Medieval Villages near Figueres Vilabertran, Peralada, Castelló d'Empuries

This route is extremely pleasant by bicycle, see the google map reference below and can be combined with Figueres, lunch - there are lots of good restaurants in this area, or wine tasting in Garrigüella, Vilajüiga, or another Emporda bodega. Or a quick dip in the sea and a fish supper...For more spritely types, Empuria Brava is the place for 'night life' (i don't remember what that is exactly, but discos are involved).

Emporda Wine links:

information about the wines

http://www.doemporda.cat/en/wineries.html

booking guided visits to bodegas

http://www.rutasdevinosemporda.es/visitas-bodegas-emporda-1-0.html

one to start with

http://www.espeltviticultors.com/

Vilabertran Monastery

Information about this site before arriving is a closely guarded secret, but once you are in situ, a useful leaflet will find its way into your hands - in English, if there are any left...

There is also a little walk around the village - the leaflet in catalan can be downloaded - here it is to give you an idea. Presumably it is available in English once you've paid up!

http://www.mhcat.net/content/download/9382/73194/file/Vilabertran%2C+itineraris.pdf

The point is that it is a very pleasant visit on your route.

This is Dalí's Vilabertran Lake (Llac de Vilabertran) and belltower.

for the history and architectural details of the complex go to this link 

http://www.vilabertran.com/vb.php?ss=328424156d2f1554de808bfcc6cb6270&ap=a03s01p01

Last admission 30 minutes before closing time.

From 1 September to 30 Juny: from Thursday from Saturday: from 10 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. and from 3 p.m. to 5.30 p.m.

Sundays and local holidays: from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

July and August from Tuesday to Sunday: from 10 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. and from 3 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.

Closed on Mondays except public holidays, 25 and 26 December and 1 and 6 January.

Standard: €3,00 

Concession: €2,00 

Tuesdays and local public holidays, free of charge for all.

C/ Abadia, 4

17760 Vilabertran (Alt Empordà)

Tel.: 972508787

e-mail:

vilabertran.cultura@gencat.cat 

This link has a nice introduction to the monastery, in English.

http://capcreus.com/vilabertran/vilabertran_uk.htm

Peralada

It is just 7 km 

from Figueres and 40 km from Girona. Here is a 

useful link for more information about the medieval village: 

http://capcreus.com/peralada/peralada_uk.htm

About 500 AC, a group from the Iberian tribe of indiketes built what would be the first walled village of Peralada.Transformed into the centre of a country from the Carolingian Empire in the 9th Century, Peralada became one of the main capitals of l'Empordà throughout the Medieval Age. From this bright period there are still many buildings and monuments left which make the delights of the visitor who discovers the secrets of a millennial village.

Still, most people only ever see Peralada on a warm summer's evening, dressed to the nine's en route to a concert in the castle grounds during the annual festival. And some don't go to the concert but stay in the

casino

or the al fresco dining terrace! The village is well worth seeing however, during the day, combined with other medieval villages.

Castle Museum of Peralada

- here is what they say about themselves:

In Peralada the visitor has the opportunity to visit one of the most spectacular, private collections of Catalonia; the Castle's Museum, which is located inside the antique Carme's convent.The cloister and the Gothic church are two of the convent's original dependencies that can be visited. A library with around 80.000 volumes and more than 1000 editions of El Quijote is another appeal of this visit, which follows with the Glass Museum, with on of the best and biggest collections of the world. And, eventually, the Wine's Museum, which was created in the 60's in the wine cellar where until that date Peralada's wines were produced. All the elements and objects exposed are from the wine's culture in any of its phases.
Timetable:From 1st July until 15th September. Guided visits every hour o'clock. Opened every day. From 16th September until 30th June. Opened every day save on Sundays and holiday's afternoons. On Mondays it is closed the whole day.

for the

casino

http://www.casino-peralada.com/ing/index.asp

for

wine

http://www.castilloperelada.com/en/

for the

music and dance festival in summer

- a wonderful experience, at night, outdoors.

http://www.festivalperalada.es/festivalperalada/programacion-2012/?lang=en

Castelló d'Empuries

Nice introduction link here: 

http://capcreus.com/castello/castello_uk.htm

Cycle route Vilabertran and Figueres villages

This is a route we did by road bike in April last year and thoroughly enjoyed - we were lucky with the wind! Highly recommended and you can extend or cut short as you feel like - just be careful to take a good map, as you wouldn't think you could get lost but believe me, you can!

https://maps.google.es/maps?q=castello+d'empuries&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x12ba61d9ab3cdd37:0x400fae021a467f0,Castell%C3%B3+d'Emp%C3%BAries,+Girona&gl=es&ei=1_OYUJy1IeiQ4gTCh4GAAw&ved=0CJ8BELYD

http://www.empordaturisme.com/en/Associats/Natural_Parks-188/PARC_NATURAL_DEL_CAP_DE_CREUS-29.htm