Written by Sally Veall,
28th March 2023

Our writer in Spain, Sally Veal, has called the Costa Brava home for a long time now. In the third part of this series on the beautiful Spanish coast, she takes us on a journey through: Palamós, Platja D’aro, Sant Feliu de Guixols and Tossa del Mar.

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Another major fishing port, Palamós, is a real working town. The bay is very large and extends from Palamós to Sant Antoní de Calonge, which is another popular place for second homes.

Palamós itself has a pretty old town which is full of shops, tapas bars and restaurants while there are many restaurants lining the beach. The hospital here serves the surrounding area and was extended a few years ago to accommodate the rising number of inhabitants.

It is a good place for late night bars and gets busy in the summer months. It is not trying to be a major tourist resort however, being authentic in its way of life with the fish auctions and fishing industry. Property is becoming more expensive with several new upmarket developments.

Expect to pay €200,000 upwards for a two bedroom apartment and double that for a good sea view. Three bedroom houses are from €470,000 and you can pay over €1 million depending on the location.

Platja D’aro

Platja D’aro

Platja D’aro

This was the first purpose-built tourist resort on the Costa Brava and today is the main shopping and nightlife zone. The main street is lined with big stores such as Mango, Massimo Dutti and Oysho. Behind it in the pedestrianised streets are smaller outlets offering clothing, shoes and jewelry.

There is a wealth of restaurants of all types including Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Italian and pubs. It is a very popular place to live these days as you can have everything you ever need on your doorstep. The beach is long and is lined with apartments, bars and restaurants. Towards the back of the town are residential areas with a variety of properties. It is just 35 minutes’ drive from Girona. There is an international school here.

The town is modern but manages to create a good atmosphere and is open all year round. For the young at heart, there is plenty to do after the sun goes down in night bars and discotheques. In the summer you can enjoy jazz on the beach on Friday nights.

The centre’s property is mainly apartments but there are some good residential areas with houses behind the main town. €205,000 an upward buys a two bedroom apartment while a three bedroom house with sea view and pool costs €770,000.

Sant Feliu de Guixols

Sant Feliu de Guixols

Sant Feliu de Guixols.

Some 20 minutes further south is the very pretty coastal town of Sant Feliu de Guixols. The pedestrianised centre is lined with bars, shops and restaurants while the promenade on the main town beach has a good chiringuito, a playground and a shade under the many trees. The town functions all year round with a big increase in population during the summer months.

There are some delightful apartments and houses on the hills surrounding the bay and all the way down to the second bay, Sant Pol, which is home to some smart hotels and seafront restaurants. The exclusive 5-star Hostal de la Gavina hotel has been welcoming celebrities for years.

There is an international school close by in Platja d’Aro, the Sunday market is excellent and for nightlife and other excitement Platja d’Aro is a few minutes’ away. Sant Feliu is mainly for families and those who want a quieter lifestyle.

You can be in Girona in 35 minutes where there is also access to the AP7 motorway. Property tends to be a little more expensive here, much of it in the exclusive areas around the town. A two-bedroom apartment in the centre starts at €168,000 with three bedroom apartments in Sant Pol costing up €2.5 million. A three-bedroom house in the hills with sea view will cost from €258,000 and in Sant Pol up to €3million.

Tossa del Mar

Tossa de Mar

Amazing Tossa de Mar.

Tossa de Mar is undoubtedly a pretty town with a castle standing proudly above the beach and sea. Its existence reveals the importance of the town in years gone by and today it remains a major tourist destination. Hiking the lovely path that winds along the coast, Cala Llevadors, provides outstanding views and is well worth the effort.

The old town is dominated by the castle and there are bars and restaurants within its sanctuary. You will also find a variety of shops in the narrow streets as well as many good eateries, especially for fish.

With 14 km of beach, you can find a small, secluded spot and enjoy the warmth on the main town beach, Platja Gran and a gentle stroll through the pine woods takes you the delightful Cola Pola beach, which is a secluded cove.

The town is a 35-minute drive from Girona airport on the A7 motorway. It’s not all that easy to get to Barcelona without a car but the best way is to take a bus to Arc de Triomph metro station.

Property prices have increased recently, currently from several million Euro for a large villa with views to €250,000 two bedroom detached house and about the same price or less for a two bedroom apartment. Expect to pay €470,000 upwards for a four bedroom house with a sea view.

We will finish our journey through the coastal region of the Costa Brava next month to visit Lloret de Mar and Blanes.

Part one: A trip along the Costa Brava

Part two: A trip along the Costa Brava

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