It Rains In Spain

Introducing Catalonia

Barcelona      Girona      The Catalan Pyrenees      Cadaqués and The Costa Brava      Tarragona

Montserrat Catalonia

Catalonia is a fizzing microcosm of Spain in so many ways, yet is resolutely and vibrantly independent in so many others, not just politically. You need time to explore Catalonia, time to understand its eccentricities and attractions, time to savour its culture and art, and time to appreciate that it is a wonderful tapestry of the old and the cutting edge.

Catalonia has always been the industrial powerhouse in Iberia, benefitting economically from it’s dedicated work ethic and business savvy. Immigration up until recently was always high, simply due to the greater opportunities for work offered in Catalonia. Such economic prowess has accelerated the desire in many parts of Catalan society for complete independence from the Spanish state, citing an unfair tax deficit as an example that Catalonia would be better off alone. Yet tensions aren’t new, Franco’s Madrid-centric dictatorship from 1936-1975 banned regional autonomy, and with it language and culture. The resentment still seethes, best expressed in el clásico when Real Madrid and Barcelona meet, and, more prevalently of late, at the ballot box. The next few years may transform Catalan history once again.

Barcelona surely jumps off the page of any guidebook to a potential visitor, the Mediterranean city truly is a dazzling blend of art, culture and hedonism. From Gaudi to Messi, the city exudes creativity and an identity all of its own. But Catalonia is not just Barcelona. From the majestic Pyrenees that flank its North, to the picture perfect fishing villages that Salvador Dalí adored so devotedly, Catalonia has a myriad of attractions. Secondary cities Girona and Tarragona are enchantingly historical, and well worth a visit. Oh, and have a glass of Cava.

Highlights of Catalonia

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