More Spain driving advice

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Aug 22nd, 2003, 10:41 AM
  #1
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More Spain driving advice

Hello again,
Only 2 weeks before we leave for Barcelona and the Costa Brava, and this site has been wonderful!
Our final itinerary is below, any comments welcome, but my specific question is about the drive between Aiguablava and Cardona. The map services online (mapquest and michelin) recommend driving back south toward Barcelona before veering off to Cardona. Anyone agree or disagree with this approach? Will we be missing good mountain scenery if we do it this way? Thanks in advance!

arrive Paris 9/6
take easyjet to Barcelona 9/7
Staying at Hotel Colon until 9/10
9/10 driving up the coast to stay at the parador at Aiguablava
9/11 drive to parador at Cardona 9/12 back to Barcelona
9/13 Back to Paris
9/14 back to nyc

(btw, the detour through paris is not by design, but out of convenience, my boyfriend has a conference in paris just before we leave)

Thanks again.

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Aug 22nd, 2003, 02:00 PM
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hi sls15,
From Aiguablava (my very favorite spot on the Costa Brava!), I'd go back through La Bisbal to Girona on the C66, then...
the speediest, easiest route to Cardona would be down the autoroute, A7/E15, to the C58 at Manresa, then up, just as michelin and mapquest have told you.
There's a "back" way through the foothills of Montseny park and Ripoll, but since you'll only be in Cardona for 1 night, you'll want to arrive there asap so as to get the most out of your one night stay at the parador.

Just a question:
Is there a particular special reason why you're driving so far west to Cardona for only 1 night rather than staying an extra night at the Aiguablava Parador to explore more of this most scenic part of the Costa Brava?
You'll fall in love with the parador's views!
The little calas around there of Sa Tuna, Sa Riera, Aiguafredda and Llafranc are all wonderful, all worth a visit plus the prosperous city of Girona itself. We spent 4 nights there last summer and found so much to keep us busy.
Just a thought...

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Aug 22nd, 2003, 02:02 PM
  #3
 
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correction!
That back route would be on the C25 through the Montseny park foothills and VIC, not Ripoll (which is too far up). But I still wouldn't take either so as to maximize your stay in Cardona.
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Aug 22nd, 2003, 02:17 PM
  #4
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Thanks once again Maribel. We originally wanted to stay two nights at Aiguablava, but only one night was available. So we decided to try another parador, and Cardona looks very interesting...a medieval fortress in the mountains. We thought it would be an interesting contrast. But, I will admit that since booking, I have begun to second guess that stop.
Would you recommend cancelling that night and staging on the coast, or perhaps in Girona? I'm torn...
Thanks again for all of your help, your advice has been wonderful!
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Aug 22nd, 2003, 03:30 PM
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sls15,
I suspected that was the reason! Because of its truly fantastic setting, that Parador is sooooo hard to book! Yes, I actually would highly recommend that you stay somewhere else in the vicinity for that second night. You'll truly love this area, I'm sure, and I think you'll find it hard to tear yourselves away from those sea vistas. You could stay then in the city of Girona, but it doesn't have any particularly stunning hotels. The Ultonia is handy, the Bellmiral is a quaint B&B in the Call, the ancient Jewish quarter, and CathyM discovered this one, an aparthotel across from the Bellmiral:
www.historic.go.to Try to find the "Girona, Spain" thread with the text search and see what CathyM and Carolyn have to say about their stay, and Carolyn's restaurant reco.

Or you could just stay put in the Aiguablava area and soak in those unforgettable sea scapes another night. We could hardly drag ourselves away. The El Far de Sant Sebastiá high above the hill at the lighthouse in Llafranc has sensational views and is very romantic. www.elfar.net

Look at the following collections-I'll bet you'll find something here in the Girona province either inland in the Baix Empordá or on the coast to tempt you:
www.innsofspain.com
www.rusticae.com
www.secretplaces.com
www.lugaresdivinos.com
www.specialplacestostay.com
(for the Hotel Llevant in Llafranc and the Can Fabrica in the countryside)

And have a great trip!
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Aug 29th, 2003, 04:10 AM
  #6
Ian
 
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sls15

Empuries is a wonderful spot - Greek & Roman ruins on one site. You literally walk on broken pottery & tiles.

Other possible stops - La Brisbal D'Emporda - for pottery. You'll drive along the main street on your way to the coast & it is lined with pottery shops.

Just past La Brisbal, turn left & drive 1 km & visit the medieval village of Peretallada, with stone roads, a stone moat etc.

see http://tourism.catalonia.net/

click on routes: Province of Girona/Costa Brava

BTW: It is easy driving from Barcelona & the toll roads are cheap & not a problem.

Ian
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