The Sea to Dalí: Hiking Catalonia & Spain’s Magical ‘Wild Coast’

A gastronomic hotbed. Salvador Dalí, surrealist. Centuries-old archaeology. Inhale crisp Mediterranean air on an epic adventure hiking the Catalonian seascape of Spain’s Costa Brava.
Rating (5)
Program No. 22550RJ
14 days
Starts at
Flights start at

At a Glance

A sizzling tapas skillet of gambas al ajillo. The larger-than-life roots of Salvador Dalí. Enchanting villages and welcoming villagers. There is much to love and learn on an extraordinary adventure walking coastal paths and inhaling Mediterranean air amid the Catalonian seascape of Spain’s Costa Brava. From cosmopolitan Barcelona north along the “Wild Coast” nearly to France, the Romance language of catalan is every bit as unique to locals as their fresh seafood, rocky headlands, hidden beaches and fertile vineyards. Make memories on foot in a land you won’t forget.
Activity Level
Outdoor: Spirited
Walking 5-8 miles daily, occasional steep ascents and descents, some rugged and rocky terrain, flights of stairs.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Hike through the National Park of Castell-Cap Roig, with its hidden coves and sandy beaches, until we reach Calella de Palafrugell, one of the Costa Brava’s most picturesque villages.
  • Learn about renowned Surrealist Salvador Dalí on a walking field trip to his home in Portlligat and the Dali Theatre-Museum in Figueres.
  • Walk a Mediterranean forest to vineyards swept by the Tramuntana winds and learn about this area’s key role both during Spain’s Civil War and WWII.
Featured Expert
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Elena Lomban
Elena Lombán began leading educational programs 12 years ago and loves the thrill of meeting participants at the start of each new adventure. Elena is an English teacher and licensed Galicia expert and is passionate about both education and travel — so leading groups allows Elena to share her love of linguistics, literature, history and art with Road Scholar participants. Fluent in Spanish, Galician, English, Italian and French, Elena has traveled all over Europe and North America and enjoys cooking, film, literature and hiking.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Elena Lomban
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Spain: The Root and the Flower
by John A. Crow
Take this book with you to Spain; it's an absorbing, well-written account of Spanish cultural history from prehistory to the Romans, Jews, Moors, Golden Age, and on to Franco and his legacy in modern Spain.
Victus: The Fall of Barcelona
by Albert Sanchez Pinol
A sweeping historical novel set in the early 1700s in the Catalonia region of northeastern Spain. Pinol's main character is Marti Zuviria, a treacherous, young military engineer who holds the fate of the War of Spanish Succession in his hands. Dark, witty and profound, the novel culminates in a great betrayal and the fall of Barcelona and Catalonia.
Catalonia, Costa Brava, Barcelona Map
by Kunth Verlag
A detailed road map of Catalunya with legend, conventional signs and significant points of interest. The reverse depicts Barcelona. Scaled at 1:300,000.
Love and Revolutionary Greetings: An Ohio Boy in the Spanish Civil War
by Laurie E. Levinger
Follow the story of a boy name Sam Levinger who travels to Spain in 1937 to join the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. Based off of letters home to his mother, this story will captivate and educate it's readers of the American involvement during the Spanish Civil War.
Eyewitness Guide Barcelona & Catalonia
by DK
Handsome, convenient and up-to-date, this superbly illustrated guide features color photography, dozens of local maps and detailed information on the region's attractions
A Traveller's History of Spain
by Juan Lalaguna
A swift survey from prehistory through the Romans, Goths and Moors to the present.
Ghosts of Spain
by Giles Tremlett
Tremlett captures the Spanish character, history and modern politics in this masterful portrait, interweaving the story of his love for the country (where he has lived for 20 years) with interviews, anecdotes and observation.
by Robert Radford
A nice overview of Dali's life and important works, this Phaidon art book explains how Dali infused his work with the surreal. Includes plenty of color photographs.
Antonio Gaudi: Master Architect
by Juan Bassegoda Nonell
This pocket-sized collection of Gaudi's work captures the evolution, imagination and exuberance of one of the most influential architects of the 20th century.
Homage to Catalonia
by George Orwell
Orwell's portrait of the Barcelona uprising and the spirit of a city at war is a classic, an observant and heartfelt report from the streets

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