A 45 km of Mas Torrencito . Colliure, located at the southern end of the Languedoc-Roussillon (France), it is an ideal place for a getaway from Barcelona or any other Catalan town. Collioure. Mastorrencito, rural tourism Girona with Pets
Its idyllic location in front of the sea, the narrow streets of its old fishing district, its rich seafood gastronomy, its artistic tradition or its historical heritage are some good reasons to visit.
With this post we want to awaken your curiosity and encourage you to get to know this idyllic French town, the cradle of Fauvism and the place of the death of Antonio Machado.
Brief history - mastorrencito, rural tourism Girona with Pets
The small town of Collioure, with barely 3.000 inhabitants, was named for the first time in the year 673, when the Visigoth king Wamba baptized it as Caucoliberis.
For many centuries it was part of a strategic enclave in constant dispute, coming to belong to the kingdoms of Aragon and Mallorca between the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries.
In 1659, as a consequence of Treaty of the Pyrenees, Spain ceded the Rossellón to France and Collioure became part of what many would later call “Northern Catalonia”.
Already in recent times, Collioure experienced two notable episodes related to art: around 1904 it became the cradle of the fauvism, promoted by Matisse, and in 1939 it was the place where the poet Antonio Machado died, whose grave you can find there.
Tourism - Collioure Rural tourism Girona with Pets
The best way to start a visit to Collioure is not to enter the town, but to take a little distance. Do it on arrival or departure, if you prefer, but take some time to contemplate it from afar.
If you arrive at Collioure from the highway, it is worth making a small detour to walk around the Fort Carré and Fort rondAlthough they cannot be visited, they offer very good views of the sea and allow you to contemplate the town from the heights if you walk a bit.
If you arrive from the south you will also get a magnificent perspective at the foot of the road. And it must be even better from the Fort San Telmo, where we have not yet had the pleasure of climbing.
When you decide to head towards the town, you must bear in mind that it is quite difficult to park, since many streets are pedestrianized and it is usually full of people (especially in high season).
Therefore, it is convenient to master the subject of parking lots.
The official tourism website has this PDF updated to 2016 with locations and rates. You can also see them in Google Maps. And once you have parked, go for a walk!
And what can you visit in Collioure? The great reference, without a doubt, is the Royal Castle.
El Royal Castle - Collioure. Mastorrencito, mas torrencito rural tourism Girona with Pets
As we can see in our days, it is the result of at least 4 construction stages, the most primitive being that of 673, when it was already mentioned as a fortification in some historical documents of the Visigoths.
Then came the Templars (XNUMXth century), the Kings of Mallorca (XNUMXth-XNUMXth century), the Habsburgs (XNUMXth-XNUMXth century) and the Bourbons (XNUMXth century), who were expanding it even at the cost of demolishing parts entire town. And what remains today of all that?
The truth is that its interior is not what comes to mind when we think of a medieval castle. There are several structures that remain standing and you can take a nice walk along the walls, but the few rooms that can be visited are empty.
Even so, it is worth paying the entrance fee (€ 4) and taking the tour between its towers and battlements, with magnificent views of the town and the sea, as you can see in the photos. During our visit, at the end of 2015, there was an exhibition of antiques dealers and other exhibitions are frequently held, in addition to concerts and shows. [See schedules].
Another place that you can visit and that you will find very close to the castle is the Church of Notre Dame des Anges, with a medieval bell tower and a Gothic nave from 1684. Inside you can see an altarpiece by the Catalan artist Josep Sunyer.
Chapel of San Vicente,
From the church there is a short way to another landmark: the small Chapel of San Vicente, from 1701. There is not much to see, but the walk along the beach will serve as an excuse to have some good views of the north, where houses built in the rocks emerge and the long line of cliffs extends into the distance.
Then you have to take time to walk around Moré, the old fishing district. Most tourists crowd there and it is a typical place to sit down to eat in one of its restaurants and enjoy the classic local dishes based on mussels, anchovies, etc.
But Moré also surprised us with a multitude of forgotten corners and lonely alleys that invite you to get lost.
To extend your getaway to Collioure a little more, you can choose to visit the tomb of Antonio Machado, in the old cemetery (very central); climb to the area of the gigantic Fort Miradou and contemplate Collioure from the heights (it is just above the Moré neighborhood); follow the fauvism route (places where there is a frame that symbolizes the place where the painters of this movement made their paintings.
Guided tours can be made from the Tourist Office); visit the Musée d'Art moderne de Collioure or browse one of the many art Galeries which abound in Collioure.
Practical information to visit Collioure
- Location: Pyrenees-Orientales, Languedoc-Roussillon, France (Google Maps)
- How to get there:
- By highway. From Catalonia the fastest way is to take the AP-7 and just after crossing the border take the first exit at Le Boulou (nº43) towards Argelès-sur-mer / Port-Vendres. Collioure is located between these two towns, about 25 minutes from the motorway. In total, a trip from Barcelona to Collioure would take about 2 hours. If you have more time and you want to go along the south coast, you can take the N-260 from Figueres to Portbou, Cerbere, Banyuls-sur-mer and continue to Collioure. From Figueres you have to count at least 1h 30 ′, which may be more depending on the traffic. It is not the most practical option, but it is the most beautiful.
- Train. Collioure has a train station, although connections with Spain are not ideal, as they normally involve a train change in Perpignan. Travel time from Barcelona can amount to 3h30 depending on the connections. Check schedules and prices at RENFE o SNCF.
- Bus. From Barcelona you can take a bus from ALSA to Perpignan (about 3h) and then the bus nº400 to Collioure (1h).
- Airplane. The nearest airport is Perpignan, some 30 km away. There are no direct flights from Spain.
- Collioure | Sud de France | France
- Map: Collioure carte (PDF)
- Accommodation in Collioure:
- En Booking You can find 24 accommodations in the Collioure area and the surrounding towns.
- Eat at Collioure:
- Anchovies and wine are two of the best valued local products. In general, it is typical to eat seafood or fish-based dishes, as well as some traditional specialties of Catalan cuisine.
- Most restaurants are concentrated in the narrow streets of the old town. We ate at Casa Linga, where we were able to taste a varied giant plate at a good price (more than correct quality). In TripAdvisor You can take a look at the best rated Collioure restaurants.
Thank you very much and we hope to see you soon. #Uncompresented
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