We found what we were looking for in SW France and Spain. Sun and heat. The area is arid, with the Corbieres Range in the distance, the beautiful Mediterrean before us and olive groves and peachtree orchards in the intervening fields. And oh, yes, vineyards on every available space of land.
The beach at Port Leucate, France was wide and sandy, and NOT overcrowded. It was perfect.
Barcelona was large. Also hot and sunny. The best part was visiting a cousin and spending hours talking, especially about the Lord.