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2013 Grand Prix - Where to stay outside of Barcelona?


We have tickets for the Spanish Grand Prix in May and are trying to organise accommodation, but I'd appreciate some guidance on location. I've searched the forums, but they all seem to focus on staying Barcelona but having visited Barcelona several times already we would prefer to stay somewhere pleasant outside of the city. We'd like to make a bit of a break of it, rather than staying somewhere soulless that is just convenient for the circuit.

Initially we had thought of staying on the coast (although ideally in a quiet resort rather than one full of package tours) but would also enjoy staying somewhere rural but inland (I notice there's a couple of national parks not far from the circuit). I like the idea of renting a cottage/apartment, but there will only be 2 of us and most of the ones I've seen seem to be huge! A nice hotel would be fine.

Could anyone offer any recommendations of areas to look into? We can hire a car if we're a little off the beaten track but would like to be within about 30 mins of the circuit as I expect to have to add time sat in Grand Prix traffic on to that. On a similar note - how is the traffic? I've seen mixed reviews of people saying it was fine and well organised and others saying the train/metro is the only form of transport to conisder using.

Any pointers much appreciated.