Salou, tourist capital of Costa Dorada

Salou is a port city on Costa Dorada, located just 20 km south of Tarragona. The city was founded by the Greeks in the 6th century and became well-known for its fishing port, which was at its peak in the Middle Ages and continues to be used in modern times.

Salou has about 30,000 inhabitants, a number that multiplies in the summer due to its popularity with the tourists. Expansive beaches and small coves with crystal clear waters, along with its strategic position on the map, near Barcelona and right next to PortAventura, make Salou a very attractive destination during the summer months. Next, we'll show you everything you need to know, so nothing catches you off guard during your holidays in Salou this summer..

Leisure and fun for tourists in Salou

Salou offers a thousand and one activities to do, especially in summer. Salou is internationally recognized as one of the world’s premier destinations for sports and leisure activities. You can participate in any watersport you can imagine, such as canoeing, diving, snorkeling, water skiing, kayaking, or windsurfing... And that’s just the beginning. You can also kitesurf, sail, swim with fins, and canoe.

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But there is more to life than sports, so let's talk about other kinds of fun. In Salou you will find hundreds of places to enjoy over your summer: restaurants of all kinds - typical Costa Dorada cuisine, seafood and Mediterranean cuisine, avant-garde, international food, and there is no shortage of fast food either - pizzerias and Irish pubs, bars - both daytime beach bars and nightclubs, of course, but also music pubs for all kinds of music lovers, including live music, and you don’t have to leave until you can see the sun rise over the sea.

Things to do in Salou:

As experts in the area, we will explain everything you must see and do if you come to Salou on vacation. So, take note of the essentials and the bests things to do in Salou - Whether you are on vacation as a couple or with friends, visit Paseo Marítimo Jaime I, because it really is the epicenter of the tourist activity and a symbol of Salou..

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Also, don’t miss seeing the Torre Vella if you are interested in the history and origins of the places you visit, or Iglesia de Santa María del Mar , a Gothic structure from the 18th century, built by the town’s fishermen. Here you can also appreciate the murals.

Other buildings included on this route are the Vila Enriqueta and Villa Loperena . You will find them when walking along the seafront of Salou and Paseo Jaime I, located just in front of the Yacht Club.

Would you enjoy a bit of calm in an idyllic place?  Salou may have exactly what you are looking for - the Lumine Beach Club , a tourist resort hidden in the pine forest that surrounds the Larga beach in Salou.

With its Infinity pools, sand pools, freshwater or saltwater pools, you will feel like you have landed paradise . There are also shallow pools to delight the little ones. Now, there is an exceptional activity that you must do if you like hiking or simply love nature and want to see the beach and the Mediterranean forest from a different point of view than usually. We talk about the Camino de Ronda in Salou . You can start it in the Promenade that goes to Cabo de Salou . On the seven-kilometer-long promenade from the center of Salou to the Lighthouse, you will come across a path called Ronda, which runs along the entire coast and crosses cliffs, coves with crystal clear waters, and pine forests. A walk that is worth it, without a doubt.

Vacation in Salou with children: Thing to do in Salou

If you plan to spend your vacation in Salou with your children, instead of being confused by the great offers of nighttime entertainment we just described, you should be happy, because Salou is only 10 minutes from PortAventura , a magical and incredible place which every child should visit at least once.

If you do not want to leave the city of Salou, you will also find BoscAventura  here, a vertical forest designed as outdoor fun for children, where they will experience great adventures with zip lines, climbing walls, paintball, all adapted to different levels of difficulty. But not only that, you can also go karting with your children in Karting Salou, an experience you will surely remember for a long time.

Another option is to enjoy the promenade through the eyes of a child , because it is full of entertainment for the little ones. For example, in summer,  Fuente Cibernética  offers a show with light and sound, projecting elements that illustrate the songs.

It seems really magic. And this is not the only thing in Salou that causes excitement among the children: Fuente Luminosa, which originally was meant to go to Montjuïc (Barcelona), ended up staying in Salou because it was too small.

The main attraction lies in its night lighting, but if you really want your kids to have fun, take them there in summer, when the weather is hot, as it is one of the many fountains that splash water and allows kids to run and play. It’s a great idea for a family outing and one of the best things to do with children! Needless to say, on the Paseo Marítimo, you will also find many playgrounds right on the beach.

The beaches of Salou

The sun and the beach are the main tourist attractions of the Costa Dorada, and anyone who tells you otherwise is lying. The beaches of Salou are the best of Costa Dorada .

  • La playa de Levante:(known by its Catalan name Platja de Llevant). This extends for more than a kilometer with its clear waters and fine sand. It is a very popular beach with families. It is fully equipped with showers, toilets, a children's area, and sports facilities for beach sports where you will have a great time with your family or friends playing volleyball or beach soccer. It is in front of this beach that you will find the Luminosa fountain, one of the tourist attractions that we talked about above, and that in turn lies adjacent to the marina.
  • La playa de Poniente: (known by its Catalan name Platja de Ponent) is the closest beach to the center of town. It is part of the same contiguous marina that borders Platja de Llevant de Salou. Above the beautiful promenade of Salou and along the thousand meters this beach covers, you will find a small forest of palm trees on the sand, playgrounds, showers, sunbeds, umbrellas, chiringuitos - of course - and access for the disabled... which is why it has been awarded with the blue flag and the Q of quality.
  • La platja dels Capellans: this is the beach that connects the walk to the east. It is a small, urban, and inviting beach. Another beach where you can bake in the sun and take a dip in the sea of Salou
  • La playa Larga –o platja Llarga: as it is known in Catalan: this one of the classic spots of Salou. Surrounded by the green of the pines and the blue of the sea, its name means “long beach” because it is not very wide, but it is quiet, expansive, and has good services. It's the beach located just below the Lumine Beach Club.
  • La cala Font: you will be surprised to find, in the middle of the city, a small natural cove surrounded by vegetation. It is the perfect place in Salou to practice snorkeling. Surely it does not look like any other one you've visited!
  • Cala Penya Tallada: this natural and wild place away from the tourist crowds is located before you arrive at Faro de Salou, and it is surrounded by crystal clear waters and Mediterranean vegetation.


Map of the beaches of Salou

If you like coves, you're in luck, because in spite of Salou being a city with all imaginable services, you can find wonderful stretches of nature in the form of coves  that delight the locals and tourists alike – at least the ones who know, and now you are one of these lucky ones. We present to you Cala Llenguadets , a few hundred meters from the center of Salou. If you don’t want to leave the city but prefer to avoid the big beaches of Llevant and Ponent, the Llenguadets cove is a very good alternative.


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We also want to tell you about Cala Cranc . It is a small cove on the outskirts of Salou. You will find it in the most eastern point of the municipality and in it, as it could not be otherwise, you will also find a beach bar, along with vegetation formed by pines and shrubs, crystal clear waters, very few people, and a calm sea. What more could you want?

Festival honoring the patron saint of Salou

The festivities of Salou take place in August and are known as the Golden Nights  (NitsDaurades, if you see it written in Catalan on a poster). If you are lucky enough to be in Salou during these holidays in August, you cannot miss them. If, however, you travel in September, you must attend the Santa Tecla de Tarragona festivities , featuring many great concerts, fireworks, parades, and events of all kinds... it's a great party that attracts thousands of people every year.

Tourism around Salou

If you stay in Salou, you're very near  Reus , and if you like architecture and history, do not settle for just the Modernist route of Salou that we described before. Go to Reus and do the Modernist route of Reus as well, because it is S-PEC-TA-CU-LAR.
If you feel like going a bit further south, about 40 kilometers away you will find Delta del Ebro. It is a natural park and one of the most important wetlands in Spain, where thousands of bird species live surrounded by fields of rice truly incredible landscapes, and unspoiled beaches up to 14 kilometers long. It is worth a visit. And above all, if you do go, don’t miss trying Delta del Ebro rice, it’s spectacular!

Useful information about Salou

The Salou tourist office

Plaça Europa, office open during the tourist season (from Easter week to the end of October)
Address: Plaça Europa, s/n - 43840 Salou, Tarragona, Spain
Opening hours for the public
From July 3 to September 3, 2017:
Monday to Sunday: 10:00 am to 1:30 pm – 5:00 pm to 8:30 pm
More information
977 350 102

Where to stay in Salou?

Salou, as the tourist capital of the Costa Dorada, has a very wide and varied hotel and accommodation infrastructure. If what you are looking for is to stay downtown, the best option is to rent an apartment in Salou and enjoy both the beach and the promenade. If what you are looking for is more freedom, then we can book a house or a villa in quieter areas such as Cabo de Salou.

How to get to Salou?

Salou is located 10 kilometers from Tarragona and 8 kilometers from the airport of Reus. It is just over an hour by car from Barcelona airport. You can get to Salou by highway (AP-7), by freeway (A-7) and by the N-340. It also has a train station, from the south (Valencia) and from the north (Barcelona). We will wait for you!
¿How far is Barcelona from Salou?
Barcelona its around 100 km far from Salou. If you are traveling to Salou from Barcelona, the cheapest and fastest way its the train, beacouse it cost only 10.-€ and you have trains every 20 mintus from the main Barcelona train stations to Salou ( it takes 1h 20 min ).


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