Monday, 20 April 2015


 Girona Cathedral and the river Onyar

We have just arrived in Girona en route to stay with our friend Maggie in Llafranc on the coast. There is just time today for a late afternoon stroll to see something of the old town, especially the walls. We set off from our hotel and cross the river Onyar. The tall houses which line the river are a delight and the Cathedral looms on its hill beyond.

We walk along the Rambla de la Libertadad to emerge beside the river and talk a left to reach the start of the walls. You climb some steps and then begin to follow a narrow walkway. The corner turret looks pretty, but had obviously been recently used as a toilet.

 It was very instructive to see how Girona is surrounded by mountains and this was especially clear from the top of the next bastion, with the church of Sant Feliu (further away) and the cathedral on the right.

From the next tower, the narrow walkway stretched ahead towards the north.

Further on we noticed a wonderful green house facade down to the left. 

The wall continued to the north east corner where some sections had decorative arches. 

On this corner the pretty Jardins d'Alemanys (German garden) offered a shady spot to avoid the summer heat. We now left the wall and wandered round the side of the Cathedral to the main facade at the head of an impressive stairway.

The Cathedral is of 11th century origin and was altered in the 14th and 15th centuries and now has the widest Gothic nave in the world. The massive west front has a baroque facade, dated 1753, superimposed on it.

Round the corner is the church of San Feliu, which was constructed between the 13th and 17th centuries. It is unusual in Spain in having a spire. The stump opposite the left hand tower is simply because the tower was never built. Like the Cathedral, the baroque facade is rather incongruous.

We then crossed the river again, admiring the reflections of the riverside houses in the river, which by now had more water in it.

We concluded the walk with an aperitif in a square near our hotel.

Conditions: sunny and warm.

Distance: about two miles.

Rating: Four stars. There is of course lots more to see.

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