If you plan on spending more than a few days in Barcelona, it's worth it to consider taking a day trip outside the city. Barcelona is close to so many quaint pueblos (small villages), picturesque towns and cities rich in history and architecture, most of which you can get to and from in just one day. One of the most beautiful seaside towns, Cadaques, is about 2.5 hours up the Costa Brava and is not only home to the renowned surrealist artist, Salvador Dali, but is regarded for being a small, calm and peaceful oasis just outside the Catalonian capital. Although Cadaques is ideal to visit during the spring and summer months, it's still very charming with plenty to do during the fall and winter.
Facing the Mediterranean Sea, Cadaques was said to be a favourite spot and huge inspiration for the works of Dali, Picasso and other famous artists of the time. What used to be a fishing village that was only accessible via the sea, today has become fairly well known, yet still remains off most tourists’ radars. The best way to get there is via car (although there are buses which run from Barcelona) as with the car you'll also be able to drive 15 minutes outside of the town to Cap de Creus. This small peninsula (where the Pyrenees mountains meet the sea) is located on the Eastern most tip of Spain and is surrounded by steep cliffs and overlooks crystal clear water. This is an excellent place to go for lunch, as the one restaurant situated atop the mountain has an infectious energetic vibe and serves delicious fresh fish as well as other typical Catalan and Spanish dishes.
Within the town of Cadaques you can easily stroll to Portlligat, where Dali lived and worked on and off between 1930-1982. Tickets to get into the house are around 11 Euros, but be sure to check the schedule as opening hours vary depending on the time of year. The Dali shop is also worth checking out and is right around the corner from his house.
In addition to the wonders of Dali’s life, Cadaques offers short boat and sailing excursions and has a wide variety of charming, rustic, high quality restaurants. This is a wonderful option for a day trip and a truly enjoyable getaway from Barcelona’s busier and noisier scene. It’s best to leave early in the morning to avoid traffic and to be able to spend a full day there. If you have the time it’s not a bad idea to stay overnight and truly get the most out of this romantic, beach side town.