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Catalan Coastal Self-Guided Walk

9 days
from
$2,279 NZD
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5 / 5 from 1 review
Walking & Trekking
Suitable for:
Age 8+
Activity level:
Leisurely / Moderate
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Trip code: 
W08CL
Way to Travel:
Self-Guided Holidays
Activity:
Self-Guided Walking
Min age:
8

Mainly coastal walking also taking in sweeping green valleys, pretty wine villages, hidden white hamlets and colourful fishing harbours. 

This eight-night, self-guided walking holiday begins and ends in the pretty inland village of Garriguella. Once you commence walking around the peninsula, the sea is your constant companion, offering magical views from the high walking trails that lead you through the reserve. The Natural Park protects cork oak, pine woods, bright orange prickly pear, vineyards and terraces of olive groves, all surrounded by magnificent coastal cliffs where shearwaters and swifts wheel on the breeze. 

Highlights

  • Delightful villages, bijou beaches, craggy coves and rocky bays
  • Rich history: Roman ruins, sun-kissed castles and prehistoric dolmens
  • Sea views almost all week from fabulous, high walking trails
  • Cobbled streets, medieval archways, fishermen's huts-turned-restaurants
  • Cap de Creus peninsula, one of the largest protected Natural Parks

Key information

  • 8 Nights , Hotel-to-hotel
  • All continental breakfast and 4 evening meals
  • Route notes and maps provided 
  • Luggage transfers between hotels 
  • Walking transfers
  • Countries visited: Spain

What's included

  • All continental breakfast and 4 evening meals
  • Route notes and maps provided 
  • Luggage transfers between hotels 
  • Walking transfers

What's not included

  • Visas and vaccinations
  • Travel insurance
  • Single supplements
Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for private group trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

4

Days of Walking & Trekking
Terrain:

Walks on this holiday are mainly on country paths and tracks. Some sections are rocky and uneven so good supportive footwear is essential, and walking poles recommended.

Day by day breakdown
Day 214.0km/9.0miles
Day 414.0km/9.0miles
Day 616.0km/10.0miles
Day 813.0km/8.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Garriguella
to
Garriguella
  • Day 1

    Arrive in Garriguella

    Explore the pretty streets of Garriguella before your evening meal. (Staying at Vilamont Spa Hotel)

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Garriguella to El Port De La Selva

    After a 10-minute transfer to Pau, enjoy panoramic coastal views south as you ascend to Sant Onofre, a rocky 14th century chapel clinging to the hillside, then crest the peninsula at Castell de Sant Salvador, once a refuge from pirates and now a sunkissed crumbling ruin in a perfect spot for picnics! Descend past the 13th century Sant Pere de Rodes abbey, before the Vall river leads to the sea. Dine on the waterfront overlooking the picturesque natural harbour. (Staying at Hotel Porto Cristo)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    At El Port De La Selva

    Perhaps use the hotel spa today (payable locally) or stroll along the waterfront; this is the only working harbour on the peninsula, where fishermen still land their catch. We also include directions for a 10.5km or 12.5km walk to the peaceful mediaeval village of la Selva de Mar, where you can enjoy a shady lunch in one of the terrace cafes, and some lovely views over the vines. (Staying at Hotel Porto Cristo)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 4

    El Port De La Selva to Cadaques

    Heading east, you walk through the heart of the Natural Park where neptune grass, shy orchids and bright yellow saxifrage cover the hillsides. Evidence of ancient settlements in the shape of dolmens appear at Cista dels Bufadors along the trail, before the white houses of Cadaques appear below you. it's a short stroll along the harbour to your hotel, complete with pool and private beach. (Staying at Hotel Playa Sol)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    At Cadaques

    Salvador Dali lived a short walk from Cadaques, and you can make an appointment to visit his quirky house if you wish. The pretty harbour, perfect light and relaxing atmosphere has made Cadaques popular with artists for decades; many art galleries and curio shops line the waterfront, and the narrow alleyways behind are packed with chic restaurants and bars. (Staying at Hotel Playa Sol)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Cadaques to Roses

    Leaving Cadaques, you pass a rocky lighthouse outcrop and follow the southern edge of the peninsula, passing below Puig de sa Cruilla. The second half of the walk is all along the seashore, passing a plethora of pretty coves and bays, perfect for relaxing or swimming. (Staying at Hotel Almadraba Park)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 7

    At Roses

    It will be hard to leave the hotel today; its location is so perfect! Set just above a sheltered beach, with access via steps, it has tennis courts and landscaped gardens shaded by tall pines, not to mention a pool with 180 degree views and a tempting poolside bar. if you do explore, the centre of Roses has the remains of the 16th century Trinitat Castle, a star-shaped redoubt, and the ruined ciutadela, an impressive fortress from Greek and Roman times embellished by Carlos V in the 16th century. (Staying at Hotel Almadraba Park)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 8

    Roses to Mas Palou/Garriguella

    You ascend from Roses to a natural balcony, the Pla de les Gates, passing a clutch of dolmens in la Muntanyeta. After descending to the verdant plain below, your walk then takes you on country tracks through apple orchards and sunflower fields, with the high Muntanyes de Verdera as a backdrop, and ends in the wine village of Mas Palou. From here we transfer you (15 minutes) to your hotel in nearby Garriguella. (Staying at Vilamont Spa Hotel, Breakfast at hotel and evening meal in local restaurant)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 9

    Leave Garriguella

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Vaccinations

Spain

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All continental breakfasts and 6 evening meals.

Traditional Spanish food such as paella, chorizo and albondigas (meatballs) can be found on just about every menu in Catalunya, but do
not forget to try the regional specialities too. Local cuisine features plenty of fish, including world-renowned anchovies from L’Escala, and botifarras (black pudding) from the mountains. A good starter might be Pan Catalán (pa amb tomàquet), this is lightly toasted bread, drizzled with olive oil and topped with tomatoes and garlic. Thanks to its geography, the region has developed “Sea and Mountain” - mar y muntana cuisine, combining chicken with lobster, or rabbit with prawns. Fruits are used as well, such as roasted chicken and figs, or pheasant and grapes.

Dishes are rich and hearty, however, it is not just a meat-based cuisine, and there are plenty of vegetable options. Catalan dishes also rely heavily on sauces: Sofrito is an onion and tomato sauce, Picada is made from dried fruits, nuts and herbs, Sanfaina is a sauce of fried peppers, aubergines, onions and tomatoes and Romesco is made with tomatoes, peppers, nuts and garlic. Most menus are written in both Castilian and Catalan and sometimes in English too, but you may find a pocket
dictionary useful in the more remote places.

 

Weather

In April, May and September expect temperatures to average between 17ºC and 22ºC with high chance of rain showers though it could also be simply partly cloudy and more temperate. Temperatures between June and August tend to be higher, with averages between 25ºC and 29ºC, and highs reaching up to 33ºC. Expect a combination of sun, showers and clouds all year round.

Is this trip for you?

This is a self-guided tour, as such there will be no group or tour leader and you are free to complete the walks at your own pace. Please bear in mind that although this is a self-guided holiday, the atmosphere in the hotels tends to be quite social and they will sometimes place walkers together at breakfast and dinner. We have suggested that 8yrs is the minimum age for this trip, but as it is self-guided and you will be leading your own family we will ultimately leave this decision up to you.

This holiday provides spectacular, yet relaxed walking and is perfect for people wanting to fit as much as possible into a short holiday. The route takes in the winding, sandy paths of mainland Spain's loveliest coast experiencing frequent glimpses of dazzling aquamarine seas through the umbrella pines, as well as heading inland to discover the truly unspoilt landscape of the Catalan countryside. This is a wonderful region for bird and plant life. Over a third of the countryside is now protected under a government scheme to preserve natural habitats, which means a staggering variety of rare species: golden orioles, booted eagles, purple-shot copper butterflies and colourful wild flowers. Hidden deep in the forests are stunning natural curiosities, including the 5000 year old dolmens and sparkling freshwater springs which drew the first settlers to these parts thousands of years ago.

Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for private group trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels

Your family-run hotels are perfectly situated, with three out of four on the beach. The Vilamont Spa, with pool, sits on the church square in a pretty village and the Porto Cristo is set just back from the sea, with meals enjoyed in the hotel's seafront restaurant. At the sea-front Hotel Playa Sol, in the chic and arty harbour of Cadaques, there are swimming opportunities aplenty and the Almadraba Park is a spectacular cliff-top hotel overlooking the Bay of Roses, with a panoramic swimming pool and steps to the beach.

Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for private group trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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  • Reviewed September 2018
    david worthington

    Our Catalonia adventure

    Beautiful and diverse walks through glorious countryside and yomps across some spectacular coastlines, this Catalonian coastal walk was a perfect way to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary together. We are newbies to Exodus travel and had been looking for something different and special to do with just to 2 of us. This hit the mark perfectly; the booking staff were so friendly, our tour guides so helpful nothing was too much trouble, even the route guidance was friendly (and top notch in knowing the local areas of interest from prehistoric monoliths to Salvador Dali's house ) And the hotels we visited were first rate, we feel so lucky as first timers to have landed on such a delightful experience. My only concern is how I am going to get used to not finishing a walk with a celebratory glass of the local wine with fresh tapas! The routes were just the right stretch for us between 8 to 10 miles every other day, so that you get to spend a day in your new venue exploring and mixing with the locals. We even ventured into the sea a few times including kayaking in Cadaques. One of the best holidays we've had, and hope to repeat in other exciting places.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    All the surprises! Starting and finishing in spa hotels - excellent idea, food was to die for from rustic to Michelin aspirations, the weather superb, the routes just about right for us keen novices, the staff and venues just top class.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    didn't have one, it was self guided and supported by great route notes.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do it!! and do it soon because we are telling everybody about our trip!! Don't over pack, you only stay in one place for 2 nights so can rewear evening clothes.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks!!

Dates & Prices