Spring has sprung… a spot of natural culture. Who can say no to a walk which enlightens you about Catalan Roman times in the open air or prehistoric art from the Bronze Age surrounded by nature and charming towns? Or to discovering native fauna in a very unique zoo? In Catalonia nature is adventure and also culture. Experience it in the open air this 2018, the Year of Cultural Tourism.
Seeing a bear in the mountains can be a very exciting adventure, and finding out more about how the live, can be too. On the Brown bear route in the Pyrenees, in Pallars Sobirà, a specialised guide will accompany you on the walk and will explain how they control their steps or how you must act if you see one. These excursions aim to raise awareness about the importance of bear conservation and their habitat.
Respecting nature and fauna is a good life lesson which, if you are visiting with children, they will learn eagerly. Take the chance to visit the Isil House of the Bear, the first bear interpretation centre in Catalonia. You will be able to hibernate in a bear’s den, identify his foot prints and other interesting facts about this mammal.
Like Robin Hood of the forests
Try a new sport that combines nature, concentration and aiming. We can offer you a day out in nature at the Esquirol archery circuit, designed by the world champion in this discipline, Sebasià Juanola. You just need a forest, a bow and an arrow. Along this route, you will have to find the targets, which are designed in 3D and are shaped like animals, and above all you need to aim well.
You can take a beginner’s course with an instructor or go round the circuit alone, if you are already familiar with this sport. There are two types of circuits for practising archery, the amateur one of 1.5 km and the 3 km professional one.
A very family-friendly zoo in the Catalan Pyrenees
For animal and nature lovers, the Pyrenees Zoo is like a gift. When you go in here, you will realise the most important thing is loving and respecting the environment and the animals. Here you have the opportunity to see birds of prey in action, on an exhibition flight that will surprise you and, perhaps, leave you a little shaken.
In the zoo, there are more than 50 species of native animals and you can pat them, feed them and also help them to train thanks to the Touch&Feel activity. The kids are sure to enjoy touch a fox or feed milk to a genet. And after the guided tour, you can enjoy something to eat in the zoo’s picnic area.
An exceptional Roman site
In Valle de Boí, nature intertwines with Roman art. Visit the site of Roman churches in the Catalan Pyrenees, one of the best in Europe and declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO. Added to the beauty of the natural setting is how exceptional this site is, concentrating a large number of churches in a small space, churches that share the same architectural style, high quality and preserved over time with few changes.
The eight churches and the hermitage were built between the 10th and 12th centuries and are Lombard Roman style. You will be surprised by their willowy bell towers, the emerald stonework and external decoration of arches and Lombard stripes. You can complete this Roman immersion in the valley’s interpretation centre, where you will find out what it meant for the inhabitants of that time via audiovisual and interactive elements.
Prehistoric art at Terres de Lleida
How can a cave just 60 m2 contain up to 28 paintings and remains from the Bronze Age? The answer lies west of Os de Balaguer. The Vilars Cave, declared a Heritage site, is like a natural art museum. Its prehistoric art paintings show daily scenes, and also symbols and solar religious representations.
The visit to this cave, which is part of the prehistoric art of the Iberian peninsula’s Mediterranean basin, includes an excursion in a 4×4 with a driver so that you are able to enjoy the landscape of this mountain range, Os (la Noguera).
Enjoy nature in a cultural way!