Sailing along the Costa Brava, with its 245 sandy beaches, and bays and coves surrounded by vegetationand rocky cliffs, is a source of constant surprises
by Barbara Borgonovo
THE COSTA BRAVA IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE WITH MUCH TO EXPLORE.A boat is undoubtedly the best way to discover its 220 kilometres of coastline with its many practically secret beaches and rugged cliffs that crash down from the Albera Massif and the Cap de Creushills right to the sea.
This part of Spain is a strip of land that stretches from Barcelona all the way to the French border, hemmed in by the Pyrenees. It has an excellent climate, and that means that unique experiences can be enjoyed throughout the yearin places that preserve an ancient and magic fascination, nestled between the sea and the mountains, with hills, natural areas and breathtaking views.
Architecture and spirituality, tradition, trade, craftsmanship, folklore, traditional and gourmet cooking come together to give life to a unique combination of experiences. From North to South, from Portbou to Blanes, where land and sea meet, everything contributes to create a symbiosis which has inspired writers, poets, musicians and artists of all eras, and great chefs like Ferran Adrià and the Roca brothers. In this area alone there are 58 restaurants that between them hold as many as 68 Michelin stars.
In this strip of Spain you can follow the coastal routes by bike, pedalling along green paths through the province of Girona; you can take the DO Empordà wine route; you can parachute into the Bay of Roses. The artistic-cultural aspect is also very important, with a trip along the “Dalí Triangle”, from the Dalí Theatre-Museum in Figueres, to Portlligat which is the site of the Dalí Casa Museo, and the Gala- Dalí Castle in Púbol.
The province of Girona alone has over 550 heritage sites. There are numerous attractions and they are all perfectly integrated with one another, in full respect for a region that is very proud. A trip within a trip is to rediscover ancient flavours and knowledge. It is a region where ancient and modern co-exist in between tradition and innovation, in which the culture and the innate hospitality of the people who live there make it a unique place in the world: where the hectic pace of summer at the coast blends with ancient rural traditions, where history meets with the unceasing push towards innovation and the discovery of new trends.
The capital, Girona can be easily reached by plane or train, and is known as the city with the highest standard of living in Spain. It is an unmissable tourist destination where you can discover a lot of unusual artistic and historical details. In recent years it has become even more popular as it was usedfor location filming for the Game of Thrones series. The city has a rich calendar of events, such as the Girona Flower Time festival that is held in May or the evocative festival for the city’s patron saint in autumn, or the Temporada Alta performing artsfestival.
Thanks to its Mediterranean climate, the Costa Brava can be visited both in summer, to enjoy its unique beaches, and throughout the other seasons of the year. The summer is hot and sunny, and during this period a lot of people rent boats to enjoy a relaxing time, the sea and the splendid coves. The winters are mild, and you can use your boat for most of time.
The winds change constantly in the Mediterranean, and that is why it is very important to keep yourself updated on weather conditions. The regional government is investing a lot to promote nautical tourism.
The Costa Brava has a series of ports that are well equipped, modern and have good services. The most important of these are Aiguablava, Blanes, Cadaqués, Cala Canyelles, Calella de Palafrugell, Canals de Santa Margarida, L’Escala, L’Estartit, Llafranc, Marina d’Empuriabrava, Palamós, Port D’Aro, Roses, Sant Antoni de Calonge and Tamariu. The marinas at Palamós, Estartit, Sant Feliu de Guíxols and Roses have developed a welcome network for luxury charter boats, not least because of the significant resources that the hinterland offers, and the chance of using the logistical support of One Ocean Port Vell in Barcelona.
OneOcean Port Vell
This marina is one of the main boating locations in the Mediterranean. OneOcean Port Vell is in the heart of Barcelona and the six quays fitted out for superyachts of up to 190 metres make is the ideal base from which to set out to discover the Costa Brava. The structure is equipped with very high-level services that are available 24 hours a day to support boat owners and their crews.
It adheres to the EMAS Eco-Management and Audit Scheme, is ISO 14001-certified, and is fitted with equipment that address any technical, bunkerage or safety problem. In the marina there is also the Ocean Wellness & Gym, with a multi-lingual 24-hour reception, meeting rooms, gourmet restaurants, cocktail bars, golf cars and many other facilities.
A small marina with 110 places for boats of up to 15 metres in the middle of a gulf in the extreme Pyrenean outcrop of the Serra de Roses. Its beaches make an ideal setting for trekking and excursions by horse.
The marina has 754 places for boats of up to 25 metres. The depth in the harbour ranges from two to three metres, and the port is fitted with water, electricity, fuel, boat-lifting crane, travel lifts, slide, services, a mechanic, workshops and restaurants.
The marina has 875 places for boats of up to fifteen metres. The harbour is three metres deep, and the port is equipped with water, electric energy, fuel, boat-lifting cranes, travel lifts, a slide, services, a mechanic workshops and restaurants.
Sant Feliu de Guíxols
The marina has 260 places for boats of up to thirteen metres in length. The depth in the harbour ranges from four to eight metres and the port is equipped with water, electricity, boat-lifting crane, travel lift, slide, services, a mechanic, workshops and restaurants.
(Costa Brava, colour, art, culture and food – Barchemagazine.com – Agosto 2019)