a stroll through colourful alleys
Collioure hides a maritime and architectural wealth that’s beyond compare. It’s easy to understand why this Catalonian port and fishing village, with its medieval heritage and colourful sun-drenched Mediterranean coastline, attracted the likes of Matisse, Derain and Picasso. Stop off to explore this beautiful corner of Pyrénées-Orientales which is also known as the pearl of the Vermilion Coast.
Collioure, paradise in Pyrénées-Orientales
Venture into the town’s little pedestrian streets. You’ll notice lots of details in the architecture that tell stories of various occupations over the centuries.
Between flower-filled balconies and colourful houses, you simply must not miss the medieval enclosure that reminds us of the history of this town.
Ideal for a walk in the sea air, the marina has become the town’s emblem. With the fishermen returning in the morning, gourmets enjoying lunch, and evening visitors admiring the lights around the bay, the port of Collioure is lively whatever the time of day. It is also a well-known spot for painters in search of inspiration!
See the webcam of Collioure!
Try Collioure anchovies
During your visit, don’t forget to stop at one of the bars, restaurants or shops on the sea front to sample the famous anchovies of Collioure. As the locals will explain, it was the port and the favourable geographical location that gave rise to the town of Collioure. You can satisfy your curiosity with a visit to the traditional anchovy salting factories where the town’s ancestral customs are perpetuated.
Collioure, a historic royal town
A visit to Collioure is also an immersion, via the heart of this monument-town, into the history of Catalonia and Aragon. Collioure really is an open book featuring towers, castles and forts from Roman times to Louis XIV and from the Saracen era to the Kings of Majorca.
For a trip through history with the family, head for the Château Royal of Collioure a 13th century castle which was classified in 1922. While today’s visitors have to look up to see the castle, things were a little different up until the 17th century. It is alleged that the architect, Vauban, had the upper town of Collioure demolished in order to raise the outer wall of the enclosure and make room for the glacis. So don’t hesitate! Launch an attack on the last royal fortress of medieval France with a visit to this monument of many facets. From the ancient summer residence of the Kings of Majorca to the medieval fortress and finally the prison that housed refugees of the “Retirada” (Republican retreat after the Spanish Civil War), its history is an odyssey through time.
In Collioure, follow the artist!
In Collioure you’ll inevitably hear the names Matisse, Signac, Derain or Picasso... Indeed, this little Catalonian port, with its clear blue sky, colourful buildings, historic heritage and picturesque markets, has attracted some of the great artists. So, the Musée d'Art Moderne is a natural guardian of the town’s history. You’ll learn how the Fauvism movement started here in the 20th century, and you can follow the Fauvism trail that winds through the colourful alleys of Collioure, in search of 20 reproductions of paintings by Matisse and Derain. The really curious can also visit the Maison du Fauvisme. Inside, you can get a close look at some of the most beautiful works of contemporary art. We guarantee you’ll be amazed!