Roses is one of the main resorts on Spain's popular Costa Brava in the Catalonia region of Spain. It has a Citadel with Greek, Roman and Medieval remains.

Explore Roses

Roses sits at the head of a large bay and has the longest sandy beach on the Costa Brava coast. It has been an important site throughout history with the Greeks being amongst the first to appreciate its excellent natural harbour. It is now home to Spain's biggest fishing fleet and also has a leisure boat marina which opened in 2004.

It is the biggest resort on the northern end of the Costa Brava and lies just 30km from the French border. It has become the resort of choice for anyone interested in water sports.

Roses is for the most part a modern resort but there are a few historical buildings to see. The Town Hall is housed in a lovely Modernist building, Mallol House, which was built in 1906 and designed by Joan Mares.

The church of Santa Maria y la Casa Mallol is another Modernist building and inside has ornamental ceilings and stained glass windows.

Another key attraction to Roses is the World Famous 'El Bulli' restaurant which has won the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurant Award 5 times in the last decade and El Bulli's chef, Ferran Adria, won the Chef of the Decade award in 2010. The restaurant has three Michelin stars.

Roses has a weekly market every Sunday.

The beaches of Roses are long and sandy and along their length are a good selection of bars and restaurants and many have great sea views. The long seafront promenade passes the two ports of Roses and as well as the bars and restaurants there are a number of sculptures to admire.

Snorkling, diving and glass-bottomed boats all offer opportunities to see the rich underwater world of the sea around Roses. Kayaking, windsurfing and sailing are also popular watersports on offer here.

As well as the main town beach there are a number of small coves up and down the coast from Roses and many are beautiful with their lovely rocky surroundings.


Roses Historic Sites

Many of the historic sites of Roses have been lost but there is a castle, a ruined citadel and some parts of the ancient city walls remaining. You can take a free guided tour of the remains of the Citadel which contains remains of the early Greek and Roman settlements. There is also a small museum.

The citadel is a pentagonal shaped fortress and inside are the remains of Greek, Roman and Visigoth settlements.

The 11th century church of Santa Maria is also in the Citadel.

A couple of kilometers away to the east is the Castell de la Trinitat which has recently been renovated. You can get some great views over the Bay of Roses from the castle. Trinidad castle was built in the 16th century and you can visit ts rooms which contain information about their role in the castle and one room contains a display of old photos of Roses and the Costa Brava.

Roses, Spain

Where to visit near Roses

Whist staying in Roses make sure you make the excursion over the hills to Cadaques which is a very pretty resort frequented by Salvador Dali and Picasso in the early to mid 20th century. You can also visit Dali's seaside home at Portlligat. This is well worth the trip.

Next to Roses are two important nature reserves; the Creus Cape Peninsula and the Parc Natural dels Aiguamolls de l'Emporda, an important wetland site. Both deserve a visit.

To the south of Roses is Empuriabrava, one of the biggest marinas in the world. With over 40km of canals it is an attractive town and its many waterways give it a very nautical flavour.

You can find more local travel ideas in the Girona guide, and the Catalonia guide.

See also Find Roses hotels

Map of Roses and places to visit


Roses places to visit



Cadaqués is one of the most picturesque villages in Spain and nearby Portlligat is the home of the Casa-Museu Salvador Dali.

Cadaques guide


Portlligat is a quaint fishing village and home to the house of Salvador Dali which is well worth visiting.

Portlligat guide
Castello d'Empuries

Castello d'Empuries

Castello d'Empuries is an interesting medieval village with a huge church. It is a small distance inland of Roses.

Castello d'Empuries guide


Empuries is a fascinating archeological site containing a Greek and Roman colony

Empuries guide


Figueres is home of the unmissable Salvador Dali museum (Teatro-Museo Dali).

Figueres guide


L'Estartit is a popular resort on the Costa Brava. It makes a good base for visiting the area.

L'Estartit guide