The Bay of Roses offers a historical itinerary true to the chronology, the art, and the culture of the times.
It is one of the most complete and impressive megalithic itineraries on the Costa Brava, and in fact, large dolmens remain from the first inhabitants.
The dolmen of the Creu d’en Cobertella, which is the largest in Catalonia, dates back to the Neolithic Period. In the route through the origins of this Bay, we also find menhirs which date from the 3rd and 4th millenniums BC.
Greek and Roman civilizations
An entryway to the Iberian Peninsula created by the Greek and Roman civilizations, the Bay has two world-famous archaeological sites, Emporion and Rhode. The current name for the Bay of Roses was derived from the name Rhode.
Emporion, which means “market”, was the city founded in the centre of the Bay by Greek merchants from Phocaea and later colonised by Romans. The Archaeological Museum of Catalonia in Empúries handles the dissemination of information and the constant recovery of the significant ruins of both cultures in this space.
The Citadel of Roses
The citadel is a Renaissance-style enclosure of 131,480 m² built in 1543. The important archaeological site which lies within the fortification consists of :
The remains of the Hellenistic district within the Greek settlement of Rhode, which enjoyed its period of greatest prosperity in the 4th and 3rd century BC
The Roman villa, dating back to 2nd century BC and 6th century AD.
The paleochristian necropolis.
Several Visigothic buildings.
The Lombard Romanesque monastery of Santa Maria, dating back to the 11th century and the remains of the fortified medieval town.
The remains of several military buildings dating back to 16th century.
The Museum which provides an insight into the history and heritage of Roses, from prehistory to modern times.
The Exhibition Hall.
A visit of the Citadel is a history master class concentrated in a unique area.
The village of Castelló d’Empúries was extremely important in the medieval period (much like the county of Barcelona), and it was the capital of the old county of Empúries. The magnificent Basilica of Santa Maria is one of the most important religious buildings which have been conserved from the era. The narrow streets in the village, the city walls, the washing place, the Jewish quarter, and the medieval prison were all declared cultural assets of national interest. Additionally, the Roses Citadel was named a historical-artistic monument in 1961. All of these elements are vestiges of different eras and occupations, from the initial Greek colony of Rhode to the medieval village with the 11th-century, Romanic-Lombard monastery of Santa Maria.
River village: Sant Pere Pescador
Sant Pere Pescador, surrounded by the natural park Aiguamolls and bordered by the river Fluvià, shows a perfect balance between crop and navy. The combination, in a landscape of great fields of fruit trees and a beach with sand dunes and about seven kilometers long, the town became an emblematic of our coastline.
The town has more than a thousand years of history, today retains the old sections of the medieval wall, fortification that surrounded the town. The council is an example of coexistence between traditional economic activities and tourism industry, where much of the labor force works in modern farming fruit trees.
THE BAY'S NATURAL ASSETS
The Cap de Creus Natural Park
The Cap de Creus Natural Park has the distinction of having been the first maritime-land natural park in Catalonia. Within the park, there are two land reserves of geological singularity and exceptional biological diversity.
For nature lovers, the Cap de Creus territory has a great diversity of flowers, with some of the more important being the many native land species and attractive underwater species, such as Neptune Grass (Posidonia oceànica).
The Natural Park dels Aiguamolls de l’Empordà
The marshes in the Empordà used to occupy almost the entire plane of the Bay of Roses. The Parc Natural dels Aiguamolls de l’Empordà includes complete reserve areas which are a refuge for thousands of migratory birds..
Its ecosystems have a clear marine influence, as they include sandy beaches and dune formations. In this park there are spaces for agriculture and pasture. Often these areas have been converted into rice fields because of their tendency to flood.
Montgrí Natural Park
Montgrí Natural Park has a singular landscape, shaped by a coastline with cliffs, coves, and beaches which give way to the seafloor; it is like going back in time and enjoying the flowers, fauna, and landscape of a stable and complete ecosystem with an incomparable ecological value and with the contrast of a mountain massif behind it.footprint of man has left an extraordinary cultural patrimony.
When we add to all of that the numerous impressions that man has left throughout his history in the area, it becomes a patrimony worthy of study. In Montgrí we have discovered a unique natural space, where the footprint of man has left an extraordinary cultural patrimony.
THE LITTORAL AND THE BEACHES
The coast of the Bay is broad and unique. More than 45 km are beaches covered in very fine sand, and 15 km are small, sandy coves with crystalline waters. It has both wild, tranquil beaches and more urban beaches with high-quality tourist services and an offer of leisure activities which are respectful of the environment. Over the years, the beaches have obtained universally recognised quality and environmental certifications, such as the Blue Flag, EMAS, ISO 14001, and the Q Certificate of Quality Tourism. All of this makes them ideal for families.
The extensive work that was carried out to recover the dunes and the system of small mountain lakes provides a high ecological and environmental value throughout the entire area around the Bay, which is reflected in the international protections it has received, such as the Natura 2000 Network – Mediterranean Region and the RAMSAR List of Wetlands of International Importance
With the development of tourism in the second half of the 20th century, the economy, which until that time was primarily based on agriculture and fishing, came to be based principally on the service sector. This is an economy which benefits from the participation of the landscape, nature, and especially the local products and the products from the land, such as the cultivation of cereals, rice, and fields of fruit trees. Here, the apple is the star product, with great expanses of apple trees in the municipality of Sant Pere Pescador, and all of these factors contribute to maintaining both the tradition and the agricultural and commercial use of this product, which is highly valuable to the territory.
The apple is recognised as a Denominación de Origen (Designation of Origin – DO) of Girona-Costa Brava, and in the interior of the territory the wines and oils of the Empordà have DO status.
Roses and L’Escala have two important fishing ports which have been their economic motor for many years, based on catching and selling fish from the Bay. Conserving this ancient trade has evolved into a model which combines the traditional use with a more recreational and educational use, as we can see from a visit to the markets and the Fish Interpretation Centre of L’Escala (MARAM).
This new model has provided the Bay with high-quality nautical facilities. There are marinas in Roses, Empuriabrava, and L’Escala, all of which are equipped with all of the services necessary for leisure crafts and the Nautical Club of Sant Pere Pescador.
Today the Bay of Roses is a tourist destination par excellence and has a variety of accommodation such as hotels, apartments and villas and a wide range of top quality campsites, recognized as the best in Europe.
The combination of so many festive activities, cultural, sports and leisure activities that take place throughout the year making it an ideal destination for families such as people who want to enjoy a pleasant stay.
The Bay has a nautical quality facilities. Marinas of the Roses and L’Escala with 25 km of navegable channels and 5.000 moorings, the Marine of Empurabrava it’s Europe’s most great residencial marine. The ubication and climathology also are important to permit the practise of skydiving and water Sports.
SPORTS AND ACTIVE TOURISM
Its geographic location and climate conditions make the Bay an ideal environment for all types of water sports. From sailing to kitesurfing, SCUBA diving to windsurfing, in general, they are sports which respect the environment, and around which are hosted all kinds of events throughout the year, such as the world windsurfing championship and the Spanish kitesurfing championship in Sant Pere Pescador, the sailing championship in L’Escala, and the national beach volleyball championship in Roses, amongst others.
Empuriabrava is a world reference in skydiving, and the Bay’s airport is located there.
Amongst the many activities of active tourism are the large network of marked paths for hiking (including GR routes 11 and 92), the Camí de Ronda footpath, cycling tourism, the ATB routes, and the green path of the Muga.
The kitchen Bay has reached international fame thanks to the brilliant creations of Ferran Adrià, chef of El Bulli restaurant, for years considered the best restaurant in the world, currently undergoing restructuring. The anchovies from L’Escala where today it is used the same technique of the century craftsmanship XX. Altres products renowned sound apples and San Pedro de Castelló duck Cortal Empúries.
Wineries that produce wines of the region under the PDO Empordà wines young, fruity rosé, white wood, blend of breeds, and the iconic sparkling Grenache, C, A proposed route for wine cellars that permetfer and cooperatives that are sure to surprise visitors.
This is some text in a paragraph.The inhabitants of the Bay work to keep alive the historical and cultural traditions which the various civilizations that have occupied the territory have left as their legacy. Some of the examples of these traditions are:
Triumvirate: a Greco-Roman festival which takes place in the municipality of L’Escala; Land of troubadours: a medieval festival in Castelló d’Empúries; Route of Art in Castelló d’Empúries; Festival of Salt: an homage to the fishing and salting origins of l’Escala; Carnival: a very popular festival with broad participation by the citizen; Havaneres: nowadays, on summer nights, the beaches are the stage for singing havaneres; Sardanes: this is the typical dance of Catalonia; Summer nights: in Sant Pere Pescador.
The Bay is home to many diverse music festivals which are held in unique locations, taking advantage of the area’s mild temperatures.
One of the traditions which have remained since the period of Greek occupation is the markets. The weekly markets, which are held in many locations, attract curious tourists and are the place where the locals get their food.
As for traditions based on religious beliefs, the Bay hosts processions, the Way of the Cross, and living Nativity scenes, amongst many other displays of the religious tradition of the nation.