Catalunya region

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Situated in the northeastern Iberian Peninsula, Catalonia is a land of rich and varied scenery, 580 km of Mediterranean coastline, and has preserved a rich architectural heritage.

Catalonia is a small country of six million inhabitants but it has more than a thousand years of history and a culture and language of its own which have forged a very distinct character. The people of Catalonia have always been open to the outside world. Catalonia is divided into four provinces: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona. The capital city is Barcelona. Its territory corresponds to most of the historical territory of the former Principality of Catalonia.
Catalonia is today an autonomous region within Spain, but in fact has an older history as the independent kingdom of Aragon which in some ways historically predates Spain itself. It’s worth visiting ancient towns: Girona with an impressive Jewish quarter; Tarragona with Roman age capital; Lleida; Figueres with Dalí museum.
Catalonia has a great variety of different landscapes very close to each other, mountains on the Pyrenees (at the border with France), and green hills on north of the country, agricultural planes on the west and beaches on the east. Catalonia’s more southerly mountains, such as the Garraf range, have a rugged look about them, with bare rocks and gray and reddish soil which create a very striking atmosphere. This is the home of the dwarf fan-palm, the only palm native to Europe. Another range -the Ports of Tortosa, overlooking the Ebro Delta- is an important reserve of the Spanish ibex goat. In winter, travelers can take advantage of sports and tourist facilities available in the ski resorts. Two spectacular National Parks are situated amid these lofty peaks: that of Aigüestortes and Lake Sant Maurici, and that of Cadí-Moixeró. Mediterranean beaches, there are places of artistic interest, historic buildings and landscapes which are equally well worth seeing.
Catalonia has hundreds of "festes" that go on around the region every week of the year. "Festes" are ritual like celebrations that have been passed down through generations of people for more than 700 years. They are organized by the people of a town for their own enjoyment, and not for any commercial interest. Festes” have ritual like sequences of events that usually involve Giants, Devils, Human Castles and processions. A magical atmosphere is created at the “festa”, almost like a type of Catharsis. “Festes” stem from Medieval Times when fantastical dragons and Giants were created to instruct people about religion in church services.

Detailed interactive map Catalunya

map: Catalunya

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