We’re not prone to cutting on Barcelona’s coveted beaches—most residents of a major city can only dream of such luxury—but they can be a touch hectic for some. At their busiest, neighboring sound-systems clang loudly to dissonant effect and sun-crazed tourists lay claim to every centimeter of sand.
Take a different approach and trek to Stiges instead. A 35-minute train journey from Sants Estacio or Passeig de Gracia costs roughly the same as a bottled beer, and provides a refreshingly different seaside experience. With a pedestrianized town, striking quietude enables you to leisurely amble towards the water and enjoy fine examples of modernista architecture on the way. Once at the beach, fine golden sand and picturesque crystalline waters will have you wondering what all that fuss about the other beaches was about, anyway.
The town is also known for being gay-friendly, with a number of hotels and bars serving the large visiting and resident LBGT community who add to the area’s vibrant atmosphere.