Whilst enjoying the comfort of one comfortable inn, we ride in a different direction each day including a trail to the beach. Andalusian horses will adeptly guide you on this discovery trail deep into the heart of Catalonia where the riding is as varied as the ever changing landscapes of the region. There are plenty of opportunities to canter along the plains and meadows, over river valleys and through the winding forest trails.
Ride to medieval cobbled and walled villages and enjoy the famous Catalan cuisine and wines from the Empurdan region which are served throughout the ride. The diverse range of dishes, tapas and picnics making this a gastronomic way to discover the local area with opportunities to take days off or ride every day. A more relaxed experience than the trails with no pressure to ride each day or pack your bag each night.
Please Note: The opinions expressed in these reviews are the author's and do not necessarily reflect the views of Unicorn Trails Ltd. These reviews are "directly from the horses mouth" and unedited. Unicorn Trails may make additional comments for clarification clearly identified in red.
Review received from HV of Newport on 21/05/2018
DAY 1 WELCOME
Arrive at Masia la Palma (or similar) hotel. Before dinner we will go over the week's programme and sample some of the full-bodied local real wines. You will be told about the special characteristics of our trail horses. You will be given an opportunity for a one-to-one conversation designed to find every rider their perfect horse. Then you can enjoy dinner!
DAY 2 VALVERALLA LAKE
After a hearty breakfast we saddle up and prepare for the trail with the help and suggestions of your guide. The destination today is the nice Valveralla Lake with its forest of beech trees, meadows and fields, where we can enjoy spectacular views over the Gerona region and the mountains of Gavarres.
After a delicious picnic, we turn back to Masia la Palma, in the direction of the Fluvià river. On the way we pass through the medieval villages of Sant Miquel de Fluviá, Sant Mori and Saus, where we can stroll through the village and see the castle from the outside. We continue, alternating small villages with vast meadows and dense forests. Then we will have a short break for a coffee or a beer at the quiet village of Vilaür, a charming place that preserves the medieval wall. We will cross the East gate to enter the Main Square (where the Duquesa de Alba has a pretty house). Once we arrive, we can relax by the swimming pool until dinner.
DAY 3 HIPODROME OF BASCARA - ESPINAVESSA
After breakfast and preparing the horses, we will leave through tracks surrounded by Mediterranean forest. The mountain creeks offer amazing views of prairies and meadows. We will then reach Fluvià River, near the village of Báscara with its famous hippodrome, where we will test our gallop. The picnic will take place at Masía La Palma. On our way we will find country cottages and churches, all surrounded by olive groves and cereal fields. Then, we will turn back through the villages of Parets de l’Empordá and Galliners. Today it’s a long day in the saddle.
DAY 4 TER RIVER - COLOMERS
After another delicious breakfast we saddle up our horses and ride through forests, meadows and fields, to Riera de Llampaies, our destination today and we will discover the magnificent Baix Empordá. We will have our daily picnic at Colomers, near the Ter River where we can have a nap under the beech trees. We follow our route crossing the quiet villages of Vilopriu and Saus back home. There we can offer a fresh shower to our horses and have a swim in the swimming pool before dinner.
DAY 5 ARENYS D'EMPORDÁ
We saddle up our horses and leave in the direction of the Fluvià River. On the way we pass through pine and oak forests near the villages of Saus and Sant Mori. Then we will arrive at sant Miquel de Fluviá and have our daily picnic in front of the river under the shade of the trees. In the afternoon, coming back to Can Sort, we will cross Arenys d’Empordá, where we can see the castle Palau de Santa Eulalia, and continue through the characterful villages of Vilajoan and Calabuig with its tower/church that dominates the entire valley. Return for dinner.
DAY 6 SANT MARTÍ D'EMPURIES
Today we prepare to take our horses to the beach which is what we've been looking forward to all week! Firstly though we have a full day of riding to do to get there. Tonight the horses will sleep in a cane field near the sea. We make a gentle descent on paths surrounded by meadows, past Saus up until Ventalló and Palau Borrell for a delicious picnic beside the private Garriga Castle, in Sant Feliu de la Garriga. In the afternoon we pass Viladamat and Albons, alternating trotting and some cantering. It seems that our horses smell the sea breeze. We pass Mas Vilanera, which has an old mill and is near the village of L'Escala, and reach Sant Martí d’Empuries. At the end of the beach is an old Greek pier, dating from the sixth century BC, where we will leave our horses in paddocks and then go back to Masia la Palma by car.
DAY 7 THE BEACH
We get up early for breakfast and then move to where we left the horses yesterday afternoon. We mount and trot beside a stream for a few minutes until we reach the sea, at the beginning of the bay of Roses. We will continue to gallop along the beach, stopping occasionally to enter the water until almost wetting our feet. After a long eight kilometres of golden sands and sparkling sea, we turn to go back home through orchards and paddy fields. After riding through silent woods and streams we stop for a relaxing lunch next to an old “tintaría”. We return to the hills to reach Vilaür, enjoying our last route in the Empordà mountain range, at the heart of the Costa Brava.
DAY 8 ADIOS AMIGOS
Breakfast and departure…. we hope to see each other again soon!!
Please note that, subject to availability, the hotels named here may be changed for another hotel of similar standard
We think our hosts in Catalonia are some of the best in the business! They offer a range of rides and in the unusual event of a ride not confirming ie. there are 3 or less riders, an alternative rail or based ride will be offered and the difference in price refunded so you can book your flights with confidence.
On this horse riding holiday, you will need to dismount and walk next to your horse over short distances so good walking boots are required.
Set group transfers take place on Sundays so if the 7 night option (Programme A) has been booked then the return group transfer price is applicable (see 'Transfer' in information box above).
For riders who have booked for less than 7 nights, the group transfer price may not be applicable, depending on how many people are arriving on that day (minimum 4 people for a group transfer). If the minimum number is not reached then a private taxi can be booked by your hosts at a cost of €40 one-way from Girona and €185 one-way from Barcelona. Riders will then join the normal group transfer on the departure day, Sunday, and will pay for a one-way group transfer.
For non-group transfers, the private taxi transfers are €60-€70 one-way from Girona and €200-€250 one-way from Barcelona. These prices are subject to change depending on the taxi company and time of transfer.
All transfers are payable on-site.
8 days, 7 nights, 6 days riding - Sunday to Sunday
7 days, 6 nights, 5 days riding - Monday to Sunday
6 days, 5 nights, 4 days riding - Tuesday to Sunday
5 days, 4 nights, 3 days riding - Wednesday to Sunday
4 days, 3 nights, 2 days riding - Thursday to Sunday
Please note: All itineraries are given for your guidance only and it may be altered on the ground and in accordance with the prevailing conditions by the organising team.
The horses used for rides are well-schooled pure or crossbred Andalusians. They have all been carefully chosen and most are between 14.2hh (150cm) and 16hh (165cm) and are of a medium build. They are sure-footed, fit, forward going, responsive to ride and well adapted to the requirements of the oftentimes rough terrain. The tack is English and trekking style and most horses are ridden in snaffles. English saddles and trekking saddles are utilised. Saddle bags are provided to carry items required during the day and for picnic lunches. You will be paired with a suitable horse based on your experience and preferences, but if for any reason after the first day you feel that you are not well matched then just let your guide know and you will be given another horse.
To participate in this trip you must be a reasonably competent rider (English style). You should be well balanced, comfortable and secure in the saddle and able to control a well-schooled horse outside at all paces. Riders are expected to be able to cope with a variety of different going and different types of terrain. All the rides are aimed at reasonably capable riders, who are also fairly fit and riding regularly.
Participants are expected to ride regularly in the months before they go to ensure they can cope with the hours in the saddle. There are also places on the rides where you will need to dismount and lead your horse - if the ground gets rough or steep, and for a short time to warm the horses up and cool them down each day. Riders are expected to groom and tack up their own horse each day in preparation for rides.
Your guide will go over the week's programme when you first arrive (usually at dinner on the first night), explaining the special characteristics of the Andalusian trail horse and of the tack used, then discussing each rider's ability, experience and their preference as to the kind of horse they would like to ride. The minimum age for this ride is 14 years.
The weight limit for this ride is 14 st/198 lb/90 kg, please enquire if you are an experienced rider exceeding this weight.
Masaia la Palma hotel or Can Sort guest house. Can Sort is a large farmhouse and the 'logistical' home to the Catalonia Trails team and their horses. It is situated on the slopes of a hill overlooking the extensive plains of the Ampurdán and the Bahia de Rosas. The snowy peaks of the Pyrenees can also been seen in the distance. The atmosphere at Can Sort is tranquil and relaxing; enjoy the large swimming pool, the extensive gardens, the friendly staff and of course the traditional Catalan cuisine! Bedrooms are spacious with en-suite bathrooms and some have terraces or open out directly onto the garden. The horses are turned-out in the large green meadows surrounding the farmhouse and the stables are on your doorstep. The meals are plentiful and contain many typically Catalan dishes as well as regular European dishes. Breakfast is substantial, lunches are either saddle-bag picnics (extensive with quiche/salted cakes/chorizo/Catalan cured meat/fruit/cheese/ham/wine/biscuits/chocolate) or sit-down lunches at a table prepared by the back-up team (hot food/mixed salads/cheese/biscuits/fruit). Dinners are 3-4 course and accompanied by good local wines. A bottle of local cava is never far away and the atmosphere is very welcoming. The team always tries to showcase their regional and Catalan products resulting in beautifully prepared meals for all to enjoy!
Please note that, subject to availability, the hotels named here may be changed for another hotel of similar standard
Vegetarian or other dietary requirements can be accommodated with advanced notice. Please contact Unicorn Trails with requests.
Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct documentation in place for your trip. If Visa’s are required the requirements can change from year to year depending on diplomatic relations. Please request information from the appropriate Consulate in your home country. Unicorn Trails will assist with any questions you have or supply any necessary supporting documents as required by the consulate on request.
Visa are not required for U.K. or other European nationals. In the UK the British Foreign Office gives travel advice on travel insurance, passport and visas, health and vaccinations, legal issues and emergency issues. They can be reached on 0207 008 0232/0233 or at www.fco.gov.uk
The British Consulate in Madrid is at the Calle de Fernando el Santo 16, 28010 Madrid. Tel: +34 91 7008200. Email: email@example.com www.ukinspain.com.
The Spanish Embassy in the U.K can be found at 39 Chesham Place, London SW1X 8SB. Tel: (020) 7235 5555.
Due to the interaction of Mediterranean and mountain climate in this region, you will find ideal conditions for horse back riding the whole year round. In spring the climate is mild, summer is not too hot, the autumn pleasantly warm and winter with its clear air, not too cold. Especially recommended are March and April as well as November!
No special health precautions are required for visits to Spain, for further details please see your local doctor. We do advise taking plenty of sunscreen!
For up to date information on specific health concerns please contact the Medical Advisors For Travellers Abroad. Their website can be found at www.masta.org
Voltage is the same as in the UK and most appliances such as battery chargers for videos, hair dryers etc. can be plugged in with appropriate adapters. These are available for purchase at most airports and travel shops.
230V 50HZ with a two pronged round pin plug
Good quality film is widely available for purchase as well as batteries (normal, alkaline and lithium). There is electricity available each night to recharge cameras and batteries. There is good mobile reception in some part of most days. At the base the mobile reception is variable but there is free wifi.
We recommend wearing jodhpurs, as these protect your legs from soreness, and you will find a light-weight, cotton pair, more comfortable during the summer months. You may need two pairs if you are on one of the longer rides.
Your riding boots should have a sole with tread and be comfortable for walking, as you are certain to lead your horse on some occasions. Jodhpur boots and half-chaps are a more flexible combination for comfort and leg protection than long riding boots.
A long-sleeved shirt is recommended for protection against the sun and against scratches when riding through undergrowth.
Lightweight riding gloves are useful, as is a "bum bag" to contain your camera and any other items you may need during your ride.
We strongly recommend taking a water-bottle, especially on trail rides, which can be refilled en-route; these can be carried in the saddle-bags provided.
A light cotton scarf can help to avoid breathing in too much dust in dry areas.
Bring sunglasses, also to protect your eyes from dust.
Suncream and lip balm are also recommended.
It is essential that you bring good wet weather gear. Although it rains very little, when it does it is normally a heavy downpour, consequently a jacket or cape and waterproof trousers are a good idea.
Please bring a photocopy of your travel insurance certificate with you.
Last but not least... do not forget your bathing suit!
This ride is available on set dates with 8d/7n/6 days riding and can be confirmed online. Shorter stays are available from 5 days upwards. Please let us know if you wish to book another date, we can confirm new dates on request for 4 or more riders between February and November.
2018: 25 Feb; 18* Mar; 8** Apr; 6** May; 3** Jun; 23** Sept, 7*, 21* Oct, 4 Nov (* denotes mid season, ** denotes high season)
Other dates on request
|Riding days||Product item description||£|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,039|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||195|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||695|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||895|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||165|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||595|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||745|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||139|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||499|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||595|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||189|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||399|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,135|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||195|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||789|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||975|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||165|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||679|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||809|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||139|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||565|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||649|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||109|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||399|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,199|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||115|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||855|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,029|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||165|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||729|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||685|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||109|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non-rider||399|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||855|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||139|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||609|
|Riding days||Product item description||€|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,159|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||215|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||775|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||995|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||185|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||665|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||829|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||155|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||555|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||665|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||215|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||445|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,265|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||215|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||879|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,085|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||185|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||755|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||905|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||155|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||629|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||725|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||125|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||445|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,335|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||125|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||949|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,145|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||185|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||815|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||765|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||125|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non-rider||445|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||955|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||155|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||679|
|Riding days||Product item description||$|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,409|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||259|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||939|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,205|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||225|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||805|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||1,005|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||189|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||675|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||805|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||259|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||539|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,535|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||259|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||1,069|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,315|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||225|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||915|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||1,095|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||189|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||765|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||879|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||149|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||539|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||1,619|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||155|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||1,155|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||1,389|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||225|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||989|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||925|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||149|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non-rider||539|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||1,159|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||189|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||825|
|Riding days||Product item description||SEK|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||12,395|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||2,295|
|2018 Low Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||8,279|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||10,625|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||1,969|
|2018 Low Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||7,099|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||8,855|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||1,639|
|2018 Low Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||5,915|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||7,085|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||2,275|
|2018 Low Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||4,735|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||13,519|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||2,295|
|2018 Mid Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||9,405|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||11,589|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||1,969|
|2018 Mid Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||8,059|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||9,655|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||1,639|
|2018 Mid Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||6,715|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||7,725|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||1,315|
|2018 Mid Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non rider half board||4,735|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||double pp||14,265|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||single supplement||1,335|
|2018 High Season 8d/7n||8d/7n||6||non rider half board||10,149|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||double pp||12,229|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||single supplement||1,969|
|2018 High Season - 7d/6n||7d/6n||5||non-rider||8,699|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||double pp||8,155|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||single supplement||1,315|
|2018 High Season - 5d/4n||5d/4n||3||non-rider||4,735|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||double pp||10,189|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||single supplement||1,639|
|2018 High Season - 6d/5n||6d/5n||4||non-rider||7,249|
The flora and fauna in this region is plentiful and varied. On the plains you'll come across plenty of livestock such as herds of sheep and cattle as well as wild boar, deer and many species of birds. As you climb higher into the mountains you may be lucky to see mountain goats and eagles soaring. The flora is really special. Meadows of sweet smelling and colourful wild flowers such as, lavender, thyme and sunflowers. Walnut groves, beech and oak forests make for cool riding and provide perfect shade for a relaxing picnic.
Non-riders can easily join this holiday while their travelling companions ride. At Can Sort non-riders can relax by the pool or in the gardens or perhaps have a horse riding lesson? The area surrounding Can Sort has a wealth of opportunities, from visiting the Dali Museum in Figueres to visiting the beaches near l'Escala or taking in the sights and sounds of Gerona.
Car-hire is recommended although taxi's can be easily booked and are not very expensive. It is usually possible to find the riders for a picnic lunch too. Please note that lunches are not included in the non-rider price.
Spain is a beautiful and diverse country, the second largest in Europe. The official language is Castilian Spanish but Catalan, Galician and Basque are also spoken. Territory includes two island archipelagos – the Balearics and the Canaries – and two enclaves on the North African coast, bordering Morocco – Ceuta and Melilla. The African influence can be found throughout Spain but especially in the south, for example the guitar was invented by the Spanish when they added a sixth string to the Arab lute. Music and art permeates Spanish culture, most obviously displayed in the fire and passion of the Flamenco and the stunning modern architecture found in the cities.
The famous siesta is still enjoyed by the majority of Spaniards, most shops close at lunchtime for two or three hours so everyone can escape the often scorching afternoon sun. Evening meals are served late into the evening with plenty of wine or sangria. Often meals can last two or three hours, especially if your host is serving Tapas, small and varied dishes of meats, bread, vegetables. Paella is also a delight and very popular across the country.
Spain is one hour ahead of GMT and they use the metric weights and measures system, so kilometres and kilograms instead of miles and pounds. There is approximately 1.6 kilometres in a mile and 2.2 pounds in a kilogram. The international dialling code for Spain is +34.