The month of May we were for the first time in the Aran Valley , a beautiful place in the Catalan Pyrenees , surrounded by mountains ideal for all types of public. The period of snow and thaw had ended, so some places that were not very accessible in winter could be visited without problems.
We stayed in a very cool bungalow of the Camping Verneda Mountain Resort a mountain resort in a beautiful enclave of Pònt d’Arròs , next to the Garonne river.
As we did not know anything about the area, we let ourselves be advised by the owners of the Verneda Mountain Resort and also by Gorka Martínez, a photographer friend of ours who has lived in the area for many years.
The Bassa d’Arres
At 1560 meters above sea level, this small raft is located, equipped with Picnic area with fountain included, it can be easily reached with the car. The day was rainy, but that did not make the environment less beautiful. Perfect to go with children.
The drive through Arres de Sus and Arres de Jos to the raft is also impressive, in May highlighted by its green splendor. The road is narrow and some areas in poor condition, but in a normal car it passes well but with patience.
If you have time, there is an area where the Victoria mine is located, which, as it was the morning, we decided not to approach.
Saut deth Pish
This place is another very photogenic wonder that can be accessed by car. In the Valley of Varradòs you will find this impressive waterfall, formed by two waterfalls that make a total of about 30 meters high. The water arrives underground almost entirely from l’ Estany Llong .
If you have time to take a walk in the area you can admire the forest of Siesso and Lake Varradós to the right of the waterfall . A beautiful setting of mountains and forests of beech and fir.
A great place to spend the day with the family, surrounded by nature on all sides, and water, lots of water.
Artiga de Lin
For me it was one of the most beautiful places I saw. Arriving by car is also easy, through an asphalted track that ascends the entire valley of the Joèu river. Half way through we will see indicators to the left to go to the Uelhs deth Joèu that we visited later.
When you arrive at Artiga, you are amazed by all the flat and open space that opens before you, a green meadow full of streams, and then be captured by vertical walls of high mountain, that contrast is what makes this place the most impressive.
There are many trails to travel, through the valleys, forests and the different mountains that surround the area.
Uelhs deth Joèu
As I said, before arriving at Artiga, you will find the detour to visit this spectacular area.
It is considered the source of the Joèu river, although these waters come underground from the melting of the Aneto peak. As it was May, the force with which the water sprang was impressive.
This raft, located in a place of great beauty, is a perfect place to go with family and take a walk around. As it is easy to get there by car, many people come with children to spend the day.
Like all the places I visited, beautiful to take pictures of water reflections of the mountains and forests that surround it.
Barranc de Blanhiblar
If you want spectacular views of the entire Aran Valley, go up to the slopes of Baqueira, from the Barranc de Blanhiblar you can see all the villages in the area.
We went at dusk and it was a magical moment.
Pla de Beret
After the tracks, towards the Sanctuary of Montgarri, you will find immense plains full of horses and cows that graze in the area. I enjoyed taking pictures of everything that moved 🙂
Montgarri Romanesque Sanctuary
To get to this area by car you have to cross the entire Pla de Beret , there is also what you do walking, it is all flat and without problems.
The sanctuary, at 1652 m. , belongs to the municipality of Naut Aran, and is on the banks of the Noguera Pallaresa river. A beautiful area where you can rest after the excursion or simply arrive by car and enjoy a family day visiting the church, eating under the trees by the river, or walking the different trails that you will find band and band.
If one day you do not feel like driving, you can walk along the banks of the Garona River along a quiet path known as Camin Reiau, which runs through and connects all the villages of the Aran Valley.
A beautiful walk listening to the sound of the water, the birds of the area and seeing how the vegetation changes as we pass through the different towns, sometimes more leafy or sometimes not so much, simply simple and wonderful.
I wish to return next summer and enjoy this intense green typical of the Atlantic slope.