava is a company dedicated exclusively to sea kayaking activities. It has centres in several areas of the Costa Brava and offers numerous guided kayak tour options along the most captivating and spectacular parts of the coast as well as courses for all abilities.

C/Enric Serra 42
17130 L’Escala
+34 972 773 806


Golf Clubs

PGA Catalunya, Caldes de Malavella

Located just outside the quiet town of Caldes de Malvella and only a few kilometres from Girona airport, this fantastic course is a test for all standards due to the fact that every hole can be played from five different tees. With its undulating fairways, beautiful green fir trees, abundance of purple heather and large number of lakes, this course is a truly wonderful golfing experience for players of all levels.

Ctra N-II Km 701
17455 Caldes de Malavella
+34 972 472 577


Empordà Golf Resort, Gualta

The Empordà Golf Resort, located in the one of the most beautiful parts of the Costa Brava, enjoys a privileged location just 15 minutes from the best beaches on the Costa Brava. The course offers a total of 36 holes divided into two separate 18-hole courses. The course was designed by Robert von Hagge who took full advantage of the natural beauty of the setting itself.

Ctra de Torroella de Montgrí a Pals Km 345
17257 Gualta
+34 972 760 450


Golf Platja de Pals

Located on the farmland of Arenals de Mar, Golf Platja de Pals is considered one of the finest in Spain due to its design and construction, and it has been the venue of numerous international competitions. This British-style 18-hole course is the oldest on the Costa Brava and its beautiful setting and proximity to the sea inspire enthusiasm in all types of players, from beginners to experts.

Camí del Golf 64
17256 Pals
+34 972 667 739


Golf d’Aro, Platja d’Aro)

Designed by Ramon Espinosa and opened in 1992, the course at Golf d’Aro sits in the Gavarres mountains, 300 metres above the tourist resort of Platja d’Aro, overlooking the Costa Brava coastline. Encircled by a mix of pine, oak and olive trees, the course is routed along and over some deep ravines, making it as spectacular as it is challenging.

Urb Mas Nou s/n
17250 Platja d’Aro
+34 972 81 67 27


TorreMirona Golf Club, Navata

This 18-hole golf course is set in beautiful countryside with challenging greens and gently undulating fairways with fantastic views of the nearby Pyrenees.

Ctra N-260 Km 46
17744 Navata
+34 972 553 737


City Sights

Greco-Roman Site of Empúries

The Greco-Roman site of Empúries is one of the most important archaelogical sites in Spain. The vast and amazingly detailed remains of what was once a thriving Greek (and later Roman) town are located just outside the seaside town of L’Escala. The mosaic floors and the remains of the amphitheatre, forum and various Roman villas give you a real sense of what life here might have been like in days of yore. Tours are offered in several languages.

C/Puig i Cadafalch s/n
17130 Empúries-L’Escala
+34 972 770 208


House-Museum Salvador Dalí, Cadaqués

The Portlligat House-Museum was Salvador Dalí’s only fixed abode from 1930, the place where he lived and worked until 1982 when, on his wife Gala’s death, he took up residence at Púbol Castle. Reservations must be made in advance.

17499 Cadaqués
+972 251 015


Cap Roig Botanical Gardens

Just below the hilltop castle in Palafrugell, these magical terraced gardens cascade down to the beach. The elegant steps are lined with tall cypresses and in the summer, there’s the most gorgeous scent of oleander and yellow sage.

Jardí Botànic de Cap Roig
Camí del Rus s/n
17210 Calella de Palfrugell
+34 972 614 582

Girona Cathedral and Jewish Quarter

The Catedral de Santa Maria de Girona was built between the 11th and 18th centuries. It boasts Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque architecture and Spain’s largest nave. The Jewish Quarter in Girona is one of the best preserved in Europe. It is located just beside the Cathedral and is an area of narrow streets with ancient steps and cobblestones.

Plaça de la Catedral
17004 Girona
+34 972 215 814


Dalí Theatre-Museum

Costa Brava & Girona (City Sights) Dali Theatre Museum

The Dalí Theatre-Museum occupies the building of the former Municipal Theatre, a 19th Century building which was destroyed at the end of the Spanish Civil War. Surreal and theatrical, this is where you will find the Mae West room, complete with “lips” sofa, and a version of Michelangelo’s David, created from car tyres.

Plaça Gala-Salvador Dalí 5
17600 Figueres
+34 972 677 500