Tossa de Mar

The walled old town

The Costa Brava has its fair share of medieval, walled towns but Tossa is the only one that’s also on the coast. The narrow, cobbled streets are full of bars, shops and restaurants and it gives Tossa a completely different feel to the other coastal resorts. For me, this is one of the best things about the place – you’re kind of getting two for the price of one, beach and culture all in one go.

The beaches

The main beach at Tossa has one of the longest stretches of sandy beach on the Costa Brava and the seafront promenade is one of its prime attractions. But this isn’t the only beach in town. If, like me, you like your beaches a little smaller and more intimate, head south out of town and you’ll find some gorgeously secluded little coves and fabulously quiet, laid back beaches.

The sunshine

It’s obvious really isn’t it? The weather here is brilliant for a big chunk of the year and even when it’s cold, it still feels bright. The artist Marc Chagall was so taken with the intensity of the sea and sky that he called Tossa "the blue paradise".

The holiday vibe and nightlife

Tossa is one of the livelier towns on this stretch of the Costa Brava although it’s still relatively laid back. We’re not talking Ibiza here, or even Lloret de Mar, but during the day there’s a general buzz of holidaymakers at play and once the sun goes down the old town’s plentiful bars and restaurants are generally packed, particularly in high season.

The castle

Wherever you are in Tossa, the distinctive medieval castle, perched at the top of a hill at one end of the beach, dominates the view. To get up closer it’s a steep, winding climb up to the top, but the views over the Costa Brava are spectacular and you even get a statue of Tossa’s most famous visitor - Ava Gardner - thrown in for good measure.