Montserrat Monastery

Founded in the 11th century, then rebuilt between the 19 & 20th centuries it was the destination for a booked tour. Why was it rebuilt? During Napoleon’s invasion of Spain, the abbey was twice burned down and sacked by his troops.

Located 30 miles northwest of Barcelona, Montserrat means ‘serrated mountain’. During the 12th and 13th century, a Romanesque Church was built and that was our first destination in the morning. It was at that time this monastery began to see pilgrims visiting.

As expected, beautiful and ornate inside.

A little closer to the pulpit.

The organ was unlike what I had seen previously with some of the pipes placed horizontally.

While a great deal of this church was old, one of the chapels had this sculpture V.E.R.Y different and modern.

Exiting the church you came upon these prayer candles.

This fountain holds the secret to a youthful beauty. I’ll try any and everything to hold back the years – just saying.

A few last shots of the church before heading to other parts of the monastery. Also, it should be noted 1223 was the first account of a boys’ choir which continues to this day and can be heard during one of the daily masses.

The detail in the prophets above the doorway was amazing.

Earlier I mentioned this became a stop for pilgrimage. Why? Legend places the finding of the statue of the Virgin of Montserrat around 880. These carved Madonnas are believed to have been created in Jerusalem at the beginning of the religion and can be found all over the world. This cross indicates the chapel where it’s displayed. No, we didn’t make the trek.

There are accommodations on the property.

Along with a number of statues. This was carved in a nook along one of the pathways.

We had some free time and chose to take the funicular to the top of the Monserrat mountain. A group of young children and their adult chaperones squeezed in amongst the adults. Needless to say, it was quite noisy on the ride up.

The mountain is considered a park.

Right near these signs, several lilac bushes were growing – reminded me of spring time in the Midwest.

Ultimately, this building was our destination.

On the way we had some clear vistas from the surrounding area.

Eric led the way followed by Adrienne. The jackets needed earlier were quickly shed.

And we made it! Peeked in the (barred) windows and nothing was inside. Oh well, we had the satisfaction of getting there.

One last shot from the top of the mountain.

What goes up, must go down…………via the funicular. We were the only ones on the downward trip and got this cool video from the front car.

With about twenty minutes to spare, it was just enough time for some liquid refreshment. You just never know what you’re going to see.

Before they arrived, a motorcycle group were escorted to the mountain. This mountain welcomes all.

Ginny