Friday, December 9th, 2016

Caldes de Malavella and The Best Sunset of My Life

25

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

For my final night in Costa Brava, Spain, I arrived in the inland town of Caldes de Malavella.  This beautiful town ended up being an unexpected highlight of the region.

I’d never heard of Caldes de Malavella before my arrival.  The small town is an hour from either Barcelona or the French border and 15 minutes from my beloved Girona.  The town’s claim to fame is its healing waters.  Thermal baths and hot springs are common, which turned Caldes de Malavella into a major spa destination.

I got to experience this water firsthand at Balneari Prats, a spa resort that takes its location seriously.

Balneari Prats

I immediately loved the design and decor and the giant healing water pool outside.  There really is no luxury like cushy spa luxury.  (And, amusingly, my blogger friends and I seemed to be the only guests under the age of 80.)

The best part?  My room had its own enormous jacuzzi tub.

Balneari Prats Room

As the beloved Golden Hour arrived for us photographers, we went out to explore the town.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

Caldes de Malavella has a population of just 4,000 and the town is easily walkable.  We explored Roman ruins and stopped at one of the ancient fountains to have a taste of the healing waters for ourselves.  The water heals you from the inside out!

Hot Water

But as I sipped my cup of warm water, eternal youth was the last thing on my mind — because at that point, I looked up at the sky and realized that we were on the brink of a truly exceptional sunset.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

I’ve seen lots of beautiful sunsets — the sunsets of Koh Lanta, Thailand and Angkor and Phnom Penh in Cambodia in particular were incredibly memorable.

But this Catalan sunset was OFF THE CHARTS.  I’ve never seen so many colors in the sky at one time.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

Yes, these pictures are edited, as all of my photos are.  But this isn’t much of an exaggeration.  I hardly touched the colors.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

Soon, most of the yellows and blues faded away and we were left with a melange of hot pink and bright purple.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

I can’t tell you how frustrating it was to be experiencing a life-changing sunset while in the middle of a time-crunched tour, with no access to viewpoints to enjoy it to the fullest.  I think my fellow bloggers and I were all losing our minds a bit as we scampered all over the place, desperately trying to capture it as best we could.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

Good thing central Caldes de Malavella is home to some beautiful Catalan architecture, like this building, the Casa Masi Ros.

Amazing Sunset, Caldes de Malavella

Soon, that majestic sunset faded, and we returned to Balneari Prats to indulge in a spa treatment: a 15-minute hot and cool shower massage.  My bikini-clad attendant grabbed one of my feet in each hand and swung my legs around until they cracked.  Not your usual massage!

After a sumptuous meal, our night drew to a close. Before heading up to bed, I got behind the hotel’s piano and my Catalan friend Francesc took the best portrait of me I’ve ever seen.  Francesc is an amazing iPhoneographer and Instagrammer — follow him here.

Piano Recital

It was the perfect ending to 10 magical days in Costa Brava.

Many thanks to Visit Costa Brava and TBEX for hosting me in Caldes de Malavella.  All opinions, as always, are my own.

Comments

25 Responses to “Caldes de Malavella and The Best Sunset of My Life”
  1. Anne says:

    Such a beautiful town and sunset!! I love Spain so so much, but I have never been to Costa Brava. I definitely need to visit!

  2. Alexis says:

    Love your pictures. So pretty!

  3. So beautiful! I absolutely love hot springs destinations! When we lived in Taiwan, I went to a spa once a week with a friend that really was just a series of hot pools filled with different kids of herbs, as well as super powerful water jets that would hit you all over your body. It was a great weekly massage, and only cost the equivalent of $4 per time! Horray! Thanks for the beautiful pics to start my day!

  4. Christina says:

    We missed Spain on our jaunt through Europe this time around, unfortunately. But luckily, there is tons of blogger info on it now for when we do go!

  5. What a gorgeous sunset! Great photos.

    We’ve not been to this region of Spain but its on the list! Hoping to get there later this year. Ive read so much about it (on here and other blogs) and Im really excited to get there some time soon!

  6. Sussy says:

    I love your photos, they are amazing. And it´s s great, because I had my best sunrise at the Cost Brava, at Lloret de Mar, just 10 days ago. 😉
    This region seems to be a magical place for magical sunsets and sunrises!

  7. Julia says:

    This seems like such an idyllic day. I am sighing in bliss just looking at your gorgeous photos all the way from my apartment in rainy nyc. Great post, I can’t wait to explore the Costa Brava as soon as I get the chance!

  8. Dave says:

    The sky really was amazing that night!

  9. Tim says:

    Beautiful sunsets! Pink clouds always remind me of cotton candy.

  10. Craig says:

    Amazing colours! In Scotland, we have rain,wind and all the other nasty stuff. Occasionally, from spring through autumn we have the most incredible skies I have ever seen.

  11. Love the jacuzzi, the sunset, and your portrait!

  12. Gorgeous sunset and gorgeous portrait!

  13. Veronica May says:

    Such beautiful photos! What do you use for editing? I’ll have to visit this place one day.

  14. I am a sucker for sunset photos. My favorite time of day and they always evoke a mood. Great job!

  15. Awww, the Costa Brava. I went there as a 17-year old 14 years ago, but I can’t recall any of those amazing sunsets. I must have been distracted otherwise-as you are as a 17-year old. 😉

  16. Gorgeous. Lots of spas and natural springs around Costa Brava and further north into the Pyrenees. I’ll have to check this one out. On your next spa trip try the springs in La Garriga, about an hour from Barcelona.

  17. Great great pictures. I really love all of them. Oh Spain is truly fascinating. Spain’s the most interesting and diverse. Thank you for sharing this Kate 🙂

  18. Richard Hoopt says:

    Simple lovely pictures and I know the waters are simple the best, why, because I have lived here these past 6 years and enjoy going to my local Font Raig ( 60f) and drink 5 litres every 3 days.

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