The last time I had been here was during an incredibly hot summer, back when I was 16 I think. I remember the heat because it was almost impossible to walk around before the sunset. I wasn’t driving at that time – of course – and I didn’t remember the road to get here.
From Barcelona it’s just over 2 hours (and that makes it a hot spot for weekenders); the last length of the journey is a pretty high and winding road (especially if your driving boyfriend suffers vertigo!), before you start your descend to the bay. Once at the bottom, you get rewarded with one of the most charming white fishing villages of Costa Brava, in the Alt Empordá region: Cadaqués. Whilst a lot of the Costa Brava villages/towns have been taken over by mass tourism, Cadaqués still retains its old charm: white steep and narrow alleys, lovely bars and restaurants set in the most scenic corners, beautiful views of the crystal blue water, picture-framed water front in a stunning location. An overall sense of tranquility and mellowness pervades this pocket-sized town and you will get it as soon as you step in.
In the past, Cadaqués had been frequently chosen by many writes, painters, poets and artists in general as a holiday spot or as a place to have a second home. Dalí, Picasso, Miro’, Magritte, Lorca and Breton just to name a few. And you can’t really blame them. Dalí is particularly celebrated in the area (his former house in Port Lligat – not far from Cadaqués – deserves a visit) so keep you eyes open to spot his face around town.
I was there last April, long before the crowds started to take over – as every summer – this tiny village of just over 2,500 people, with prices sky-rocketing and making it a mission impossible to find a not overpriced accommodation. But in April (still with a strong Tramuntana wind), it was perfect as it was: a quiet fishing village with few people around enjoying the serenity of such a gorgeous place. Spend a few hours wandering its narrow streets, walking the sea promenade and nosing in the few open shops.
Weather was still far too cold for a swim (unless you are used to swim in the North Sea, I suppose) but if you are happy with walking and enjoying a clara in an outdoor sun-soaked terrace facing the sea… well, then come in April (or at least no later than June)! 🙂 You will beat the crowds and once there you will soon understand how nice is to be almost on your own in such a magical town.
I can’t recommend any place to eat because we chose to have a jamón y queso sandwich-to-go and sit by the sea to enjoy the awesome scenery… can’t really blame me!
If you have come to Cadaqués, you may have already stopped at Figueres, a nice town home to the stunning and unique Salvador Dali Theatre Museum. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s definitely worth a trip on his own, so have a look at my post on Girona & Figueres!
I left Cadaqués with true beauty in my eyes: the white fishing village, set amidst the darkness of the surrounding mountains in the cerulean of a Spring windy day soaking up in the blue-green water is possibly the best postcard to bring back home.