Caldes d'Estrac also known as Caldetes

An Insider’s Guide to Caldes d’Estrac

Caldes d’Estrac is a municipality in Catalonia, Spain. Located on the coast between Sant Vicenç de Montalt and Arenys de Mar, it is accessible via the N-II coastal road and a RENFE railway station. Caldes d’Estrac is also known as Caldetes and is popular for its thermal baths. The name Caldetes comes from Roman times, however, during that time the municipality was referred to as Aquae Calidae or Hot Water

History & Economy of Caldes d’Estrac

Caldes d'Estrac

View of Caldes d’Estrac

As mentioned above, the town’s history is deeply connected to its thermal springs, which were a significant draw for the area. During the medieval period, Caldes d’Estrac was a small agricultural and fishing village. In the 18th century, the medicinal properties of the thermal baths gained renewed attention. By the 19th century, Caldes d’Estrac had become a popular seaside resort for Barcelona’s bourgeoisie. Many wealthy families built summer residences in the town. 

The town eventually became a cultural hub and attracted numerous artists, writers, and intellectuals. Prominent figures such as Josep Palau i Fabre, a Spanish poet and writer,  spent time in Caldes d’Estrac, contributing to its cultural significance.

The 20th century saw further development and modernization. The construction of the N-II road and the railway line improved accessibility, making it easier for visitors to reach the town. The town continued to grow as a tourist destination, maintaining its reputation for health and wellness due to the thermal baths. Today, Caldes d’Estrac retains much of its historical charm while offering modern amenities. 

Thermal Baths
The 19th-century thermal baths in Caldes d’Estrac are the only publicly owned ones in Catalonia. The mineromedicinal baths are heated and mineralised at a depth of 2,800 metres, emerging at 38.8°C. The unique pure crystalline water flows continuously in the Balneari, maintaining its biological, physical, and chemical properties, and offering significant healing and therapeutic potential. They are recommended for treating rheumatic conditions, osteoarthritis, respiratory issues, locomotor system disorders, osteoarticular trauma, uric and oxalic calculosis, and chronic urinary tract inflammations. To gain the most out of your thermal bath experience, check out the Balneari Caldes d’Estrac Spa, located in the center of town. 

Property in Caldes d’Estrac

Caldes d'Estrac

Beach front Property in Caldes d’Estrac

The property market in Caldes d’Estrac is fairly robust given the ongoing popularity of this charming seaside town and its proximity to Barcelona via train or road. It offers a variety of property types, from modern apartments to historic homes, making it an attractive location for buyers and investors alike. Whether looking for a permanent residence, a holiday home, or an investment property, Caldes d’Estrac provides diverse options in a beautiful and tranquil setting. Property prices tend to be relatively high compared to some other towns in the Maresme region, reflecting its desirability and exclusivity. As of mid-2024, the average price per square metre is 3141€ (indomio) but can vary significantly depending on the specific location and type of property. The market offers a range of properties, including new build apartments, modernista townhouses, and luxury villas. Properties with sea views or those that are close to the beach are particularly sought after. The rental market is also active, with many properties available for long-term rentals as well as short-term holiday rentals, attracting both locals and international visitors. Caldes d’Estrac is considered a good area for real estate investment due to its consistent demand, potential for property value appreciation, and overall attractiveness to both local and foreign buyers.

Gastronomy in Caldes d’Estrac

Caldes d'Estrac

Chiringuito on Platja dels Tres Micos in Caldes d’Estrac

If you are a seafood lover, Sotavent is the place to go. Known for its high-quality cuisine and prime location just metres from the sea, the restaurant offers exceptional rice, fish, and seafood dishes, along with spectacular desserts. This restaurant is also one of the most popular chiringuitos on the Maresme coats. Next, the restaurant La Tasqueta stands out for its fusion-style cuisine. Among its most popular dishes are its salmon tartare, tapas, and octopus. Their desserts include some of the tastiest in Maresme. They describe their style as ‘different, fresh and dynamic’. For something different, try Pizzeria Estrac. Their menu draws from traditional Italian cuisine, especially pizza and pasta. Another restaurant to note is Dynamic Restaurant, located on the seventh and eighth floors of Dynamic Hotels offering stunning Mediterranean views. It features a versatile dining space perfect for intimate dinners or group events. The El Cel Dynamic terrace provides a luxurious outdoor dining experience, while the Terra Dynamic bar offers a relaxed setting for snacks and drinks. 

Shopping

View of Carrer de La Riera in Caldes d’Estrac

Since Caldes d’Estrac is a small municipality the shopping there is limited. However, you will be able to purchase the daily necessities and essentials from the local Condis and store called “Casa Lady”. 

Beaches of Caldes d’Estrac 

Platja dels Tres Micos in Caldes d’Estrac

Caldes d’Estrac is the perfect destination for beach-goers with clear blue waters and soft sand spanning 800 metres. Platja dels Tres Micos is one of the most beautiful beaches in Barcelona as it is not next to a train line, making it one of the quieter beaches in the area. Since 2009, Platja dels Tres Micos has annually received the Blue Flag award, recognising its excellence based on strict health, environmental, and accessibility standards set by the European Foundation for Environmental Education. To add to the coastal charm, Platja dels Tres Micos offers sun beds and parasols even if you are not a member of the local beach club or a hotel guest. The Xiringuitos along this coastline are some of the most sophisticated due to their prime location with mesmerising sunsets. The backdrop of the beach features stunning houses built during the 19th century. The architecture of these buildings were very much inspired by the famous Antoni Gaudí. Gaudí used nature as his source of inspiration for architecture, making the modernista movement full of more organic-style buildings. Platja de la Riera merges with Platja dels Tres Micos and has the same clean shore and crystal clear water. 

Additionally, if you are looking for a place to live and/or work near the beach then Kalima is the space for you. Just 7 seconds from the beach, Kalima, has transformed a hotel into a coliving, coworking, and cafe space. Kalima believes in the power of working and living near the ocean. Kalima provides the opportunity for individuals to find their perfect work-life balance by boosting mental health and increasing productivity and creativity, while also fostering a sense of belonging. Learn more on their Instagram.

Activities in Caldes d’Estrac 

Monument in Parc de Can Muntanyá

The beaches of Caldes d’Estrac offer sea inflatables for any beachgoer to use. It’s also a great access point for kayakers, windsurfers, or paddleboarders, but you will need to bring your own gear. Additionally, if you walk far enough along the beach you may find stone bunkers. These bunkers were built in the year 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. They were used to house machine gun nests and prevent the landing of unwanted troops.

The Fundació Palau is an art exhibit centre that features the fantastic art collection left behind by Josep Palau i Fabre.  It aims to promote contemporary art and culture, focusing on the relationship between art and literature. The foundation houses an extensive collection of works by Picasso, reflecting Palau i Fabre’s close relationship with the artist. Additionally, it includes pieces by other contemporary artists and various documents, manuscripts, and personal items related to Palau i Fabre’s life and work. There are both permanent and temporary exhibits. Be sure to check the Fundació Palau website for the latest exhibits. 

The Nadal i Farré House is a Noucentista-style building situated at 48 Camí Ral Street in the heart of Caldes d’Estrac. Noucentista art was a reaction against the modernista style that was increasingly becoming more popular. This house is one of the grand summer mansions constructed by the Barcelona bourgeoisie at the beginning of the 20th century. This house is one of the many beautifully designed homes to view in Caldes d’Estrac. 

While Gaudí did not design any buildings himself in Caldes d’Estrac, there are many buildings within the area that were inspired by his work. Other houses and buildings noted include the Rosa d’Or Popular Athenaeum, Can Gili, Cal Arqué, Chapel of El Carme, Can Vidal, and Santa Teresa Street 5. 

Parc de Can Muntanyá features a large natural area, perfect for walking, relaxing, or having a picnic. Located on the southern slope of Puig Castellar, the park has an excellent view of the sea and town below. It is also a great spot to see local flora and fauna. 

As mentioned above, the Balneari Caldes d’Estrac Spa is the most popular spa in Caldes d’Estrac because it offers the thermal bath experience. Beyond the baths, they also offer a wide range of spa treatments such as facials, massages, skin wraps, and many more.  Walk in at any of their open hours to use their thermal bath at a rate of 13 € for 25 minutes. Any other services require a pre-booked appointment. 

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