OCTOBER 15 – 24, 2016
Our Spain tour itinerary will take us northward along the Costa Brava. Throughout the province of Girona are medieval towns to be discovered. We will take time to stop, wander their cobblestone streets and alleyways, take in the medieval architecture and taste local cuisine.
A few kilometers from the Mediterranean Sea on the Costa Brava, lie the medieval streets of Pals. Pals historic center stands on a hill surrounded by plains. Witness real medieval architecture: cobbled streets interrupted by semi-circular arches, facades with pointed arched windows and stone balconies are among Pals distinctive features. A circular Romanesque bell tower built between the 11th and 12th centuries stands in the center of town. Local cuisine is that of Baix Emporada, which brings together ingredients from the land and sea.
Close to Pals is the town of Perratalada. Its name is derived from pedra tallada, meaning ‘carved stone’. Declared a historic-artistic monument, most of the buildings are stone with a moat which still encircles parts of this town. The privately owned Caste of Peratallada is the main structure in the center of town dating back as early as1065 AD. Perratalada is known for its beautiful old stone buildings, rutted stone streets and passageways. It is close to the beaches of the Costa Brava and is known for its restaurants, small boutiques and artisan galleries. In 1991, the film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves was filmed in Perratalada.
To the west of Figueres lies Besalu, a small Medieval village that dates back to the 11th century. It exists today as a quirky balance between the old and the new. Besalu’s picturesque bridge and Jewish quarter have been restored making this village a walking museum. Besalu is a photographer’s dream. Along with the river, bridge and medieval stone buildings, there are contrasting quirky artists’ studios. Look up, down and behind things to find chairs! Besalu has a strange fascination with ‘unique’ chairs. Some of the best seafood paella is offered in Besalu. We will try to find it!