If you’re a nature-lover and are craving to get away from the stresses of modern city life, there is no better place to go hiking than Serralada Litoral, a natural reserve that forms part of the Network of Protected Natural Areas, managed by the Barcelona Provincial Council. Situated in a cluster of hills between the sea and the plains of northeastern Spain, this park is full of stunning views that you cannot miss out on. After an exercise-filled day, finish off your hiking experience with a visit to AIRE Ancient Baths Vallromanes, where you will be able to enjoy a holistic relaxation experience that will complement your day in nature.
La Vall de Montalegre y Tiana route
One popular route is La Vall de Montalegre y Tiana, which takes about 2 hours and spans 6.7km. The route starts at Tiana’s astronomical observatory, where you will find an informational office. Soon after setting off on the trail, you will be immersed in the natural landscape, full of lush vegetation largely untouched by human hands. On your way, you will come across the so-called “cholera cemetery,” where the victims of a group of cholera-affected travelers who were making their way from Barcelona to Tiana in 1870 were eventually buried. About 2.5km into the route, you will find narrow, descending trails that will test your rock-sliding skills. Although this path is full of stones and plants, it is not excessively challenging, so don’t let your lack of hiking experience hinder you from embarking on this adventure. Before finishing up your route, you’ll be able to see several small historical monuments, including the remains of an agricultural villa constructed in the 1st century BC. Finally, you’ll walk through the enchanting town of Tiana before returning to your starting point at the observatory.
Puig de Castellar route
Another well-known route is the Puig de Castellar, a circular, 4.7km route that begins at the sports center in the neighborhood of Singuerlin and lasts about an hour. The first thing you’ll see on the route is the fountain of Bartomeu, which was restored in 2003, in the midst of a breathtaking landscape. After heading down a dirt road and climbing a steep incline, you’ll come to the top of a hill where you’ll be able to look down upon a jaw-dropping landscape that will make that intense climb worth the effort. From the hilltop, you’ll be able to see the monastery of Sant Jeroni de la Murtra. Along the curved trails, you’ll then come across the chapel of Sant Climent. Follow the path and you’ll land squarely in the center of the ancient Iberian settlement of Puig Castellar, which was inhabited between the 6th and 2nd centuries BC. Here, you’ll be able to gaze upon the quaint, narrow streets and the ancient houses that were once alive with the bustle of people. Many of the archeological findings made here are displayed at the Museu d’Arqueologia de Catalunya and the Torre Balldovina de Santa Coloma, which might be another worthwhile stop while you’re in the region if you’re interested in history. Finishing up your route, you’ll see the cave of Genís. Take a rest by the Font de la Bóta or the Font del Drapet and breathe in the beauty of your surroundings before heading back to your starting point.
The best way to finish the hiking day
After a long day of hiking, head over to AIRE Ancient Baths Vallromanes to balance that rejuvenating exercise with a pampering experience that is equally restoring for the soul. AIRE consists of a chain of thermal baths with locations all over the world, one of them being Vallromanes, right by Serralada Litoral. This unique relaxation experience, much deeper and much more unique than your typical spa, is modeled after the Greco-Roman tradition of baths and gives you access to massages, facials, wine tastings, fine dining and more. AIRE’s Vallromanes location is situated in a restored country house built in 1497 in the middle of a beautiful natural landscape. Continue to enjoy the rejuvenating effects of nature while you bask in this one-of-a-kind mind-body relaxation experience and finish off your hiking day in the best way possible.