Via Romànica: A medieval getaway
From Perpignan, in northern Catalonia, until Bassella, in the county of Alt Urgell, you can trace an imaginary line that connects some of the best preserved Romanesque churches in the Pyrenees. The route, called Via Romànica follows a corridor that runs through the valley of the Tet River, meets the Segre River, and goes through the counties of Rosselló, Conflent, La Cerdanya and Alt Urgell.
The area of the Pyrenees comprising this Via Romànica, shares ancestral religious and cultural roots, since back in the medieval times belonged to the same feudal dominion. This explains the similarity of these small churches.
The Via Romànica consists of 11 different itineraries. We are going to suggest one of them, which will take us near the small town of Bellver de Cerdanya.
The first stop is the church of Pedra, which existence dates back to the year 965. It was looted and burned several times. It is located on a hill on the way to the villages of Bor and Pedra. Along the same route we can also find the church of Marcel de Bor and the church of Santa Cecília de Beders.
Church of Pedra
The next stop is one of the Romanesque architecture’s best examples of the area: the church of Santa Maria de Talló. In 1993 it was declared as an architectural asset of national interest. Also known as ‘the Cathedral of La Cerdanya’ due to its larger size, it was once a monastery.
Santa Maria de Talló
Not too far from there you can find the church of Sant Serni de Coborriu in the small town of Coborriu de Bellver. Documents show that its origins date back to the late tenth century. It still keeps the original structure.
Sant Cerni de Coborriu
The church of Talltendre (Sancti Aciscli of Talltendre) is from the twelfth century except for the small bell tower, which was added later.
Church of Talltendre
In Éller, the church suffered more modifications than the rest. Records show that it was first documented in the late tenth century. The National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC) displays a twelfth-century polychrome statue found here.
Church of Éller
The routes that make up the Via Romànica are very near to each other and within the limits of the Natural Park of Cadí-Moixeró, which you can also discover while enjoying the architectural and cultural legacy of these churches.
Featured photo: Ferran Viladevall