The first time I took a trip to the Collserola park was when I had very little to do one Sunday and a friend (thanks, Viv!) recommended it to me. She said it was a huge natural park very close to the city and I didn’t really understand why I had never heard of it before. Sure enough, I have only lived here for almost a year now, but I never once heard other people mention it. They spoke of Montserrat, the beach, Girona, but nothing of this bit of peace situated so close.
- How do you get there?
Get to Plaça Catalunya and take either the S1 (towards Terrassa) or the S2 line (towards Sabadell) from there (yep, it’s the ferrocarrils ). Both of these lines go to one of the entrances to the park. It’s called Baixador de Vallvidrera.
And it takes less than 30 minutes from Plaça Catalunya!
Do you know the hill which has Tibidabo on top? Or the gigantic radio and TV transmitter (also called the Torre de Collserola) ? Well, imagine the hill as a wall which divides Barcelona and the park, because as you get on the other side of Tibidabo and the tower, that is where the 8000 hectares of this natural park are hidden.
I have only been there twice. The first time was this spring and I went there on a Sunday. Not knowing where to go and what to see, I took the first path I saw and it led me to the information centre.
It also took me to the Verdaguer museum. The name might sound familiar to you if you often take the metro in BCN, because it is one of the names of a stop on the yellow/blue line. It is also the name of a much loved Catalan poet, Jacint Verdaguer, refered to as the “Prince of Catalan poets”.
The Verdaguer museum is located in a beautiful old house also known as Vil·la Joana and it is here that the poet lived his last years. Even if you don’t understand much Catalan, the walk through the museum is worth it, because it has all the rooms intact and, need I say this? pretty sepia pictures from the olden days:D Oh, and it’s free!
On my first trip to the park I was lucky enough to get there on time for a guided tour with some of the park’s volunteers. There is one for sure every Sunday at 11:00 and these lovely Catalan/Spanish speaking people walk with you and talk to/at you (if you wish) and show you around one of the park trails. I went with them to the pantà de Vallvidrera, which is a lovely dam at the end of a 2 kilometer hike (just a stroll, really).
The second time I went there was this Sunday and I just went inside the information center, asked for directions to the start of one of the trails (Font de la Budellera) and the nice spectacled man at the counter explained how to get there.
The walk took only 2 hours and it was mostly in the shade, and as you get towards the end of it you see the Torre de Collserola and the Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor, framed by trees and greenery. Very close to the end there is a path that might lead to Tibidabo.
And despite the fact that it is nearly impossible to select which flower photos to post and which to leave behind, I will try to leave you with a *cough* enormous amount of nature pics, the first from my spring visit, the second from my June visit.