Catalonia Trekking – Serra de Finestres, La Garrotxa
Of La Garrotxa’s National Volcanic Park area this is one of the most recommendable routes. Interestingly, it is also one of the least touristic ones, since it keeps well out of La Fageda d’en Jordà (one of La Garrotxa’s 26 natural reserves; an amazing forest which grows on a magma layer spewed by Croscat volcano thousands of years ago), which in the last decade has unfortunately become a cross between a parade and Disneyland.
The other attraction is the fact that it takes you to a great Catalan Romanesque building, the nowadays abandoned Church and Monastery of Santa Maria de Finestres.
- Distance: 14. 2km (15.5 km for us since we got sidetracked)
- Duration: 5h
- Average speed: 3.1km/h
- Elevation interval: 442m - 883m
The route starts at Santa Pau’s Council House square. After getting out of the town, it takes us past Can Bertrina (picture no. 7) and Descolls (picture no. 8) and deep into the Parc Natural de la Zona Volcànica de la Garrotxa. We will be walking amongst spectacular beech forests, which make up the national park and which we recommend you dearly to visit, especially in Spring and Autumn. It ends in Santa Maria de Finestres’ Sanctuary, a monastery located on the top of a cliff at over 850m . Its location offers us priviledged 360ª views of La Garrotxa and Pla de L’Estany Counties.
NOTE: Regarding organizing and initial research for this hike we recommend Palau Robert’s route, but it is in no way sufficient to carry out the route. Among other issues, it does not specify the fact that it follows the yellow marks until you’re on your way from the Monastery, but that after that, you need to follow the red marks (a mystery unsolved as of yet).
For the newbies we recommend Itinerannia, which, as well as offering good maps of this area in La Garrotxa, it offers advice on the sign posting you will find along the way: the vertical signage (quite scarce and only to be found at routes’ crossroads) and the horizontal signage, yellow and red. The towns mentioned in the vertical sign posts are the first 4 to be found at under 6 hours’ walk and which are in the direction the triangle points at.
Tags: Girona province · Hidden places · Hiking · Mountain · One-day trips · Open-air visit · Outdoors · Trekking · Walks
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