Holidays to the Costa Dorada hit the spot thanks to long golden beaches, a theme park on the doorstep, and Barcelona just up the road.
The Golden Coast
Translated, Costa Dorada means ‘Golden Coast’, so it’s no surprise beaches are big news in these parts. In fact, the Costa Dorada has around 240 kilometres’ worth of sandy sweeps. In amongst it all, you’ve got Salou and La Pineda.
Salou is the undisputed holiday giant. It comes with a long beach, a palm-lined prom and a restaurant scene that does everything from Sunday roasts to paella. Throw in a good handful of clubs and bars and that’s pretty much Salou summed up.
La Pineda’s beach
For something more low-key, head up the coast to La Pineda, where shallow waters and a wide strip of flat sand really pull in the families. It’s all backed up by a long parade of shops, tapas bars and bistros. The real ace in the pack, though, is the Aquopolis waterpark. As well as getting soaked on the rides, you can take in a show at the dolphinarium.
Waterparks and Roman ruins
If you prefer to get your kicks out of the water, though, Spain’s biggest theme park is more or less on the doorstep. PortAventura Park is more like a mini town, with hotels, restaurants, and even three golf courses lining up alongside the white-knuckle rides. And as for other places to visit, Tarragona and – a bit further afield – Barcelona, are both within daytripping distance.
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La Pineda sits pretty at the top of a trio of holiday resorts on the Costa Dorada – Spain’s ‘Golden Coast’. It’s calmer than Salou, its big sister town to the south, but livelier than Cambrils, a sleepy fishing village and the smallest of the 3. The Spanish have been holidaying in La Pineda since the Fifties. Over the last couple of decades, the rest of the world has got in on the act, lured in by the sandy beaches and family-friendly feel.
As resorts go, Salou hasn’t really put a foot wrong. Set on Spain’s Costa Dorada between Cambrils and La Pineda, it’s the liveliest of the trio with a full-on nightlife and plenty of eating places. It’s cleverly got Europe’s biggest theme park right on its doorstep, too. But it’s the golden-sand beach that really sets this resort up for success.
Set on Spain’s Costa Dorada, PortAventura isn’t so much a resort as a whopping great big theme park with hotels on the side. The place pulls in over 3 million visitors a year and it’s easy to see why. You’ve got a one-stop holiday here, with loads of white-knuckle rides, a waterpark and all-you-can-fit-in family entertainment.
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