General view of the Greek ruins of Ampurias. Girona © Turespaña
The ruins of Empúries are in the province of Girona, in Catalonia. Visit this ancient colony founded by the Greeks in the 6th century BC, later occupied by the Romans, who created their own town in the 1st century BC. This spot on the Costa Brava was a prosperous territory, on account of its commercial activity, until the town was abandoned in the 3rd century AD and disappeared beneath the dunes. This unique archaeological park was hidden for centuries until, in 1908, the excavations began that continue to this day.
Explore this network of walls, columns, streets and houses, admiring priceless mosaics, marble and paintings. The drainage systems, layout of houses and constructions such as the Forum, an old factory, the Amphitheatre and the Basilica will give you an idea of what life was like way back at that time. Don't miss the statue of Asclepios, the Greek god of medicine, presiding over a temple, looking out to sea. The Greek wharf, along the shore, also has to be seen - it is in an excellent state of conservation. Make the most of the occasion to visit the Archaeology Museum, where you can see important pieces, ceramics, utensils and sculptures from the time. The Mediterranean beauty of this spot is hard to match.
We recommend you get to Empúries by walking down the promenade that sets out from L'Escala and Sant Martí d'Empúries, two beautiful fishing villages with important cultural heritage. It is a pleasant route that passes beaches and coves with fine sand, ideal locations for a range of water sports such as scuba diving, sailing, windsurfing, kayaking...
Enjoy an unforgettable day of art, history, and nature too. There are a range of alternatives on offer in this area: outings, gastronomy (be sure to try the anchovies), hiking, cultural routes that take in styles from the Romanesque to the brilliant master of Surrealism, Dalí, rural tourism… Be sure to head for any nearby tourist office where they will help you plan your day.
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