The Cami de Ronda - Coastal Path
Updated: Jan 23, 2021
This coastal walk takes you from the port of Palamós to Calella de Palafrugell via some of the prettiest coastal villages on the Costa Brava. We find that even in the summer months when parking is at a premium, there is always available parking in Carrer de sa Tamardia above the Palamós Marina. From here, you can join the Cami de Ronda and this first section takes you over the wooded hill between Palamós and La Fosca with elevated views of the coastline to the Iberic ruins at Platja Castell.
This walk is about 10km /3.5 hours and ideally suited for the spring and autumn when the temperatures are pleasantly warm although you can certainly walk it over the summer months as there are plenty of bars and cafés to grab a drink and the best blue flagged beaches to go for a dip.
After La Fosca, climb up to the ruined Castle Sant Esteve and continue along the coast to Cala S’Alguer and then to Platja Castell.
Platja Castell is one of our favourite beaches. It’s located in an area of outstanding natural beauty and the beach is in a protected green zone with no new buildings allowed. To the south of the beach, there are some rocks which separate the main beach from a small cove dedicated as a naturist area. The main beach also has lifeguards, two chirringuitos (beach bars) and you can rent kayaks here too. There is ample parking which at the moment is €5.00 for the day and €3.00 from 14.00 onwards. To the north end of the beach, you will find some Iberian ruins which according to Archeologists, have been occupied from the 6th Century BC to the 1st Century AD.
After Platja Castell, a climb takes you into the Cap Roig hills and a wild section of the coastline with vertical cliffs, panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea and a few secluded beaches well away from the tourist areas. The Cap Roig hills are also home to a Castle and botanical gardens which are open to the public throughout the year. During the summer months, they also host the Cap Roig Music Festival which we highly recommend. This year, amongst many others and to account for all tastes of music, they include Andrea Bocelli, James Blunt, Rosario, Juanes, Maná, Texas and Bryan Ferry. It’s a small and intimate concert arena which provides a great evening out in the open air with world-class acts.
Part of the Cami de Ronda passes Cala Estreta which is one of the most popular naturist beaches on the Costa Brava. This is a great place to strip off and go for a dip before picking up the Coastal path again and continuing on to Calella de Palafrugell.
Calella de Palafrugell is a lovely little seaside village best known for the Havaneras in the first weekend in July. Havanera is a genre of music that originated in Cuba in the nineteenth century and many Catalans that emigrated to Cuba, brought this particular music style back with them when they returned to Catalunya after the Cuban revolution. In Begur, just along the coast, they hold their “Fira d’Indians” in early September which still celebrates this Cuban / Catalan connection.
As for the Havaneras, it was popular tradition in the 1960’s to sing Havaneras in the local bars and taverns. However, this particular music festival has become somewhat of a monster attracting tens of thousands of people and utterly overwhelming this otherwise charming little village. Unless you are really keen to go along, I would avoid this area entirely during these festivals.
One of the big problems here with these pretty little seaside villages is that they have become hugely popular and the prices for dining out reflect that. During the summer months, you will almost certainly pay over the odds for a meal here. We suggest a picnic on the beach or save your money for a fantastic restaurant further inland. Our 2018 top tip for local restaurants here are Mas Pou located inland in the little medieval village of Palau Sator or if you want a seaside restaurant right by the water’s edge, then try El Palangui situated in Tamariu. Both offer excellent value for money, good service, excellent quality of food and they don’t hike up their prices for the tourists.
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