Tag Archives: Girona

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Girona in Giro

Girona in Giro 🌺 What to See & Do in Springtime

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Discover the enchanting allure of Girona in springtime: a captivating Spanish city adorned with vibrant blooms and rich cultural heritage.

Nestled in the heart of Catalonia, Girona offers a tapestry of experiences, from exploring its medieval Old Town, lined with cobblestone streets and colorful facades, to wandering along the tranquil banks of the Onyar River.

You can immerse yourself in the essence of Catalan cuisine at bustling markets and quaint cafes, or delve into history at iconic landmarks like the Cathedral of Saint Mary of Girona.

Join us on a journey through this picturesque destination, where every corner unveils a new delight in the embrace of spring’s blossoming beauty.



Starting Out on Foot

What can you do in Girona if you have just 5 or 6 hours to spare?

Actually, quite a lot.

Our hotel was located in the center of Girona, next to the Onyar river. We started out early after breakfast and followed the river northwards – passing the brightly painted façades of the houses – and heading closer and closer to the unmissable Girona Cathedral.

Along the way we passed several bridges decorated with vibrant red hanging geraniums. Everywhere we looked, it seemed the locals were busy working on intricate and colourful street decorations. A common theme was chopped tree branches, which were painted in various colours and then arranged into interesting and surprising pieces of artwork.

The whole town seemed to be alive with creative activity.

Airport Taxi Prices

Springtime in Girona

In fact, this was all in preparation for Girona Flower Time – the main event of the spring (from 7th to 15th May), with 179 floral projects spread throughout the city.

Bridge decorated for 'Girona Flower Time'

Bridge decorated for ‘Girona Flower Time’

Heading up into the old and narrow alleyways of the Jewish Quarter, the path becomes progressively steeper. The area is atmospheric and steeped in history. No wonder they chose this and other locations in Girona for filming parts of Season 6 of A Game of Thrones.

It would have been nice to spend more time discovering these old streets and antiquated shopfronts, but we were keen to reach the Cathedral and the City Walls.

Girona to Barcelona Tickets

The Jewish Quarter - Isn't that Arya Stark standing at the top?

Jewish Quarter – Isn’t that Arya Stark at the top?

Visit Girona Cathedral

Eventually, we emerged into the sunshine of a large piazza, and the entrance to the cathedral.

Entrance tickets cost €7 (or €5 for the over 60s).

The cathedral itself is interesting enough, sporting an enormous central organ. Ranged around the interior walls are dozens of chapels dedicated to (and housing) the remains of prominent clergy.

Some of these date back as far as the 10th century.

Girona Cathedral

Girona Cathedral

Included in the entry price are multi-language headphones that provide useful background and interesting anecdotes concerning the interred celebrities, as well as details on the construction of their chapels.

You can also visit a beautifully maintained interior courtyard centred on a giant well and decorated with coloured flowers.

Cathedral Courtyard

Cathedral Courtyard

For myself, the most interesting area was the Cathedral Treasury and Museum – a series of five antechambers containing a variety of artefacts dating back over a thousand years.

These include a bible originally belonging to King Henry II, as well as the Gerona Beatus – a 10th-century illustrated manuscript.

Here, you can also find the oldest and best maintained tapestry in Europe – The Tapestry of Creation – dating back *incredibly* to the 10th century.

Walk the City Walls

On exiting the Cathedral, we walked around the back of the buildings where we could follow a path that rose progressively higher.

This leads to the ancient walls of the city of Girona.

Girona City Walls

Girona City Walls

We walked the length of the walls, this time heading south back towards the city center.

Along the walls are a number of observation towers which you can mount for terrific views over the city and across to the snow-capped Pyrenees.

A view to the Pyrenees

A view to the Pyrenees

Along the battlements we came across what I can only describe as a medieval stone loo built into a recessed section of the wall.

This was basically a stone seat with a hole cut through the center, leading to the outer wall.

No doubt handy in the heat of battle, or if you just wanted to show the enemy what you thought of them.

Tempted as I was, we decided to give it a miss.

A walk along the entire length of the walls took around 45 minutes, and brought us back almost directly to our hotel in the city center.

Hotel Deals in Girona

Pucker-up to the Lleona Statue

Another fun attraction in town is the Lleona, an odd-looking limestone statue in the Plaça de Sant Fèlix.

The legend is that if you mount the step and kiss his shiny bottom, you will return to Girona.

Girona in Giro

“Whoever kisses the bottom of Lleona, will return to Girona”

There is a Konig beer terrace just alongside where you can take a beer and watch the antics of the tourists checking out the statue.

Enjoy a drink while you're watching the fun

Enjoy a drink while watching the fun

After spending the day visiting the Cathedral, the old town, city walls, and checking out the shops, we were ready to eat.

We had earmarked 3 promising restaurants, but the one we chose provided a truly gastronomique end to our day.

Where to Stay & Eat in Girona

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Girona transfers from airport

Girona transfers from airport 🚌 and onward to Barcelona

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Located within sight of the Pyrenees in the northeast of Catalonia, Girona is a great place from which to start a journey to some really exotic locations.

This is due to Girona’s proximity to Barcelona – a main Spanish hub from where many flights depart in the direction of South America, Latin America and beyond. Luckily, Girona transfers from airport and onward to Barcelona are straightforward enough if you do some planning in advance.



Our Itinerary

In our case, we were looking for an inexpensive way to travel to the Canary Islands. We also quite liked the idea of a stopover in Spain. When we found Ryanair flights to Girona for €27, and ongoing flights from Barcelona to the Canaries for €71, we had the makings of a perfect trip.

Girona transfers from airport and onwards to Barcelona

View from Girona city walls

Barcelona is 99 kms south of Girona, so we just needed to find the easiest connection between the 2 locations.

In the meantime, we planned to enjoy a 36-hour stopover in Girona, to see what the city had to offer.

Girona Airport to City Center

On arrival at Girona airport, our first task was to find the best way into Girona city. There are no train connections between the airport and the center of Girona, and a taxi costs around €25.

Airport Taxi Prices

By far the cheapest way of getting into Girona city center from Girona airport is by bus. There are regular bus services from the airport to both Girona and Barcelona. On exiting the arrivals hall, we turned right and walked around 100 meters to the bus station. The bus destinations are clearly marked: Girona city on the left and Barcelona city on the right.

The buses to Girona run every 30 minutes between 6 am and 10 pm, Monday to Saturday. The fare is just €2.25 one-way, and the bus takes you to Girona’s central bus/train station. The buses are modern and comfortable, and the journey takes around 25 minutes.

Girona transfers from airport and onwards to Barcelona

Girona City bus and train station

Girona City Center to Barcelona Airport

If you are flying in or out of Barcelona airport (Barcelona-El Prat), the easiest and most reliable way to travel to or from Girona city center is by train, This avoids traffic congestion and delays when travelling by bus, taxi or rented car.

Barcelona-El Prat airport is 13 kms south-west of Barcelona city center.

Girona's main train station

Girona’s main train station

If you are travelling by train between Girona city center and Barcelona airport, you need to choose a train going to Barcelona Sants (aka Estacio de Sants – most of the trains stop here).

At Barcelona Sants you need to change trains. There is an Airport train which runs regularly between Barcelona Sants and Barcelona airport (Terminal 2). The journey takes 20 minutes and costs €4.

The price you pay to travel between Girona and Barcelona Sants depends on the time it takes to arrive. This can be anything from 30 minutes to over 2 hours. You pay more for the Express trains.

We chose a Regional train with around 8 stops that took 1 hour 20 minutes. The price was €12 per person.

Girona to Barcelona Tickets

Regional train from Girona to Barcelona

Regional train: Girona to Barcelona

The trains are modern, fast and smooth with clean toilets and individual power sockets for your electronic gadgets.

On arrival at the Airport train terminal, there is just a 10-minute walk to Terminal 2. However, if you need to get to Terminal 1 you will have to take a shuttle. This will add another 20 minutes or so to your journey.

Of course, all the above applies in reverse when travelling from Barcelona airport to Girona.

Save time – Book train tickets in advance

If you know your travel plans in advance, you can book your train tickets online. The official Spanish online portal is Renfe. If your Spanish language skills are a little rusty, you can also make your booking in English from the Loco2 website.

After booking and payment, you receive a PDF ticket which you can print out and use directly on the train.

After enjoying our short break in Girona, the onward journey by train to Barcelona-El Prat airport went smoothly. We arrived at Terminal 2 in good time for our evening flight to the Canary Islands. We were scheduled to arrive in Tenerife South just after midnight. Accordingly, we had booked an Aparthotel located not too far from the airport.

Hotel Deals in Girona

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