People from Germany, the Netherlands or Great Britain might certainly know this small city located nearby Barcelona, Spain. In summer, this cute Mediterranean village turns into a crazy nightlife hotspot full of young and wild people. In high season, Lloret de Mar can become pretty packed and the people on the beach sometimes seem like sardines in a fish can. In low season, however, the village is a nice spot to relax and stock up on some sunshine.
We visited Lloret de Mar during a time least imaginable for beach holidays: the month of December. Although the weather was quite mild, it was not possible to relax on the beach with just a bikini (although we saw some crazy grannies who did it – possibly some locals who are used to bathe in the sun at any weather), neither was it possible to take a bath in the sea. But this was the only disadvantage, everything else was a marvellous experience, there were many things to do and we will survey the highlights in the following:
Coming from Barcelona, the train ride into the direction of Lloret de Mar takes you about one hour and is truly incredible: The train mostly takes you along the BEACH. Yes, there is no street, highway or any other kind of lane between the train tracks and the sand, which means the water will be right in front of your nose. At some points, there will be no beach but only rocks between the tracks and the water which will make you think you are riding on the Mediterranean Sea. It is truly unique and you will certainly be not able to continue reading your book or magazine during that time.
Having arrived in Lloret de Mar, the 37 000 inhabitants - town appears to be rather calm during low season. Most of the party hotspots like all the gigantic discos and night saloons are closed but you can still find some local restaurants, bars and shops that are opened all year round. This way you can experience much more the local Lloret de Mar and not the one designed for young party tourists. It is also perfect for Barcelona locals/expats to retreat from the hustle and bustle of the big city.
First stop should be the beach itself, Platja de Lloret. You can take a walk along the impressive beach promenade (Passeig d’Agusti Font and Passeig de Camprodon I Arrieta) and observe the crystal blue sea. You will find various statues, monuments and landmarks walking along the promenade that will all teach you something about Lloret de Mar. At the end of the beach you will find the sculpture of Dona Marinera, the Fisherman’s Wife. The bronze statue stands on a rock and represents a woman looking out to the sea, seeming to welcome someone. The sculpture is said to give Lloret de Mar beach great beauty and quality. Legend tells us whoever touches the foot of Dona Marinera while looking out at the horizon, will have their wish come true.
Not far from Dona Marinera is the next stop, a beautiful castle. It seems that every somehow bigger Spanish town has its own castle, because… well, why not? Located directly on the beach, this one is called Castell d’en Plaja. Although looking quite medieval, this castle’s construction is to be dated back to 1935, so it is basically still in its medieval-castle-infancy. Every castle needs to start at some point though, aren’t we right on this? Taking a walk around the building and passing a small tunnel offers you some great glances at what our beautiful Mother Earth is capable of: spectacular, wide stretches of coastline awaiting you to take pictures from every angle and afterwards enjoy the moment. This path extends all the way to the next town, Tossa de Mar. The castle itself is privately owned and it is not possible to visit it. If you do want to visit a castle, you should visit Castell de Sant Joan. It was built in 11th century and therefore can indeed be called medieval. Unfortunately, most parts of the castle are ruins but the castle tower still exists and you can have a spectacular view of the coast there.
If you are in Lloret de Mar in summer, it is a wonderful idea to visit Santa Clotilde Gardens after you have been to Castell d’en Plaja and/or Castell de Sant Joan. In winter, it might get uncomfortable after a while but for summer time we think there is nothing more refreshing than taking a walk through the shades of beautiful trees and plants and impressive Catalan architecture. Santa Clotilde Gardens are located south of Lloret de Mar, you can reach it by strolling along Fenals Beach.
Since we visited Lloret de Mar in winter and weather was mild but not quite fitting for a garden stroll, we headed to the city centre and consumed interesting information at two museums: Museo de los Gatos (Spain’s only cat museum) and Museo del Mar, a museum dedicated to the sea and located right at the beach. We can recommend both museums very much but if you only have time for one, we would go for the Cats museum, since it is somehow a little bit more exclusive. The museum contains the private collection of a couple from Russia. You will find over 6000 objects, e.g. paintings, porcelain figures, vases and many more, all dedicated to cats. The address is Carrer Sant Albert 10, 17319 Lloret de Mar, and entrance fee is only 3 Euros.
Our last stop was located right in the delightful city centre: Iglesia Sant Roma. This church has a Catalan-Gothic style which will beyond doubt impress you. It was originally built in early 15th century and a modernist touch was added during its renovation in 1914. It is absolutely worth it to enter the church. Inside you will be able to admire marvellous murals on the walls. The church is open daily from 9:30am– 12:00pm and from 4pm – 7pm.
We hope we could inspire you with this little insight into the amazing beach hotspot in Catalunya, which is interesting in both summer and winter. When you are in Barcelona next time, make sure to organize a day trip to Lloret de Mar.