Our driving vacation around Spain ended in Figueres and Cadaques for a Salvadore Dali art extravaganza! We made plans to see Portlligat House first. This is an artist's dream location right on the bay and the home itself features architecture that is functional and yet designed to inspire his creative genius.As others have stated there are only 8 visitors allowed inside the house at a time and each tour lasts approximately 40 minutes and the guide switches languages easily to accommodate foreign visitors. You absolutely must book online in advance and you must check your bags in the shop across from the ticket office---no exceptions. Photography is allowed without flash. Parking is down the street and free.Seeing where and how an artist lives and creates reveals even more what that artist wishes to express to the viewer. Portlligat House is an extension of Salvador Dali's expression and although a little off the beaten path, it is well worth a visit!
Booking is absolutely essential as only eight people are allowed in at a time. You'll have to book handbags, camera bags and satchels into the lockers and there is definitely no wheelchair or pram access. Dali and Gala were very lucky to live in this magnificent location and their home is a reflection of their personalities. Dali's studio and collection of paints is enviable and his self-designed pulley for large works of art is very clever. His eccentricities are vast with a life-sized bear at the entrance and Pirelli types at the pool. Loved the circular conversation room!
Not 5 stars, even for Dali lovers, as some of his artwork and possessions (e.g. all his books) have been replicated here and the originals moved to the other Dali museum. None of his completed paintings are there...this really is a visit to his house, left untouched after the death of his wife. There is an incomplete painting in his workshop area, which is very interesting to see. The Hall of the Bear and the swimming pool area were particular highlights for me.Make sure you book in advance online as otherwise you will only have the option of going on a waiting list in case someone cancels or doesn't turn up, or you can choose to visit the gardens/olive groves but not go into the house.It's not that far to travel from Girona, but is a fairly long drive as the last part is on winding mountain roads. If you are travel sick don't go here on a coach and make sure you take travel sickness pills before you go. We hired a car and it was much less terrifying. We saw some coaches and they looked a bit scary to me!You can't park directly next to the house, but you can park before you reach the house, parking is free and you can walk down to the little bay - look out for Dali's house on the right as you walk down as you can see striking sculptures from the road. You must pick up pre-booked tickets half an hour before your allotted time slot at the latest, but can pick them up earlier if you want to. You have to leave bags in the little house opposite and take a ticket to collect them with afterwards. The entrance to the house is up a small flight of steps...you have to wait for your guide to let you through the roped off area up the stairs and unlock the house to get in. The guide's English was excellent and we enjoyed the tour. There were 8 in our group going round the house at one time.You are left to explore the outside area on your own, following a suggested route on the little leaflet/map provided, including the swimming pool area, olive groves, etc. There is also the opportunity to see some photo and film clips in the outbuildings of the grounds of the house. Even without going into the grounds there is a room across from the ticket office and shop showing films at regular intervals that you can watch without needing a ticket.You can take photos but without flash, and you are limited on time in each section of the house. It's not enormous though so you do get chance to have a look around before you get moved on.There isn't much in the area outside the grounds of the house. There wasn't a café or restaurant open when we were there at around 11.30am so we would recommend you take a snack and a drink with you if you are going to be there early. The restaurant at the hotel further up was open when we came out so we stopped for lunch there which was tasty but they don't do sandwiches and snacks, it's more of a proper meal. The view and the bay itself are very pretty and you can take some nice photos around there but we found it quite a long time to wait to get in.There are toilets towards the end of the route around the grounds of Dali's house. If you need to go before you go in, you can walk past the shop to the exit and they will let you use the toilets if you have a ticket.
It was great to be at Portlligat House Museum and see where the great genius of surrealism used to have inspiration. I was extreamely happy to have this opportunity as I like Dali`s work very much.
We enjoyed this peek into the eccentric and highly creative lifestyle of Dali, who left his house untouched after the death of his wife. It is worth a visit. Be sure to reserve tickets before you go - and make sure you are there at the appointed time (30-minutes prior to viewing time) - we arrived 10 minutes prior to viewing time and our tickets had already been cancelled and given to someone else. Luckily, it was not prime season and we were able to go back in an hour when someone else was late and we got their spot! The setting in Port Lligat is beautiful so it wasn't a great hardship to wait the hour.
While I am a fan of Dali, I was disappointed by the lack of engagement by our tour person. We did reserve our spots months in advance. It was clear that the guide was there to just make sure that we didn't touch anything. But had little or no insight on Dali's life or the history of the house. The house itself was worth seeing but don't come there with any preconceived notions that you'll learn anything from your guide.
Oh, how he loved his Russian muse, his much-older (and only) wife, his alter-ego, and his better half. But she inspired him and he was (in his own way) very much in love with everything she stood for. Not a typical wife by any means. Nor was he a typical husband. So, okay, on to the "house" ... there are 3 different parts to the house and each part has period of 10 minutes allowed per section, so move along and enter the "Casa Museau Salvdore Dali Port Ligat!" (The guides are watching).Maybe it is something in the water or the air, there has to be reason for his disturbed genius. This house-museum is like life-interrupted: his brushes, oils, everything of his, invites you to take a close look at life as Dali lived it.Imagination on steriods, that is what one sees here. The interior of the house is a flight of fancy with just enough to hold it together to be functional. The grounds, well, nothing is holding that together! It is "fancy" run amok! Really, a pool shaped like a phallus? And what about the over-sized "looks-like-a-person-lying-in-the-ground-but-only-its-super-huge?" Everywhere on this property it strikes you like either someone is having a great time playing a practical joke or someone has some serious "separation from reality" issues. So, back to the house ...in about 1930 Dali bought the house and spent a long time enlarging it. The polar bear in the entry was a gift from Sir. E. James. The home has a lot of Dali character and style. In about 1949, the 3rd cottage and library underwent revisions (1930 is when the second cottage was incorporated into his eclectic development). In 1949, the art studio was added; it has doors which date back to the 17th century and the room was built around the doors. In 1936, the "yellow room" was built, it is his first studio and has beautiful views of the beach and bay.There is only one bedroom in the house. Guests stayed in the gift shop quarters And so it went, he house and compound were never really done. When you are a wealthy genius, you can be eccentric and do pretty much waht you want. Walk the grounds, go inside the giant egg and pop up for a photo opportunity, stomp around the grounds, and try to imagine life as Dali lived it. Now, that would take a whole lot of imagination! This is good addition to add on to the Dali museum tour. We scheduled our travel through Explore Catalunya and did it all.
We visited in July 2014. We easily booked online, which is a must, as they only allow a certain amount of people in at a time. The interior of the house is a guided tour, but very relaxed. The guide speaks for a minute or two and then you are free to walk around the rooms and get a closer look. At the end you are free to roam the outside without a guide and stay as long as you like. Amazing to see how Dali and Gala lived and the location is beautiful. His creativity is evident in every room. Be sure to find the pool area - fascinating.
Even if your only connection to Dali was the Athena poster on your teenage bedroom wall, it is well worth the somewhat tortuous drive to get to Cadaques and then Portlligat to see this most unique of houses. Tips: -1. You must, must, must pre-book your ticket otherwise you almost certainly will not get in.2. If possible stay overnight at Cadaques as it is a little gem in itself and well worth exploring.3. Cap de Creus, the most easterly point of Spain, is just a little way further along the coast and worth the drive just to experience the landscape and to be able to say you've been there.4. Sounds daft, but if I was doing this again I would book two house tours: one in the morning without my camera to just look, enjoy and learn and another in the afternoon to take all the photos I could want. It's not really possible to do both in one go. I know, I tried.
We stayed next door and almost did not get in. You have to book you slot, preferably via internet. The house is well worth the trip
A very pretty villa in a stunning beachside location. Dali's quirky collection is very interesting and you get a real sense of the man in his home, and not just the artist.The terraces and outside spaces are equally worth experiencing and it is a reasonable entrance fee.You have to book ahead before you arrive, which means a phone call to the villa to get a code number. The setting beside the sea is a delight. A little cafe next door is nice for a coffee or ice cream. Bring a picnic if it's lunchtime though as there is very little else around to buy food.
The house of Salvador and Gala is well maintained and it gives you a great impression and understanding of Dali's life and work environment.
After driving from Figueres the day before expecting to visit Dali's house we were annoyed with ourselves for not reading the literature carefully enough. No booking, no entry she shouted! So we made a booking for the next morning, which meant another 30 km drive over the mountains on really windy roads with lots of Spanish drivers!Was it worth it? You bet. One of the best museum type experiences you will ever have. The stuff you see in situ makes it more interesting than the museum in Figueres. That is also brilliant!I would highly recommend spending a few days in the area, it is beautiful for sight seeing and eating.
I think we saw things in the right order: First the encounter in Barcelona itself and then further North at Figueres for the "Theatre". Finally the peaceful location and house at Port Lligat.The fishing port is sublimely peaceful - despite the visitors - and the house is wonderfully calm. It really is a cse of Catalan tourism at its best as everything is so well organised and presented: The car park is a respectful distance from the village. The house oposite has become a check-in area for bags. The booking process pins you down to precise timings (like a piano exam!) and small groups but when you get inside you appreicate why all this was necessary. The studio is particularly intriguing.I was the only one in my group to realise what the swimming pool was all about. Chec it out!
Well organised entrance where tickets are booked in advance. Fascinating house which had an amazing peace and calm around it. Gardens and grounds and the sculptures there are lovely.