the best period
Spring and Summer
Nestled in its perfect cove, snug as a jewel in its mountain setting, glittering with vines, olive trees and prickly pears, Collioure is a sight for sore eyes no matter how many times you see it. The greatest early 20th century artists were won over by the former fishing village's unique atmosphere and fell for the beautiful Catalan town themselves. Follow in their footsteps and listen to our experts: here's a Fabulous Voyage exploring the pearl of the Côte Vermeille.
If you really want to soak up the setting in and around Collioure away from the hustle and bustle of the town centre, it's best to head to the hills. So Nicolas, a Valles’ride guide, brings you a unique electric scooter ride from the centre along the paths weaving through the terraced vines, between land and sea, Collioure and Port-Vendres. Drink in the staggering views as you ride dozens of miles along the coast, from the Cerbère cliffs to the Leucate plateau.
Along the way, Nicolas will tell you stories and the secrets behind the signal towers on every hilltop. Suitable for over 12s. What a great way to explore beautiful landscapes and combine sport, tourism and fun!
The flavors of the Catalan country
Once your outing's over, it's time to recharge your batteries and you'll be spoilt for choice in Collioure with its many restaurants where you can settle down on the terrace and tuck into Catalan specialities.
Once you've filled up on delicious local produce, it's time for some food for the soul! You're invited to a fun-filled scavenger hunt in the old town following in Matisse's footsteps! According to "Mamie Louche", rumour has it that the founder of fauvism (an art movement in its heyday in early 20th century Collioure) painted a mysterious artwork in top secret. Now it's up to you and your family or friends to piece it back together.
The "Le Tableau Mystérieux" Box is available to buy from Collioure Tourist Information.
Spend the rest of the day just enjoying the moment after you find (we trust you) the best spot to snap this open-air theatre stage! Go on, here's a clue... People say that the views are pretty good if you go up La Glorieta, a stunning Moorish pavilion! What do you think?
You sped through them on your electric scooter yesterday, now it's time to meet them: lovingly tended for centuries on terraces lined with drystone walls defying the Albères slopes (the last Pyrenean foothills), the vines are a great source of pride on the Côte Vermeille.
They make the famous Collioure and divine Banyuls wines and are best enjoyed on a guided tour joined by the winemakers themselves... naturally. Their passion for their trade is infectious as they invite you into their winery for a morning of experience, education and, of course, wine tasting.
We suggest a Vinohrando tour in the Domaine Piétri Géraud vineyards to meet Maguy and Latitia, two talented female winemakers, for a VIP tasting with them. "Women" and "wine" share the same initial after all.
Another mouth-watering option is a vineyard tour followed by a Catalan lunch on the cooperative winemaker Dominique Recasens' property. Learn the history of the vineyard and vine growing before a Banyuls aperitif served with another Collioure speciality, anchovies, then a classic meal washed down by AOP Collioure wine!
We're well into the afternoon, the light is softer and it's time to explore the deep sea depths in Collioure Bay. Join the Centre International de Plongée de Collioure for a dive with peace of mind and learn the basics with your instructor.
The wrasse, grouper, urchin, octopus and coral can't wait to meet you! So, are you ready to explore the world of silence?
Your thirst for adventure is unquenchable and you can't help but go back to the magical streets of Collioure. That's lucky! Collioure Tourist Information has designed a cinema tour with your name on it.
Join Catherine Blin, a cinema history specialist, to learn about the films shot in Collioure between 1955 and 2009. It will give your break a Hollywood vibe and make your friends go green with envy! Something different isn't it?
In practice, the tour is available every Tuesday in summer and lasts 1.5 hrs.
It's your last day in Collioure and since you've not really had any downtime up to now, treat yourself to a chill out. You deserve it! Take a dip at one of Collioure's picture postcard beaches which are all sheltered from the sea swell. Pure joy! That's what holidays are for after all!
Want to end your stay on a high?
We've found the perfect adventure for you: a sea kayak trip at sunset with Kayak Mer Aleoutes.
The schedule for your magical night: novices get a quick introduction to paddling then, we know you can't wait, it's straight into a kayak ride hugging the rocks (you'll see why it's called the "Côte Vermeille" or vermilion coast). Also featuring a swim in a dreamy cove and, of course, a "Colliourenc" Banyuls drink and tapas. My mouth's already watering, how about you?
Night falls at 9.30pm and you've fallen for Collioure... What a Fabulous Voyage!
How to get there?
Collioure lies in the far south of Occitanie in the Pyrénées-Orientales department, 30km south of Perpignan.
• By car: from Toulouse in 2.5 hrs via the A61 then the A9 (junction 42). From Montpellier in 2 hrs on the A9 (junction 42).
• By plane: the nearest airport is Perpignan-Rivesaltes (36km). Flights to/from Paris and a dozen destinations in France, Europe and North Africa
• By train: TER regional trains run to/from Collioure and Perpignan several times a day or you can connect on the TGV high-speed train to/from Paris.
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