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Leaving for Spain in a week - Barcelona and Costa Brava help needed

Leaving for Spain in a week - Barcelona and Costa Brava help needed

Old Sep 1st, 2009, 11:21 AM
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Leaving for Spain in a week - Barcelona and Costa Brava help needed

I'm leaving on Monday for 11 days in Spain - Barcelona, Costa Brava and Madrid. We've finally finalized hotels and decided on our must see list. I've been to Madrid before so I'm not worried about that leg of the trip, but I'm starting to have anxiety over our Costa Brava portion of the trip and where we're going to eat in Barcelona. We're 20/30 somethings from NYC with crazy jobs so we're trying not to pack too much into our days. We've left the Costa Brava intentionally somewhat unstructured, other than a few must sees like the Dali Museums, Pals, Girona and Begur, to allow for time to leisurely enjoy the cost and its offerings; but the closer we get to the trip, the more my OCD is kicking in. In an effort to calm my nerves and not drive my boyfriend nuts wandering the city and the coast in search of food, I would really appreciate any suggestions you all can offer with respect to the following:

* reasonably priced, non touristy, places to eat in Barcelona and the Costa Brava. We'll be in Cadaques for one night and then at the Castell d'Emporda in La Bisbal which I think is not too far from Girona; and

* off-the-beaten path places to visit in the Costa Brava - we were hoping to find some quiet beaches/coves not too overrun with high-rise hotels and the like.

Many thanks!
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 11:37 AM
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Barcelona is a big city, what part of Barcelona are you staying in?
take a look at:
http://www.maribelsguides.com/
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 11:50 AM
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How are you planning on exploring the Costa Brava? Castell d'Emporda has its own restaurant. It's east of Girona, on the way to Begur, where there are no high-rise hotels or apartments.
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 12:05 PM
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There's a bunch of really great beaches in the Costa Brava ranging from traditional fishing villages to more touristy, here's some suggestions (with photos) from a local travel writer:

http://www.ruba.com/guide/Josep_Pami...aches_in_Spain

Port de la Selva and Begur look particularly relaxing and "cute" Enjoy your trip!
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 12:52 PM
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You might find some tips here, esp. on restaurants:

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...osta-brava.cfm
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 01:11 PM
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In Barcelona I LOVE Asador de Aranda - I think there are two locations. They are probably a bit touristy but I love the roast suckling pig and baby lamb - definately not for vegetarians! "Wandering in search of food" - if my travel partner doesn't like wandering and reading the menus in order to find the perfect restaurant, they are not the travel partner for me! Seriously, have a great trip - I love the food of Spain and usually it is not easily found here in the US.
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 01:25 PM
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Reasonably priced in Barcelona:

Cerveseria Catalana, 236 Carrer de Mallorca in the Eixample.

Any of the counter places in the Boqueria Market on the Ramblas.
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 03:09 PM
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Thanks so much for the responses. I've added the links to favorites and will check them all out this evening.

Danon - In Barcelona we're staying in an apartment near Plaza Catalunya. From what I can tell it doesn't seem to be the "coolest" of places but seems like we should be able to walk or train it to wherever we need to go. As I mentioned, we're from NYC so don't mind neighborhood hopping for food - I just like to have a few options in mind just in case. I've downloaded Maribel's guide and it looks like it's full of great recommendations. Thanks!

Robert2533 - We're renting a car at the airport in Barcelona and will be driving around the Costa Brava. Since Cadaques is the furthest away, we chose it as our first stop so we can enjoy the coastal views on the way up and maybe make a few stops on the way. Any suggestions. We're spending the second two nights in La Bisbal, so on the way back from Cadaques, it's the Dali house museum, Figueres and then perhaps Girona if we can fit it in. Begur, Pals and the nearby beaches look amazing so I'd like to fit those into our last day in the region.

I'd love to hear thoughts on anything we're missing, and particularly food options in/around the Costa Brava. We figure one night at the hotel, but the rest is wide open. Thanks again!
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Old Sep 1st, 2009, 04:35 PM
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The area around Begur is beautiful, but can be bit too busy at times. It's best off season.

I actually prefer the interior, from Besalu to Olot and the Garrotxa valley, down to Vic. There is a village in the mountains with spectacular views to the south called Tavertet that we found very interesting and well worth the drive.

If you are going to be in Figueres at lunch time, then you should stop at the Hotel Empordà (www.hotelemporda.com), as recommended in Maribel's Guide to Barcelona. The food is very good. The restaurant is open for lunch from 12:45 to 15:45.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2009, 08:49 AM
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At the bottom of the hill from Begur is playa riera, a nice beach with a few restaurants. From riera, there's a coastal trail from the left side of the beach as you face the water that passes a beautiful nudist beach (playa roja) on the way to a broad sand beach with more restaurants (playa roca). About a 20 minute walk, very pretty. We stayed at the Aiguaclara in Begur and loved it. Nice restaurant there too. Pals is pretty neat too. Have a nice trip!
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