The ruggedly beautiful Costa Brava holiday coast stretches for 100 miles (160km), along the shores of Catalonia in Spain's northeastern corner, from Port Bou on the Franco-Spanish border to Tossa del Mar, just north of Barcelona.
The coast is filled with high-rise resort developments and modern marinas catering to package tourists, but retains enough green hillsides and lonely, wild cliffs, coves, and caves to belie its reputation as one of Europe's busiest holiday destinations.
Holidaymakers revel in the hidden delights of the craggy coastline, many venturing out in boats to discover deserted coves scented with pine and citrus trees, fragrant herbs, and bright flowers. Popular resorts and marinas lie in close proximity to relatively unspoilt fishing villages and towns.
Along with some old castles and fortifications, these resorts are evidence of the area's rich history. Offshore divers revel in the abundance of wrecks to explore in the crystalline waters, while seemingly endless sunshine pours down on stretches of sandy or shingle beach.
The undeveloped natural areas and fishing industry have also resulted in making a holiday here a gastronomic treat. Seafood reigns supreme, from sardines to delicious lobster, but specialities also include local wild game, like boar, duck, and rabbit, which can all be washed down with a variety of wines produced from the vineyards that clothe the hillsides.