Start the morning right with stair sprints at the cathedral
Nestled in the heart of Girona’s old quarter, visitors will find a big stone construction fronted by a glorious set of 99 stairs. This stair-lovers’ heaven is formed by three neat sets separated with much-needed resting platforms roughly every 35 steps – a must do while you’re here! The cathedral itself is worth a look as well, if time permits. Think it might be difficult to find? Listen out for any of the six cathedral bells ringing on the quarter hour.
Work those legs! A rewarding view at the top of the ‘Castell de Sant Miquel’
Walk, jog, run or sprint: whatever the level, be assured that the view here is worth the effort! On a clear day, Sant Miquel treats its visitors to panoramic views of Girona city, the Costa Brava coastline and the snow-capped Pyrenees. Start the trip through the lush green valley of Sant Daniel (just beside the city center) and in less than two hours (or faster if you run) this spectacular view will be the reward! A great option for the active family!
Complete the urban circuit of ‘La Muralla’ – the historic city wall of Barri Vell
A fantastic spot for those in search of some active sightseeing on foot (sneakers are highly recommended)! The original city wall was constructed around the 1st century BC, but has since undergone extensive renovations to become what it is today. This means that aside from being a great exercise location; it comes with a large slice of rich history. It is possible to travel the entire length of the wall, as well as to climb its four lookout towers, all while looking down upon the beauty of Girona’s old Jewish quarter.
Get on your bike! ‘Vies Verdes’ from Girona to the sea
Grab a bike and allow a good few hours to enjoy this pedal-powered journey from Girona to the sea. Following the 39.7-kilometer ‘Narrow-Gauge Railway’ route, riders will set off from Girona, passing through the picturesque Gironès and Baix Empordà regions. Accompanied by the feeling of freedom, with only your own legs to facilitate the journey, enjoy this time out amongst nature.
Back in town? Head to La Fabrica for the perfect post-workout refreshment
Not only does this place boast the best coffee in Girona, they are also 100% bike friendly. Use either the purpose-built racks outside in the warm sun, or glide that two-wheeled machine into a shaded place at your table; La Fabrica serves the same amazing coffee and treats no matter where you sit. Don’t forget to try their signature Hummingbird cake! As they say at La Fabrica, ‘life’s too short for bad coffee!’
Jump in the car and hit the ‘vies braves’ for a swim
After about a 25-minute drive, park the car in the sleepy seaside town of Sagaró and get ready to get wet! These well-marked swimming paths, named the ‘vies braves,’ cover virtually the entire Costa Brava with little yellow buoys. Closest to Girona is the 2-kilometer ‘via brava de Platja D’Aro,’ taking you from Caleta de Sagaró to Platja de Sa Conca. The swim through such pristine, Mediterranean blue water makes this journey something really special. Plus, there is the option to walk back along the ‘Camí de Ronda’ coastal path for another perspective of the area.
Loop the Lake at Banyoles
Pack a picnic and hop in the car again for a frolic around Catalonia’s largest natural lake – Lake Banyoles. The lake in question holds roughly 12 million cubic liters of fresh water and serves as a popular training ground for some of Europe’s top rowers. The circumference, or single loop, is approximately 5 kilometers in length – a great training distance for a multitude of sports. With a neat waterfront circuit and separate lanes for cyclists, runners and walkers, this place caters for the sports fanatic at any level.
By Claire Knott