Salou Holidays – Let your hair down in Catalonia!
In the sun-kissed Costa Dorada region of Catalonia, Salou holidays are undoubtedly the most popular with Brits. If your idea of a great holiday is a lively break jam-packed with exhilarating outdoor sports and equally lively nights out at vibrant bars and clubs, then this is the holiday location for you.
But that’s not to say that families can’t also have a brilliant time at the resort in Spain. At the many beaches (which form part of the stunning Golden Coast region) there are still quiet areas. Parents can top up their tans while relaxing on sun loungers as their kids build sand castles to their hearts’ content. More laidback neighbouring resorts are also close by.
The opening of the Universal Port Aventura theme park on the outskirts of the resort saw a marked increase in visitors from Britain. But that is not the only reason why holidays to there get snapped up all-year-round. The seasonal climate (warm summers and mild winters) means holidays to Salou can be enjoyed there at any time of year.
The beaches do get extremely busy in summer, but there is always room enough for everyone as the coastline stretches for miles and miles. In milder weather (April and October), exploring the wetlands of the Ebro Delta makes for a fascinating afternoon out and about. The weather is more comfortable then than in peak season (July and August).
The resort enjoys a Mediterranean climate. During the summer season (early June to mid-September) the average daytime temperature is 27°C, sometimes reaching 29°C in mid-August. A night-time summer temperature of 18.5°C is what you can expect. Evening strolls after dinner are a delight.
You can confidently book your holiday and look forward to up to 10 hours of sunshine daily throughout the summer months, with very little rainfall during that time. The occasional tropical storm has been known to hit the region in summer, but these can sometimes only last for around about an hour!
Winters at the resort are mild. You can still find plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy, as well as organised excursions to wonderful Barcelona. The average winter daytime temperature is 14°C. Do remember to pack a sweater or a cardigan, as at night the temperature can fall to 7.5°C.
During May or October, the locale is quieter. These are the off-peak months when the best deals can be found. You’ll also have a wider choice of hotels, some of which offer generous discounts on rooms and also evening meals.
If you are longing for a week away but need to watch the pennies, consider flying out to the resort in April or November. It is even quieter then but certainly not a ghost town. There will be plenty of cheap deals available around those times.
During the weeks outside of the UK school holidays is when the very best holiday bargains are available. So, if you’re on a really tight budget, plan your one or two-week break for then. The Mediterranean climate means you won’t be stuck in your hotel room or apartment for the duration, and you may well find discounted outdoor pursuits are available then.
Find the best deals Directline Holidays have to offer by looking at the best deals below, or alternatively by visiting our late deals offers.
Flights from the UK to Catalonia leave regularly from UK airports. Jet-off from Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Luton, Manchester, Bristol, Glasgow or Belfast to either Reus Airport (REU) or Barcelona-El Prat Airport (BCN). From London expect a two-hour flight. Barcelona airport is larger, but at Reus you’ll still find a café, restaurant and duty free.
At Reus Airport, paying 10 euro (£8.50) for the 20-minute taxi journey to the resort is advised, as the bus trip to there can be a bit of an ordeal! There are always plenty of cabs: modern saloon cars, estates and mini buses. The drivers are affable and helpful, and most speak English.
If you’re flying into Barcelona-El Prat Airport (BCN) from the UK, once you’ve touched down in Catalonia expect a 1 hour and 15 minute drive to the resort. Because Barcelona Airport is so modern you can always freshen up there and enjoy a cool drink or even a meal before catching a cab or hiring a car.
It’s a 1 hour 25 minute journey by train from Barcelona to the resort. Take the Barcelona Airport Train to Barcelona Sants (20 min), and then change.
Package holidays to Salou are all about flying out to Catalonia, transferring to the resort, checking-in at your hotel, and then simply heading for the beach! Yes, there are plenty of sports, leisure pursuits and recreational activities to enjoy there, but it is the beaches that make the resort in the Golden Coast region of the country’s north-east so very special.
Once there, after seeing the fine golden sand for real (after reading so much about it in the run up to your departure date), all you’ll want to do is feel how soft it is beneath your feet as you make your way towards the cool crystalline ocean for a paddle. Finding a sun lounger and a parasol/canopy for hire won’t be a problem for when you want to dry off later.
Sun lounger and canopy hire is cheap, in fact, and sometimes without charge (depending upon which hotel you are booked into at the resort). The two main beaches there (The Ponent Beach and the Llevant Beach) both have sun loungers for hire, and you’ll find all the essential facilities you would expect at a top Spanish resort too.
Cafes, ice cream kiosks, beach bars, toilets, showers… it’s all there, professionally managed and maintained to the highest standards. The lifeguard presence is also something mums and dads will find reassuring. The Llevant Beach even has a dedicated children’s playground, and for teenagers and adults there is a gym and a volleyball court.
Watersports are available to enjoy along the beautiful coastline at the resort. Take your pick from water-skiing, jet-skiing, kayaking, surfing, banana boat rides, sailing and parasailing.
Because the beaches are so wonderfully spacious, you won’t have to worry about arriving there and finding it a rowdy environment. For even greater tranquillity, head for any one of the secluded coves along the resort’s coastline. The most isolated of all these are found at the neighbouring resort of Cap Salou, which is only a ten-minute drive away.
Visit the amazing theme park of Port Aventura and have fun with the family. Extremely popular all year round, its concept is based around different cultures and civilisations such as Mexico, the wild west, China, the Mediterranean and Polynesia, offering an educational insight as well as great fun and entertainment. There are water slides and rides, rollercoasters and fun and games galore for children of all ages and parents will enjoy the range of dining and entertainment available. A visit offers thrills and memorable experiences for youngsters and it makes a wonderful family day out.
The beaches around Salou offer a clean, safe environment for swimming, sunbathing and water sports. All are gently sloping towards a clear Mediterranean sea and possess fine golden sand and the beach of Playa Llarga in particular offers the shade of a surrounding pine forest and is extremely picturesque. All have extensive facilities close by and the beaches of Salou are undoubtedly the main attraction for visitors to the Costa Dorada.
A day trip to the nearby fishing port of Cambrils offers visitors a marked contrast to the modern resort of Salou. It still retains a very traditional character with narrow cobbled streets, a busy working harbour and rustic medieval houses. It is renowned for its upmarket seafood restaurants and attractive long sandy beaches and has a colourful street market that is well worth a visit.
Ebro Delta National Park
Enjoy a day walking, cycling or bird watching in the wetlands of the Ebro Delta. This protected environment is home to countless species of birdlife such as herons, kingfishers and flamingos and encompasses a wide range of different habitats including sand dunes, marshland and coastal lagoons. Riverside forests can be explored on foot or take a river boat into spectacular wetland scenery full of unique vegetation. This is a highly rewarding trip and will delight nature lovers.
Salou offers a range of water sports activities which are popular with holidaymakers and always provide thrills and excitement. Windsurfing, waterskiing and banana boat rides are some of the highlights and children are well catered for with supervised beach and water sport activities. A large water park in nearby La Pineda offers even more water based fun for youngsters and will ensure a memorable family holiday in Salou.
The main city on Costa Dorada, Tarragona has an intriguing mix of old and new with Roman ruins and ancient city walls blending in perfectly with modern shopping complexes and tree lined boulevards. There are many interesting sights here such as the busy old harbour, known as El Serallo with its flotilla of local fishing boats and several impressive museums housing priceless Roman relics, archaeological finds, artwork and tapestries. Tarragona boasts some of the region's most attractive beaches and a day spent here offers many opportunities for relaxation, shopping and sightseeing.