The mercury had hit 48 degrees just days before we arrived in Spain and, after the summer’s heatwave in the UK, we wondered if it had been a wise decision to travel to the Continent for more sun and high temperatures.
We had chosen to stay on the Costa Dorada in the Catalonia region for a relaxing family holiday.
And, as the temperatures cooled just a little, we were not to be disappointed.
The Playa Montroig resort, just south of Cambrils near the village of Montroig del Camp, is right on the Mediterranean and an ideal location for families.
Set between the golden beaches and the Colldejou mountains, it offers something for all the family, whether it be swimming, sunbathing, sport or socialising.
The resort’s excellent facilities include a pool complex, tennis courts, football pitches, table tennis, a gym and a spa. There are also bars, a restaurant, takeaway and shops selling all you need for a holiday by the sea in sunny Spain.
We stayed with Eurocamp in one of their three-bedroom Azure mobile homes. The air conditioned accommodation comes with a living area/kitchen, a double and two twin rooms, a shower room and toilet. Outside, facing the tree-lined street, is a decked area and barbecue.
Eurocamp representatives were on site, ready to help holidaymakers. Unlike some resorts, there were no Eurocamp-run children’s clubs, but our ten-year-old daughter tried out the resort’s own group for her age, taking part in a morning of games and crafts.
We spent most of our holiday by the pool where our daughter and son, 7, enjoyed meeting new friends and riding the flumes, or on the beach where the Playa Montroig has a bar, play area and pedalos.
It’s a busy resort, with families from across Europe and beyond bringing their campervans and tents or renting one of the many bungalows and cabins. But it’s easy to escape the hustle and bustle either on the site or by taking a stroll along the golden sands.
And we managed to tear ourselves from the campsite on a few occasions to explore a little of the region’s rich history and picturesque coastline.
Walk a couple of miles south and you come to Miami Platja, and inland is Montroig del Camp with its chapel of Our Lady of the Rock, perched high on a spectacular cliff.
Just five miles north is Cambrils with its beaches, port and old and new towns. We spent a morning enjoying a stroll by the marina before moving to the old town to browse the market stalls. It was then on to one of the street bars to sample the local tapas delicacies.
Close by for those wanting a more adrenaline-filled day out is PortAventura – named as the most-visited theme park in Spain and the sixth most popular in Europe. Barcelona is also easily accessible by car or a 90-minute train ride from Cambrils. We took an early morning ride along the coastal railway, arriving by mid-morning to experience just a few of the city’s attractions.
The city’s hop-on-hop-off bus services give an easy tour of the sights, including Gaudi’s iconic Sagrada Familia church, still being constructed 92 years after his death.
The city also has a host of other modernist attractions, such as the Park Guell and Casa Batllo.
We managed just a few of these before deciding that visiting Barcelona for just a day is such a challenge we’d soon be returning for more.
The Costa Dorada is easy to reach by air or sea. We opted for the route from the UK to Santander with Brittany Ferries, before driving across the north of Spain to our destination.
The ferry from Plymouth to Santander takes about 20 hours and offers a relaxing alternative to the stresses of air travel. We enjoyed a smooth crossing with a overnight stay in our cabin and plenty of time for shopping, fine dining and relaxing on deck.
Spending just a week on the Costa Dorada, we barely managed to scratch the surface of what’s on offer. Next time we’ll stay for longer and explore more of the region’s attractions – if we can drag ourselves away from the pool.
- Eurocamp is the largest operator of premium outdoor holidays in Europe, with more than 180 parcs across 13 countries. Prices range from £350 per party for 7 nights in a two-bed one-bath Avant, leaving March 29, 2019. To book visit http://www.eurocamp.co.uk or call 01606 787125.
- Brittany Ferries offers up to seven weekly return crossings from the UK to Spain. 2019 prices start from £290 each way for two people taking their car, including an en suite cabin. To book, visit http://www.brittanyferries.com or call 0330 159 7000.