Figueres, a town in northern Catalonia, has the advantage of being located not far from the French border. Known for having seen the birth of the great artist Salvador Dalí, several places in the town make reference to man. But beyond the Dalí Theater-Museum, astonishing monument which is also the emblem of the city, Figueres is also a place where you have to stroll to contemplate the rest of its rich heritage, indulge in a few shopping sessions and join its cafes and restaurants to test the local gastronomy. The capital of Alt Empordà has all the assets to enjoy pleasant moments with family or friends.
Discovering the beautiful heritage of Figueres and its museums
One of the first things to do when arriving in Figueres is to walk through its historic center to admire its beautiful heritage. You can start by reaching the square where the church of Sant Pere is, in Gothic style, before stopping at another essential square, that of Gala-Salvador Dalí. If this place is coveted by all visitors, it is because there is the unmissable Dalí Theater-Museum.. Dreamlike monument, “the greatest surrealist work” as the artist said, with the red facade crowned with enormous eggs, it immediately calls out the gaze and arouses all curiosities. Still linked to Dalí, Monturiol Street is home to Casa Puig, designed by Josep Azemar and in an eclectic style. It is none other than the house which saw the birth of man. Its opening to the public as a museum is scheduled for 2023. From Josep Azemar we can also appreciate the Casa Roger house, located in the Plaza de la Palmera, a modernist house where Dalí created his first paintings as a teenager. As you stroll through the city center, which is very easy to navigate on foot, you shouldn’t miss out on either
Just 800 m from the Dalí Theater-Museum is another gem of Figueres: the Castle of San Fernando . This incredibly preserved military fortress, which was built in the XVIII th century, displays colossal dimensions. It is also the largest building in all of Catalonia and one of the most imposing military fortresses in Europe. Its stables could accommodate more than 450 horses!
On the museum side, visitors obviously spend time at the Dalí Theater-Museum, to see many of the works of the genius, from his beginnings to the end of his life. But other places must be visited to vary the pleasures, such as the Toy Museum of Catalonia , which delights children, and the Empordà Museum, which houses a vast collection of works from the Catalan art scene.
To discover the heritage of Figueres and better understand the links between Dalí and his city, several cultural routes and guided tours are offered by the Tourist Office, every week. The Dalí route for adults, but also the one dedicated to children, as well as the heritage route in the historic center are all recommended routes for the curious and those who wish to learn more about the history of this fascinating city. Do not miss the food and wine itineraries, to taste local products from the sea, from the mountains in several restaurants in the city, and accompanied by PDO DO Empordà wines served by a renowned sommelier in the region. The itineraries are also offered in French in July and August. The timetables are to be consulted via this link . Finally, note that the Church of Sant Pere also opens its doors to the public for an ascent to its bell tower.
Shopping, gastronomy and festivities for a stay of all the pleasures
Figueres is a city where you can enjoy the simple pleasures of life. So we also take the time to stroll around El Rovell de l’Ou, to get to the open-air shopping center where there are food, textile, clothing and home decoration shops. Shops can also be found around the Rambla, as well as bars and restaurants. Moreover, to take a gastronomic break , you should know that the offer is tempting, with beautiful addresses that reveal on their menus traditional recipes from Alt Empordà. With Km 0, restaurants offer quality cuisine, made with seasonal products. Fruits, vegetables, products from the sea and the neighboring mountains, the whole is sublime by the presence of essential ingredients such as onions and olive oil from Empordà. We also accompany the dishes with a good glass of one of the DO Empordà labeled wines. Red wines, white wines, sweet wines, Garnatxa de l’Empordà and Moscatell de l’Empordà, the range is wide and the pleasures varied.
And then, we do not fail to participate in the highlights that ignite the cultural season of Figueres. Music is in the spotlight in summer, with the Jazz Festival and the Les Nits d’Acústica Festival. In July, dance lovers enjoy seeing the city transform into a giant stage for the festival while the dances and movements of Figueres Es Mou. The party also continues at the start of the school year in September, with the two events that are the humorous festival of Còmic and La mostra del Vi de l’Empordà, which celebrates for the latter the wines of the Empordà and the gastronomic products. Tastings and a multitude of activities on the program.