The geographic location of El Vendrell allows its beaches of fine sand to enjoy a pleasant climate which attracts people from everywhere. The proximity of the sea and the mountains has given a special flavour which combines the present with the traditional roots of this municipality. Its beaches, festivals and culture make El Vendrell irresistible for families with children.
The range of culture and leisure activities in El Vendrell is practically endless, and is also complemented by good services and equipment along with a large communications network. Proof of this are its roads and railways which connect it, as well as its proximity to the ports of Tarragona, and Reus and Barcelona airports.
The beach, an essential
The coast of El Vendrell is the most important tourist attraction in the municipality and is made up of three maritime centres: Sant Salvador, Coma-ruga and el Francàs. The beach and the seafront promenade with its houses in Noucentisme style are ideal spaces for taking a calm walk as a family, enjoying the find sand under our feet and the pleasant climate of El Vendrell.
There are seven kilometres of coast in a straight line and at a low level, with fine sand and clear water, and a perfect temperature. The beaches of El Vendrell have had the Blue Flag quality certification since 1988.
The beaches guarantee us some surprises: just before arriving at the Sant Joan De Déu health resort (today a five star hotel) we arrive at Les Madrigueres, a natural space used by migratory birds. On the beach of Sant Salvador, we can contemplate a thousand year old chapel, the oldest building in the municipality.
In summer, there is a great deal of activity on the beaches. Gymnastics and Nordic walking can be practiced, and playrooms are also opened for children to have fun. Furthermore, at the Masai Blanca marine reserve we will have the option of snorkelling thanks to the Aula Aquàtica activity.
An adventure park
For adventurous families who want excitement, Diver Parc must be visited, open every weekend from the 15th of February to the 30th of November for parents with lively children.
We will enjoy a natural environment in which we can fly along zip-lines, cross elevated bridges, balance on the walkways, jump while gripping a rope, and be caught in a giant net – all of this while we see the beach in the background.
Traditions and festivals for all
El Vendrell has retained its traditions, and this is reflected in the municipality’s festivals, such as, for example, the Feria de Santa Teresa, celebrated every October since 1829. The other main festivals are the Fiesta Mayor and Día de Santa Ana.
In July the Fiestas de los Barrios festivals are celebrated, as well as el Pa Beneit, one of the most characteristic and original traditions of El Vendrell, originating in the Middle Ages and celebrated in the harvest season.
In all of these festivals we can marvel at the expertise of the castellers els Nens del Vendrell group and have fun with the parades made up of the Baile de Bastones, the Gigantes, the Baile de Diablos and all the processions of popular culture groups.
Unique cultural spaces
El Vendrell has a very significant culture, made up not only of its museums, but also of musical activity, which includes a large number of concerts and recitals which culminate in the Pau Casals International Music Festival. This festival hosts the most prestigious cellists and also other orchestral formations and national and international composers.
The Pau Casals International Music Festival has been held in July and August since 1981 in the Auditorio Pau Casals auditorium. This space has a modern, light structure, specifically designed for musical activities, as its concert room has incredible acoustics.
This Auditorium has a large schedule of events throughout the year, with all kinds of events related with music: from the promotion of young music students seeking an opportunity, to concerts by the most important performers of the international music panorama.
In addition to this, the Auditorio Pau Casals includes activities related to music in its schedule, intended for families with children. These musical workshops have the aim of teaching, introducing composers, instruments and musical works.
On the 14th of August 2016, a musical educational activity will be carried out, to demonstrate the life and work of Lleidan composer and pianist Enric Granados, in commemoration of the first centenary of his death. It is a good occasion for learning about national music!
Another very important cultural space in El Vendrell is the Teatro Municipal Àngel Guimerà municipal theatre (TÀG), a place designed for holding any kind of performing art, whether dance, music or theatre. On its schedule it is common to find works aimed at families, in order to bring culture to all. Works for children are also performed, such as, for example, puppet theatres.
The Biblioteca Terra Baixa library is another place with a large quantity of culture intended for children. In July, August and September, children’s reading groups are opened for children of 7 to 13 years of age. The activity consists of selecting one book per group, reading it and then meeting to comment on it with refreshments.
Furthermore, at the Fiesta Mayor de El Vendrell Story Hour is held, an occasion in which popular culture groups of the area meet with children to tell a story. Who will be chosen this year? Els Nens del Vendrell, Las Gitanas, El León del Vendrell… We will have to go to find out!
Museums, a great attraction
There are two museums in El Vendrell which have activities for families. One of these is the Museo Deu, which organises special guided visits for families, teaching workshops and cultural and heritage routes.
This museum has one of the most important art collections in the country, with pieces dating from the 12th century to the present day: carvings, carpets, basins, sculptures and paintings, and works of gold, glass and marble which will amaze not only us but our children.
On the 16th of April, Museu Deu will hold a workshop for children, related with the temporary “Origen” exhibition, and on Sunday the 15th and Sunday the 22nd of May two family activities will be held for International Museum Day. Other children’s activities will also be organised on the 9th of August: “Let’s paint in blue”.
The Museu Pau Casals museum, located on the beach of Sant Salvador, El Vendrell, offers a range of family activities throughout the year, intended to bring music and the figure of Pau Casals to children in the form of games and fun.
The museum, the former residence of the cellist, respects the original structure of the house at the time, showing the life and work of Pau Casals in an innovative way. The music, audio-visual materials and original objects and documents bring us closer to the life and thoughts of Pau Casals in an exciting way, from his childhood to adulthood.
The museum offers theatrical visits which bring us closer to the history of Sant Salvador and the daily life of Pau Casals, scheduled for the 26th and 27th of March, the 24th of April and the 22nd of May.
Another notable activity is the musical story “Desde aquel día los clarinetes son negros” with David Puertas as narrator and Carles Pertegaz on clarinet, scheduled for the 17th of April and the story “Granados y la chispa de la felicidad” with actress Clara del Ruste and Emili Brugalla on piano, scheduled for the 22nd of May.
What to eat?
Of course, El Vendrell has also retained its gastronomic tradition. We can sample traditional dishes in many of the restaurants spread along the coast. One of these is Xató del Vendrell, an elaborate, popular fish based dish with its own special day on the first Sunday of February, an occasion to try it.
We cannot miss out on trying the dish coca enramada, which originates in the Middle Ages. It is a base made of flour and yeast, on which spinach, onion, pepper and other ingredients are placed. It is accompanied by a sausage and is a delicious snack which can only be found in El Vendrell.
Finally, we cannot leave out the typical sweets of the area: bufats, made of hazelnut, sugar and egg whites; orelletes, typical during the Carnival and Lent; carob cake; and resolís, a liquor with aromas of aniseed and cinnamon. Those with a sweet tooth are also welcome in El Vendrell.
In conclusion, this is a quiet but fun place, which is traditional but modern, in which families with children can enjoy holidays in which nothing is missing. Do you want to discover the hidden wonders of El Vendrell?
More information: www.elvendrellturistic.com