A Different Side of Spain: Why Tarragona Needs to Be on Your List

Summer time means longer days of exploration and adventure, and nights of shared moments with the ones you love. In Spain, it means traveling, sun, and plenty of beaches.

Whether you’re finishing up your year abroad in Spain or whether you’re thinking of taking a trip here in the summer, the Catalonian hub called Tarragona should be on your travel list.

Photo via  Nikki Ndukwe

Photo via Nikki Ndukwe

It’s not far from Barcelona  

If you’re already on a trip to Barcelona and want to get away to explore some of the less-touristy cities in Catalonia, Tarragona is the perfect place to travel to. Trains leave frequently from the Barcelona-Sants station and take roughly an hour to arrive to the station in Tarragona. From Barcelona, you can easily do a day excursion to this neighboring port city. There are many tours and excursions you can book on sites like Lonely Planet or you can just go where the wind takes you as there’s plenty of things to do there.

The Beaches

If laying out in the sun is your thing, be prepared to see some of the most breathtaking beaches that Spain has to offer. Situated on the Mediterranean coast, the city’s captivating beaches can be accessed from a short walk from the center of the city. In the summer time, Tarragona has a balanced mix of tourists and locals alike, making the beaches less crowded than that of Barcelona. Whether you’re looking to party on the beach with a DJ and delicious drinks, or whether you’re opting for a more, relaxed book reading session, Tarragona has it all. For the most spectacular views, visit the Platja Llarga (or “Playa Larga” in Castellano).



The Roman amphitheater

Roman history is fascinating and there are more amphitheaters to be known than just the famed Colosseum in Rome, Italy. Built in the second century AD, the Tarragona amphitheater sits right on the coast of the city, offering mind-blowing (and Instagram-worthy) views.

Walking the city


Many of the major cities in Spain are quite large, making it intimidating to try and explore it all in one day. Tarragona is a lot smaller than Madrid or Barcelona, so you can enjoy your time strolling through the city and taking it all in. The walk from the beach straight into La Rambla takes less than 10 minutes, while you can enjoy all of the cafes and shops along the streets of the city. There are several affordable hostels and hotels that are walking distance from the delicious Catalan restaurants.    



Food and drinks

Patatas Fritas, Tortilla Española, Crema Catalana, Pa amb Tomaquet (Pan con tomate), Paella and Fideua, the list of food to try is endless. The Tarragona food scene is filled with traditional Catalonian and Spanish food to indulge in (that’s also affordable). Wash it down with a glass of wine or even an authentic Cuban mojito.  

Nikki Ndukwe is a twenty-something part time writer + foodie and full time travel enthusiast. Most of her time is spent plotting new adventures and day dreaming about life in Spain. Lover of photography, style, food, culture, languages, and all things Spain, Nikki is currently preparing for her next journey in the north of the country.