As the waitress liberally pours whisky over the large slab of cake in front of us, we don’t feel a pang of guilt – because we know we’ll be walking it all off tomorrow.
It’s the third day of our week-long walking holiday along the Catalan coast of Costa Brava, just north of Barcelona.
We arrived in Calella yesterday afternoon, having already enjoyed two days of steady walking along this beautiful coastline.
Our journey started in S’Agaro, an upmarket resort with a picture-postcard beach, where we relaxed in Hotel S’Agaro’s seafront gardens and enjoyed a dip in the pool before dinner.
The first walk, which was an ambitious 14km, took us from S’Agaro to La Fosca.
A long and winding promenade, which starts outside the hotel, opposite Santa Pol beach, takes you past some lovely villas on the cliff tops and lots of beautiful views
Part of the route took us through a small forest of pine trees which, as well as smelling lovely, rewarded us with great views of the boats bobbing on the Mediterranean below.
Descending to ground level, we were awe-struck by the magnificent yachts in the Punta Prima marina.
After ambling across several small bays, we arrived at Platja d’Aro. A 2km stretch of sand backed by high-rise buildings, it is the modern part of the Costa.
But this was not the longest beach on this first day’s walk.
At a vast 4km in length, Sant Antoni de Calonge seems to go on forever, especially when you’re at the end of a long day’s trek.
Thankfully there’s a promenade, which is a lot easier to walk on than shale and sand.
La Fosca is further inland and much quieter than Sant Antoni.
When we arrived at Hotel Ancora (our tour operator, InnTravel, uses a network of hotels along the route of footpaths along the coast), the receptionist handed us towels for the pool at the back.
After taking a well-earned dip, we were presented with our slab of whisky-drenched cake.
The following day’s walk is shorter and the last one for a couple of days, as tomorrow is a ‘free’ day.
With that incentive we have a spring in our step on today’s mostly cliff-top walk. There’s a lovely climb which, though sometimes steep, takes us through a beautiful forest of pine and cork trees.
After descending from the forest we arrive in S’Alguer, a tiny cove with brightly-coloured fishermen’s cottages and boats on the cobbles in front.
A family eat lunch at a table shaded by trees, and a woman outside another of the huts paints at an easel.
We want to join them in their tiny piece of paradise but feel like intruders – and we have more walking to do.
But not much more as, after cutting through some fields (still following the red and white markers which guide the official footpaths), we arrive back on the coast and at a lovely beach.
Calella, our destination for the next two nights, is the Costa’s most beautiful resort and Hotel Sant Roc is perched at the top.
We wake refreshed and happy that today is a ‘free’ day. We choose to spend time lying on the coast.
I wasn’t sure if I’d like a walking holiday but it was a perfect way to see the beautiful Costa Brava.
Debbie Murray travelled as a guest of Inntravel (01653 617000, www.inntravel.co.uk) which offers a week’s walking holiday along the Catalan coast from £820pp based on two sharing, including seven nights’ half board accommodation (at five hotels en route), walking maps and notes, and luggage transfers.
Flights and transfers are extra – recommended airports are Girona or Barcelona.