After all, who could resist a city that gets festooned with an avalanche of flowers every spring, that boasts a strikingly-red Eiffel Bridge, and that is home to the Best Ice Cream in the World™?
|Girona, seen from the Eiffel Bridge|
As part of my final trip around Spain before moving back home, I spent three nights in this fabulous city and got more deeply acquainted with what makes Catalan culture unique than I would have otherwise as a tourist in Barcelona.
|An ensenyera with many esteladas|
As I strolled through the old town, I came across a shop that had been converted into an information center for Catalan separatism with a huge banner proclaiming a myriad of statistics that supported Catalans creating their own country (and to be fair, it was pretty convincing, even in the original Catalan!). The banner did leave off one critical piece of information: an independent Catalunya would remain outside the institutions that have ensured its prosperity over the years, like NATO, the borderless Schengen Area, and, most significantly, the European Union.
At the crossroads of historyGirona’s situated just to the south of the lowlands that make it possible to move between Spain and the rest of continental Europe, so as you can imagine the city has been at the crossroads of the history that has shaped not only this distinct region of Spain but also Europe as a whole.
|Jewish History Museum|
Home to a specialized Gothic styleIf I ever get around to writing a blog post about my top 10 favorite cathedrals in Spain, Girona’s will definitely show up on that list, if only because it’s such a glorious example of Catalan Gothic architecture, which features wide interior spaces, vast flat/unadorned walls, and octagonal towers.
|Church of Sant Feliu|
|View from the ramparts|
|Rocambolesc ice cream|
Have you been to Girona before? Where else can you find the essence of Catalunya in Spain? Share your thoughts below in the comments thread!
For more pictures, check out my album on Flickr.