Spain Guide


La Pineda Tourist Attractions Things to Do

If you're holidaying in Pineda with youngsters no doubt you'll find yourself spending most of your days at the beach, the water park and Port Aventura. If you get time to venture further afield, Pineda is well placed for visiting some fascinating cities and top tourist spots in Catalonia.

The Aquopolis water park is one of the main reasons why so many families visit this resort. It makes a great day out for children of all ages (and most adults secretly enjoy it too!). Besides the many water rides, there's an aquatic obstacle course, a wave pool, bumper boats, mini golf, a small zoo and numerous snack bars. Bear in mind that the park is only open from the beginning of May to mid October.more than one youngster has been distraught to arrive in Pineda out of season only to find its biggest attraction closed.

You'll probably save money by buying your entrance tickets directly from the park, rather than a tour operator, especially if you go for multi day tickets or group discounts. Try to get there early because in high season it gets very crowded after 3pm when visitors can buy half day tickets.

Port Aventura is open most of the year but check in advance if you're travelling between November and March as the park does close for certain periods during that time. You really need at least two days to take in all the attractions so once again make sure you get discount tickets by buying directly from the park which offers special deals designed to encourage you to return.

There's a mini road train running to and from Port Aventura throughout the day and it's just a short bus or taxi ride. The park is divided into five themed lands China, Polynesia, Mexico, the Mediterranean and the Far West. It's chock a block with thrill rides, water slides, live entertainment, bars, restaurants and shops.

Each land has themed souvenir shops with tempting but rather pricey one harassed mum put it "blindfold your kids and lock your wallet!"

One useful money saving tip is to take your own waterproof gear with you if you don't want to get drenched on the water rides (and stung by the high costs of waterproofs within the park).

Port Aventura's most famous feature is the terrifying Dragon Khan Europe's biggest roller coaster with no less than eight 360 degree loop the loops. This is the ultimate white knuckle ride (in fact my knuckles had to be prized off the safety bar by my two children at the end of it!).

The evil Khan dominates the skyline for miles around, presenting an ominous challenge to those who like to have their nerves tested to the full. The signs outside say it's not recommended for people with epilepsy or heart problems a more appropriate sign might read "only recommended for the most foolhardy".

Be warned that although the ride only lasts a few seconds you may face a long wait to get on it, especially in peak season.

Try to fit in at least a day visit to the fascinating city of Barcelona with its mind blowing Gaudi architecture, famous fountains and Gothic cathedral. A stroll along the pedestrianised Las Ramblas with its colourful flower stalls and street cafes is a must.

Regular buses run from Pineda to the nearby city of Tarragona which is well worth a visit with its wealth of ancient buildings and monuments including Roman aqueducts, amphitheatre and medieval monasteries.

Local tour operators organise excursions to the breath taking Benedictine Monastery at Montserrat, perched high in the mountains amid extraordinary rock formations which have attracted pilgrims for thousands of years.

The Salvador Dali museum in Figueres, where some of the painter's most important works are housed, is another popular day trip from Pineda.