CostaBravaTouristGuide.com — Some 7 km north of Llançá is the small village of Colera, in the Catalan county of Alt Empordà.
It is listed in some guidebooks as San Miguel de Colera. That was the official name given when, in July 1770, King Charles III authorized the establishment of the village.
Nowadays San Miguel refers to the residential area. Too, San Miguel is the town’s patron saint.
Colera is said to come from the Latin word for ‘hill,’ refering to the foothills of the Albera mountain range that provides a magnificent decor to the West.
About 600 people live here (2008 figures) spread out over 24 square kilometers.
Tourism is Colera’s main industry, but even during high season (August) the place remains uncrowded.
• Colera, which can be reached by train from Figueres, Girona, Llançá and Portbou, is built along a riverbed.
• Colera is located 74 km from Girona, and 28 km from Figueras.
• The village is serviced by the N-260 road, which is in the process of being upgraded to the A-26 Autovia.
Perhaps due to its tiny size the tourist trappings seen elsewhere along the Costa Brava have largely bypassed this village.
With few typical tourist amenities, Colera is a great place to escape the crowds.
The center of Colera, the PlaçPi i Margall — referred to by locals simply as ‘Plaza Mayor’ — is about 200 meters from the beach.
It features a pair of outdoor cafés shaded by the Arbe de Libertat (Liberty Tree) — a banana tree planted at the town’s centennial in 1898.
Here is where you’ll also find the townhall, as well as Colera’s two oldest shops.
There are a few restaurants and simple bars. Colera also has a three simple hotels and some holiday apartments, as well as a camping site.
Colera has two large, pebbled beaches set in a horsehoe-shaped by with a small fishing harbor at one end.
Even during the height of the summer season there’s plenty of space at the beach.
• Playa de Garbet: 650 meters long and 140 meters wide. Consists of large and small pebbles. Showers and drinking water available.
• Playa d’en Goixa: This beach, near the train station, consists of large river pebbles. Showers and drinking water available, as well as access for the disabled.
• Punta d’Es Borro: At a short distance from town this isolated beach, 100 meters long and 7 meters wide, is popular with nudists. There’s a 200 meter walk from a car park. In recent years some houses have been built nearby.
Most other beaches in the area can be reached by car or on foot, while some are accessible only by boat — and thus a bit more private.
A road from the train station leads to the small bay of Calle Rovellada.
The more adventurous continue on to windblown Punta de L’Escala, where the sure-footed take a public footpath of sorts to the rocks below.
• The town’s large, quiet beaches — as well as the many smaller beaches.
• The tiny tourist office provides information about a number of walking routes in the area, as well as The Albera nature preserve.
• Art Parc at Playa d’en Goix, in front of the train station, consists of a collection of sculptures by Joan Padern.
• Castle Mills, the ruins of a castle that dates to the Middle Ages, and located near the abandoned village of Mills (8 houses).
• Built in the eleventh century, the chapel Ermita de San Miguel de Colera is worth a visit.
Feasts & Festivals
• Mel Novella: during the weekend of San Juan (June 24), Colera hosts a Mel Novella (New Honey) market with more than 30 stands in the center of town.
• San Miguel: the ‘Festa Major’, on September 29, is in honor of the town’s patron saint.
• Club Nàutic Sant Miquel de Colera can be contacted if you wish to moore your boat in the sports marina: Badia de Colera, s/n. 17496 Colera, Girona. Tel : (+34) 972 38 90 95 Fax: (+34) 972 387 001.
• Diving Center Colera is an official Catalonian Government centre; it is a Beuchat diving centre and Naui school, Cmas, EDA. It is located at the San Miguel Camping (below).
The center’s boats take divers to one of two diving areas: the Banyuls-Cerbère reserve, off the coast of France, and Cap de Creus — between El Port de La Selva and Cadaqués. Both diving spots are reserves, said to have kept their wild and natural nature.
The diving school offers courses of level I-II-III ACUC, daily outings and special group packs.
• El Càmping San Miguel A tranquil, family-orientated campsite for tents, caravans and vans. Also offers bungalows.
Colera City Hall
Colera’s official website: Ajuntament de Colera (Catalan)