If you follow this advice, you will not regret it. Enter the church of Sant Climent de Taüll, stand facing the centre of the apse and wait for the magic to begin. Every hour a spectacular mapping is projected that recreates the original Christ Pantocrator that decorated the space. The church recovers the splendour it had in the twelfth century.
Sant Climent de Taüll is one of the nine churches that make up the Romanesque complex of the Vall de Boí, declared Patrimony of Humanity by UNESCO. In the Pyrenees of Catalonia this route begins to help you to discover a part of the Catalan architectural heritage. The mapping has left the bar high, as you climb kilometres and still rise higher. Come try it out.
The history of the timber merchants
The first stop is in Pont de Suert. The capital of Alta Ribagorça hosts the Museum of Sacred Art of Ribagorça, which gathers a collection of religious pieces that belong to different historical periods. The route continues towards the Pobla de Segur, a city with its history linked to Noguera Pallaresa and to the figure of the Raiers (Rafters). They were the people who used to be in charge of transporting wood downstream, and they created primary and effective boats made with trunks tied together, and set sail along the river. To pay homage to this trade, Raiers Day is celebrated annually and there is the Raier Space, a museum that tells the story of this icon of the town.
A panoramic tour by train
As if you were a Raier, you follow the course of the river to the mountain range of Montsec. You can do it in several ways, although one of the most attractive is traveling in the Tren dels Llacs, which leaves from the Pobla de Segur station. The locomotive makes its way through a railway line that has been reborn into a panoramic route to explore the landscape of the Montsec mountain range, as well as different marshes. Once you get off the train, you can hop on a new transport, the kayak, to cross the wild gorge of Mont-rebei, with walls up to 500 meters high. If you prefer, you can also cross it on foot.
Then it's time to savour Lleida. In the upper part of the city lies the Seu Vella, a religious building that was built in the 13th century on an old mosque. The 60-meter-high bell tower and the 14th century cloister are some of the highlights.
Wines and history
Half way along, the route opens a winery interval. On the map, you have the Priorat marked, which houses DOQ Priorat, recognised worldwide for the quality of its wines. Carthusian monks began to grow vineyards in the area in 1262, next to the Cartuja de Escaladei, which can still be visited in the heart of the Sierra de Montsant Natural Park. You can extend this wine tourism interlude in Montblanc, a city with several wineries of DO Conca de Barberà. In addition to its wines, in Montblanc you must discover the medieval centre and the walled enclosure of the fourteenth century.
Modernism in Reus. The vermouth of Reus.
Half an hour by car and you will find Reus, a sanctuary of the modernist architecture of the Costa Daurada due to the footprint left by masters such as GaudÌ and Domènech i Montaner. You have also arrived here with a second goal: to try the vermouth. Reus acts as the Catalan capital of this hundred-year-old drink that is closely linked to Catalonia. You will often hear the Catalans using the expression "Vamos a hacer el vermut" (Let's have a vermouth), to refer to the aperitif prior to lunch at noon. The Vermut Route of Reus is a great gateway to the city's vermouth culture and tradition.
From Reus you enter the last stage of the road to travel to Tarragona, or Tarraco, its name in the time of the Roman Empire. Founded in 218 BC, the Roman legacy is present in the city in the form of different monuments - declared Patrimony of Humanity by UNESCO -, such as the circus, built in the first century AD with a capacity for 25,000 people, and the amphitheatre, one of the most admired of the empire due to its location by the sea. From the viewpoint of the Balcony of the Mediterranean you have a bucolic stamp of this historical jewel.