Day: January 14, 2014
Girona; the Liveable City
The city of Girona is a wonderful and relaxing place to stay, with a beautiful park, Jewish quarter, and cathedral. The bustling center is filled with shops and bakeries, and has an open market with local produce and gourmet selections. The SLOLerners loved it. We stayed in the oldest part of the city, on the main street in the Jewish quarter (Mom really outdid herself this stay) and we walked throughout the city every day.
We visited many museums in Girona, such as the Jewish museum, the Girona History Museum, the Casa Masó, and the Museum of Cinema. The Jewish Museum, just a few buildings away from our apartment, explained the history of the Jews of Girona and their exile. The Girona History Museum is full of incredible displays of when Girona was still part of the Roman Empire and how the city adapted to the industrial revolution. The most impressive part of the History Museum was their collection of press machines from the late 19th century. The Casa Masó is a museum / tribute to the architect Rafael Masó. Our flat was in a building designed by this architect. His style of architecture was a beautiful mixture of the Arts and Crafts style, and the Art Deco style. The most fascinating museum in Girona (in my opinion) is the Museum of Cinema. The multistoried museum visit starts off with a short clip in the private movie theater, and then continues to three full levels of incredible exhibitions and hands on activities.
There is a park in Girona much like a small scale version of Central Park that caught our attention for two reasons. First, for the fantastic running grounds, and two, for the ice skating rink. The park is full of lined up Plátano trees (they’re not actually banana trees, that’s just the name) and is a peaceful break from the busy commercial / residential jungle. The ice skating rink is quite the opposite of the peaceful environment of the park because its jam packed with kids from all around the town. We ended up taking a trip to the rink and it was so much fun! Although, there were so many people skating in the rink that the ice was more of a slushy than a hard ice rink. Edie and I fell down a couple of times and we got completely soaked!
During the end of our stay, we met up with a bicycle friend of Dad’s, Eddie Salgado (not Edie). Eddie is a traveler of Europe and South America and has been abroad for seventeen years. We walked through most of town with him, showing him around, and at the end of the day, he hopped on a train and headed to Barcelona.
To conclude our stay in Girona, this city is one of the first towns on our trip that we felt we could actually live in for a long period of time. We loved the local environment, and the city was not too big. This town is one that we could easily come back to and stay there.