Costa Dorada holidays

One of the few places to really qualify as a paradise on earth, Costa Dorada is the destination of choice for those seeking to combine the sea, sand and fun of traditional Spanish holidays with a slice of real Catalonian culture.The Spanish themselves come here for their breaks, attracted by the long golden sands that give the place its name, which translates as the ‘Golden Coast’. There’s no surprise it's on our list of favourite resorts, whether you’re travelling here with friends, family, or as a couple.

Things to do

You’ll find plenty of things to do on your holidays to Costa Dorada, whether you’re travelling with family, friends or your significant other. Those with children will enjoy a thrilling day out at one of the nearby theme parks, while romantic couples might enjoy a trip to explore sun-bleached Roman ruins or marvel at some of the finest examples of Modernist Architecture, anywhere in the world. Groups of friends with a taste for the Great Outdoors can take advantage of the variety of activities on offer, including golf, water sports and cycling.

If you’re travelling with children, the whole family will love a trip to PortAventura. One of the largest theme parks in all of Europe, it’s packed full of adrenaline-pumping roller coasters, live shows and there’s even a water park. If your kids prefer making sandcastles on the beach, the soft sands of Llevant Beach in Salou are nearby, while the Paseo Maritimo is perfect for a sunset stroll by the sea.

For a sense of history, a visit to Tarragona is a must. It’s a beautiful town dotted with Roman ruins. You can visit the amphitheatre or take a tour of the Archaeological Museum, before enjoying a meal at the vibrant town square. In nearby Reus, you’ll see incredible modernist architecture and a museum dedicated to the town’s most famous resident, Antoni Gaudi.

If you love to be active on holiday, Costa Dorada has everything from scuba diving to horse riding and mountain trekking. Many of the towns, including the charming Sitges, run segway tours as a unique way to see the local area.

No matter when you visit Costa Dorada, the region’s full of vibrant celebrations and fiestas. The Festival of St Joan Catalonia honours the shortest night of the year with fireworks, bonfires and dancing, while Sant Pere Festival in Reus and Sitges International Film Festival of Catalonia are must-sees.

Places to stay

Found in the south of Catalonia, the Costa Dorada stretches 216km down the east coast of Spain facing the Mediterranean Sea. Between Salou and Tarragona is the family-friendly PortAventura resort. Kids will love the thrill of the theme park and can splash their way through the Costa Caribe Aquatic Park. Or pick nearby Cap Salou where you can enjoy a leisurely round of golf or pop to one of the many small beaches and enjoy a dip in the Mediterranean Sea.

More Travel Guides

We also have travel guides available for destinations including: Cap Salou | Portaventura

Map of Costa Dorada

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11-25°C

August is the best time for Costa Dorada holidays if you’re looking to make the most of the summer sun, when temperatures hit the mid-to-high 20s throughout. Should you prefer slightly cooler conditions, try coming in late spring or early autumn.

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2 hours 30 minutes from London

Flights land at Reus Airport (REU), which is about 3km from the centre of Reus and 13km from Tarragona.

Costa Dorada is best for...

Families: One of Europe’s biggest and best theme parks, PortAventura. There are rides and shows for visitors of all ages. Test your nerves against the Furius Baco slingshot ride or take a quiet trip on a Chinese-style boat.

Beach lovers: From golden sands in Cambrils and La Pineda to peaceful coves along the Cap Salou coast, choose from a variety of beaches to top up your tan.

Outdoorsy types: Enjoy a rich selection of outdoor activities, including diving, horse riding and trekking.

Fast facts for Costa Dorada

Language: The official language is Spanish but most staff in hotels, eateries and shops have a good command of English.

Currency: You’ll need to convert your pounds to Euros, as this is Spain’s national currency.

Local time: Costa Dorada time is 1 hour ahead of time in the UK.

Fly to: Reus Airport. Transfers to Salou, PortAventura and Cambrils take 25-35 minutes. Cap Salou and La Pineda take 35–45 minutes.

Flight time from UK: The Costa Dorada flight time is 2.5 hours.

Tourist Information: Further Costa Dorada tourist information can be found at https://costadaurada.info/.

Local Tax: You must now pay a Tourist Tax Fee of around €0.50-2.50 per person per night which is payable at your accommodation. You’ll only have to pay for the first 7 nights of your holiday. Children under 16 don’t pay the tax.

 

Getting around Costa Dorada

By train: Train services operate along the Costa Dorada coast, including a line that runs from Tarragona to Barcelona in an hour and 30 minutes. High-speed trains are also available from Tarragona to Madrid, taking just two and a half hours.

By bus: There are regular bus services between the region’s larger towns. All towns have bus stops with local travel information.

By car hire: Car rental is available from Reus airport and across the region. Do remember that the Catalonians drive on the right and overtake on the left!

Events in Costa Dorada

Cultural festivals: Cultural celebrations occur throughout the year in Costa Dorada, the most important of which is the Festival of St Joan on the 23rd June. Catalonia marks the shortest night of the year with dancing in the streets, feasts, firecrackers and bonfires. The Sant Pere Festival in Reus (June) and the Santa Tecla Festival in Tarragona (September) are also not to be missed.

Ready, set, go: Book your Costa Dorada holidays in October and you’ll catch the petrol-powered pleasure of watching the World Rally Championships. The pretty town of Salou is the starting-line and the tyre-shredding event takes place over three days, in the PortAaventura Theme Park. 

Costa Dorada safety and security

Visa / Health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/spain for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Costa Dorada.

Costa Dorada weather

Temperature: 11°C - 25°C

If you’re looking to laze on a beach and get some serious bronzing under your belt, book your Costa Dorada holidays in August, when the temperatures are in the mid-twenties. For fewer crowds and cooler conditions, spring temperatures average between the mid-teens to the low twenties, while the autumn months, between September and November are slightly warmer.

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