There is plenty to explore in Catalunya starting with the provincial capitals of Girona and Tarragona, the coastal towns of Cadaques and Sant Marti d’Empuries, the Greek settlement of Empuries or the Roman sites in Tarragona or the medieval towns of Pals, Peratallada and Besalu.
To the north
The old town of Girona is well conserved and very impressive. Fans of the Game of Thrones can look for some of the locations used for the sixth series. The Jewish quarter in Girona dates from the 12th to 15th century and you discover the narrow Calls and paths. The city also offers some great shopping, fine restaurants, interesting cafes and is well worth
Empuries and L’Escala
Imagine going to the beach and looking out at a man made rock formation that was built by the Greeks thousands of years ago. The old Moll Grec or Greek Wharf is a coastal indicator of the presence of the Greek settlement of Empuries just to the north of L’Escala. The Romans later built a larger settlement known as Emporium a little further inland and the two sites can be visited. In summer plays are performed in the archaeological site.
The neighbouring towns of Sant Marti de Empuries to the north and L’Escala to the south are also worth visiting. Sant Marti is a small coastal village that now seems to live exclusively from touriism, but it is still pleasant to sit out at one of the terraces in the main square.
L’Escala is a major settlement but the old town borders the rocky coast and there is a good collection of bars, restaurants and cafes. In summer you can swim out to a raft anchored to the sea bed and in winter you can look across to the snow capped mountains in the Pyrenees mountains.
Beautiful medieval town on the edge of the Garrotxa, a volcanic area. The town has an important historic jewish quarter.
Cadaques, Costa Brava and medieval towns.
There is a lot of exploring to do. Cadaques is a stand out town on the Costa Brava and is very popular in the summer months for good reason. There are lots of beautiful medieval villages like Peratallada, Pals and Monells. Some will be drawn by summer festivals, like the one held in Peralada. Others by the sea – kite-surfing at the beaches of Sant Pere Pescador, or diving at the Medas Islands out from L’Estartit.
South of Barcelona
Once a major Roman outpost the city of Tarraco is still visible today with numerous Roman archaelogical sites in and around the city that can be visited. Located on the Coast, Tarragona also offers beautiful views across to the Mediterranean.
Siurana is one of those hidden places that you dream of discovering. Set in the mountains behind Tarragona and Reus, between the mountains of Montsant and Prades it is a magical setting. You turn off the main road before getting to Cornudella de Montsant and the road winds up the hill. At the top the view is quite stunning.