Anoia

To the west of Montserrat we find Anoia, a region where it’s still possible to get away from it all and regain some peace and calm. It’s a land for stargazing, strolling around towns and cities brimming with history, visiting old factories converted into museums or tasting delicious artisanal food in fairs and markets.

Our route begins in the region capital, Igualada, whose well-preserved historical heritage is well worth exploring: at the Leather Museum, located right next to the irrigation channel, you can find out how tanneries operated in the 18th century. You’ll also be interested in the Muleteer’s Museum, whose impressive collection of tools, utensils, carts, carriages, saddles and bridles shows the evolution of goods transportation over the course of time.

One of the other must-see attractions of the region is found in Capellades, namely the Paper Mill and Museum, a 17th-century mill where you can discover the artisanal paper manufacturing process. Before you leave Capellades, head to the ‘Abric Romaní’ Prehistoric Park, located at the top of a scarp of great scenic and geological importance, where you can explore some 20 archaeological sites from different periods.

Més de 45 castells, 25 dels quals es poden visitar, són les joies del patrimoni medieval de la comarca de l’Anoia. Alguns són fàcils d’accedir-hi, d’altres estan més aïllats, però tots són de gran interès històric i cultural.

Over 45 castles, 14 of which are open to the general public, are the jewels of mediaeval heritage in the region of Anoia. Some are easy to get to, while others are more isolated, but they all hold plenty of historical and cultural interest.

The starting point for those with a keen interest in mediaeval buildings has to be Claramunt Castle. Standing at the top of a hill, this 10th-century castle formed part of the network of castles that marked the boundary line between the Catalan counties and Al-Andalus. The castle’s two walled enclosures are especially interesting and it offers some amazing panoramic views. What’s more, there’s a great fun trail to surprise children as they climb up to the castle.

Calaf Castle, built a century later, was also a strategic point around which the town of Calaf grew, famous today for its wonderful weekly market. The fortification has a polygonal floor plan, with five sides and rounded corners. Guided tours are offered on the first Saturday of each month.

Meanwhile, Montbui Castle in Santa Margarida de Montbui is another must-see attraction. This Romanesque complex was built at the end of the Miralles-Queralt mountain range to ensure a commanding view of the Òdena Basin. The views from the vantage point known as Salt de la Donzella (Maiden’s Leap) are exceptional!

Tous Castle dates from the same period. It’s a fortified manor house with a great quadrangular crenellated tower that has been preserved intact. Located in Sant Martí de Tous, it’s now privately owned but tours are arranged a couple of times per month.

In Sant Pere Sallavinera, the impressive Boixadors Castle enjoys a commanding view of the Calaf high plateau. Witness to many a battle, its history is captivating! If you visit, ask to hear some of the fascinating stories about the different families who have served as lords of the castle since the 11th century, and don’t miss the pretty Chapel of Sant Pere.

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A region where it's still possible to get away from it all and regain some peace and calm. A land for stargazing.
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