Much of the Montseny massif, listed by UNESCO as Biosphere Reserve in 1978, is in the region of Vallès Oriental. We invite you to come with us on this two-day getaway through the spectacular natural sites of Montseny, get to know the village of the same name, head to the circus tent of one of the most popular Catalan clowns, and do some adventure sport. Are you ready?
IN COLLABORATION WITH BARCELONA ÉS MOLT MÉS AND THE DIPUTACIÓ DE BARCELONA.
Day 1: Breakfast and cowbells
Montseny is mainly known for its nature, mountains and landscapes, certainly, but also for the large number of restaurants and good places for a light bite, whether on the road or in the towns and villages. So you can’t begin your day without a hearty breakfast to set you up. We’ve chosen the Fonda del Montseny, an establishment dating back to the 19th century, when the muleteers and merchants slept there, and turned into a restaurant in 1992. They make their dishes using fine quality ingredients based on traditional Catalan recipes.
With a full stomach, you can start walking through the village of Montseny, amidst the Natural Park. You must visit the church of Sant Julià de Montseny, whose belfry, with a square and slightly leaning tower, dates back to the 12th century. And don’t miss the exhibition of cowbells collected by the couple Jaume Traveria and Montserrat Garriga throughout their lives... up to one thousand! You’ll find the exhibition at the village social centre.
Day 2: Circus and adventure
Whether you travel with kids or not, it’s always a good moment to visit the factory of dreams that is any circus. And at the foot of Montseny there is a very emblematic one: the Circ Cric, with the tent, the high-wire acts and the humour, in Sant Esteve de Palautordera since 1995. It’s run by Jaume Mateu, whose artistic name, Tortell Poltrona, may ring a bell. Every Sunday at midday – and also often on Saturday and other days of the week – there is a show at the Circus, so if you’re doing this getaway at the weekend and today is Sunday, now you know! Book your tickets in advance and let the show begin!
At lunch time you can stay in Sant Esteve de Palautordera and eat at Can Marc, a restaurant that defines its cuisine as creative Mediterranean. You’ll still have the whole afternoon ahead, so go to the headquarters of the Sant Celoni based company Daema Aventura so that they can suggest a lively activity to spend your last few hours in Vallès. Doing a challenge race in the style of the Takeshi’s Castle game show, renting an electric bike, testing your skills with archery, forming part of a human table football game, going into a big inflatable ball or playing a football match are just some of the multiple possibilities that the company offers.
Over the last decade, the old Roca Umbert textile factory has become the centre of cultural life in the capital of Vallès Oriental. The building contains different spaces including the municipal library, opened in 2005, the Centre Tecnològic i Universitari, the Espai d'Arts, which provides services and resources to the region’s artistic community with the aim of promoting contemporary creation, and cub, a space given over to rehearsals and musical production. Special mention must be made of La Troca, a unique space that hosts a dozen entities related to the world of popular and traditional culture.
Not many places can claim to have been wine and champagne production facilities before becoming a theatre with a program of dance and children’s and professional drama. The building is very beautiful both inside and out, and retains its original cellars. What was once the wine vat is now the sound and light booth. A place, then, that offers some added value when attending a show, and a good example of how to convert old buildings to other uses.
On the ground floor here there is the tourism office of Caldes de Montbui, an obligatory stop-off to find out everything you need to visit the town. You can also take advantage of your visit to see everything that Thermalia has to offer, from the history of the town’s spas to an important selection of works by the sculptor Manolo Hugue, who lived in the village for many years, and a number of pieces by his friend Pablo Picasso. The temporary exhibition room also features interesting exhibits.
Head for Castelltercol to discover the house where Enric Prat de la Riba, one of the greatest 20th century Catalan politicians, lived. Prat de la Riba was the creator and first president of the Mancomunitat (Commonwealth), and whether you agree with his politics or not, the house is worth a visit because it retains the decor and atmosphere of an early 20th century town house. We particularly like the bedroom, with its 19th century furniture, and the atmosphere of the office, which was transferred here from Barcelona.
The museum’s collection covers various fields, including archeology, art, decorative arts, ethnography and numismatics. The Natural Sciences are also studied here since an extension was built in 1987. The museum is therefore multidisciplinary, as you will discover when you explore its permanent and temporary exhibitions which will help you to learn more about past and present of Granollers and its surroundings. And for lovers of contemporary art, there is a good exhibition on the third floor of the building.
Opened a decade ago, the building was designed by local architect Josep M. Botey, and consists of two halls: the larger one with a capacity for 700 spectators and the smaller one for 221. The number of shows that are scheduled throughout the year is remarkable; they include music, theatre and dance, but if you just want to explore the building, nothing better than to ask for a guided tour (for groups with a minimum of 15 people), on which you will be able to walk around the stage, the dressing rooms and the stalls.