COSTA DE MARESME
"Sant Pol de Mar"
Southwest of the Costa Brava - the 'Wild Coast' - comes the Costa de Maresme, where the hills retreat from the shoreline, allowing the property developers more space. There is ribbon development for most of the way between Blanes and the outskirts of Barcelona, though the hills themselves remain relatively unspoiled, and there is some good walking to be found there (the views over the coast are superb). If you are entering or leaving Spain by rail via the Mediterranean coast, it is worth changing trains at Girona or Massanes - Maçanet and using the hourly Cercanías service along the coast line (the lower part of this, from Mataró to Barcelona, was the first public railway to be inaugurated in Spain, in 1848). This is the view from above the tunnel at Sant Pol de Mar, looking towards Barcelona, in March 2003.
"Sant Pol de Mar"
Looking the other way - from the train (February 1991).
Typical Catalan farmhouse in the hills above Premià de Dalt. This one is in ruins, but has a vineyard that is still carefully looked after - in the foreground. The hills here are popular at weekends with walkers from the city, and there are a number of good restaurants targeting locals rather than foreigners.
"The capital of the Maresme region"
Mataró, the capital of the Maresme region, is an ever-changing, lively city with an important cultural heritage that gives it a personality of its own. Its privileged geographic situation -by the seaside and the Serralada Litoral mountain range- makes its weather conditions ideal to enjoy the city.
The origins of Mataró go back to the Roman Times. The valuable heritage of this period can be seen at the Roman villa known as Torre Llauder, from the end of the 1st. century B.C., and at the ancient ruins recently found at the old part of town. When strolling around the central streets, one manages to do a quick trip through its history. This trip allows the visitor to travel from the Roman Iluro -the original name of the city- to the Baroque Mataró and through its colonial architectural influences and to contemplate a remarkable example of the Modernist movement thanks to the works of one of its most important representatives: the architect from Mataró, Josep Puig i Cadafalch.
Mataró is a city to live in. Everything invites one to have an enjoyable time, day and night, specially in the summer. The gastronomic offer is wide and varied and its most popular and traditional dish is the cuttlefish with beans. One can also enjoy its waterfront -with a more than a thousand berth marina and fishing port-, the restaurants, the open air areas to eat and drink and the beaches. The city also has a great commercial offer: the traditional Mediterranean markets and shops where one can find all types of products, international trade marks, souvenirs and design products.
Mataró is a modern city and well-connected to its metropolitan environment and to the rest of the regions in Catalonia. The communication network allows an easy access to the city not only by public transport but by private transport as well.
These are the main reasons why Mataró is a city with an excellent quality of life. Its services, the green spaces, its privileged situation by the sea and the wide range of activities –cultural, entertaining, sports and leisure-, common to dynamic cities, make it a great place to visit and live.
Mataró is the capital of the 'Comarca del Maresme'. It is basically a commercial and industrial city, home to 116.764 people. It has a privileged geographic situation -by the seaside and the Serralada Litoral mountain range.
Its origins go back to the Roman Times. In these times the city was named Iluria. An example of this period can be seen at the Roman villa known as Torre Llauder, from the end of the 1st. century B.C., and at the ancient ruins recently found at the old part of town.
The city has some interesting buildings with remarkable example of the Modernist movement thanks to the works of one of its most important representatives: the architect from Mataró, Josep Puig i Cadafalch.