Girona is the name given to both a region and its capital city in northeast Catalonia. The city is situated just 100km north of Barcelona and is part of the Girona comarca within the Costa Brava region. It is one of the largest Catalan cities with almost 100,000 inhabitants that live in an area of 39,14 km2.
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Girona was originally called Gerunda by its first inhabitants, the Iberians, and later by the Romans as well. Located in the confluence of three main rivers (the Onyar, Guell and Ter Galligants) the region is at 70 meters above sea level and close to both the Mediterranean Sea and the Pyrenees Mountains. This strategic positioning attracted many people in the old days. In the 1900’s the city experienced a boom of an artistic movement that earned it the reputation of being the second capital of culture in Catalonia (after Barcelona). In the 1950´s, after the traumatic period of the Spanish Civil War, also aggravated by flooding, the city started its slow economic recovery and large numbers of immigrants from the south of Spain arrived.
Girona’s easy access by train makes it a popular spot for a day trip for visitors staying in an accommodation in Barcelona. As a city rich in history and culture, it´s a great place to explore. The Cathedral, once used by the Moors as a mosque, was entirely rebuilt after their expulsion. The current building is a stunning example of Catalan Gothic architecture. Another famous sight is the Old Fortifications, whose walls were built by the Romans in the 1st century BC and have protected Girona throughout the years from invaders. On the margin of the Onyar river, you will find the Church of Sant Feliu. Its 18th century façade and 14th century Gothic style make it one of the most emblematic buildings of the city. Another beautiful church to visit is the Sant Pere de Galligants, a very popular attraction.
Independency Square, named after the War of Spanish Independence against Napoleon, is one of the most famous squares of Girona. Just a few minutes away you will find the Cases de l’Onyar, or Houses of the Onyar. This group of houses on the two banks of the Onyar River were built many years ago and are a splendid example of Mediterranean architecture. The most famous museum of the city is the Jewish Heritage museum, which highlights the history of the Jewish community, especially in Catalonia.
Just a short drive or train ride away from Barcelona, Girona city is a wonderful place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the Catalan capital. Relax in a plaza with a cup of coffee and a good book or take a walk around the famous cathedral and fortifications nearby. For the perfect accommodation for your getaway to Girona, book one of our fabulous Apartments in Girona.