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“A great alternative to the Costa's”
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3 reviews
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Cottage -
4 Bedrooms, 1 Bathroom, Sleeps 12
Pauls, Province of Tarragona, Catalonia

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Very good - based on 3 reviews
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Reviews from our community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
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English first
English first
Spanish first
English first
Saffron Walden
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“A great alternative to the Costa's”
Reviewed 10 August 2015 for a stay in July 2015

Our stay was only for three nights, although we would love to come back and stay longer another time.
The rental is a charming restored house in the small and charismatic village of Pauls. Pauls is located up in the hills of Catelonia in the Els Ports National Park, well off the usual tourist trail, and some 45km North West from the coast, and about 100km from the historic and very attractive city of Tarragona. There are several walking/hiking trails that run nearby - Google Els Port National Park before you go, as not much information is available locally. Lots of other outdoor activities are available.
Your own transport is definitely recommended, although Pauls does have shops and businesses of it's own which, as the village is so small, are all within a couple of minutes walk - including a very good and friendly baker, two small bars (at least one of which serves good basic food) and a restaurant (which we didn't get a chance to try on this occasion). There is also a small outside public swimming pool that looked great, although we didn't manage to find time to make use of this.

The house is in the center of Pauls, on a steep slope, which means that one side it is almost built into the rock, helping to keep the rooms cooler. Access is by very narrow and steep paths, not all of which are suitable for cars, although (with help from the owners) I managed to get my large car close enough to unload. The house has three floors, the ground and first floor formed the rental for our stay, but I think the top floor can also be opened up for larger groups.
For our group stay there were three bedrooms available: One - a double bedded room on an internal veranda that opens onto the main ground floor living area.
Two - a compact double bedded room on the first floor.
Three - a large bedroom divided into two areas, also on the first floor, one area has two single camp beds and the other has two double-bunk beds, so in with just the ground and 1st floor the house could accommodate up to nine, plus the owners also have a cot that can be provided on request. Bedding and towels are provided.
There is an outside veranda on the first floor with a barbeque that makes a pleasant space to sit and read/chat.
Bathrooms with powerful showers are on both the first and ground floors.
The extended living area in includes a kitchen with electric oven/range, fridge freezer dining area with table/chairs and a lounge with sofas etc.
The house is attractively decorated, furnished and fitted out in an artistic and individualistic way (see the listing pictures - I will also try and post some in the future) and it feels like a family home.

The nearest town of size is Xerta, about 10km /15 minutes drive away which although not really very big, has small supermarkets, butchers/bakers, pharmacy, garage / petrol station etc.
Tarragona is about an hours drive, but well worth a visit for the Roman amphitheater/ museum, historic center and sandy beach (all with nearby cheap and easy parking). While it does have tourists (few Brits, mainly Spanish and French) and a great beach, it was not crowded, and Tarragona is not like a tourist trap
(I came across a really first class butcher here, friendly, and with the best chorizo I have ever tasted).

The owners were very helpful and hospitable, but if your Spanish / Catelan is as bad as mine it would really make the trip much more enjoyable if you could swot up in advance and/or get a good phrase book /use Google Translate to assist with communications - outside the bigger towns, few will speak English.

So, all in a really very enjoyable, experience, friendly owners, and not a typical "villa / pool / beach" rental, but all the more enjoyable for that.

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Liked best: The location, the un-touristy style of the property, the weather, the owners!
Travelling group: Extended Family
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Recommended for:
Friends getaway Families with young children
Large groups People with pets
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Reviewed 29 September 2013
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Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
Antonio c...
Reviewed 26 June 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
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2 guests
US$ 186
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