The laid-back seaside town of Malgrat de Mar may have its roots in agriculture, but these days the vibe is more about getting away from work. Nearly year-round agreeable temperatures, rustic bistros serving locally grown food and beaches bordered by dramatic mountainous terrain make it perfect for a getaway. Part of the charm of Malgrat de Mar holidays is seeing the atmospheric remnants of its ancient industrial past, including an unusual sea-borne rocky outcrop once used to load iron.
Beyond the strip of modern hotels there’s an old terracotta-roofed village just ripe for strolling around. Plus, you’re well positioned to explore the rest of Costa Brava’s beautifully rugged coastline, with its multitude of sun-drenched resorts and the cosmopolitan hub of Barcelona within easy reach by train or car. With plenty of affordable accommodation in quiet surrounds, you can check out the nearby sights with the family, take advantage of Catalonia’s delicious cuisine and have money left over for dessert, which of course has to be the cinnamon-dusted Crema Catalana.