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A day in Girona

Girona (Gerona) is a small medieval city about 100 km above Barcelona and not so far from the French border. Girona is located in the heart of Catalonia between the rugged Costa Brava and the high peaks of the Pyrenees and the perfect destination for a day trip or a weekend.

Girona, a piece of Medieval history

Girona is a medieval city and therefore also has a rich history. Girona was founded by the Romans, but over the years you can see influences from different cultures and religions that lived in Girona over the years. Girona is therefore surprising to visit because of its special and diverse architecture.

The great vibe of Girona

The river, De Onyar, runs through the city. This river splits the old center of Girona from the new center of Girona, which you will find on the west side of the city. Girona is a very nice city to walk through, to shop, to enjoy on the terrace and to taste culture. Girona is a charming city full of history, culture and shops. The inhabitants of Girona are very warm people and welcome the tourists with open arms. The fine character of these people gives the city of Gerona some extra warmth.

Games of the Trones in Girona

Girona has become more famous in recent years, as it was a well-known filming location in the Game of the Thrones series. You can even take themed walking tours that take you to the various Game of the Thrones filming locations.

A day in Girona

Girona is a wonderful city to spend the day, if only because of the nice atmosphere of this city. But there are also a number of sights that you really should not miss when you are in Girona for a day. We have listed the best sights in Girona for you.

Visit the impressive Cathedral of Girona

When you walk through Girona for the first time and have no idea what to expect, the grandeur of this cathedral comes quite unexpectedly. Suddenly you look around the corner and you see the impressive facade of the Cathedral of Girona glittering.

The Cathedral of Girona is called in full the Cathedral of Saint Mary of Girona. The famous cathedral of Girona stands in the middle of the old town of Girona, the Forca Vella. It is one of the largest cathedrals in Europe. In the cathedral you can see architectural styles from different periods in the past. The main part of Girona Cathedral is built in a Gothic style. But you will also find a Romanesque-style monastery here with many columns and sculptures of people and animals.

In front of the cathedral you will find a grand staircase. This grand staircase is therefore the best place to take a photo with the Cathedral of Girona. It is especially the striking baroque facade that attracts attention. You have to brave 90 steps to get to the entrance of this cathedral. But if you have the chance to visit Girona Cathedral from the inside, we definitely recommend it. Because the inside is at least as impressive as the outside of the cathedral. One more little fact; in the 6th season of Game of the Thrones, this cathedral was one of the filming venues.

Café l'arc is a café right in front of the cathedral. It's a nice place to admire the cathedral and watch all the tourists passing by.

Address: Pl. de la Catedral, s/n, 17004 Girona

Passeig de la Muralla, walking the city walls of Girona

This is definitely one of the best things to do when you are in Girona for a day, walking the old city walls; Passeig de la Muralla. Unfortunately, many people skip this attraction in Girona, which is really a shame. Because from Passeig de la Muralla the views over the city of Girona are really fantastic. These walls were built at the time when the Romans ruled Girona. They were enlarged twice. Once in the year 800 and again in the 14th century. The city walls of Girona are still in surprisingly good condition, due to the years of restorations that have been spent on these city walls. The city walls surround the entire old center of Girona and you can walk almost the entire part. If you want to walk the complete round, you will be walking for about 2 hours. This sounds long, but the walk is really beautiful with nice views and plenty of benches to rest. On a good day you can even see the snowcapped peaks of the Pyrenees in the background of the Girona skyline. But you can also walk a small part of this city wall. After 30 to 40 minutes there is a staircase, with which you can leave the city walls.

Passeig de la Muralla is one of the longest and best preserved medieval walls in Europe at almost three kilometers along. To find Passeig de la Muralla you have to climb the stairs of the main cathedral and then walk around the cathedral. These city walls of Girona are not very well marked, but if you walk around the Cathedral of Girona, you will definitely find them.

Basilica of Sant Feliu, another impressive church in Girona

At the bottom of the grand cathedral of Girona you will find another impressive church, namely the Basilica of Sant Feliu with the striking bell tower. Basilica of Sant Feliu was built between the 12th and 17th centuries in honor of Saint Feliu. This church was mainly built in the Romanesque style, but you will also find examples of the Gothic and Baroque style in this church. Basilica of Sant Feliu has a number of remarkable artifacts, of which the Chapel of St Narcissus is the most impressive. This chapel is completely covered in gold with blue marble, which gives the chapel a particularly beautiful appearance. If you have bought tickets for the great cathedral of Girona, you can also enter Basilica of Sant Feliu with the same tickets.

Address: Carrer Trasfigueres, 4, 17004 Girona

El Cul De La Lleona, a tradition in Girona

A visit to Girona is not complete without a visit to El Cul De La Lleona, a pillar with a story in Girona. A lion carved in stone hangs from this pillar and climbs the pillar.

Now you wonder, what is the tradition with this column? According to legend, you have to kiss the bottom “the butt” of this statue to ever return to Girona. A bit of a strange thought that everyone here kisses the lion's ass…. But of course you can always try.

Address: 17004 Girona

Discover the Jewish Quarter in Girona, El Call

The Jewish quarter in Girona is also known as El Call. Located in the old town of Girona, this Jewish quarter is one of the best-preserved Jewish quarters in Europe. The Jewish Quarter has its origins around the year 1100. In the following 300 years, the Jewish Quarter was continuously developed and expanded and became one of the largest Jewish quarters in Girona. The Jewish quarters is a very photogenic neighborhood. Everywhere you see nice alleys, beautiful stairs and secret gardens and squares. If you're lucky, someone will leave their door open here and you can peek into the cute courtyards of these apartment buildings. If you want to know more about the history of this Jewish quarter, visit the museum about Jewish history. The Jewish quarter is also where the great cathedral of Girona is located.

Stroll along river bank and bridges of the Onyar River

The River Onyar splits Girona in two, between the old center and the new center of Girona. On the right side of the bank of the Onyar you will find the old center of Girona. The old town of Girona is the most beloved part of Girona with its cobbled streets and stone steps. To the left you will find the new center of Girona, where you will find a number of popular bars and restaurants. The best thing about these bridges is the view they give over the colored houses that stand next to the banks of this river.

Pont de Pedra, the most iconic bridge of Girona

Pont de Pedra is Girona's most iconic bridge. The original name of Pont de Pedra is Pont d'Isabel II, because the bridge was built when she ruled the country. Pont de Pedra is the connection between the old and the new center of Girona. Pont de Pedra is the only bridge that you can cross by bicycle, but the bridge is prohibited for all other traffic. Pont de Pedra is the first bridge over which you can reach the old center of Girona. After Pont de Pedra there are 5 other bridges over which you can reach the old center of Girona.

The Eiffel Bridge, another bridge in Girona

The Eiffel Bridge is perhaps the most famous bridge in Girona. Perhaps because the Eiffel bridge differs so much in design from the other bridges in Girona. The Eiffel Bridge was built by Gustav Eiffel. Does this name look familiar to you? That could be right. Gustav Eiffel is also the architect of the famous Eiffel Tower.

The original name of the bridge is Pont de les Peixateries Velles and by the locals it is also called El Pont de Ferro, the Iron Bridge. The bridge was built in 1877, just before the Eiffel Tower was built. It is a special bridge to see. The narrow, steel construction is very different from the old Mediterranean houses that stand next to the riverbank. Due to the color red, The Eiffel Bridge is certainly a striking appearance in Girona.

Taste the famous pastry in Gerona, Xuixo

Xuixo is a very well known and loved pastry in Girona, which you can buy at most bakeries in Girona. It is a deep-fried pastry with Catalan cream on the inside and cinnamon on the outside. Is the water already in your mouth? Can't wait for the next time I'm in Girona again.


Arab baths, a piece of the Middle East in Girona

Or not? Because despite the fact that these baths are called Arab baths, they were built by the Christians in the 12th century. The bathhouses consist of a bathing area, an octagonal bath surrounded by narrow pillars, a frigidaire (a cold water bath), a tepidarium (a warm water bath) and a palladium, which is a kind of sauna. This sauna was heated by a stove under the floor.

La Rambla de la Llibertat, a cozy street in the center of Girona

La Rambla de la Llibertat was built in 1885 and is a wide pedestrian boulevard running parallel to the River Onyar. Along this boulevard you can shop, enjoy a drink on the terrace or have a nice meal in one of the restaurants.

Address: Carrer del Rei Ferran el Catòlic, s/n, 17004 Girona

Plaça de la Independència, a 19th century square in Girona

Plaça de la Independència is a 19th-century square in the Mercadal district of Girona. This square, Plaça de la Independència, is surrounded by restaurants and cafes where you will see many of the locals of Girona who like to congregate in this square. Centrally located in the center of Plaça de la Independència is a statue honoring the people who helped liberate Girona during the French occupation.

Monestir de Sant Pere de Galligants, historic artifacts in Girona

Monestir de Sant Pere de Galligants is an old Romanesque center in Girona. Today Monestir de Sant Pere de Galligants is no longer used as a monastery, but you will find the Archaeological Museum of Catalonia and Girona here. You can see artifacts here from Prehistory and the Middle Ages. The Monestir de Sant Pere de Galligants itself is also a beautiful building to walk through.

Address: Carrer de Santa Llúcia, 8, 17007 Girona

Visit the Mercat del Lleó, more food in Girona

Mercat del Lleó is a market hall, as you see a lot in Spain. If you like good food and drinks, Mercat del Lleó is definitely worth a visit during your day in Girona. Mercat del Lleó sells a lot of fresh products and local dishes. You can also taste tapas and have a nice drink. A lovely place, where you will also meet many of the locals.

Address: Plaça Calvet i Rubalcaba, s/n, 17002 Girona

Girona, a lovely city to explore

If you don't want to be right on the coast of Spain, Girona is a wonderful place to use as a base. From Girona you can easily visit the impressive Costa Brava, but you can also discover some beautiful villages in the interior of Spain. Even Barcelona is very close and you can easily visit from Girona.

Is one day enough to explore Girona?

The answer to this question is certain. Girona is a nice city to discover on foot, because the important sights are a relatively short distance from each other. Therefore, Girona is easy to discover in a day. But if you have the opportunity to stay two nights in Girona, we definitely recommend it. Because in the evening the terraces are full of people and Girona maybe even more atmosphere than during the day.


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