Discovering Lloret de Mar – Nature, activity, history and outdoor life
Lloret de Mar is the region’s largest holiday resort and it helped put the north east of Spain on the tourist map in the 1960s. These days the area is attracting a more upmarket and discerning crowd than it has in the past. Away from the hotels and busy seafront the hills around the resort is dotted with luxury villas with many boasting breathtaking sea views and there are new exciting restaurants and hotels opening up every year.
Activities and nature
The area surrounding Lloret de Mar is wild and rugged as the name ‘Costa Brava’ indicates. The hills offer great hiking opportunities, best appreciated off season due to the high temperatures in summer. Many coves and inlets with clear, turquoise waters are only accessible by boat. There’s also diving, kayaking and sailing as well as a host of other water sports where you can discover the coves. South from Lloret de Mar’s main beach you find Fenals, arguably one of the most stunning stretches of coastal path in the region, renowned for its orange-pink rock and bays hemmed in by rocks and promontories. Lloret de Mar also has plenty of golf courses nearby including Santa Cristina d’Aro golf course and Club de Golf Angel de Lloret.
History, tradition and architecture
Lloret de Mar dates back to the 3rd Century BC so it is rich in history. The town is also home to some wonderful Modernista architecture, the style made famous by GaudÍ at the turn of the 20th Century. Given that Lloret de Mar was formerly a fishermen’s village, everything used to revolve around the harbour. During the late 19th Century many youngsters chose to discover their fortune in the New World (mainly Cuba) rather than face a life of hard work and little money as fishermen. They would return with pockets full of gold. Then, wanting to flaunt their newly-acquired wealth, the Indianos – as they became known – commissioned up-and-coming architects to build huge, extravagant mansions in what then became known as Modernista style, typically adorned with stained glass and nature motifs.
A clear example of this style is the Modernista cemetery, designed by the renowned Catalan architect Puig i Cadafalch. Other buildings in the town that also bear Modernista hallmarks include the parish rectory, the Chapel of the Most Holy and the Chapel of the Baptistery.
In contrast to the spectacular Modernista buildings, you find the quaint buildings of Lloret de Mar Old Town. The narrow streets, parallel to the sea front, are full of traditional houses – a reminder that people have been living and working there for hundreds of years. The names of the streets such as Carrer dels Pescadors (fishermen) Carrer de les Vídues i de les Donzelles (widows and maidens) indicate the lives of those living in the town in a time gone by.
There are numerous exceptional beaches in and around Lloret de Mar, offering crystalline shallow waters and many with the Blue Flag certification. They include the emblematic Santa Cristina beach and the idyllic Cala Boadella, often cited as one of the best beaches on the Costa Brava. Many beaches offer leisure activities, such as water skiing, paddle surfing and kayaking as well as lively chiringuitos (beach bars).
Beaches and coves in the area include:
- Lloret de Mar beach
- Fenals beach
- Cala Boadella
- Santa Cristina beach
- Treumal beach
- Canyelles beach
- Sa Caleta
- Cala Morisca
- Cala Gran
- Cala Tortuga
- Cala d’en Trons
- Cala dels Frares
- Cala Banys
Away from the beaches Lloret de Mar also boasts numerous cultural offerings. There is the Maritime Museum just off the seafront promenade and the Castell de San Joan that dates back to the 11th Century and has been fully restored and now serves as a heritage centre. The Santa Clotilde Gardens are a must-see. Set atop a cliff, they were designed by Nicolau Rubió i Tudurí at the end of the 20th Century in Italian Renaissance style and sweep down to the sea.
Other cultural highlights in the town include:
- Parish Church of Sant Romà
- Angel monument
- Iberian settlements at Puig de Castellet
- Iberian settlements at Montbarbat
- Sanctuary of Sant Pere del Bosc
- Mare de Déu de Gràcia
- Chapel of Les Alegries
- Chapel of Sant Quirze
- Monument to the Fisherman’s Wife
- Chapel of Santa Cristina
Lucas Fox is currently offering an exceptional New Development on Lloret de Mar’s Passeig Maritím. Find out more here.