The Begur Experience

Begur Costa Brava what to do and where to go.

Begur in March

20120331-113920.jpg

20120331-113941.jpg

20120331-113954.jpg

20120331-114014.jpg

Leave a comment »

Top travel apps

Nuvola apps remote grayscale

Nuvola apps remote grayscale (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have found a few useful travel apps.

Spotted by locals.
European city app with tips for locals.
Price. Free to download costs €2.99 for each city guid.

Around me
Will help you find the nearest service where ever you are.
Price free.

Linley planet Spanish phrase book.
Helps with over 630 phrases
Coat €4.28

Tuned in radio
Has 50,000 on line radio stations.
Price free.

Postcards
Use your picture to create a postcard , add a message and the address , it will be made and posted for you.
Price free to download
Postage €1.80 international.

Barcelona public art.
Get insider tips on where to spot art around the city.
Price €0.84

Artspotter
This works in several different cities.
Price free.

Tripit
Sync all you travel info in one go.
Price free

Packing pro
Creates a packing list for you based on your destination and temperature.

Leave a comment »

Wine

Wine grapes. Español: Uvas de vino rojo. Русск...No  visit to Begur would be complete without a visit to Grau.

This comprehensive wine shop has everything your heart desires if you are a lover of wine and even if your are not you can pick up some great oils and balsamic vinegar.

Click on the link below to take you to their website.

http://www.vinsilicorsgrau.es/quienes.php

Leave a comment »

Packing

20120325-095348.jpg
It’s time to pack again. I think sometimes it’s the best bit of the holiday. You anticipate what you will be doing and imagine where you will be wearing the various articles of clothing you are packing! I know some people hate it but I love it ! I get that nearly there feeling.
This time next week I will be ” sitting in the square drinking coffee ” . I promise lots of happy blogging and great photographs.

Rent a beautiful villa in Begur click on the link below .
http://begurhaven.com/
Wish I was there!
The tired city girl.

Rent a beautiful villa in Begur click on the link below .
http://begurhaven.com/

Leave a comment »

Girona

The bridges over the river Onyar : Pont de San...

The bridges over the river Onyar : Pont de Sant Feliu with in the background the Church of Sant Feliu; Girona, Spain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

;

;

In contrast to the boisterous and animated Barcelona, Catalonia’s second city is not yet a major tourist destination – and that is it’s great appeal. With 80,000 Catalans living in Girona, visitors are warmly welcomed to participate in all it’s life and charms.

Girona was founded by the Romans and is divided in half by the Onyar River, which separates the old and new quarters. While modern side of town is certainly worth exploring, the true beauty of the place is in the old part. Along the Onyar, 19th-century buildings sit atop the ancient city wall at the water’s edge, freshly painted in cream, pale green, and ochre. Under the Eiffel pedestrian Bridge, built by the same company as the tower, lazy carp expect to be fed. On the far side, the old city waits to be discovered.

The medieval quarter demonstrates its history through the mixture of architectural styles. The Rambla, a wide pedestrian walkway hugs the river, with shops and restaurants on the ground floors of the colourful buildings. Renovated in the last 10 years, it is an area of book shops, antique stores, modern furniture shops, restaurants and apartments. You will not find a single T-shirt stall, postcard and film stop, or corporate chain outlet. Under stone arcades in the Rambla, vendors hawk vegetables, spices, and nuts. Nearby streets have names that each tell a story: Plaza of Chestnuts, Street of Ironworkers, Street of Traders.

Turning away from the river, a labyrinth of cobblestone streets rises up a slight hill, and stone buildings with red tile roofs form narrow passageways beneath boughs of wisteria.

When the Romans lived here, Via Forca was part of the Via Augusta, the Imperial path that led to Rome. In the 13th and 14th centuries, it was the main artery of the Call, or the Jewish Quarter. Today, Via Forca leads to the Museum of the History of the Jews, located where the last known synagogue in town was built. What’s most impressive about this town-run museum is that there are no Jews in Girona, and haven’t been since their expulsion in 1492. Yet their 600-year presence is lovingly documented and celebrated through exhibits, music and dance, a library, and a collection of tombstones from the medieval cemetery.

Further up the street, the cathedral stands on a Roman temple site. The cathedral’s architecture spans several periods: Baroque facade, Gothic interior, Romanesque cloister, and neoclassical bell tower. There is a stunning view of the town from its upper plaza. In this quarter, too, are 12th century Arab baths, a Benedictine monastery, and the Romanesque Church of Sant Nicolau.

Girona is an interesting town to simply stroll around in, and it is also an excellent base from which to explore the Emporda region.

Rent a beautiful villa in Begur click on the link below .
http://begurhaven.com/

 

Leave a comment »

La Bisbal – Home of Ceramics in Catalonia

Weekly market on Main Square (Plaça Major) in ...

Weekly market on Main Square (Plaça Major) in La Bisbal d'Empordà (Baix Empordà, Catalonia, Spain) with the Santa Maria church. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

;

;

La Bisbal is the Costa Brava’s third most important inland town after Girona and Figueres, and comprises two distinct districts – the old and new.


The New Town
is straggled along the main road and nearly every every shop offers products of the local ceramics industry. This competition has resulted in a wide selection of flower pots, tubs decorative tiles and kitchen articles etc being offered for sale at prices which are a fraction of those elsewhere in Catalonia and the Costa Brava. Large, traditional glazed garden tubs are just a few euro. This alone is a great reason to visit La Bisbal.

Although many people visit the town with the sole purpose of buying ceramics , the old town has much more to offer.


The Old Town’s
original bridge over the River Daró is at the north west edge of the town. This 17th century bridge, Pont Vell, is now a footbridge and stands on the foundations of a Romanesque bridge which had been washed away by a torrent. Even in winter, the river is now hardly a stream and in summer it is virtually dry.

La Bisbal’s most important building is the fortified Palace of the Bishops of Girona, Castell Palau de la Bisbal, on the Plaça Castell. This heavily fortified castle provided the bishops with additional security by uniquely siting the chapel on the roof of the defences. A trap door in the chapel leads directly to the Bishop’s quarters below.

Rent a beautiful villa in Begur click on the link below .
http://begurhaven.com/

Leave a comment »

Figueres

Català: Imatge tractada de una de les dues cav...

Català: Imatge tractada de una de les dues cavallerisses de la fortalesa de Sant Ferran de Figueres. Destaquen pel seu bon estat de conservació. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This City is the capital of the Alt d’Emporda area and has a population of 40,000 people. It is home to one of the World’s most popular museums, the Teatre-Museu Dali, which was created by Dali who spent his final days here and is buried in the crypt. It is a must for visitors to the area; it is advisable to arrive early and be prepared to queue. Opening times are July-September 9:00-20:00, Oct-June 10:30-18:00.

The Rambla, a tree-lined boulevard built over a river bed in the 1930’s connects the old and new parts of the town. Various café-bars fringe the Rambla and there are markets on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Other places to visit:-

Dali Prints The Toy Museum (Just off the Rambla)

Barri Antic (The Old Town between the Rambla and the Dali museum)

Castell de Sant Ferran (the town’s 18th century citadel, parts open to the public)

Museu de L’Emporda (local archaeology, art, and a room dedicated to Narcis Monturiol)

Museu de Joguets (Toy Museum in the Hotel Paris – 3,000 traditional children’s toys).

Monestir de Vilabertran (Augustinian abbey, one of the finest examples of Catalan Romanesque architecture. 2km from Figures towards Perelada)

Rent a beautiful villa in Begur click on the link below .
http://begurhaven.com/

 

Leave a comment »

Sant Marti d’Empuries

EmpúriesThe lovely village of St Marti d’Empuries is a gentle half hour stroll from L’Escala, along a shaded promenade running beside to the golden beaches. The pathway passes between the ruins of the ancient Greek & Roman city of Empuries and the sea.

Sant Martin d'Empuries locationThe walled village itself is built over the oldest buildings of Empuries and had effectively been permanently occupied since the bronze age. It is considered to be the oldest settlement in Catalonia, with even the church dating from the 11th century.

This modest mediaeval village is famous in Catalonia for it’s beautiful endless, fine sand beaches with excellent views of the Bay of Roses, the restaurants that dominate the small village square, and an impressive eleventh-century church.

A visit to this special village is strongly recommended, although getting a table at one of the restaurants in the village square is difficult in peak season. They are a favourite haunt of customers coming to dine from as far afield as Barcelona and France.

For a perfect day, start at the Northern end of L’Escala (by the statue commemorating the landing of the Olympic torch) and take the coastal path north. There are a few beach bars plus a small hotel on the way for refreshment. Just before St Marti, you will pass the ruins of Empuries and gain a good view of the extent of them. The entire walks takes around 20 minutes and the surface is well constructed.

As an alternative, a dotto-type train runs to and from St Marti and L’Escala take this late in the evening when the sun has set for a magical ride through the forest that you will never forget.

http://www.canyellespetites.com/places-sant-marti-d-empuries.htm
 

Leave a comment »

L’Escala

View of the Roses Gulf;
The town is renowned for its anchovies and ancient ruins of Empuries and it is host to several festivals throughout the year.

The older centre of the town still retains the character of a typical Spanish working town with its bustling narrow streets and good selection of shops, bars, cafe’s and restaurants. There are two small, popular beaches in the old town that add to the overall charm and atmosphere of the area.

Sardanas are the local dance. It is one of the few national dances that is actually danced by the townspeople themselves rather than by a group. An orchestra known as a “Cobla” accompanies the dancing. The participants stand in circles and by listening to the cues given by the music know what step they should be dancing at any given time. Sardanas look deceptively easy to dance! The dances take place every Wednesday evening at 10pm during the summer at the beach at Riell’s and spontaneously groups of people form into circles. Everybody is invited to participate in the dancing..

The Landing of the Three Kings – 5th January The Three Kings arrive by sea are eagerly met by the local children. The Kings disembark onto the main beach and then ride through the town on horseback. That night the children all go to bed hoping that when they wake up in the morning the Three Kings will have left them some gifts, however if the child has not behaved well during the year he may find he has been left a lump of (edible) coal!

Dia de Sant Jordi (Saint George’s Day). April 23rd: Sant Jordi is the patron saint of Catalonia and the day is celebrated throughout Catalonia. The legend has it that when the famous dragon was slain, a rose grew from its blood. To celebrate the victory over the dragon Catalan men give the woman they love a red rose on Sant Jordi’s day. In return women buy their loved ones a book. Over recent years the Catalan custom of buying books on Sant Jordi’s day has become fairly international and in many countries of the world April 23rd is known as “International Book Day”.

Triumirat Mediterrà is a market that is held in L’Escala in June. What makes it special is the fact that the whole market is “set” in 30BC. Traders are dressed in Greek or Roman dress, the Tavernas sell drinks that would have been available at that time and all products must be compatible with the era. During the days leading up to the market there are plenty of related activities and many restaurants offer a special Roman meal, serving similar food to that which the Romans at that time would have eaten. On the day of the market activities include several gladiator fights and an auction of slaves.

La nit de San Joan – June 23rd. It is a night when people build bonfires and have firework displays. Families and friends get together for a special meal traditionally accompanied by “cava” (champagne) and “coca”, a type of cake.

Festa del Carme July 16th This is the day on which the town pays homage to its senior citizens. There is a boat parade which brings many of the town’s “elders” to the beach from where they are accompanied by their grandchildren or other relations to the church for a celebratory mass, followed by more festivities lasting all day.


Gegants
Giants and Capgrossos originate from the Corpus Christi processions. Nowadays many Catalan towns have “giants” which are brought out on high days and holidays. There is an annual “giant” meeting in early September every year in which all the local “giants” come to L’Escala for the day and parade around the town. These are L’Escala’s “giants”, Pere and Maximeta. Here they are standing either side of the church door behind a “carpet” of coloured sand made on the day of the Festa del Carme. The Catalan insignia is represented in a sea full of fish and with small groups of people dancing Sardanas.

The “Festa Major” from the 2 to the 6 of September where the Sardana, the traditional dance of Catalonia, is enjoyed with a special passion. Other interesting festivities, although of a more tourist character are the Festa de la Sal, annually in October where the visitor can see the traditional offices related to fishing industry, – in which also participates the population. Another is the Festa de l’Anxova where everyone will be able to taste the internationally acclaimed anchovies of L’Escala.
 

Leave a comment »

Tamariu Beach Map

Leave a comment »