All posts filed under: General

sea

Camí de Ronda – Walking between rugged rocks and the deep blue sea

 

sea colours

Sea: play of colours on the Camí de Ronda

Sea, sun and hiking boots: With a length of 200 km, the Spanish coastal trail reaches from Portbou near the French boarder to Blanes in the South. If you decided to take on the whole trail you would definitely be en route for quite some time. Ranging from 140 km in 8 days to 43 km in 2 days – everything is possible.

 

First stop on the coastal trail: Pals

beach

Broad sandy beach of Pals

We decided to take a more moderate route – at least for now. One beautiful summer afternoon – the sun is high in the sky but doesn’t burn down as strongly anymore and a gentle breeze is coming from the sea – we tie up our hiking boots and start our tour in Pals. Having arrived at the beach, we can’t help ourselves… We have to indulge our sweet tooth and get an ice cream. Don’t be too hard on us though, we did our fair share of walking afterwards!

Away from the hustle and bustle

We start our hike on the wide sandy beach of Pals where the waves are towering up today. Walking up a small staircase we reach the first part of our trail and all of the sudden we find ourselves away from the hustle and bustle of the beach. The waves splashing against the rocks, almost reaching us, captivate us. The power of the Mediterranean on the Catalan coast is definitely not to be underestimated!

waves

Splashing waves on the Camí de Ronda

Playa Illsa Roja – tropical feeling on the Costa Brava

 

Tropical feeling on the Playa Illa Roja

We move along between the rugged rocks and the deep blue sea to the next small – but charming – bay. With its huge lump of rock rising from the sea and the almost tropical looking rock face covered with trees, Playa Illa Roja reminds us slightly of Thailands famous beaches. Once again the waves are towering up in front of us making us wanting to jump in!

 

 

atmosphere

Dreamlike atmosphere at the Playa Illa Roja

High above the Playa Illa Roja

After capturing the atmosphere of this magnificent little bay with our camera, we take on the steepest part of our hike – only to discover a spectacular view of the Costa Brava.  We are looking at broad parts of the coast and the seemingly endless dark blue sea and think to ourselves: „How rewarding hiking can be!“

 

 

 

Enjoying the peak and the turquoise sea

After a short moment of enjoying the view, we continue our walk on a beautifully paved way to our next and at the same time last stop. The view is once again heavenly and the many seaside mansions that are surrounding us, make us (slightly enviously) dream.

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Lump of rock at the Plaja Illa Roja

Last bay: Sa Riera

sea

Almost there: Sa Riera

While the sun is slowly setting behind the mountain, the last part of the path leads us through a small group of trees appearing almost mystical in the dim evening light. One last step around the corner and we have almost reached the last stop of our tour: Sa Riera in the small coastal town Begur. Sailing ships are gently floating in the turquoise water and the last swimmers of the day are jumping in the waves. Situated directly at the beach of Sa Riera, a few charming little cafés offer us refreshments including a beautiful view of the sea.

sea

Sailing ships in Sa Riera

Only the beginning…

sea rocks

Camí de Ronda – between rugged rocks and the sea

We are sure: this small part of the Spanish coastal trail was only the beginning. And that is also one of the big advantages of the Camí de Ronda – you can choose and adapt your route however you like. Young or old, fit as a fiddle or rather slow-moving – everyone has the chance to make their way through the Spanish nature at their own pace. And what could be more relaxing than to ditch your car for once and discover Catalonias beauty by hiking along the coast?

Addicted to the Sea

From bay to bay on the Costa Brava

Mediterranean Sea – The beautiful Costa Brava stretches from the north of Barcelona to the French border and reaches from the foothills of the Pyrenees near Portbou to the Tordera river estuary near Blanes.
A rugged coastline with hidden beaches meets the deep blue Mediterranean accessible by charming little harbours.

Beautiful sunset at Cap the Creus

Beautiful sea view

A boat trip on the Costa Brava pleasantly surprises with spectacular views of a dreamlike scenery. Discovering the Costa Brava from the water is a real treat. Little fishing villages like Cadaqués, Port de la Selva, Tamariu or Calella de Palafrugell are also particularly charming when you are approaching them by boat.

Small sandy beaches separated by steep cliffs and unique rock formation, surrounded by fragrant pine trees, bizarre-looking cork-oaks  and elegant acacia trees – you’ll fall in love with this picturesque region with all of your senses.

Sailing boat in Roses

“Seacret” spot

Nevertheless, the northern part of the Costa Brava is still an inside tip for many – boat lovers included! Trips along the Costa Brava are best planned during low season because then you are guaranteed enough space to anchor using the designated buoys. The best idea is to cruise from bay to bay on a cosy little sailing boat: whether it be a day trip or a two-week vacation – everything is possible on the Costa Brava.  Basking in the sun and listening to the waves – that’s what a perfect day on board looks like.

Sailing trip on the Costa Brava

From one bay to another

Crossing from one bay to another and stopping wherever you like to cool down in the crystal-clear, turquoise water – the perks of traveling by boat! Sunbathing on deck, taking a dip in the deep blue sea and hearing nothing but the gentle sound of the waves…The evenings are perfect to enjoy a romantic picnic while the sun is going down. And later, at full moon, it’s time to let the champagne corks pop – oh, how beautiful life can be!

Speed and waves – discovering the Mediterranean Sea

So, set sail for the Costa Brava and discover its romance. Simply leaning back and unwinding while enjoying the view on the ocean and gently floating on the water. What could be more relaxing?

Discovering Cadaqués and the beautiful sea

CLUB NÀUTIC COSTA BRAVA

Carretera Club Nautico, S/N, 17230 Palamós, Girona
www.cncostabrava.com
Less than an hour away from Girona, the modern marina provides an excellent infrastructure to explore the Mediterranean Sea. The harbour offers the perfect basis for discovering the beautiful bays and sandy beaches of the surrounding area.

CLUB NÀUTIC L’ESCALA

Carrer Port de la Clota, s/n, 17130 L’Escala, Girona,
www.nauticescala.com
The modern marina, Club Nautic l’Escala, consists of excellent facilities for boats and their crews. Thanks to its central location on the Costa Brava, you can easily explore the whole region.

SANT FELIU DE GUIXOLS MARINA

Escullera del Port, s/n, 17220 Sant Feliu de Guíxols, Girona,                                               www.cnsfg.cat
Marina Sant Feliu de Guixols offers great service with exceptional facilities and assistance around-the-clock. There’s even a dry dock available. In the harbour, you’ll also find an outstanding restaurant, an area for members as well as personal services. The marina is easily reachable from Girona.

PUERTO DE ROSES MARINA

Avinguda de Rhode, s/n
17480 ROSES (Girona), portroses.com
Puerto de Roses also offers a ultra-modern marina with access to the charming little town and the beautiful nature at the natural park at Cap de Creus. Full nautical service and professional staff allows stress-free stopovers during your boat trip along the Spanish coast.

MARINA D’EMPURIABRAVA

Calle Empuriabrava, 0 Edificio Nautico, 17486 Castelló d’Empúries, Girona
www.marinaempuriabrava.com
The giant Marina d’Empuriabrava offers 5.000 mooring sites surrounded by a holiday resort that promises great luxury and comfort. Easily accessible from both France and the Balearic Islands.

Ice cream with frozen berries

Where does ice cream come from?

The temperatures are rising and so is our appetite for some tasty ice cream. But have you ever wondered where it does come from? We did some research. You won’t believe what have found out.

Once upon a time in China

Ice cream as we know it today has its origins in China and Greece, not in Italy, as you may think. 3000 years ago, they used snow and mixed it with spices and honey.
The Italian trader Marco Polo finally brought the recipe to Europe, where it soon turned into a delicious speciality. Thanks also to the cooling effect of saltpetre, which was discovered later.
Soon afterwards, various recipes with rose water, cinnamon, chocolate were spread.
In the 18th century, the first real ice cream parlour opened. Its breakthrough however came with the invention of Carl von Lindes refrigerating machine, the predecessor from today’s fridge.

Fruit ice cream

The ice cold refreshment has its origin in China, really surprising!

Ice cream burger

In Girona, for example, you can try some real extravagant variations in the famous ice cream parlour of the Roca brothers, owners of one of the best restaurants in the world (currently no. 3 on the list) El Celler de Can Roca. There, you can order an ice cream burger consisting of two brioche rolls, filled with your preferred ice cream and topping, and heated up in an waffle iron. Try it!

Ice cream in a roll

It may sounds strange to eat ice cream with bread, but the panet is really tasty.

If you rather prefer to make your own ice cream, here is an easy recipe and the best thing is: you don’t need an ice cream machine!

For example with quark:

Recipe for home-made ice cream

The preparation is super fast and easy and the self-made ice cream is low-fat, rich in protein and each portion only has 88 calories.
Just purée 150 g of low-fat quark, a tsp of honey and 150 g of frozen fruits like strawberries or other wild berries with a hand blender. Afterwards, garnish with fresh fruits and serve immediately! If you want to prepare frozen yogurt, use Greek yogurt instead of quark. If you don’t count calories, use some whipped cream. Simply delicious!

Frozen wild berries

The best thing about this recipe, you don’t need an ice cream machine to make your own delicious ice cream.

Finished ice cream

Decorate the ice cream with some fresh fruits and enjoy! Bon appetit!

Dalí from a different angle

One day in the life of Dalí

Exposition in the Gala Dalí Castle in Púbol

The temporary exposition in the Gala Dalí Castle in Púbol gives visitors the chance to get an impression of the private Dalí – his work in his studio and the life with his wife Gala. From March 15 until January 7, 2018, you can see photographs of both of them, made by Ricardo Sans, a Spanish photographer.

Ricardo Sans’ heritage

The Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation bought around 900 pictures from the Ricardo Sans heritage, which where taken by him during his cooperation with Dalí. Both got to know each other in 1949, through mutual friends. Since then, Sans documented them with his photographs between 1949 and 1956. The exhibition is divided into four different sections: portraits of Salvador Dalí (1949-1956), portraits of Gala (1951-1953), portraits of Salvador Dalí and Gala (1951-1954) and their everyday life in Portlligat (1950-1956). Organized by huge picture frames, the images seem like a photo album visitors can “leaf through“.

Visitors watching the phptographs

We were very interested in observing the private Dalí and Gala in the photographs.

Photographs showing the Dalís from different sides

The pictures give an insight into the private life of Dalí and make possible a better understanding of the extroverted artist. Some photos show him eating sea urchins, other while painting the Christ of Saint John of the Cross. The portraits of Gala show her mostly posing in front of the camera, with a smile on her lips. There are two photographs standing out, both of them are double exposed. The first one shows Dalí with his better half in their courtyard of their house. The second one shows Dalí hiding in the living room, typical surrealist style, showing that Salvador Dalí knew better than anyone else how to draw attention.

 

Eccentric Dalí and Gala

Dalí with the love of his life, Gala in their house in Portlligat.

Dalí as designer

The exposition is definitely worth a visit, because you can also visit the Gala Dalí Castle at the same time. In its on special way, the medieval building, which was given to Gala as a present from Dalí, gives you the possibility to immerse in their lives. Dalí himself furnished and designed the castle for Gala, the love of his life. A glass table serving as a peephole for observing their guests or a radiator covered with a painting of the exact same radiator are only a few examples for Dalí’s creativity.

Golden water tap

A very unique detail is the golden water tap in Gala’s bathroom.

 

 

barcelona

Barcelona – The other side

Barcelona off the beaten tracks…The famous Sagrada Familia, the Rambla, the Plaça Catalunya… all of these popular sights immediately come to mind when thinking of Barcelona… But Catalonia’s capital has so much more to offer! With that in mind, I payed a visit to the Catalan student city off the beaten tracks and far away from the most popular sights.

The only way is up – Barcelonas neighbourhood to be

The young and hip district Gràcia is located in the north of the city centre, far away from the crowds of tourists that Barcelona has to deal with. This part of town is nothing like the somewhat hectic historic centre. Walking through the streets of Gràcia, you immediately feel the changed atmosphere. No flawless architecture, no brightly polished streets but variety, liveliness and above all authenticity.

barcelona

Especially in the evening, the district’s squares like the Plaça de la Virreina and the nearby Plaça de la Vila de Gràcia are full of life. „Good food, good mood“ is our motto for the evening. The Patatas Bravas are hot, our Cervezas are cold… The perfect ending to our first day in Barcelona!

 

 

 

And those who are looking for a special, non-ordinary, place to stay, should definitely check out „Mare de Déu de Montserrat“.

barcelona hostel

Mare de Déu de Montserrat – one of a kind!

barcelonabarcelona

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The youth hostel that was built in a Moorish architectural style offers an extraordinary view of Barcelona because of its location on top of a hill. Although I have to admit that reaching the hosel (by foot) leaves you a little bit out of breath, the view makes it worth every step!

barcelona architecture

Impressive architecture!

In vintage-heaven

barcelona

Barcelona’s vintage heaven!

 

Sure, the famous Rambla (and Barcelona in general) are a true shopping paradise. The most popular fashion chains can be found on every corner. But isn’t that a bit boring in the long run? Vintage and second hand stores on the other hand are full of history and personality! Who would have thought that only a couple of minutes away from the Rambla on the Carrer dels Tallers, a completely different shopping world is waiting for me?

 

 

barcelona vintage

Traveling through time – in style!

 

More than excited I rummage through every corner of every store for the next couple of hours. From beautiful 50ies dresses to old denim jackets and shirts with the craziest patterns and colours (long live the 70ies!)- there’s nothing you can’t find here! The Carrer dels Tallers? Heaven on earth.

 

 

 

 

Exploring Barcelona off the beaten tracks

barcelona hospital

The impressive Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

barcelona Without a doubt, Gaudís grand masterpiece has to be seen once in a life time. But also off the Sagrada Familia there are dozens of things to discover. For example the impressive Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau that was built in the famous Catalan modernism style. Although the former hospital has long been replaced by a new building, the historic site still has its doors open for visitors. Part of the old building is nowadays used by the medicine faculty of the University of Barcelona – definitely not a bad spot to study!

Sunday in Barcelona: from the labyrinth…

A Sunday well spent brings a week of content! 

Anyone who devoured the book „Perfume: The Story of a Murderer“ and loved the film adaption as much as I did, definitely has to visit „Parc del Laberint d’Horta“. After all, Barcelonas oldest park is one of the movie’s most beautiful locations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The heart of the beautiful park? Its mysterious labyrinth…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

…to the beach!

barcelona beach picknick

And because its Sunday, the day of rest, I treat myself to a relaxing afternoon at the beach. While I bury my toes in the sand and watch the seagulls circle above my head, I’m already planning my next trip to the Catalan capital I fell in love with…

 

 

 

 

barcelona beach

Beach day!

Some impressions…

Playing golf in Torremirona

Golf is booming! – the success story

Golf is booming! – No matter if beginner, advanced or professional – During a trip along the Costa Brava, through the idyllic countryside of Emporada – golfing fans should test the grandiose golf courses of the Sunshine Destination. Along the wild coastline with beautiful beaches you can find golf courses surrounded by picturesque landscape. So, whoever wants to stay here longer – currently there is a great offer of comfortable holiday villas at attractive prices. Find examples online: selected-property.com.

 

Holing the ball

Perfect day for playing golf in Peralada

 

 

Especially sportive and fitness orientated active holidaymakers of all ages love the open-air game. Even kids already practice the perfect tee.

Stereotyping was yesterday. The argument „elitist and too expensive“ is no longer valid. A complete set for beginners is available online for only 100 euro. Suitable shoes can be found from 40 euro up.
Beginners start at the Driving Range or play their first rounds at Pitch & Put. Just trash and try out. Of course it takes time until one is able to play the game – but practice makes perfect!

As soon as one is infected by the golfing virus the license to play is the next step. Thus, become a „Pro“. The trainer helps to get a license. This is the ticket to the golfing paradise. The license makes it possible to play at almost any golf course in the world.

 

 

Lake at the golf course

Lake in Peralada

 

Lifestyle

However, golfing is booming and will continue to boom, and this is not by chance: Meditation, concentration and competitive sport – all in one. Thus, an attractive stress ratio. Hard-hitting strikes and sporting performance paired with a relaxed lifestyle: golf courses of Costa Brava offer a unique landscape and mediterranean climate. A 18-hole round outdoors along with a 8 to 10 km walk and 1200 calories burned brings you in a good shape. As a reward one can enjoy an exquisite gourmet meal accompanied by delicious regional wines.

However, our photo series of the most beautiful golfcourses of Costa Brava should give all of you who can hardly wait to grab his/her equipment first impressions of the fantastic golf landscapes of Catalonia. In addition, as a special offer we have prepared tipps for golf properties. Even if you do not have the golfing license in your pocket – „living on the golf course“ brings a lot of advantages – especially in terms of service and security. Also, it’s guaranteed that you get into good shape here!

 

Pool at the golf club

Panorama

Golf clubs

Costa Brava and the Pyrenees of Girona are a paradise for all who dream of green tees and fairways.

  • ClubDeGolf Costa Brava – Santa Cristina d’Aro
  • ClubDeGolf Peralada
  • Empordа GolfResort Gualta
  • Golf de Pals
  • Golf Girona – Sant Juliа de Ramis
  • PGA Catalunya Resort – Girona / Caldes de Malavella
  • Torremirona GolfClub – Navata
  • ClubGolf d’Aro-Mas Nou – Platja d’Aro

 

Perfect weather for holing in the ball

Golf lawn in Torremirona

Pitch & Putt

Short distances, par three and a lot of golf. The Pitch and Putt on the Costa Brava offers optimally designed courses. Pitch & Putt:

  • Mas Nou Platja d’Aro
  • Castellу d’Empùries
  • Fornells de la Selva
  • Caldes de Malavella
  • Peralada
  • Platja d’Aro
  • Par 3 Gualta

 

Blue sky over Torremirona

Torremirona golf club makes golfer hearts beat faster

Different types of Catalonian cheese

Cheese in Catalonia – A marvelous world

Fira del Formatge artesà Lladó

In Catalonia, one is going to find a surprisingly broad range of different kinds of cheese. Quality and a sense for what is truly special are always on the increase, especially in the last couple of years.

Most famous types of cheese

  • Firstly, there is SANT MATEU, a hard cheese which is left to mature for two months. It is known for its red rind as well as for its elastic texture and mild taste.
  • GARROTXA – Made from goat milk, it is left to mature for a month in stone caverns until it develops its special taste – mild, fresh and reminiscent of nuts, with a faint hint of mushrooms.
  • CANTELL however, is known for its nuttily flavour and the bluish natural rind which takes three months of maturing to develop properly.

 

Blue cheese at Llado

A paradise for cheese lovers

 

  • APRIME is a fat-reduced cheese for the body-conscious and features a mild flavour and soft consistence.
  • Caseated by wrapping cloth around goat milk, CAN PUJAL NEVAT is another soft, slightly sour cheese with white natural rind and a texture that melts on one’s tongue. Can pujal nevat takes about six weeks of maturing.
  • Another type made from goat milk is known as PETIT NEVAT. It is a small, soft cheese with a doughy texture and a mild flavour of mushrooms. Regional cheeses are known as Mountain – and Lowland cheese.

 

Hard to choose between all the different kinds of cheese

Huge offer

 

Llado

They are made from sheep-, cow – or goat milk or a mixture of the above. Besides, they come in all shapes and sizes. However, they are usually not known beyond their place of origin. Because of that Llado is hosting an annual cheese fair. However, the fair is an excellent opportunity to go on a culinary journey. And also, to get a taste of the region’s best cheeses. This year’s cheese fair is taking place on September, on the market place of Llado. Furthermore, wine and freshly baked bread are  offered, and there is music and other events of cultural interest. However, whilst in Llado, we highly recommend to take a walk to the antique centre of the village. Thus, visit Iglesia de Santa Maria and Monasterio de Santa Maria. Both date back to the Middle Ages and count as historic monuments.

To conclude, long story short: a trip to Llado is great fun for the entire family!

 

Shooting GOT in Girona

Temps de Flors – Girona covered in flowers

For a long time, Girona has been covering itself with flowers in the month of May. We have been there at the 61 Temps de Flors to capture the most beautiful moments of the opening event. 

Cathedral of Girona

Temps de Flor in Girona

Temps de Flors

All day long, we roamed through Girona’s impressing Old Town, not only to discover the art of flowers, but also to find a couple of new galleries, restaurants and boutiques.
However, even the smallest and most winding alleys at the verge of the Old Town have been freshly restored and brought to new life. Only a few building sites are left now.

 

Decoration during the flower festival in Girona

Decoration in old town Girona

 

 

Girona is shining

Girona shines in its garment of spring, and the inhabitants have dressed up for the opening ceremony. We find blossoming pieces of art in the streets and squares, in yards and churches, on meadows and roofs. Art and kitsch, flower and form, constructed and grown – it is a symbiosis of emotion, fun, cooperation and communication. It is a feast for all senses that attracts more visitors each year. We let the colorful crowd carry us. The cathedral’s bells chime, raised high above. The wind carries flowers made of paper.

 

Cathedral of Girona, decorated

Pieces of art at the Cathedral

 

White cement sculptures linger on a wall. Now and then cloves and leaves surprise us, exotic buds, branches and trunks, all intricate and forming sculptures. They lean against walls or seem to float freely in the narrow alleys. The school for music is giving an early open-air concert; their violins‘ soft sounds are carried far away. Visitors wait in line in front of the Arabic Baths. We keep maundering, until we reach the stairs of the cathedral. Here, an arrangement of flowers creates a new coherence between architecture, human beings, and nature.

 

Temps de Flors

Decoration arrangement, connecting art and nature

 

“Temps de Flors” represents the interaction of art and nature. Hence, reality and illusion. Moments of caducity in the circle of life.

Finally we find a coffee shop at a corner has a free table for us. Relaxed, we lean back and watch as the other visitors pass us by. However, Girona – we will come back, next year at the latest, for the 62. Temps de Flors in the May of 2017.

Bath pralines decorated with flowers

Bath candies in shells – gift idea

Treasure hunter

Are you also passionate treasure hunter at the beach? Because we cannot get enough of it: shells, stones, starfish, broken glass, driftwood … Long walks on the beach provide a great wealth of beautiful woods, sparkling polished glass pieces from the sea and well-travelled shells. A little adventure for the home and a dream of next summer seaside takeaway in the trunk. All these things can be arranged to beautiful decorations for the house and the garden, slid onto wire or hanging on lampshades – there are no limits to fantasy. It’s not about perfection. The natural-chic gets its charm by irregularity and a touch of chaos.

 

Beach still life

Our very special treasure.

Bubbling energy in shells for your home

Bath candies are a great holiday memory. If you want to give collected shells from the beach a new function, then you can recycle them as bath candies.

Shell

Bath candies

 

For 6 pieces you need:

  • 30 g of cocoa butter
  • 50g citric
  • 100 g of soda
  • 15g cornflour
  • 25 – 30 drops of good extra virgin olive oil
  • Rosemary, lavender or other fragrant fresh herbs chopped or cinnamon and vanilla – to give a good and tasty smel

 

Bath praline paste

Mixing all ingredients looks very appetizing.

 

Melt the cocoa butter over low heat in a pot, mix all the other ingredients in a bowl, stir in cocoa butter, fill the mass into beautiful shells – one can also use chocolate or ice forms – and then refrigerate. Later package them in cellophane and decorate with an olive branch. Cooled and kept dry the bath candies can be used up to 3 months. A great holiday gift!

 

Shells

Finished bath candies, ready for taking a hot, relaxing bath.

Birds in Aiguamolls

Aiguamolls de l’Empordà – a natural park

Aiguamolls – Natural Park

Aiguamolls’ natural park is characterized by an astonishing interplay of dunes, drowned meadows, brackish lagoons (special habitats due to their fluctuations in salinity) and lakes. The Catalan word aigua­molls means calm, shallow water in English. In Spanish, it is called marismas and describes a coastal wetland, which has been formed by the interaction of both the estuary and the sea.

 Aiguamolls from above

Lagoons of Aiguamolls

Our journey begins at the tourist information’s parking lot. Starting from here it is also possible to explore the birds’ reservoir afoot. It is worth the effort: the birds’ reservoir forms a part of the wildlife sanctuary.

Stork's nest

Storks in Aiguamolls

The wetland is framed by luscious green, nature having explored after the heavy spring rains. Lagoons like mirrors reflect grasses and the bright yellow of water lilies. Reed and rushes sway in the wind, whispering silently. The perfect harmony is only disrupted by the occasional dabchick diving into this mirrored world.

Lagoon with a view

Reeds in the wind

Tamarisks, adapted to wet, salty habitats, blossom in pink and white, growing as they will as trees or bushes. Storks stalk through the swamp on long legs; others circle high above in the sky. Most of them sit on their nests, built in the branches of dead, gnarled trees – or on platforms constructed for this purpose. Their loud chattering can still be heard miles away.
The white stork’s repatriation is one of the sanctuary’s most pressing concerns, as well as the protection of the more than 300 other species of birds.

Snow in the distance

Pyrenees covered with snow

Quim Franch

At the very beginning of our journey, we visit the observatory “Quim Franch”, and watch the “Cortalet”’s lake. A family of swans – parents and five fledglings – floats through the reeds in blissful peace. Frogs croak loudly. A few wild ducks bob up and down with the current, while a grey heron stands aloof, majestically. We see grouses, a whole family, on their first day out. The small black fledglings flee back into the rushes on overly large, clumsy feet, and they are gone before we can even think of taking pictures.

Fields in Aiguamolls

Lake Cortalet

Landscape

The whole landscape is blossoming. There is a stallion, grazing in front of a Masia. Resplendently white, the snow-capped Pyrenees can be seen in the distance. The wind of Tramuntana is rough, blowing directly into our faces. We see red poppy on the fields, white chamomile and blue borage. Violet lavender emits its aromatic scent. The rough landscape is of an unusual beauty, enchanting. Purely romantic. We are amazed by the interesting route through the wonderful natural park of Aiguamolls.

Canals of Aiguamolls

Water way through the beautiful natural park of Aiguamolls

Advice

The maps are available in German, English, Spanish, French and Catalan and are handed out free of charge at the tourist information “El Cortalet”. (0034) 972 45 42 22.
How to get there: Take the high way from Sant Pere Pescador or Castelló d’Empúries.
www.aiguamolls.org

Bird at a lagoon

The lagoons in Agiuamolls provide perfect habitats for a lot of different species