Peratallada, Girona: another medieval village on the Costa Brava
Published on February 28, 2019 by Catalan Holidays
Catalonia is a land rich in medieval villages. It has numerous communities that evoke its medieval past, such as Peratallada. Such a charming spot located very near to the city of Girona, and only a few kilometres from Barcelona.
Peratallada is the ideal place to get lost in the streets and get caught up by the beauty exuded by its most emblematic buildings: the castle, the church, etc. A village that also stands out for the richness of its cultural offerings.
Join us on this virtual journey through one of the most beautiful communities on the Costa Brava.
- Where is Peratallada
- Journey to Peratallada’s medieval history
- What is there to see in Peratallada?
- What is there to do in Peratallada?
- Peratallada’s restaurants
- Peratallada’s Festivals
- Where to sleep in the Costa Brava
1. Where is Peratallada?
The village of Peratallada is located in the municipal district of Forallac, in the región of Baix Empordà. Very close by (13 km.) you have La Bisbal de l’Empordà and Torroella de Montgrí. 30 km. away is Girona, 35 km. is Sant Feliu de Guíxols and a little more than an hour away by car is the city of Barcelona (130 km.).
2. Journey to Peratallada’s medieval history
By Jon Nicholls, Peratallada Flickr
Declared a “Historic Site” in 1975, Peratallada’s medieval villa preserves all the spirit of the medieval period. On an urban planning level, this community has experienced few changes with respect to the medieval past that its streets and buildings embody.
According to documentation that has been found about this area, Peratallada’s name originates from the fort at “Petra Taliata”, which means carved stone. Since the year 1065, the fort was located on the land where, nowadays, the castle and village stand.
The term “carved stone” that is used to refer to the fort makes references to the natural, sandy rock that was artificially cut to lay the building’s foundations and protect it from enemy attacks.
The beginnings of Peratallada village started with this 16th century fort, which is the castle that we can visit today. However, there are indications that before this date there were already settlers in a previous fort.
Around the castle is built a wall, of which today some wall paintings, valleys excavated in the rock and some towers such as the Tower of the Hours and the Portal de la Virgen have been preserved.
These buildings form the basis of the highlights to see in Peratallada and that you can discover below.
3. What is there to see in Peratallada?
The essence of the medieval village of Peratallada that we can visit today is the castle, the ruins of the wall and the five towers, among which the Tower of the Hours and the Portal de la Virgen stand out. Also, if you get closer to Peratallada, you cannot miss out on other points of interest, such as the Sant Esteve church, the Plaza de Les Voltes and the charm of the Carrer d’en Vas.
It is one of the main attractions of this village, of which five towers and part of the walls have been preserved. The building is up against the rock from which the name of the town originates to better protect it from invaders.
Walls and moat
Protecting the area was the biggest concern for the first settlers of this place. As well as building a castle on a rock, they dug a deep moat so that it would be more difficult for enemies to reach the walls. The Portal de la Virgen area is where the moat is best preserved, as it is seven metres deep. All these defensive elements turned it into one of the safest places in Catalonia.
Portal de la Virgen
This gateway, made up of two rounded and straight sets of archways, was one of the main entrances to the village. The name of the gateway makes reference to the image of the Virgin Mary that used to be located in the cavity in the upper part and which has not been preserved.
Peratallada’s 5 Towers: Homage Tower, West Tower, Tower of the Hours, Circular and Northern Towers
In the centre of the castle’s walled enclosure is this 10-metre-tall tower at the base of the rock. It has a rectangular floor and has squared crenellations in the upper section. The indentations that are still preserved today suggest that there used to be a middle floor made of wood.
Unlike the previous one, this is a tower of square design that stands out especially for the archway and vault that it has. Some squared crenellations have been preserved in the upper part. It is the only authentic medieval tower from the fort that has survived until today.
Tower of the Hours
This is a square-floored building with an archway and vault inside. Its name refers to the fact that the public clock resides in its interior. Its opening is walled and in the exterior walls elongated holes can be seen.
It is the only round design tower that has been preserved in the fort. It has a height of 10 metres from the base of the rock and it has holes to position guns.
It is a square floored tower that rises above the foundations that were dug out in the moat area. It reaches a height of 10 metres and has arrow slits for defensive purposes.
All of this is with regard to visiting Peratallada’s castle and walls. Fortifications that are hiding treasures inside.
Sant Esteve Church
It is a Romanesque-style temple with two naves, and it has a gateway in the front with an embellished rounded archway. Another highlight is the bell tower or belfry. Inside, the gothic tomb of Barón Gilabert de Cruïlles has been preserved.
Plaza de Les Voltes
It is a rectangular-shaped square, that long ago was arcaded on the northern side, and, most probably, also the southern slope. On the northern side, some of the arches of the gateway have been preserved, although they are already half-hidden.
Carrer d’en Vas
This street is surely the most photographed in the village. The entrance to this street must not be missed. A stone arch that allows a glimpse of a wall covered with ivy that looks like a snapshot from a film.
4. What is there to do in Peratallada?
By John, qué hacer en Peratallada Flickr
In the town of Peratallada there are different events available to you, to make your stay in this place even more enjoyable.
If you wish to visit the town in spring you can make the most of it and come when this fair takes place. It is a monographic event dedicated to the universe of herbs, where you will be able to discover a wide variety of herbs and their effects. It usually takes place in April.
Classic Car Show
In case you are a fan of vintage and classic cars, you have a date in Peratallada at the show dedicated to this topic. It is normally organised for May.
Medieval Fair of Peratallada
If you want to experience medieval times in all its glory you have to come to this village in October. At the beginning of this month, Peratallada goes back 1000 years in time to show its most authentic side and deepest roots.
The month of July offers a unique series of chamber music concerts in San Esteban church, organised by ViolaConcerts in collaboration with Forallac Town Hall.
5. Peratallada’s restaurants
By Maria Victoria, Restaurant a Peratallada Flickr
Peratallada has a rich selection of restaurants where you can enjoy quality cuisine.
Since 1995, this restaurant located in the main street of the village has offered diners a place to enjoy their cooking. Since 2002, the chef, Arkaitz, has supplied dishes filled with creativity in constant evolution.
Restaurante L’Arc Vell
In Castell Square you can try dishes that are served in this family restaurant in Peratallada. As well as the cuisine, it stands out because of its shaded garden, ideal for warm lunchtimes in the summer, and for its proximity to the castle.
In the emblematic Plaza de Les Voltes, you can enjoy a high-quality and seasonal gastronomic selection in a space that welcomes and ensnares you from the very moment that you pass through its door.
Restaurante Can Bonay
It is a catering establishment designed for those who enjoy Empordà-style traditional cooking. Among the food that it serves to the diners, this place is known for the goose with turnips. An ideal place for lovers of the typical local cuisine and small game cooking.
6. Peratallada’s Festivals
By Gerard, Fiestas a Peratallada Flickr
Peratallada’s soul lives in the three main festivals that you can visit.
Fiesta Mayor Fonteta
If you visit the village in July, you can make the most of and enjoy the charm of the Main Festival in Fonteta, a neighbouring town close to Peratallada.
Fiesta Mayor Peratallada
In August, the village’s main festival takes place. One weekend to enjoy the charms of its people and the best moment to take advantage of the summer nights and discover the whole heart of the village.
Fiesta Mayor de Vulpellac
In August you can also go to the neighbouring town of Vulpellac and enjoy this charming place, bubbling over with excitement for its most important festival.
7. Where to sleep in the Costa Brava
Costa Brava’s accommodation options are extensive. At Catalan Holidays we choose quality accommodation, designed for couples, families and groups of friends who want a degree of privacy and to be near the most interesting places along the Costa Brava.
Our proposed accommodations are apartments and holiday homes on the Costa Brava, the Coast of Barcelona and the Costa Dorada:
On the other hand, have you thought of holiday rentals of houses with private pools y holiday rentals of houses that accept dogs or other pets. Through this link you have all our holiday homes in Catalonia.