ROMAN TARRAGONA + SITGES
Would you like to visit two most important cities of the Costa Dorada?
Spend a day on the sun-soaked shores of Catalonia, exploring the towns of the Costa Dorada. Visit the ancient Roman ruins of Tarraco (modern day Tarragona). Its charismatic winding streets and picturesque plazas are home to one of the most important and best-preserved Roman archaeological sites in Spain.
On the way back we we will stop in Sitges. Sitges offers a unique mix of traditional fishermen’s houses with a lively, bohemian atmosphere The town enjoys a privileged location where the sea meets a beautiful landscape of mountains. End the day on Playa San Sebastian, named “the best urban beach in Europe” by the New York Times. Relax on one of its scenic terraces or take a dip in the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
Tarragona sits between the beautiful sandy beaches and crystal clear waters of Catalonia’s “Golden Coast The city has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Two thousand years ago, Tarraco was the capital of ‘Hispania Citerior’, one of three Roman provinces on the Iberian Peninsula.
You will be picked up at your hotel in Barcelona and we will drive south-west, along the valley of river Llobregat. We will drive past several small towns, crops and mountains.. We will have a journey of approximately one hour and twenty minutes to reach the heart of Tarraco.
Tarragona sits between the beautiful sandy beaches and crystal clear waters of Catalonia’s “Golden Coast.” The city has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Two thousand years ago, Tarraco was the capital of ‘Hispania Citerior’, one of three Roman provinces on the Iberian Peninsula. Tarraco’s amphitheatre had an exquisite setting, carved into a steep slope between the Roman walls and the Mediterranean. Discover Pont del Diable or Aqueduct with 36 arches and rises to 27 metres from the valley floor, Roman walls or Cathedral.
After Tarragona on the way back we will drive through Penedes region to Sitges. A former fishing village with wending streets, attracting artists and writers looking for inspiration from the azure waters, whitewashed houses and wild landscapes. We will do a walking tour of the winding streets and hidden corners of the labyrinthine Sitges city center and see beautiful modernista buildings , including the Casa Bacardi and Casa del Rellotge. You will hear fascinating stories about the ‘Americanos’ who became rich off this ‘new’ continent.
Soak in the Mediterranean essence of this unique coastal paradise. After guided visit you can enjoy free time and have a drink in one of the terraces
- This is private tour up to 6 people per group, if you are more than 6 email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Comfortable clothes and shoes are recommended as there is some walking involved.
- If you have reduced mobility, please contact us before booking. We do our best to welcome everyone on board!
WHAT WILL YOU SEE
Mèdol Quarry: The ancient Romans extracted the material they needed for their buildings from several local quarries, each offering a different type and quality of stone. The most spectacular of the surviving quarries is the Mèdol Quarry, located approximately 7.5 km outside the city heading toward Barcelona. Many of the walls from which the blocks of stone were extracted are still visible, as are several half-extracted blocks. Of special note is the emblematic Agulla del Mèdol, or Mèdol Spire, a stunning monolith rising to 20 m which bears witness to the pit’s original height. The lush vegetation that has grown up since the quarry fell into disuse has only added to its beauty.
Pont del Diable: or Devil’s Bridge, is only a fragment of a much larger conduit used to supply the city with water from the Francolí River. The water was taken from the Rourell area, 92 metres above sea level, and carried more than ten kilometres through a network of conduits and aqueducts of varying sizes. The portion constituting what is today called the Les Ferreres aqueduct is 217 metres long and nearly 2 metres wide, reaching a maximum height of 27 metres. The upper tier is comprised of 25 arches, and the lower tier of 11, each with a span of 5.90 metres. The structure was built in the 1st century A.D. from large ashlars stacked without mortar to form the two tiers of arc
Roman Forum: was the hub of daily life. A vast square, it was lined by the most important buildings in the city: the curia, the basilica, temples and numerous shops. Unfortunately, much of Tarraco’s forum was destroyed as a result of urban expansion in the 19th century. Today only a portion of the basilica, a large building divided into three naves separated by columns, remains. Another section of the ruins that has survived and can be visited reveals the back of the capital city’s temple and several streets and homes.
The Roman circus: was the site of horse-drawn chariot races, usually between two-horse chariots, known as bigae, or four horse chariots, known as quadrigae. Tarragona’s circus is one of the best conserved in the entire Western world, despite the fact that much of the structure remains hidden under a series of 19th century buildings. Currently, the eastern side can be visited, including the decorative façade and stands, the Sant Hermenegild vault, and those on Carrer Enrajolat. Another section has been uncovered in Plaça Sedassos and Carrer Ferrers, and several vaults can also still be seen along Carrer Trinquet Vell and in Plaça de la Font.
The Amphitheatre: was used for entertainment, including fights between wild beasts, races, public executions and gladiatorial combat. Tarraco’s amphitheatre was built at the turn of the 2nd century A.D. and underwent alterations in 221 A.D., as recorded in the 140-metre inscription that crowns the podium, the longest such inscription in the empire. Today, a heavily eroded section of the northern stands carved directly into the rock survives, as does a section of the southern stands, supported by concrete vaults. The Amphitheatre was also the site of the martyrdom of Saint Fructuosus and his deacons in 259 A.D. To commemorate the event, a Visigoth basilica was built on the site at the end of the 6th century, over which the medieval church of Santa Maria del Miracle was subsequently established in the 12th century.
Sitges: Get lost in the winding streets and hidden plazas of this traditional Catalan fishermen’s town. Nowadays, Sitges is a cosmopolitan town with a lively and bohemian atmosphere, where tradition and modernity come together in a unique landscape. The painter and writer Santiago Rusiñol, in love with light and beaches, settled in Sitges in 1891. Cau Ferrat, his studio house turned into a museum, soon became a refuge for modernist and avant-garde artists from all over Europe. Its festivals, exhibitions and performances transformed the small “vila” of farmers and fishermen into a bohemian tourist destination.
Penedés region is one of the most important wine and cava regions in Catalonia. Penedés land is between the sea and the mountains, and this influence of the sun and the sea makes that Penedés region is considered one of the country’s best wine-producing regions after the Rioja, it is also one of the most ancient viticulture areas in Europe.
WHY GAUDÍ TOURS?
- Skip line at all top sites. No need to pre-purchase tickets yourself.
- Experts in Gaudí and Modernism
- Professional and fully licensed local guides
- Totally flexible.
- Personalized visit adapting to your characteristics, age, condition or interests.
- Small Group preference (1 – 9 people). We use individual radio guide for each assistant with big group.
- No burdens, no agglomerations, no rush.
- Travel tips from friends: recommendations to help you plan the rest of your stay in Barcelona.