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Montnegre


Montnegre i el Corredor Natural Park
Parc Natural del Montnegre (black mountain) i el Corredor Natural Park, which runs parallel to the north coast of the province of Barcelona and spans an area of 15km², forms the natural border between the Maresme coastal region and the lowlands of the Vallès and Selva administrative districts. Due to its close proximity to Blanes, Lloret de Mar, Tossa de Mar,  (the coastal towns of the southern Costa Brava, very appealing to tourists) and the Maresme coast, this natural park has developed into a popular trip destination, particularly among domestic tourists. Here, stressed city-dwellers can find the perfect getaway to spend the day out in the open and have a barbecue (see below for details) or just a picnic with the family.


Flora and Fauna
The climate on the sea-facing side of the nature park is milder and drier; from here you have a wonderful view across pine woods all the way out to the sea. Further inland the climate is cooler and damper. This is mainly home to deciduous forest, predominantly oak, beech and also newly planted chestnut trees in parts, which have replaced the original contents of the wood. Inside the natural park, within a small area there are two types of habitat which explains the diversity of the animal species which live here. In the habitat with the Mediterranean climate there are genets, garden dormice, goshawks, green woodpeckers and ladder snakes. In the Central-European habitat, on the other hand, you can see beech martens, snipes and toads.


History and Cultural Heritage
As early as the Neolithic Age, Montnegre became a settlement due to its vast natural resources. Ander Roman occupation, however, the inhabitants were forced to move to the lowlands where the villages still stand to this day. Evidence of very early civilization include the Dolmen of Pedra Gentil in Vallgorguina or the Iberian settlements on Turó del Vent and Puig del Castell. Close to Can Bordoi is the Church of Sant Cristòfol. Not too far away is also the Votive Church El Corredor from the year 1544 which was later rebuilt in late Gothic style. Near the coast are the Pilgrimage Church of Llorita from the 16th century and the pre-Roman Church of Sant Martí de Mata, restored in the 16th century. On the edge of the natural park, close to the coastal towns of Pineda and Calella, the Castle of Montpalau and the Church of Sant Pere de Riu can also be seen. Additionally, outside Pinedas you can visit the Roman aqueduct on Passeig d’Hortsavinya.

Eating: Barbecue areas to “rent” and traditional local restaurants
There is a popular barbecue area just a few hundred metres before the Santuari del Corredor Chapel, which you can get to by car. At weekends and on Bank Holidays you can rent one of the many barbecues which are strung together. However, make sure you get up early because the tickets have to be bought from the little kiosk before 10am. There are two barbecue times: from 12:30pm – 2:00pm and from 2:00pm – 3:30pm. The cost stands at around €7 per slot and is valid for a maximum of 10 people (for more people an additional barbecue must be rented). Wood, lighters and the barbecue are included in the price. Tables are also available but quickly become occupied. The barbecue rental service does not operate between mid-July and mid-September due to the fire risk.
Those who do not wish to go to the trouble can go to one of the natural park’s numerous restaurants. Here you will mainly find traditional Catalan meat dishes, mostly at favourable prices. One restaurant, for example, is located right by the Santuari del Corredor Chapel. Here there are vast meadows for the children to run around in and where you can have a picnic whilst enjoying the magnificent view.


Get to Montnegre
By car:
To Vallgorguina:
coming via the A7, take exit 12 “Sant Celony/Montseny”. Take the C-61 direction Vallgorguina. After about 4km you will reach Vallgorguina where there is an information point (at 13 Esglesia street).
To the barbecue area/Santuari del Corredor:
Coming via the A7, take exit 11 to Cardedeu. Take the C-35 direction El Corredor natural park. From the park entrance it is approx. 7 km to the barbecue area and 8 km to the chapel. Both are equipped with ample parking spaces.

Recommended walking-routes
There are several designated walking-routes in Montnegre Natural Park:
From Camino del torrente de Puig path to Corral
Exit point: Information Office Punto de Información Juvenil l'Escorxador
Length: 3,500 metres
Duration: 1 hour and 15 minutes
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest: Puig torrent valley (Valle del Torrente d’en Puig), oak and pine trees; cherry trees

The La Llanura del Corredor plane
Exit point: pilgrimage church Santuario del Corredor
Length: 2,250 metres
Duration: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest: Santuario del Corredor, dense wood, view of the neighbouring Montseny Natural Park

The Megalith Dolmen de Pedra Gentil
Exit point: Vallgorguina, at the end of Montseny street after the bridge
Length: 5,000 metres
Duration: 2 hours and 15 minutes
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest:
- the Megalith Dolmen de Pedra Gentil which is around 4000 years old. Legend has it that the witches of the region used to gather here to perform human sacrifice during which they would hang their victims. You can learn more about this in the exhibition at Vallgorguina in 13 Carrer de la Iglesia street.
- the ruins of the Santa Eulàlia de Tapioles church from the year 878. This church is of Roman origin but was rebuilt after its destruction which occurred during the baroque period in 1373.
- several centuries-old, typical Catalan farmhouses, Masias e.g. Can Clarens from the year 1776

El Pont de la Vila Bridge
Exit point: The forest Parque Forestal de Mataró, adjacent to the city Mataró
Length: 2,200 metres
Duration: 1 hour and 20 minutes
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest: pine woods cultivated on what used to be wine-growing areas.  
   
Ermita de la Erola Pilgrimage Church
Exit point: Information Office and Church Centro de Información e Iglesia of Hortsavinyà
Length: 2,000 metres
Duration: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest:
-  la plaza de la Comarca, one of the many places where coal was once produced.
- l’Ermita de l’Erola, pilgrimage                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    from the 18th century.
- several typical Catalan farmhouses, Masias, along the entire walking-route

Fondo de Can Rossell Lowland
Exit point: The Avenida del Panagall Avenue, near the Rosell path, you can find the exit point mark
Length: 2,000 metres
Duration: 45 minutes
Difficulty level: low, partly steep slopes
Places of interest:
- typical Catalan farmhouse Masia de Can Rossell (right at the start of the route)
- Cork-oak woods

The holm oaks (span: encinas/cat: alzines) of Can Portell
Exit point: Information Office of the park and church in Hortsavinyà
Length: 2,250 metres
Duration: 1 hour
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest:
- Iglesia de Sant Llop church; mainly from the 18th century
- various typical Catalan farmhouses Masias
- the 4 holm oaks of Can Portell, centuries-old, impressive and in good condition

The Can Vilar defence tower and the Cañada de Can Montasell meadow path
Exit point: at the end of Mataró street in Vallgorguina you can find the exit point mark
Length: 4,000 metres
Duration: 2 hours
Difficulty level: low
Places of interest: Mas de Can Vilar: Building from the 16th century with defence tower.

The Valle de Olzinelles Valley
Exit point: When entering Sant Celoni, at the bridge of the road BV-5112 that crosses the Tordera river, take the left track. It leads you beneath the motorway A7. After some metres you can see the Casa Draper house on the left, where you can find the exit point mark of the walking route. You can park there.
Length: 8.5 km
Duration: 3 hours and 30 minutes
Difficulty level: medium (due to its length)
Places of interest:
- Church of Sant Esteve de Olzinelles, built in the 16th century. Allegedly a church stood here once before and was documented back in 1083.
- throughout the entire field stand big, impressive trees, e.g. sycamores

The Megalith Dolmen de Ca l’Arenes
Exit point: Can Bosc
Length: 9.5 km
Duration: 3 hours and 45 minutes
Difficulty level: medium (due to its length)
Places of interest:
- The Dolmen of Ca l’Arenes
- the Can Bosc farmhouse, Masia from the year 1565