Holidays on the Mediterranean Sea are among the most popular for us British tourists, and the town of Lloret de Mar in Catalonia, Spain is one of the most frequented resorts. As with most destinations on the Mediterranean, it is the beaches that attract the visitors, along with the fantastic weather and the bustling nightlife. Most hotels here have their own beaches and if you just want to kick back and enjoy the sun, sand and relaxed pace of life then Lloret de Mar is a great choice of destination. It is, however, also perfectly situated for taking day trips to some of Spain’s classic cities and charming towns. Here are our top 5 day trips from Lloret de Mar.
This beautiful medieval town is the only one on the Catalan coast that still has its old defensive wall surrounding it. Located above the Platja Gran beach, it was originally built as a defensive structure to protect the area against pirates that used to rule the waters in this region. Today, it stands as one of the most important medieval towns in the province. There are some beautiful ancient houses here and even a Roman villa that dates back to the 4th century. This town is very pleasant to spend a morning wandering around and at only 11km from Lloret de Mar it is easy to get to without any long journeys.
Again only a short distance from Lloret de Mar, Girona is a fabulous city to visit. Buzzing with an energetic vibe this historic city has all the charm of many of the larger and more famous cities in Spain. There are some wonderful museums to visit but even just wandering through the old town marvelling at the buildings and the beautiful town squares is a delightful way to spend a morning or an afternoon. There are some great restaurants here and the city hosts some very popular cultural events throughout the year too, such as the Girona Temps de Flors (when the flowers are in season). Make sure you find out if there is something on when you plan to visit.
Considered the gateway to the Costa Brava, Blanes, only 5km from Lloret de Mar, is a hive of activity. If you enjoy a visit to a botanical garden, Marimurtra Gardens, home to 3000 plant species, should definitely be on your agenda. If you are here in July make sure you head to Blanes for the International Fireworks Competition, one of the most prestigious ones in Europe.
Located right on the French border, Figueres is often referred to as the entrance to Catalonia. A day trip to this pretty town could see you visiting the Dali Theatre-Museum, where, apart from many of his most famous works, you can visit this artist’s tomb situated below the main floor of the house. There is the wonderful Castle of Sant Ferran, built in 1743, and if you are lucky enough you might even catch one of the famous fairs held in the town throughout the year.
Believed to be one of the most important mountains in Catalonia, Montserrat Massif is an hour and half from Lloret de Mar. Despite the length of the journey, this mountain is definitely worth the effort. At the Monastery and the museum you can find out about all the legends associated with the mountain and the museum also includes works by El Greco, Picasso and Dali. If you haven’t got you own car, take one of the day trips organised by many of the hotels in Lloret de Mar.
How to Get There: Lloret de Mar
The closest airport to Lloret de Mar is Barcelona El Prat, which is a busy airport serving flights from all of the major European cities, including Paris, Berlin, Madrid and Rome. Getting from Barcelona to Lloret de Mar is easy and if you book an airport shuttle with Shuttle Direct you will be whisked away to your accommodation with a reliable driver who provides a professional and efficient service. The journey is 90km but, because of the excellent roads, the drive from Barcelona to Lloret de Mar takes only just over an hour, meaning you can be in your hotel in double quick time once you arrive at the airport.
Where to Stay
Hostel Magnolia – The friendly family-run Hostel Magnolia is only 300m from the beach and with an outdoor pool and lovely terraced area, this is the perfect budget option in Lloret de Mar. Situated in a quiet area of town, the lively bars and restaurants are only a 10 minute walk away. Rooms have free Wi-Fi and flat screen TVs, and are simple but comfortable with private bathrooms. Breakfast and dinners are served at the restaurant and you can dine al fresco on the patio.
Aparthotel Costa Encantada – Set in beautiful grounds in the residential part of the resort known as Fenals, Aparthotel Costa Encantada has a stunning outdoor pool and a lovely terrace. This mid range accommodation option in Lloret de Mar provides both rooms and apartments that all come with balcony, private bathroom and satellite TV. If you choose to stay in an apartment you will have your own lounge area, kitchenette and fridge.
There is a heated indoor pool, sauna and gym, plus an excellent restaurant, snack bar and pizzeria.
Guitart Monterrey – If you want to splash out on your stay in Lloret de Mar, the Guitart Monterrey, set in extensive exotic gardens is the ideal option. With its own private beach, stunning views and outdoor pools, this hotel is a real treat. Elegant rooms are air-conditioned and some have balconies with views of either the sea or the gardens. Free Wi-Fi and satellite TV come as standard and there is a beautiful spa with Turkish baths, hot tub and a range of treatments, available at an extra cost.
Three restaurants include one that serves a buffet and another more gourmet establishment that serves Catalan favourites. A poolside bar provides fun entertainment for kids while adults will love the Gran Casino Costa Brava, which is set in the gardens.