France : The Pyrenees

Mediterranean Pyrenees Coastal Walk from Collioure to Cadaques

Trip code: W06PR 5 (1 reviews)

Self-guided walking

6 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

Level: 2
Moderate

14.0Kg CO2e

SUMMARY

  • Explore the colourful coastline, an inspiration to artists such as Picasso and Matisse
  • Discover the influential art heritage of Collioure with an option to visit the Dali Museum in Figueras
  • Choice of walking routes each day: follow the coastal trails or head into the foothills

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • 6 nights accommodation
  • All breakfasts and evening meals
  • Comprehensive route directions
  • GPX files
  • Email briefing pack

TRIP DESCRIPTION

Enjoy the best of the Catalan (both French and Spanish) Mediterranean. With the magnificent backdrop of the Pyrenees, explore an unspoilt coastline with its creeks, coves, beaches, gentle cliffs and panoramic views. You will discover attractive fishing villages and small resorts. This is a region of fascinating contrasts: a landscape seeped in history where you will be able to discover walled villages, castles and signal towers as well as Matisse, Salvador Dali and other interesting artists. And there is no better or more rewarding way of exploring this coastline than on foot and at your own pace.

This is a beautiful route, along ridges that overlook the Mediterranean sea and play leapfrog over the coves: every day you can choose between a coastal path, or a climb to the Pyrenean foothills to enjoy stunning views, then a descent through vineyards and fragrant maquis that go down to the water.

Feel the magic atmosphere of the wild Catalan coast with a fusion of light, wind, sunshine and rock, the brightly painted houses, the exotic plants and the pretty fishing boats.

Terrain

Mostly on Coastal path. This holiday features comfortable rather than challenging walking, and is suitable for anybody who enjoys 'a good walk'. On most days there is a choice of itineraries, which you can decide for yourself each day.

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DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

Day 1: Arrival in Collioure

Settle in at this charming old fishing port with a remarkable heritage, which saw the birth of the movement of Fauvist painters. Here, the light bounces off the walls and every hour of the day offers a new dazzling display.

From the quays to the top of the Citadel designed by Vauban, Louis XIV's military engineer, it is in colour that you will breathe the air of the city.

You stay at Hotel Princes de Catalogne.

hotel details

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Hotel Princes de la Catalogne, Collioure

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A family run hotel which is located on a quiet square in picturesque Collioure, 450 yards from the beach. The hotel was renovated in early 2021 and features a contemporary style.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 2: Collioure - Banyuls (14km/8.7mi or 8km/5.0mi)

Walk up to the old windmill, then on up to the fort of St Elme where you can enjoy the panoramic views of the coast, both north and south. From there, you have 2 options, along the coast or over the mountains.

The Coastal Walk : you walk down to the typically Catalan and very active Port Vendres, then follow the coast by Cap Bear with its numerous attractive coves and creeks, often featuring vines and delightfully colourful, fragrant flowers. Then Paulilles beach offers an almost irresistible opportunity for a swim and sunbathe before continuing to Banyuls by Cap d'Ullastret with its crystal clear waters and hidden coves. The Foothills Walk : you go over the mountains, you continue climbing up to the majestic Madeloc Tower through alternating 'maquis' and vines, and when you see the breath-taking 360° view running from the Spanish border to the plains of Roussillon you understand why they built this watch tower here. From here you descend through vineyards and chestnut orchards until you reach Banyuls. A very satisfying walk.

Banyuls is an interesting and historic frontier town, which is also the end of the famous trans-Pyrenean 900 kilometre GR10 from the Atlantic to here on the Mediterranean.

elevation

You stay at Hotel Le Catalan.

hotel details

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Hotel Le Catalan, Banyuls

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Located on the top of the village, overlooking the bay of Banyuls, the Catalan enjoys an ideal location with a panoramic view over the Mediterranean and the hinterland. The port, 500 metres from the hotel, offers many activities. (sailing, diving, boat rental, crafts).

Day 3: Banyuls - Cerbere (9km/5.6mi or 6km/3.7mi)

Walk right by the sea, but soon up onto the cliffs that form Cap Cerbère with its marine nature reserve (marked by yellow buoys) stretching almost a mile out to sea to protect the consequently numerous fish and many other sea creatures. You pass beautiful creeks popular with yachtsmen.

Alternatively, via the Foothills Walk: from Banyuls small lanes with ancient stone walls enable you to climb comfortably up through vineyards then 'maquis' to enjoy a series of panoramic views of the nearby coast and hills with the higher Pyrenees in the distance, including the nearly 8,500 feet Mount Canigou 30 miles away, which often has snow on its summit right into summer. You walk, however, up to the rather more manageable 2,000 feet close to the signal tower, Tour de Querroig, that marks the frontier before enjoying magnificent sea views as you descend to Cerbere.

elevation

You stay at La Vigie.

hotel details

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Hotel La Vigie, Cerbere

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Hôtel la Vigie sits majestically on the beautifully colourful Spanish border, close to the renowned coastal sites of the eastern Pyrenees. Cerbère, the last village you travel through before crossing the border into Spain, is an absolute haven, nestled between the most stunning sea views and mountainous backdrop. Each of the rooms in this cliff-top hotel has been renovated to the highest standard, providing your own comfortable, magical view point out over the Mediterranean and the stunning, ever-changing coastal views.

Day 4: Cerbere - Llanca (13km/8.1mi or 8km/5.0mi)

Cross the Spanish border by longing the coastal path passing by the lovely Garbet beach and coves bordered by pine trees.

Alternatively climb the hills to Puig Tiffel for a wonderful view over Cap de Creus, Emporda, and the sunny Albères.

4 routes according to the level you prefer. Possibility to shorten 2 routes with train journey (on your charge).

elevation

You stay at Hotel Gri Mar.

hotel details

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Hotel Gri Mar, Llanca

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The Hotel Gri-Mar restaurant in Llançà (Alt Empordà, Girona) is a family hotel located in a residential area, surrounded by gardens, near the port of Llanca, Gerona. It was founded in 1967 by Marcel-lià Navarra Gil and Sra. Amelia Llobet Daro. This hotel offers during your stay, a quiet place to enjoy nature and the sea.

Day 5: Llanca - Port de la Selva (12km/7.5mi or 8km/5.0mi)

The coastal walk offers some impressive architect designed villas to arrive at the Sarnella lighthouse, and soon after the pretty, white village of Port de la Selva offering both vibrancy and tranquillity. You can now explore the village, and enjoy all that your characterful, waterside hotel offers, or explore the lovely port of Fornells with its golden cliffs and tiny harbour.

The foothill walk is a superb route through 'maquis', up hidden valleys and along pilgrim paths to the beautiful small chapel of St Helena, and the imposing monastery of San Père de Rodes. From there are magnificent coastal views including Cape Creus and the white coastal villages. If you want to climb even higher to San Salvador castle from where you can see the bay of Rosas and the Pyrenees, including, of course, Mount Canigou. Either way, you descend with the blue of the Mediterranean shimmering constantly in front of you in order to arrive at Port de la Selva.

elevation

You stay at Cap de Creus.

hotel details

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Hotel Cap de Creus, Port de la Selva

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

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Tea/coffee


The hotel is located on the seafront, has rooms with privileged views of the beach and Port de la Selva. The Spa Cap de Creus Hotel offer massage services and beauty therapy.

Day 6: Port de la Selva - Cadaques (13km/8.1mi or 8km/5.0mi)

Walk through the natural park which provides a good view of the massif of Cap de Creus to its furthest reaches, where the Pyrenees fall into the sea with a last gasp. Varied, it starts in the middle of historic relics testifying to the remarkable work in dry-stone, before enjoying a feast of amazing geology that influenced SalvadorDali himself.

After a deserved rest in a beautiful cove, the climax is reached when you arrive in Cadaquès on the beautiful ancient coastal path, lined with stone walls, winding between terraces, with white houses tumbling down to the sea.

Alternatively, cross the wild and unspoilt coastal foothills of Cap de Creus, but also visit the beautiful and steep sided Cala Taballera cove. As you cross the cape you will see ancient dry stone shelters among the trees and other natural treasures of this remarkable landscape. The walk ends with a panoramic descent through stone walls and olive trees to Cadaques, although we would recommend extending it by visiting the Cala Nans lighthouse, not least so as to enjoy the beautiful view of Cadaquès

elevation

You stay at Hotel S'Aguarda.

hotel details

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Hotel S'Aguarda, Cadaques

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

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This family hotel run is located on the top of Cadaqués, with panoramic sea views. From the roof top with pool-solarium, enjoy a wonderful view over looking the city. The beach is 5 walk from the hotel.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 7: Leave Cadaques

Optional short walk to Cala Nans facing Cadaques (beautiful at sunrise), 2h30.

Optional transfers to Perpignan or Collioure via Figueres and the Dali Museum (possibility to stop for the visit 1h30).

When you book, please tell us if you want to do the stop at the Dali museum on the way back.

Extending your holiday

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra hotel nights we recommend: Hotel Princes de la Catalogne, Collioure; Hotel S'Aguarda, Cadaques.

hotel details

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Hotel Princes de la Catalogne, Collioure

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
Visa
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


A family run hotel which is located on a quiet square in picturesque Collioure, 450 yards from the beach. The hotel was renovated in early 2021 and features a contemporary style.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.



Hotel S'Aguarda, Cadaques

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
Visa
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Aircon


This family hotel run is located on the top of Cadaqués, with panoramic sea views. From the roof top with pool-solarium, enjoy a wonderful view over looking the city. The beach is 5 walk from the hotel.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

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These tour only prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from $417.

These flight inclusive prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from $417.

TRAVEL DETAILS

Call now to speak to our specialist team at 0044 1606 720199 or email us at sales@headwater.com for enquiries or to book your trip.

REVIEWS

This was an excellent holiday, with lovely scenery and some very nice hotels and restaurants. There's also something inherently pleasing about a walking trip that takes you between two different countries. It was really helpful to have two walking options each day (one on the coast and one in the hills), meaning that you could select the length and difficulty of the walk depending on how you felt. The route guides were also extremely clear and it was not necessary to rely on the GPS app, although was still a handy extra resource.

Richard Flower, 8 Sep 2023

 


Self-guided walking

6 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

Level: 2
Moderate

14.0Kg CO2e

6 nights from $1970

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE

Call: +44 1606 720199

 

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