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Villas in Cadaques

For sun, sea and sand on the Spanish coast, Cadaques offers a pleasantly quiet, considerably less developed alternative to the more built-up resorts down the coast.

Nestled in one of the Costa Brava’s most unspoilt corners, Cadaques is a picture-perfect whitewashed fishing village with an artistic reputation and an appealingly easy-going, rather exclusive atmosphere.

If you’re in search of an idyllic contrast to the Costa Brava’s mass tourism hotspots then look no further, over the years Cadaques has been shielded from large scale tourism by the both the Cape de Creus mountains that surround it and protective zoning regulations. Which isn’t to say that Cadaques doesn’t get busy - at the height of summer the village buzzes with visitors, but somehow it rarely feels overburdened and a relaxed atmosphere tends to prevail.

Cadaques’ bohemian reputation owes much to Salvador Dali, who settled in nearby Port Lligat in 1930. Dali’s presence soon started to attract an arty crowd - drawn no doubt by the area’s dazzling light, vivid colours and natural beauty - including the likes of Mark Chagall, Henri Matisse, Marcel Duchamp, Pablo Picasso and Federico García Lorca, transforming a sleepy fishing village into a chic bohemian getaway. Dali’s house (which he stayed in until 1982) is now a museum called Casa-Museo Salvador Dalí, one of Cadaques’ biggest attractions.

Things to do in Cadaques

Cadaques is set amid some of Spain’s most breathtaking scenery, so simply soaking up the sun and taking in the sights will always be an appealing prospect. On one side you’ve got the perfect azure waters of the bay to gaze out at, on the other, a spectacular mountainous inland landscape.

The village itself is a delightful, sensitively preserved warren of narrow cobbles streets and chalk white houses – perfect for pottering around, not least because the Old Town of Cadaques is, for the most part, a car-free zone (cars can be parked in one of the large car pars on the outskirts of town).

There are plenty of art galleries and shops to browse in Cadaques and the steep gradient of the streets ensures that even a gentle perambulation around the town can feel like a serious work out! Nonetheless, hiking opportunities abound if you head out of town. Cliffs that gaze out across the Mediterranean present spectacular coastal walking routes dotted with pretty little coves to explore and plenty of spectacular rock formations to marvel at.

Eating and drinking in Cadaques

There’s no shortage of fine restaurants and atmospheric bars in Cadaques. In recent years, this corner of Catalonia has played host to some of Spain’s most revered restaurants, not least Feran Adria’s elBulli, probably the most influential restaurant on the planet throughout the first decade of the 21st century. elBulli, which closed in 2011, was located 17 km north of Cadaques near the town of Roses. Its influence continues to be felt throughout the gastronomic world so it’s hardly surprising to find elBulli-inspired dining just down the coast. Compartir, arguably Cadaques’ most adventurous restaurant, was opened by three ex-elBulli chefs and showcases a more relaxed take on Adria’s experimental approach to traditional Catalan cuisine, with a strong emphasis on small sharing plates (‘Compartir’ means ‘share’ in Catalan).

For further proof of Catalan dining’s position at the bleeding edge of modern gastronomy, head inland to Girona and sample the world renowned culinary art of El Cellar de Can Roca, which has been named among the top three restaurants in the world every year since 2011, including a number 1 ranking in 2015. As one of the world’s greatest dining destinations it probably goes without saying that advanced booking is necessary.

Back in Cadaques, the ever-popular Can Tito, a warm, atmospheric family restaurant tucked away down a narrow back street, offers a more modest take on traditional Catalan cuisine under an arched stone ceiling. The similarly hidden away Restaurant El Barroco serves tasty Lebanese mezze in a magical little courtyard garden and was a favourite haunt of Dali.

Our Cadaques checklist

  • Visit the Dali Museum in Port Lligat

  • Take a boat tour around the beautiful bay and beyond

  • Explore the natural beauty of the Cap de Creus. The peninsular and protected natural park to the north of Cadaques is packed with stunning coastal scenery and beautiful beaches

  • Hit the beach! There are countless coves and beaches along this picturesque stretch of coastline. Typically, they are small and rocky but the water is perfectly clear

  • Sample the region’s world class restaurants including Compartir in Cadaques and El Cellar de Can Roca in nearby Girona

  • Pay a visit to Esglesia de Santa Maria, the beautiful little church at the centre of Cadaques

  • Marvel at the view from the lighthouse above Cadaques Bay. You can’t go into the lighthouse but there are few better vantage points from which to gaze out across the sea

  • Peruse the art at Cadaques Museum

  • Explore the Costa Brava coastline – highlights include picturesque coastal villages like Tamariu, Llafranc and Begur

  • Pay a visit to the town’s eight statues, including a bronze statue of Dali on the Promenade and a sculpture by Dali himself, called The Boat and the Cypress, at Port Lligat.

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                                                                                                      Recent Reviews

                                                                                                      Stylish apartment in a perfect location

                                                                                                      5 of 5
                                                                                                      We stayed at Marijke's place for one week in July 2017 with our family of 4 kids and had an amazing time. The apartment makes you feel like home the minute you arrive and we loved the location of being close to the beach, restaurants, and pretty much everything in Cadaques. Will be back next year :-)
                                                                                                      • Review Submitted: Jul 27, 2017
                                                                                                      • Date of Stay: Jul 2017

                                                                                                      Nice house, great town.

                                                                                                      4 of 5
                                                                                                      Good wifi for the boys. House was on the market , and showed it. Underground parking very close to the house.
                                                                                                      • Review Submitted: Jul 04, 2017
                                                                                                      • Date of Stay: Jun 2017