A nature reserve where the patron saint of Catalonia is venerated
There is an unusually-shaped mountain in the heart of Catalonia made from huge slabs of grey rock. At the top of this spectacular massif stands a statue of the Virgin of Montserrat, the patron saint of Catalonia. This nature reserve is covered with pine and holm-oak woods and is home to squirrels, boars and genets, among others. There are many different itineraries and guided visits that will help you discover its most hidden spots.
At the peak is the majestic sanctuary dedicated to 'La Morenata', the 12th-century Romanesque-style statue of the Virgin Mary. The architectural site comprises various squares and a basilica originally built in the 16th century and subsequently rebuilt in the 19th, with a hostel for pilgrims and visitors. Close by is the Benedictine monastery with its beautiful chapterhouse and neo-Romanesque cloister and refectory, refurbished in 1925 by the architect Puig i Cadafalch. It is also home to works by artists such as Picasso, Dalí and El Greco. Also open are the New Audiovisual Space and the Open-Air Museum where –thanks to an audioguide– visitors can see the Modernist sculptures and the Santa Cova (a chapel attached to the rock in which the image of the Virgin was said to have been found).