The Castle of Montesquiu: A Captivating Corner of Catalonia

The region of Catalonia, like its capital Barcelona, has a lot to offer. Its long Mediterranean coast filled with half-moon beaches, the rugged Pyrenees with their many national parks and villages tucked away in hidden corners, and the ancient, fort-like "masias" of the country people are an endless source of fascination.

One of these hidden corners of the pre-Pyrenees, straddling the Osona and Ripoll├Ęs districts on the River Ter, is where you'll find Montesquiu, a medieval castle.

The castle of Montesquiu first appears in documents dating back to 1285, when it was a part of a defensive triangle that included the medieval castles of Besora and Saderra.

According to Barcelona's park system, Montesquiu moved up in the castle world in the 14th century, when the regional ruler moved from Besora to Montesquiu.

Over the next few centuries, the castle underwent several structural changes. Its owners expanded the living space. They also added a small chapel dedictated to Saint Barbara.

The Barcelona Provincial Council acquired the castle in 1976. These days, the castle stands as the centerpiece of the park that bears its name.

The castle of Montesquiu is beautiful. It gives the impression of being indestructible, isolated, solitary and comforting all at once.

Its glass-ceilinged Gothic staircase provides an abundance of natural light, as do its many large windows. Streaming rays of sun add a very warm feel to the interior of this stone structure; darkness cannot take hold here while the sun shines.

Built high upon a summit amidst green rolling hills stretching for miles, the castle has no shortage of windows and each one offers its unique perspective of the surrounding landscape.

Part of the castle's appeal is the luscious, green hills and valleys that surround it's stone-laden flanks.

A three-kilometer loop trail near the castle affords great views and offers many quiet places for a picnic.

About half way through our hike you can cross a small creek to a rock island, where the sound of moving water provides a sweet melody while the sun keeps you warm.

A longer eight-kilometer hike affords you even more views, each of which makes you feel transported to a different age.

  • The castle is actually a very large medieval manor.
  • The area around the castle was the center of power for the region in medieval times.
  • The castle began as a guard house in the 10th or 11th century, according to the Barcelona Provincial Council.

A view of the castle as your approach it for the first time. Note the wall.
A view of the castle as you approach it for the first time. Note the wall.

Opening Times for Montesquiu Castle are:

Date Opening Times
October-May Saturday & Holidays Only: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
June & September Saturday & Holidays Only: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
July-August Weekdays: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Saturdays & Holidays: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Location & Contact Information:

  • Montesquiu Castle address: Masoveria del Castell de Montesquium, 08585, Montesquiu
  • Montesquiu Castle telephone number: +34 93 852 92 34
  • How to get to Montesquiu Castle:By car from Barcelona it is about a 1.5 hour drive.