Besalú – The Medieval Lullaby of Catalonia

Once upon a time, in a land ‘not so far away’ from the cosmopolitan city of Barcelona, a quaint and almost forgotten picturesque fairytale town, surrounded by its azure blue sky and natural beauty, known then and now as Besalú begins to unfold its long chapters of its untold history. 


A town of great importance during the early Roman-Medieval occupation period of Europe, Besalú, nestled in the province of Girona, now sings its own lullaby of peace and tranquility filled with an ancient atmosphere to that of the Catalan middle ages. Structures and buildings here are still in its original form, telling tales as far as the Roman empire and the strategic importance of Besalú in and around this valley.

Crowned as one of Spain’s most beautiful medieval gem, Besalú definitely lives up to it’s name with its ‘travel back in time’ feel, Roman cobbled and flagstoned streets, medieval stone houses and of course its trademark; the charming 12th century old angular Romansque bridge built over river Fluviá. Surrounding the area are pristine trees and shrubs which lines the calm river like a catalog in a tranquil mood.

With no lack in charm for a small town, Besalú is also a historic place where the uniqueness of rich Jewish heritage are preserved. The early Mikveh and synagogue built by the Jews still retain its original qualities and can be found in the Jewish quarter, situated along the twisted narrow streets inside of town. This quarter is well-known for its centuries-old myths and legends filled with vibes of mystery and superstition.



Presently home to approximately 2,400 people, Besalú is quiet and non-crowded. It is highly recommended as a day trip from Barcelona, or as a combined trip with Girona. And since the town is relatively small, it is pretty easy to walk around, exploring the town at a comfortable pace to capture all its astounding historic details and admiring the beauty of its preserved buildings. A complete tour of the whole town would take around two to three hours.


A national historical site today, although Besalú is still unknown to many, this old world gem is definitely worth visiting. With its calm river estuaries and soft rolling hills bathed in its beautiful culture and rich historical past, a visit to the medieval Besalú is undoubtably an adventurous eye-opener.

To get to Besalú from Barcelona, there is a direct bus service operated by Teisa conveniently located at 117 Carrer de Pau Claris (which is also its departure point), within close walking distance from the famous Passeig de Gracia train station. The journey takes approximately an hour forty-five minutes.

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