Sunday, 27 November 2016

Sunday 27 November – Girona

Where’s Colin? He’s in a large free car park a stone’s throw away from the centre of the old town of Girona. A large town centre car park is seldom our choice of somewhere to stay, so fingers are crossed for a quiet night.

Sometimes I think that we’re not very good at cities. We have so often gone to touristy towns/cities that come highly recommended and either can’t see what the fuss is about, or in a very short time we feel that we have exhausted everything that’s of interest to us. Then other times, like today (or Arles a couple of weeks ago), we’ll pitch up in a city thinking that we’ll likely only be a couple of hours and we’ll end up staying a couple of days.

After a rather disturbed night (Saturday night in an inhabited area; frequent heavy rain showers; migraine), we didn’t get off to a fast start this morning, but it’s a Sunday so there was no fighting for a space in the car park we’d earmarked in Girona. Free, and only a five minute walk to the cathedral = perfect!

The cathedral is to where we headed first, although having checked out the admission prices (and, as it happens, reading them wrong), we decided against and stuck with the pre-decided plan of going to the Museu d’Art.

The outside of the cathedral is far from the most striking we’ve seen. Perhaps we should have opted for the €10 combined ticket (including another church and the art museum) so we could have seen the contrast of the interior

My choice of thing to do in Girona had been the Jewish Museum. Mick’s had been the Art Museum. Had we wanted to save a few cents, then the order of things would have been to go to the Jewish Museum first, as the deal is that after you’ve paid full price for one, you can visit the rest at 50% off, and the Jewish is the cheaper of the two. However, opening hours are limited on a Sunday, and the Art Museum isn’t open at all on a Monday, which dictated Art today and, if we liked the city enough to stick around (we did!), Judaism tomorrow.

A couple of hours were spent in the impressive old (but heavily modernised inside) museum building, looking at religious statues, altar pieces, renaissance and baroque art followed by a bit of more modern stuff. There were a few information panels in English and we thought this one would be improved with the edit I’ve snuck into the photo below:

We also had a bit of an irreverent giggle at this stone relief of Jesus grabbing a football with one hand whilst making obscene gestures with the other:

Leaving the museum at just gone 1pm, I was so hungry that fainting was feeling like a real possibility, making the first priority finding somewhere to eat. The ‘where looks busiest’ method of choosing an eatery doesn’t work in Spain at that time of day (it being a good hour before any Spaniard will even be thinking about lunch), so we picked a place that looked like it had a bit of character and where no-one tried to entice us in. Our four courses, plus a whole bottle of wine for Mick (of which he drank less than half; lightweight!) and a litre bottle of water for me came in at €12 a head. I do like eating out in Spain!


Our chosen eatery was in the Jewish Quarter (apparently one of the best preserved Jewish neighbourhoods in Europe), and after lunch we had a little wander around its narrow streets and alleyways…

…before heading for the river on the far side of town…

… and picking up the city wall at the point where it terminates by the river.

Along the wall

The missing parts of the wall have been filled in, so it’s possible to walk atop it, stopping off to climb various viewing towers, all the way back to the cathedral, which is a reasonable distance. Most towns (particularly in France) would be charging a few Euros for the pleasure, but here it’s free.

The cathedral, viewed from the wall

And to the left of the cathedral a wooded park, in which Colin is parked.

Just as the light was fading out of the day we managed to squeeze in a walk around the parkland adjacent to where we’re parked, by way of a recce for somewhere to run tomorrow. Then it was dark, so we returned to our corner of the car park and up went the blinds, hoping for a quiet night.


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