Advice needed - Costa Brava

Old Jun 15th, 2024, 05:58 PM
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Advice needed - Costa Brava

Hi everyone
We are a family of 4 (2 kids aged 3 and 6). We will be in Barcelona for a week from 3-10 July then to the family resort in Cambrills from 10-14 July. We have one week from 14-21 July where we are looking for something to do.

We were thinking of driving to Valencia but I am worried about the heat and I’ve read mixed reviews about it? I am also struggling to find accomm since we have left it so late to book. I need to fly to Zurich on 21 July so we can basically go anywhere in Spain for that one week. I had thought the Costa Brava coast would be nice an even just a smaller town perhaps but the issue is we would likely need to return the car in Barcelona and probably be near to there to get the flight on 21 July to Zurich. We are open to getting the train. Ideally if we could stay in the one place for the week that would be good as moving around a lot with the kids can be hard!

Thanks so much in advance for any suggestions.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 07:46 AM
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Yes, it´s very late to book your accomodations on the Costa Brava because many places fill up from summer to summer with a loyal (and wealthy) clientele from Barcelona, such as the hotels in the Begur-Aiguablava-Calella de Palafrugell-Llafranc-Tamariú area.
But you can try on booking.com to see what might still be available in those aforementioned towns for July 14-21.
Or try further south in the Palamós to S'Agaro area.

Tossa de Mar will be packed, and I would personally avoid the party-hearty town of Lloret like the plague.

I assume you've changed your plans from the Basque Country to the Costa Brava from your other thread?

I wouldn't attempt to drive the long way from the Costa Brava down to Valencia, especially with your 2 children and the summer heat.

What time does your flight from BCN to Zurich depart? If a morning flight, you will need to spend the night of July 20 within an easy drive to BCN, but perhaps you have a late afternoon flight? We need more info to help you better.

Last edited by Maribel; Jun 16th, 2024 at 08:17 AM.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 07:49 AM
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I'd head north and even over the "border" into France, lots of lovely little places
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 07:54 AM
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If you head north into "French Catalonia", be aware that the beautiful coastal town of Collioure will be wall-to-wall with visitors (been there, done that), and lodging will be at a real premium. You might head instead inland to the lovely, very pretty "cherry" village of Ceret, the "refuge" of Picasso and Matisse, with an excellent Fine Arts Museum.
We've stayed there happily (lots to see in this area) and have taken a very early morning commute to Collioure just to snag a parking space before 9 am.

Last edited by Maribel; Jun 16th, 2024 at 07:57 AM.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:06 AM
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Thank you all so much for the really useful replies. Yes we have found good international flights on frequent flyer miles into Barcelona so we will be over that way now instead of Madrid.

We have not booked flights to Zurich yet but it will be on 21 July and there are a lot of options I see from Barcelona.

We don’t need to be on a beach but I thought that would be a good option to keep the kids entertained. Kind of keen to avoid massive amounts of crowds so I’m checking some of these other smaller towns you’ve all mentioned.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:11 AM
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Now I understand that you have booked your flight using FF miles, into Barcelona and out of Barcelona to Zurich. So the Basque Country is out.

Large crowds: Tossa de Mar, on the beach

Again, check booking.com to see what is still available for your dates at any of the aforementioned locations on the Costa Brava or even inland near the coast.

Depending on the BCN to Zurich non-stop options you see, you still may need to be close to the BCN airport on July 21, although there is an Iberia non-stop option departing at 6:45 pm (1 hr. 50 min).

Just a general and current observation:
Spain received 83.5 million visitor in 2023 and given the figures in the first trimester of 2024, Spain may reach a milestone of 100 million visitors by the end of the year. This is a massive explosion of tourism. This is why advance reservations are so necessary this year.

Last edited by Maribel; Jun 16th, 2024 at 11:32 AM.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:46 AM
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What about this?

(And to clarify - our international flight into Barcelona lands on 3 July. Then we have booking already in Cambrills from 10-14 July. So we could spend the week of 3-10 July exploring north of Barcelona then spend 14-21 in Barcelona and fly to Zurich on 21 July).

Option 1:

We fly into Barcelona then take the train Perpignan (1 hour 20 min). From there we hire car and drive 30 min to Ceret. We stay there for one week. From Ceret we can visit Collioure and other neighbouring towns.

We return car to Perpignan then get train to Barcelona where we hire car and drive to Cambrils.

Option 2:

Fly into Barcelona. Take train to Girona. Spend a week there - hire a car and explore some neighbouring towns like Palamos or Pals. Drive from Girona to Cambrills.

Last edited by hawks2012; Jun 16th, 2024 at 11:57 AM.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:54 AM
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I must say we were very impressed with beautiful Cadaques and also Calella de Palafrugell when we did a driving tour into the Costa Brava area.Both lively family resorts especially the latter.Very pretty, both though roads around them are very winding and slow.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:56 AM
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I thought from your first post that you had booked the family resort in Cambrils from July 10-14? Can you move this booking to later?
Is Cambrils is changeable?
I'm confused.

Again, advance reservations are truly essential in any location on the Costa Brava in July.

Last edited by Maribel; Jun 16th, 2024 at 12:01 PM.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 12:00 PM
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Hi Maribel
Sorry for the confusion, you are right.

Our international flight into Barcelona lands on 3 July. Then we have booking already in Cambrills from 10-14 July (I don’t think we can change this). So we could spend the week of 3-10 July exploring north of Barcelona then spend 14-21 in Barcelona and fly to Zurich on 21 July. It’s really just 10-14 July that is already locked in. We thought it made more sense to do the week in Barcelona from 14-21 July because then we can easily fly from Barcelona to Zurich on 21st.
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 12:07 PM
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Now I think I understand.
So the week of 3-10 July, 7 nights, you can spend exploring north of Barcelona (with reservations!!!) but please avoid the party town of Lloret de Mar.
And don't plan on driving too far from your arrival time at BCN to your final destination, or please take a private transfer, train or bus.

And you're locked in to Cambrils from 10-14 July, and you leave Barcelona on July 21.

From July 14-21 in Barcelona, please book NOW and expect sky high prices. It's cruise ship season, very high season and prices are at their highest.
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