If you’re looking for a lively beach resort for your 2018 cheap holiday, Calella on the Costa Maresme is for you. Welcoming couples, friends and families, a holiday to Calella offers entertainment by the bucket load and has spades of beach-based relaxation and fun for all ages. With 3km of pristine sands, bustling streets and buzzing nightlife, Calella is so much more than just another Spanish beach resort. Away from the coastline, there’s an expansive national park to explore - full of wildlife and plants – whether on foot or by bike.
Calella’s location on the Costa Maresme means the summer months see temperatures soar to around 30 degrees. With a mild but comfortable climate around the high teens to 20 degrees in the autumn and winter months, Calella is perfect for a vitamin D top-up.
With the option to visit some nearby theme parks or take a drive to Barcelona, there’s plenty to see outside of Calella. With coastal drives along scenic winding roads, sightseeing in local villages, and feasting on tapas and Catalan cuisine on offer, it seems a shame to simply relax by the pool and miss out on Calella’s many hotspots.
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A holiday in Calella is perfect for enjoying the Costa Maresme’s coastline. As you would expect, much of the town’s entertainment is geared towards beach life. With top-notch watersports facilities - including banana boats, kayaking, windsurfing and boat trips - there’s plenty to keep active families busy. Away from the beach, the old town is classic Spain. Winding alleys lined with whitewashed houses lead to a pretty town square, home to markets and festivals throughout the year. Foodies can tuck in to some truly authentic Spanish and Catalan dishes served up in the many family-owned restaurants dotted around the town.
If the sprawling town seems too daunting to roam around in the summer’s heat, hop aboard the mini train. Circling Calella in summer, it takes the leg work out of exploring, leaving you with plenty of energy to travel further afield. Let off some steam at the nearby theme parks or take a tour of Barcelona - just an hour’s drive away.
Spain’s cuisine is a very social affair. People gather in tapas bars and restaurants to chew over the day’s events while sharing some light bites. Tapas is the easiest way to sample the local cuisine in any region of Spain and Calella is no exception. Order plenty of dishes and tuck in to some amazing recipes in small portions.
If you’re ready to move on from tapas and try some main courses, paella is a classic Spanish dish full of the true taste of Spain. Adventurous foodies looking for something that celebrates the freshest catches from the coast should try the ‘tigres’. These stuffed mussels are a firm favourite on many menus. A trip to Calella wouldn’t be complete without trying two regional dishes. Track down an authentic Spanish restaurant and order the arroz al a cazuela - a local version of paella, featuring prawns, mussels, clams and calamari. Finish your meal with a traditional crema catalana. Think creme brulee with a zesty hint of citrus fruits.
Family holidays in Calella were made for spending long days on the beach. With everything from sandcastle building to kids’ foam parties on offer, children will love the huge range of beach entertainment. With specially-run events just for kids, there’s plenty to keep the mums and dads happy as well.
If you’re done with lounging on the beach, you can try water-skiing, parasailing and windsurfing - and that’s just for starters. Away from the beach, there are theme parks, day drips to Barcelona, boat trips and the Old Town of Calella to explore. The Montnegre and El Corredor Nature Reserve is an expansive stretch of Spanish wilderness just waiting for travellers young and old.
Get sporty on your Calella holiday with the fantastic range of hiking and cycling trails in the Montnegre and El Corredor Nature Reserve. 15,000 hectares of Spanish wilderness with high peaks to scale, pine forests, streams, and miles of trails to guide you through it all.
Once you’ve finished your intrepid exploring, head back to Calella Beach for some watersports or for something entirely different, try out the region’s theme parks. Port Aventura has some epic white-knuckle rides guaranteed to thrill you with their roller coasters and spectacular shows. Waterworld’s network of slides and chutes is a cooling escape from the summer sun and caters for children (and adults) of all ages with super-soaking slides and flumes.
If you’re keen to stay sporty and soak up the sun on Calella’s long stretch of sandy beach, hit the volleyball courts. Learn the art of the game or watch a few matches while you plan your tactics.
Calella’s 3km of golden sands are split into three separate beaches: Garbi, Les Roques and Gran Playa. With the coveted Blue Flag status, families can look forward to clean waters and pristine sands. Adventurous holidaymakers will find an excellent range of water sports and there’s beach entertainment to keep visitors of all ages happy in summer. Children will love the beach games, which include foam parties, bouncy castles, aerobics, football, dancing and more. For more water-based fun you can swim out to the giant inflatable pier complete with trampolines and waterslides.
Though Calella’s beaches are rarely crowded, there is a more secluded beach just 25 minutes’ drive away. Cala Treumal’s peaceful setting beneath the Pinya de Rosa botanical gardens offers a tranquil space to unwind, away from the hectic fun and games in Calella. On a beach holiday in Calella, you’re never too far away from the nearby bars and restaurants. Ideal for a quiet snack at lunchtime or enjoying a leisurely meal as the sun goes down.
Already busy and bustling by day, Calella really comes to life at night. With all the area’s hotels offering in-house entertainment, plus the town’s bars, pubs and restaurants, there’s plenty to do, even if you like your nightlife low-key. To avoid the high-octane revelling and enjoy a quiet meal and a drink, stick to the streets of the old town. Family-owned tapas bars and restaurants are on hand waiting to offer a warm Spanish welcome and serve up some fantastic local hospitality.
Those wanting to kick things up a gear or two should head for the foam parties and thumping bass in Calella’s nightclubs. Most pubs stay open until around 2am, which means even a quiet night in the pub can see you enjoying a late night in Calella. If you’re keen to carry on the party once the pubs are closed, Calella’s clubs keep the party atmosphere alive until dawn. With Caribbean Fever staying open until 7am, there’s no excuse for an early night in this town.
There’s no better place to enjoy a romantic evening on a holiday to Calella than in the winding maze of the Old Town. Wander through the network of rustic whitewashed homes, before choosing a secluded table for two in an authentic tapas restaurant. While the newer streets of Calella can get quite busy in the summer, the Old Town offers a perfect place to escape the crowds and enjoy a bottle of Rioja by candlelight.
By day, the beach is lined with sun loungers, perfect for lazing in the sun. For a more secluded retreat, head to the Montnegre and El Corredor Nature Reserve, where acres of Spanish countryside are just waiting to be explored. Take a picnic and spend the day in the reserve. On Sunday evenings you can watch the local Sardana dancing event, before trying out some of your own moves in the local nightclubs.
The local tradition of Sardana dancing is kept alive and well with a vibrant weekly display of dancing on the beachfront. Local residents perform the Sardana - a symbol of national pride - by joining hands and dancing in circles. Keep an eye on the intricate steps if you want to take part, one false move and the whole circle is out of step. If your dancing style is best described as ‘two left feet’ you may prefer to watch instead.
Away from the beach, Calella’s Old Town is steeped in history. The Town Hall Square is the focal point. The market held every Wednesday marks the spot where the historic market once stood, from the 1300s until the 20th century. To discover more of Calella’s past, visit the Dalmau Park Shelters - bomb shelters left over from the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s. Or take a trip to the still-functioning lighthouse that once defended the coast from pirate attacks.