The Montgrí massif is a relatively large limestone formation that grew as a natural border between Baix and Alt Empordà. It is considered the great shepherd of the area, where you can enjoy unique views, the beautiful panoramic which runs through the bay of Roses and Sierra de Rodes, the coasts of L'Estartit and Illes Medes, and the plain and the mouth of the river Ter.
You will find many different protected plants, many destroyed hermitages, sandy mountains and paths. The massif is said to depict the appearance of a sleepy and outstretched bishop who seems to want his Mediterranean toes with his fingertips. Some say it's the appearance of a naked woman lying or showing the face of a dragon. Judge for yourself and unleash your imagination.
One of the most efficient routes and suitable for all ages is the ascent to Montgrí Castle. It is a short route that can be morning or afternoon and has an attractive destination: a real castle (unfinished) with huge walls, towers, doors and spiral stairs that take you to the top of the towers. The construction of Montgrí Castle began between 1294 and 1301 on the initiative of King Jaume II to protect them from the threats of the county of Empúries, but the work was not completed. What we are seeing now is an unfinished castle with high walls, crowned with perfectly drawn blocks and with four cylindrical towers on the sides.
From the Camí de les Dunes, at the foot of the Montgrí massif, at the top of the Torroella de Montgrí, you can choose one of three routes to take from this place: the castle, the Santa Caterina hermitage or the mountains in the sand. From here you will find GR (red and white) markings that you must follow in the castle. In twenty minutes you will reach the beginning of the Creu seal, where you will pass three unique stone chapels. These buildings are small rosary stops on the way to the Santa Caterina Hermitage.
Upon arrival at the castle, you will see that the main facade is pointed at noon and has a through door (always open), formed by a half-pointed arch. Through the spiral staircase in one of the towers we can reach the viewpoints to enjoy the magnificent views of the Empordà with the Honey Islands in front, Pals beach on one side and Roses Bay on the other. Montgrí, excursion to the Montgrí massif and the castle
If you want to continue, follow the GR signs to the Santa Caterina Hermitage, where you can stop for a fun picnic. The hermitage, located in the heart of the Montgrí massif, was built around 1392 by three Montserrat monks who left the monastery due to disagreements with their superiors after a crisis experienced by the Catholic Church between 1378 and 1417.
The building has undergone several reforms over the years. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, famines, wars and plagues made Santa Caterina a magnificent place of folk piety; so that on November 25, the day of Santa Caterina, there was a meeting in his honor to which the security of the city of Torroella de Montgrí was dedicated to these injuries.