Climb up to the Castle of Montgri at Torroella de Montgri
and enjoy the breathtaking views of the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean, taking in the Medes Islands and the coastline all the way up to the border with France.
Monday is market day in nearby Torroella de Montgri.
It is certainly worth paying a visit to this colourful spectacle. Buy some fresh local produce and prepare a sumptuous BBQ back at the villa.
Montrgi Castle is the symbol of Torroella de Montgri! The panoramic views from the top of the towers take in almost the whole of the Empordà, from the Bay of Roses, Empúries, Canigó Massif, the Pyrenees, Montseny Massif, the Gavarres Mountaints, the Baix Ter and back to L’Estartit with the Medes Islands.
Explore the various country beaches along the Bay of Roses,
ranging from small coves, which are ideal for snorkelling, to long stretches of fine sand. Sailing and windsurfing are very popular on the Bay. In fact, the World Windsurfing championships have been held here!
Visit the Anchovy and Salt Museum at L’Escala.
The town is famous for salting anchovies and the museum is the ideal place to learn about this industry, which has been practised since the 16th Century to the present day, a heritage which is unique to the Catalan coast. Open daily. Avinguda Lluis Companys, 1, 17130 L’Escala. Tel: (00 34) 972 77 68 15. www.anxova-sal.cat.
The Medes Islands
These Islands and their marine life, just a mile off the coast, are protected Marine Natural park and are one of the most important in the whole of the Mediterranean. Divers come here from all over the world as they are considered to be such an important site.
Enjoy a guided walking tour around some of the sights of the Baix Empordà.
Among those on offer are tours of the La Bisbal d’Emporda, to include a visit to the Ceramics Museum, tour of the Romanesque monasteries, Besalú or Figueres to include the Dalí Museum. www.nikduserm.com or Nik@nikduserm.com.
The experience of the so called ‘Dalinian Triangle’ for lovers of art and culture is a ‘must’.
The three parts to visit are his home in Cadaqués (pre-booking necessary), the Teatre-Museu in Figueres and the Gala-Dalí Castle in Pubol. This will be a long day excursion but very informative and entertaining! www.salvador-dali.org
Stroll round the Roman City of Empúries
accompanied by your own English speaking guide. Tours organised in July/August only. Pre booking essential, Monday to Friday 08.30-15.00. Tel: 00 34 972 77 59 76
Scuba diving and boat trips
These are readily available from Estartit out to the Medes Islands. There are courses for beginners and excursions for experienced divers. Information and prices are readily available from the selection of diving centres in Estartit.
Go ride a bike
Bicycles can be hired from Torroella de Montgri. Bicicletes David, Av Lluis Companys, 69, Torroella de Montgri. Tel: 00 34 972759 625
Tennis! There are several clubs in the vicinity, one of them being Club Tennis Empordà, tel 695 064 208. The address is Ctra Torroella 4.9.
Always a popular activity. Go Karts L’Estartit Tel: 972 757 215. Carretera Torroella- L’Estartit kms 2
The Empordá Marshes National Park
is nearby and is the home of many interesting species of plants and animals and a haven for migrating birds. These marshes are all that remain of the old lakes which were drained in the 18th and 19th centuries to make way for crops and cattle. They are situated in the bay of Roses between Castelló and Sant Pere Pescador. Hide in one of the camouflaged cabins and count the numerous species of birds.
Go ride a horse!
Hipica Mas Paguina, tel 972 751 472. The address is Cami de la Gola, 43, L’Estartit.
Go for a walk!
There are many marked trails in this part of the Empordà. Two that immediately spring to mind are the walk around the old town of Torroella de Montgri. This starts in the Carrer Ullà and takes about 1 hour. Alternatively the Camí Vell (old road) from Torroella de Montgri to l’Estartit will take about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
For the energetic….walk from Torroella up to the Castell de Montgri.
Start at the Plaça de Lledoner, continue up Carrer de Fàtima and at the end of the street you will see a sign indicating Montgri Castle. From here follow the red and white markings on stones along the way. When you reach the large cross follow the path up until you reach the castle. About 50 metres from the top you will see the Cau del Duc cave.
Fun for all of the family in this forestry adventure park. There are 50 different activities ranging from jungle jumps, nets, bridges, zip wires, tree-hiking and more than 300 m of aerial runways. Situated in Camí del Bernegar, Masos de Pals. Tel: (00 34) 972 113 443. www.costabravaparcaventura.com. Open all year round and in July and August it is open on Wednesday nights from 10pm until 1am.
Take a drive around the villages in this part of the Baix Empordá
which range from unassuming farming villages to the carefully preserved and restored medieval hamlets. Worthy of a visit is Foixá where the magnificent castle of the Counts of Empuriés dominates the skyline. Follow this with an excellent value lunch at Can Quel, which is a favourite of both the local Catalan community and visitors from France, who like to pop over the border to sample the cuisine.
Catch the train from Flaça and visit Barcelona for the day.
There is so much to see and do in this vibrant city. Take the open topped tour bus and hop on and off at the different sights. After a lunch of delicious tapas save some energy for shopping in the elegant shops.
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