need i say more? hot pink lips! hello!!!
COSTA BRAVA – what’s not to AMOR about it?
i was so excited to return to Spain and especially Costa Brava. i adore the fact that it’s a wild coastline, not commercialized like France’s. i adore that it’s filled with little medieval villages dotting the region. i adore its history. i adore that it is part of the proud Catalonian culture. i adore its local seafood fare. i ADORE! here’s more reasons…
let’s start with this. the region begins at Barcelona. one of my favorite places. i don’t think i could tire of it. i arrived a day & a half before my Costa Brava tour to get a small taste of the best of Barcelona and SI, did i!
out at a club in Barca just like the locals do, SI SI
maybe you know this, maybe you don’t. i’m a seaside girl. so…Costa Brava speaks to me when it comes to the sea!
HOLA. seaside – love it!
i also love the lore of Costa Brava. so much history in so many ways. part of their history is tied to piracy. i’m infatuated with pirates so visiting this region and playing pirate for the afternoon was my dream!
c’mon say ARG! i’m commandeering this boat.
but really…who couldn’t love this awesome house i stayed in right on the ocean in Cadaques?! i mean WOW!
that’s right! gorgeous seaside villa. i’m seriously in LOVE!
OR how about a sail around the coast of Cap de Creus on Sant Isidre – a charter fishing vessel that is stunning!
how about visiting a town with a really cool mayor? Cadaques may have the *best* mayor in the whole world. not only is he an amazing tour guide but also a gracious host!
MAYOR = back & center. anyone who can handle a bunch of bloggers is A-OK in my book!
NOW! let’s be serious for a moment. not that the Mayor of Cadaques isn’t!! how about the spirits of Costa Brava?! that’s right. i’m talking local libations.
wine, cava, beer – all locally sourced. i endorse this 100%
OK. i do sometimes fancy myself a princess. c’mon let me believe for a minute. Charming Villas did. so how would like to stay in a castle in a medieval village?
the biggest structure there in the village of St. Mori is the CASTLE. i thought you’d like that!
when you stay in these amazing villas (or a castle :P) you can bring in a chef to make you unbelievable local fare. we did! and i even helped (HAHAHA)
BUT i have to say one of the most fun things about visiting Costa Brava was going to Dali’s house which is now a museum. what an interesting perverted dude. i can appreciate his eccentric side. i can see how he was inspired by his surroundings. inspirational indeed.
channeling my inner Dali!
OK OK but you know it’s Spain. they are not all perverted. they repent. they go to gorgeous churches! i went in. i came out. my skin didn’t burn off! whew!!
beautiful cathedrals anyone could amor!
so what of the food out and about?! this is a top priority for LOLA, as we all know. well, i was taken to the #2 restaurant in the world! El Celler de Can Roca. all i can say is AHHMAZING!!
a tour and a tasting. so lucky! so yummy.
and about those medieval villages…i’m sure you wanna see. well you have to wrap winding roads to get to them but that makes the reward so much sweeter! like this vista…
beautiful Besalu! you catch my drift?!
tell me who couldn’t be drawn to these beaches and coastline? i love sunshine & sand so Costa Brava is the perfect place for LOLA.
YES! the beaches!!!
ALL of the food was so fantastic in Costa Brava. so fresh. so local. one of my favorite meals out was at La Calendula. they use herbs & flowers in everything they make. here is MINT RISOTTO, WHITE ASPARAGUS WITH NASTURTIUM FLOWERS MAYONNAISE & ELDERFLOWER SORBET. all so good and actually quite light!
look at this delicious food! doesn’t i kinda make your mouth water?!
our final house with Charming Villas was in Besalu. it was this charming & incredible 18th century farmhouse. i could have stayed here a long, long time. one of my favorite features of this villa was the stunning pool & outdoor areas. oh, and the on site caretakers who were wonderful!
if it looks like it’s out a movie set then you have the right idea!
i cannot forget to mention PAELLA! this is one of my favorite Spanish dishes and i was treated to it several times. SO LUCKY!
AND last, but certainly not least, THESE PEOPLE! as i always say, one of my favorite things about traveling is meeting new people. although i knew a few of these folks on the Costa Brava trip, i only knew Leah & Alex well. you know it’s a good mix when you spend most of your time laughing! GRACIAS for being amazing humans.
what a group of people! (Leah & Mariana are not in this shot but are in the count of cool peeps)
NOW for my MINUS 1
the awful cold winds that can affect Costa Brava called TRAMUNTANA. no gracias!
if it looks cold, it’s because it was!
from Cadaques website:
During the winter months, Cadaqués and the north of Costa Brava can be subjected to Tramuntana, an impressive wind the blows off the Pyrenees in much the same way as the Mistral blows in France.
Tramuntana is a katabatic wind, which is a wind that blows off a mountain system due to the cool denser air at altitude in the mountains sinking, and funneling off into the coast. If you are looking for a relaxing beach holiday, then best to avoid Tramuntana, as this can whip things up. You should be fine in the summer months.
This is how Costa Brava, which translates as “Wild Coast” gets its name. You can be out walking in the Cap de Creus, and the Med will literally look like it is boiling. Not for the faint hearted, but it will certainly blow away the cobwebs!
DESPITE BEING COLD, MY TIME IN COSTA BRAVA WAS PICTURE PERFECT!
thank you Charming Villas for inviting me to come find more reasons to fall in love with Costa Brava.
PS – i cannot take all the photo credit. several are from Festivalxplorer & Leah Travels as well as Charming Villas!