Catalunya, November 2004


A pretty street with multi-coloured bollards View over Barcelona towards Montjuïc from the Cathedral A narrow curved street
The old town, and a view towards Montjuïc from the Cathedral
Barcelona beach Tower on the beach at Barceloneta The sea in the dark at Barceloneta
The beach at Barcelona, and the Barceloneta beach in the dark

Gaudí: La Pedrera and Casa Batlló

La Pedrera (Casa Milà)
La Pedrera (Casa Milà), designed by Gaudí.
section of pavement, small hexagonal patterned stones
La Pedrera may be impressive, but how about the pavement outside - isn't it pretty?

Gaudí's Casa Batlló, one of the Manzana de la Discordia houses
The Casa Batlló, one of the block of houses known as the 'Manzana de la Discordia'.
Close-up of Casa Batlló
A close-up of Casa Batlló - designed by Gaudí.

The Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família

The Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família
The south-western side of La Sagrada Família
A sculpted dove through the vertical windows of one tower
A sculpted dove through a window.
Four towers of the Sagrada Família
Four towers of the Sagrada Família
View across the city to the north, from the Sagrada Família
Looking north across the city from a north-eastern tower.
Coloured globules
Multi-coloured globules!
La Sagrada Família under construction
Construction of La Sagrada Família is constantly continuing. For an idea of scale, you can just see three workmen near the bottom-right corner of this photo, and another on a lower platform half-way up on the right side.
Stained glass window in the Sagrada Família
Stained Glass Window
Looking up at the 'canopy', inside the Sagrada Família
Inside, the Sagrada Família is designed as a forest of columns. Here we look upwards into the 'canopy'.
Sculpted hands, wrapped up and awaiting use
A pair of hands, awaiting use, in the storage area which fills much of the church floor.


View of Barcelona from Montjuïc
Montjuïc is a prominent hill to the south of the city centre, next to the port. It provides a great view of the city.
The Olympic Stadium
Barcelona's Olympic Stadium, on Montjuïc.
Barcelona port
View over the container port from the cliffside path on Montjuïc.

Montseny Natural Park

Day 1

abandoned house
An abandoned house which I passed on the way.
I started from the west of Montseny Natural Park, in the middle of the day. I headed up the GR 5 from Aiguafreda, a low point of about 400m. The weather was good, with the sun shining, but the temperature not so high.
The summit of Puig Drau
View eastwards from the summit of Puig Drau.
I reached my high point of the day, Puig Drau, 1344m, in the late afternoon, and then made my way down to Coll Formic and all the way down the road to Seva (altitude around 660m).

Day 2

early morning, looking North-West from below Coll Formic, with the Pyrenees on the horizon
As the sun rose, I saw the Pyrenees on the horizon to the north-west - the photograph shows the range as a grey stripe of high ground below the sky, with some snow-covered tops on the right, below the clouds.
I set off early in the morning, while it was still dark, and trekked up the road towards Coll Formic, repeatedly being passed by the dust-cart as it called at the various houses scattered along the valley.
Font Clareta
Font Clareta, one of many springs in the wooded gorge to the west of Matagalls.
The ruined monastery of Sant Segimon
The ruined monastery of Sant Segimon stands remote at the edge of a spur of the hillside.
The Pyrenees on the horizon
Distant view of the Pyrenees, later in the morning.
After successfully finding a cache, I walked up to the abandoned monastery of Sant Segimon. Two particularly fierce dogs served as effective gate-keepers blocking the normal path past the ruin. I scrambled torturously up past the other side of the ruin, and found my way back on to a steep path which headed up the spur.
The cross at the summit of Matagalls
The cross on the summit of Matagalls.
Once on the top, I easily made my way over to Matagalls, at 1696m one of the highest summits in the Natural Park. It was bright and sunny by this time, but the clouds were gathering to my east.
The view from Matagalls
The view from the summit of Matagalls along the south-eastern ridge.

My route took me down almost 600m to the Coll de Sant Marçal, and then back up again as far. I made what turned out to be a relatively tough and rocky ascent up Les Agudes - the top wasn't quite in the mist, but everything else was.
Looking along the ridge to Turó de l'Home in the mist
Looking along the ridge from Les Agudes to Turó de l'Home - the path I'm about to follow.
The next part of the walk took me straight along the ridge to Turó de l'Home, 1706m, the highest point in the Montseny Natural Park. The top was totally in the fog when I arrived!
The trig point at the top of Turó de l'Home
The trig point on the summit of Turó de l'Home.

The remnants of the day had turned cold and windy, so I hurriedly descended 1000m to Montseny - it got too dark to read my map just a few minutes before I reached surfaced roads.

Day 3

Looking back to the Turó de l'Home
Looking back up to the Turó de l'Home, from the south.
From Montseny I re-ascended east towards Fontmartina, and then travelled south-east on the GR 5 for the rest of the day until I reached the railway station in the town of Sant Celoni.
Strange trees with missing bark
In the forest, there were plenty of trees like these which had no bark on the lower section (1-2 metres) of their trunks. Why? Is it natural (it doesn't look it)? Or done for some reason?
View over the countryside with the rays of the afternoon sun
View over the flatter countryside to the south-east of the Natural Park in the rays of the afternoon sun

Copyright © 2004-2005 David R Edgar
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
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