Tag results for: Spain

For thousands of years the serrated peaks of Montserrat have been a sacred destination for pilgrims exploring their interior mountains and climbers scaling jagged peaks. Being neither pilgrims nor climbers, we simply wanted to see the Benedictine Abbey and hike in the national park. We didn’t know that Montserrat is the home of Sister Teresa Forcades, Spain’s most famous nun, her name usually preceded by the word “radical.”

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To be astonished by art is surely one of the most satisfying delights of travel, of life, yes?

For our first blog of the new decade Magellan and I were wavering: Norway’s Edvard Munch (The Scream) or Altamira (“The Sistine Chapel of Prehistory”)? A cartoon in The New Yorker swayed us to the latter, the first discovery of art from the Upper Palaeolithic—carbon-dated to 35,600 years ago—unique for its high quality and magnificent conservation.

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Evening rose. Carmine crimson. A duality of colours, our twofold experience of Albarracín, Spain. Evening rose in the labyrinth of medieval buildings in the town. Carmine crimson in the Stone Age rock-art in Albarracín Cultural Park.

It was Marc and Anne, a Belgian couple we met on our first trip to Spain, who recommended Albarracín. “It’s the most beautiful town in Spain,” Marc said, along with telling us about its cave art.

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What is it about mountain goats? Perhaps it’s their cross-species sociability. Their curious nature. Their direct gaze. And their amazing agility on steep mountainsides.

 If you’ve followed this blog for awhile, you know that goats have been our travel companions on quite a few hiking trails. Their presence equalled the splendour of everything else on what’s considered one of the most spectacular hikes in Spain—Cares Gorge in the Picos de Europa National Park.

And that’s saying something because Cares Gorge has a lot going for it.

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We’ve all seen our share of profound art. But being in a cave in semi-darkness among drawings created 24,000 years ago, astonished our perception of time and human achievement.

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One of the joys of hiking in Europe compared to most anywhere else in the world is the reward of eating lunch at a restaurant in a mountain village enroute.

Take, for example, Hike #1 in Teresa Farino’s book Picos de Europa. But first, let me step back in time for a bit.

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