The luckiest thing about visiting Barcelona is that not only you can find everything that a city has to offer but you can also visit nearby towns that have exceptional features. This post is dedicated to my favorite explorers. Explorers that are both curious and active. The ones that want to explore different surroundings and are not scared of getting lost. Here is our experience in Caldes de Montbui.
CALDES DE MONTBUI
Caldes de Montbui is a nearby town located in the interior part of Barcelona, called Vallés Oriental. It’s a 30-minute ride from the big city and it’s really easy to get to. However, buses take around an hour because there are several stops during the journey.
There’s around 18,000 inhabitants and it’s one of the few Thermal towns in Catalonia. This means that there’s natural hot water underneath the town and therefore, Spa’s and all sorts of Thermal sites to see and discover.
SPA & RELAXATION
The Spa’s; Balneari Broquetas, Balneari Victòria and Balneari Vila de Caldes. All of them offer many services, products and experiences.
However, I have only visited the Balneari Victòria and it was really cool. They have an old-fashioned underground SPA with different areas and a nice warm swimming pool. They offer many package deals for different occasions; I got the basic package which included a relaxing massage – very much needed!
HOT WATER SITES
It isn’t called an off-the-beaten path place if there isn’t any spots out there to visit, right? Well, not only you can chill at the SPA but you can also visit the Old Town’s interesting spots. The most famous attraction in Caldes de Montbui is the Lion Fountain. The natural water comes out at 74 degrees!!! Traditionally, inhabitants used the fountain’s hot water to cook or clean their ingredients.
You’ll probably realize once you’re there but Caldes de Montui isn’t big at all. If you walk a few meters from the fountain you’ll come across the Safareig, which is a natural swimming pool that was used to wash clothes. Not just then, but now too as people keep washing their clothes here.
Finally, I found out that there was an outdoor hot water swimming pool so I had to give it a try. There’s a 3€ fee entrance to get in and you must wear those ugly swimming caps, but it was worth it. You can overlook onto numerous fields, mountains and nature. The water is warm so you can even visit during winter. There’s also a small terrace to chill out on or even sunbathe in summer.
Apart from the relaxing SPA’s, Caldes de Montbui is more than that. There’s also several parks and trekking trails for everyone to enjoy. Families with kids can have a little excursion to Torre Roja, Torre Marimon or the Farell Mountain.
There are also a handful of Roman remains such as the Prison Tower, the Roman Bridge, the Roman swimming pool or the Remei Hermitage. There’s also a medieval Wall and the “Delger” House Museum. However, if you need some more information on the town just stop by the Touristic Information Point at the local Museum Thermalia.
The Museum hosts a full exhibition of well-known artists like Picasso or Manolo Hugué as well as an exhibition on Thermal history in the town.
EAT. EAT. EAT.
I did visit most of the places mentioned above but I also had time to try very nice food. I had lunch at Na Madrona Restaurant. A small hidden Italian restaurant in a narrow street that definitely didn’t disappoint. The place looks like a proper old-fashioned Italian restaurant, I actually felt as if I was in the middle of Rome. I totally recommend the grilled prawns and the hummus starter, they were absolutely delicious.
There are several bars with terraces to have a cold shandy after a long walk through the city. Canaletas Square must be the meeting point for many in Caldes because it was always crowded with people drinking and eating tapas.
Finally, I also popped into a place called FIKA, the only and nicest place for brunch in Caldes de Montbui. It has everything you could think of for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The avocado and egg toast was my favorite. They only serve vegetarian and vegan food so be prepared to have a healthy meal.