Melissa Leighty


Melissa set her sights on Spain eight years ago and never looked back. As a freelance writer and photographer, she covers travel, food and wine. Her insatiable thirst for travel and new cuisine has led her to try mare’s milk in Mongolia and fish pies in Siberia, but she’s happiest with the canelons de la iaia right here in her own backyard. She publishes a food blog about Catalan cuisine called Ataula ( and is at work on a new book about wine and travel. Follow her on Instagram @ataula_co and @mpleighty.


Sant Maurici Lake, Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park

Track down these natural pools in some of the most breathtaking spots in Catalunya. more

Aug 3, 2017 1:36 PM TRAVEL

Your guide to summer on the white island away from the clubs. more

Jun 30, 2017 1:45 PM TRAVEL

Stargazing is a simple way to bring science to life and view the expansiveness of the universe. more

Jun 6, 2017 5:08 PM TRAVEL

Follow in the footsteps of great literary characters through the historic streets of Barcelona. more

Apr 3, 2017 1:43 PM FEATURES

Places to nurture your body and soul. more

Dec 22, 2016 2:14 PM TRAVEL


Photo courtesy of Curso Escribà Academy

A short guide to culinary courses in Barcelona and beyond. more

Dec 2, 2016 1:07 PM TRAVEL

The Xató salad from the Penedès region is a much-celebrated part of the local culture. more

Nov 1, 2016 3:37 PM TRAVEL


Photo by Melissa Leighty

From humble beginnings, the espadrille, a traditional peasant's shoe, has become a fashion icon. more

Oct 1, 2016 12:00 AM FEATURES


Photo by Melissa Leighty

Where to sample a taste of the Balearics in Barcelona. more

Aug 2, 2016 4:55 PM FEATURES

Get away from it all for a few days in this traditional fishing village. more

Mar 29, 2016 4:43 PM TRAVEL

An artist's life on the Costa Brava. more

Mar 29, 2016 4:41 PM TRAVEL

Got something to celebrate? Delve into the Penedés region and discover the source of Spain’s favourite sparkling wine. more

Feb 5, 2016 4:35 PM TRAVEL


Photo by Carol Moran

Get off the beaten track and enjoy the winter white out like never before with our beginner’s guide to snowshoeing in the Pyrenees. more

Jan 4, 2016 4:18 PM TRAVEL

With the annual medieval market taking place this month, Melissa Leighty takes a walk through Vic, past and present. more

Nov 30, 2015 7:54 PM TRAVEL

The essential ingredient in the Mediterranean diet, olive oil is produced in five areas across Catalunya. more

Oct 28, 2015 4:20 PM TRAVEL


Photos by Toby Golus.

In our fast-moving society, the Slow Food movement’s eat local ethos is more relevant than ever. more

Oct 28, 2015 3:37 PM FEATURES

Experience the beauty of the Catalan countryside from a different, white-knuckle perspective. more

Oct 1, 2015 10:00 PM TRAVEL

Located in the province of Tarragona, the Delta de l’Ebre is a wide swath of wetland that harbours a natural park and the largest rice-growing region in Spain. more

Aug 27, 2015 4:03 PM TRAVEL


Photo by Kirsty Moore

The remnants of Barcelona's industrial past take on a new creative guise. more

Jul 24, 2015 4:46 PM FEATURES

Here’s a roundup of where you can practise your handiwork, whatever your chosen craft may be. more

Apr 30, 2015 6:21 PM Things To Do