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Romanesque routes

From La Seu d'Urgell to La Tossa de Montbui via the Segre valley, the Segarra plateaus and Anoia

From the frontier whith Andorra down the Valira river valley and soon come to Sant Serni de Tavèrnoles, which stands on the opposite bank. Slightly further on is the ancient and dynamic capital of the comarca of Alt Urgell of Alt Urgell. La Seu d'Urgell, lying in the midst of a wide, gren plain surrounded by mountains, where the Segre and Valira rivers meet. Besides visiting the cathedral of Santa Maria and the Church os sant Pere i Sant Miquel, with its magnificient museum, visitors should stroll beneath the archways of the Main Street (Carrer Major) or under the trees on the Promenade (Passeig) to savour the lively atmosphere that is somehow both rural and cosmopolitan.

Agramunt. Portada de Santa María.
Agramunt. Doorway, Santa Marí­a.

From the Vall d'Aran to Lleida via Pallars and Ribagorça

No visitor should miss the key Romanesque monuments of the Vall d'Aran. On the way from the shrine of Cap d'Aran in Tredòs at the foot of the Pla de Beret and La Bonaigua, one can stop at the parish church of Salardú and the nearby hamlet of Unha, which overlooks the green valley as far as the distant glaciers of Mount Aneto. Proceeding down the Garonne, we come to Santa Maria d'Arties rising against the spectacular background of the Montardo d'Aran.

Abella de la Conca
Abella de la Conca.

From Penedès to New Catalonia Nueva via the monasteries of the Cistercian and military orders.

From Barcelona, we take the N-340 to the Ordal pass and on to the wineagrowing area of Alt Penedès. A side road to Lavern then brings us to Sant Sebastià dels Gorgs. The capital is Vilafranca del Penedès, a town with fine historic buildings and a wine museum (Museu del Vi). From here we can make interesting side trips to the church of Sant Cugat al Moja, to the castle and church of Sant Martí­ Sarroca, which has one of the most beautiful apses in Catalonia, to the ancient buildings and archeological remains at Olèrdola, where one can enjoy the magnificient view, and finally to the chapel of El Sant Sepulcre.

Tarragona. Catedral, puerta del claustro.
Tarragona. Cathedral, Cloister Doorway.

From Cerdanya to the Barcelona area via the Llobregat and Cardener valleys.

Puigcerdà, the capital of Cerdanya, stands on a hilltop overlooking beautiful countryside. From here the first recommended visit is to the little village of Guils, with its church of Sant Esteve. Then we take the C-1313 which runs alongside the slow-flowing Segre amid the villages and green fields of the Cerdanya plain to Bellver de Cerdanya. Among the many parish churches within the municipal boundaries of this attractive tourist centre are the Romanesque churches of Tallò, known as the cathedral of Cerdanya, and of Santa Eugènia de Nerella, with its graceful leaning bell tower.

Talló. Santa María
Talló. Santa María.

From the Pyrenees to Barcelona, via Ripollès, Osona and Vallès.

Just as we cross the Coll d'Ares pass to enter Ripollés, the slender bell tower of Mollà church comes into view surrounded by meadows. A little way on, a road to the left, which affords magnificient views over the upper Garrotxa mountains, brings us to Rocabruna. We drive on down to the picturesque village of Beget, nestling in a deep valley. Inside the lovely church is an impressive figure of Christ in Majesty on the Cross.

Terrasa. Baptisterio de San Miguel
Terrasa. Baptistery of San Miguel.

From the Empordà and Garrotxa to Selva, via Girona.

Eight km. south of La Jonquera is the minor road to Capmany which marks the beginning of a picturesque and varied route offering many fine monuments and scenery ranging from highly spectacular stretches of coast to the ever-changing countryside of the mountainous areas inland.

Gerona. San Pedro de Galligants.
Gerona. San Pedro de Galligants.