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Girona

We would like to visit Girona as a day trip from Barcelona. My husband walks w/a cane. Is this city a good idea? Will be traveling w/2 Spanish speaking Americans..do we need a local guide? Any recommendations for a great local restaurant for lunch?
Thank you
Kimberlee

Posted by
18716 posts

You'll probably want to take a taxi or a bus from the train station to a point nearer the historic center, because it's a bit of a walk. Some of the very picturesque historic area is relatively flat (especially along the river), but it gets steep at the north end near the cathedral, and there's some uphill walking as you move from west to east. I don't remember how many steps one must climb to get on top of the walls or to walk along them.

I'm sure a tour in Girona would be helpful, but I've just done my own thing there with the help of an audio guide at the cathedral. There may be audio guides at the Museum of Art and the Jewish History Museum as well. The art museum is good and not overwhelmingly large. I've read positive comments about the Jewish History Museum here.

Posted by
2168 posts

Well the newer part of Girona, on the west side of the river, is very flat, easy to walk, with wide streets, like any normal town/city. On the east side of the river is the old town, which is built on a sloping hill, it can get a little inclined in a few areas like this. On the way towards the Cathedral, however, it does get quite a bit more inclined as you can see here and here. There are usually steps for the more steeper parts, which will make it easier to climb up. I'm not sure about your husband's ability so I can't say a definite yes or no, but I can say that the old town area is definitely not flat.

I don't think a local guide is necessary, with a little research you can tour the city quite easily on your own, even if one does not speak Spanish.

As for a restaurant in Girona, I recommend Casa Marieta, in the Plaça de la Independencia. It's a venerable establishment with more than 100 years of history. For a traditional Catalan treat, try the Canelones de ceps, which are pasta tubes stuffed with ceps, which are local mushrooms from the area, and baked with a béchamel sauce on top. You can read more about the history of the place here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casa_Marieta

Posted by
2263 posts

Kimberlee, I loved Girona, even more my second visit, when I spent a night, compared to my day trip for an earlier visit. Especially for 4 people including someone with impaired mobility, I would definitely recommend a taxi from the train station to the beautiful old medieval city. On my day trip, I walked both ways, which I found long, tiring and not too special. Better to spend your limited time in this old stone town, where parts of Game of Thrones were filmed. Don’t miss the Arab Baths, just a quick visit, and the interesting Jewish Museum. Plus lots of wandering around the stone lanes. Yes, the upper part of the city, where the Cathedral, Roman Walls and other museums are located, is on a slope with many steps and inclines, just take it slow I would think. I did see some sort of small tourist vehicle taking people around, probably seasonal, and that might make getting around easier. Girona is a gourmet town. I had a lovely lunch at Mimolet, a small restaurant with generally great reviews. For a fine meal, it was very reasonably priced.

Posted by
12 posts

Thank you to all for your great information. We are driving from Barcelona to Girona for the day. Can we park near the Cathedral to elimanate the walking?

Posted by
2168 posts

@kwalsh1124 yes you can, try this one: Carrer de la Muralla, 9 Parking, the parking is paid hourly, but at a reasonable price. It's located at the top of the hill, directly behind the old town, adjacent to the Cathedral/walled area, should be a much easier walk to the main sights.