Over 4 km of white sandy beaches mark the Mediterranean coast of Malgrat de Mar, which lies only 60 km north of Barcelona. Tourism really kicked off here back in the 1960s and today it has been classified as one of the official Catalan Family Holiday Destinations. This means that there are plenty of facilities, along with the right attitude towards families to enjoy a family holiday at its best.
Take time off the beach to stroll around the old town centre and perhaps have a “café con leche”, or a tipple of your fancy, while taking in the surroundings. There are interesting architectural sites dotted around, such as the 18th-century Church of Saint Nicholas (Sant Nicolau) some modernist buildings and the late 19th-century Fish Market – Peixateries Velles.
The outdoor Mediterranean lifestyle can just be enjoyed by relaxing, drinking, eating and people watching, or you can crank it up a notch and spend time walking and appreciating some of the natural spaces that the area has to offer. Try not to miss the Playa de la Conca sand dunes, the Tordera River Delta, and bird-watching if you like it. The town is embraced by natural spaces that are also perfect for cycling or hiking.
Although it is part of the Barcelona province, Malgrat de Mar is very close the province of Girona, which means in some ways it has elements of its culture and history that are more linked with Girona than Barcelona. If you want to explore some of the Costa Brava’s highlights, as well as making a trip down to Barcelona, this can be a promising location for you.
Traditionally, it has been an agricultural town with a fair amount of maritime commercial activity ever since the 19th century, as well as being an important industrial centre.
Things To Do
Malgrat de Mar Town Hall
The Town Hall is one of the modernist style buildings that you can see. It was originally opened in August of 1913, but since then its interior has been refurbished.
Another Modernist style house is Ca l’Arnau. Originally constructed in 1914, it has been home to a Public Music School, but at the moment is where the Tourism & Cultural departments are based.
Torre de la Vídua de Can Sala
Built in 1909, this is another Modernist style building by Esteve Rocafort Carreras. It features wrought ironwork and ceramics.
The Old Hospital and Chapel
Hug Descolomer donated his estate in 1441 for the purpose of building a hospital for the poor. Today it is a therapeutic centre, and the chapel, which has been renovated, sometimes hosts cultural events.
La Cooperativa (Library)
Built towards the latter part of the 16th century, La Cooperativa was originally a stately home of the Clapers family. Down through the years it has served a number of purposes, such as being a field dressing station during the 18th century, the Casino headquarters in the 19th century, and during the 20th century it was a HQ of a worker cooperative. Today it is the town’s library.
The Old Fishmongers – Peixateries Velles
The Old Fishmongers dates to the late 19th century, at which time the fishmongers were located in the north and the butchers could be found in the south.
Can Campassol Park
Although this is a park, it’s also the location of a special colonial home, which these days is where the Retired Persons Club is…El Casal de Jubilats.
La Pilona is an artificial structure, out at sea, that was used as a docking system, in the early 20th century, for ships that had been collecting iron ore from the Can Palomeres mines. The rock platform can be seen from the south of the promenade.
Malgrat de Mar has three beaches to choose from.
Centre Beach – Platja del Centre
A blue flag beach of around 900 metres in length, Centre Beach has good water quality and plenty of services around. It runs from the start of the Cami de la Pomerad to the Riera de Sant Genis de Palafolls.
Astillero Beach – Platja de l’Astillero
Located in the touristic area where the hotels are, this beach has a holiday atmosphere, along with picnic areas and refreshment stalls. What’s more is that in July and August, there’s a Kiddies Club here. The beach is around 1 km long.
Conca Beach – Platja de la Conca
From the Cami de la Pomerada, this beach runs down to meet the mouth of the Tordera River. It includes a protected sand dunes area, and the total length of the beach is 2600 metres.
Palafolls Castle – 4.3 km from Malgrat de Mar
We first hear mention of this Castle in 968. The purpose of this military structure was to protect the road between Girona and Barcelona. Today visitors can see the ruins, as well as enjoying nice views, from the crest of the mountain where it is situated.
Church of St. Nicholas – L’Esglesia de Sant Nicolau
The church, which is dedicated to Saint Nicholas of Bari, dates back to the 18th century, however it does preserve some elements from earlier periods. The façade is in the Neoclassical style.
Castle Park – Parc del Castell
This park is located on a hill where you can enjoy lovely views of all the town. Inside the park you can appreciate over 100 botanical species, each of which are labelled. There are playgrounds for the children, plus cultural events take place there.
Francesc Macià Park
A huge park of 40.000 m2, with plenty of leisure activities for all the family, this is a great place to go for a picnic or day out with your children. There are playgrounds for all age groups, a skating area, an area to relax and an amphitheatre for events. It is also filled with plenty of lovely scenery, sculptural elements and botanicals.
Tordera River Delta
Of course during the height of the summer season, there isn’t much water here. But if you are travelling out of season, you should pay the delta a visit.
Conca Beach Sand Dunes
The dunes of lie between the Tordera area and the old town, and there has been an agreement to protect the area and its vegetation.
Pla de Grau
This is an agricultural area, which is also protected. Farmers grow vegetables here, as well as hook beans (fesol del Ganxet) which are a speciality of the area. These hook beans have been labelled with the protection of Guarantee of Origin.
Photo of beach and kite surf by Albert Torelló
Photos of Rooftops, and Sunset by Alex Alishevskikh
Photo of beach and boats by Alberto Gonzalez Rovira
Where to Sleep
Where to Eat
The Spanish chain which offers a good price quality balance
Address: Calle de Badalona, 08380 Malgrat de Mar, Barcelona, España
Dia – Carrer de les Germanes Torrell, 0, 08380 Malgrat de Mar, Barcelona, España
BonArea – Carrer del Carme, 65
Lidl – Crta. N-II, Km. 673
Carrefour – Carretera N-II, km 673
Aldi – Avda. Costa Brava , 146-152