Visca Catalunya – long live Catalonia!
Catalonia – home to the breathtaking Pyrenees, the vibrant city of Barcelona and the gorgeous beaches of the Mediterranean, it really is the region that has it all. And of course it’s a runners’ paradise too, not surprising when you consider its most famous citizen is the great Kilian Jornet!
But it’s not Barcelona or the sandy beaches of the Costa Brava that I want to concentrate on, it is the north of the Region and the Pyrenees with its majestic snow covered peaks, lush green meadows and cascading waterfalls.
In July this year I completed the “Pyrenees Traverse” running from Cap Higier on the Atlantic Ocean to Cap de Creus on the Mediterranean Sea. The whole trip was unforgettable passing through the Basque Country, Aragon, Navarre, a quick sortie into Andorra before the final leg through Catalonia and the long descent to the Mediterranean. Runners are spoilt for choice from the Pyrennean National Park and the home of trail running, Espot in the far west of the Region to the relatively flatter cork forests around Macanet de Cabrys and the bustling, colourful Mediterranean town of Llanca in the far east.
But Catalonia is not just about the scenery and the running. The friendly people are fiercely proud of the Catalan culture and it’s traditions but are so welcoming to visitors and are keen to show them the very best that Catalonia has to offer. From tranquil hotels to fantastic food everyone is guaranteed a warm welcome – Catalonia once visited, never forgotten.