Along the old monks’ paths. Route 2 Santa Pau

When you go up to Sant Julià del Mont, the valley of Santa Pau opens up to us and we can see how the lava of Santa Margarida volcanoes
And Roca Negra filled the entire valley, forming a wide and fertile plain.

Region
  • Garrotxa
Towns
  • Santa Pau
Difficulty
  • Medium
Time
  • 5h
Distance
  • 15,2 km
Hide elevation maximum
  • 898
Hide elevation minimum
  • 457
Ascent
  • 797
Descent
  • 797

This walk starts in the village of Santa Pau in Carrer Major where you will find the junction marked by Itinerànnia signpost G29 Santa Pau. Head for ‘Begudà’, cross the place and continue along Camí Doma, cross the main road to a minor road passing through fields and takes you to Itinerànnia signpost G28 Can Coderc that continue direction to Begudà. In this point we found the yellow marks for the path Coll de la Boixeda just found the Itinerànnia signpost G119 La Boixeda.
Head towards ‘Sant Jaume de Llierca’; in just a few metres you will have to pass through an electric fence and then continue on a footpath through the fields. With a gully down to your right, head up to the left to reach a fence below a farmhouse. Circumnavigate the house to your right, passing between two ancient oak trees. Here you pick up the old trail that begins
to climb gently over bare rock ramps with a line of reddish cliffs up to your left. As you gain height the views over the Santa Pau valley and the Serra de Finestres broaden out.
As you reach the base of the cliffs there is a small rock outcrop on your right that provides stunning views over the Santa Pau valley. Try and imagine how the lavas from the volcanoes of Santa Margarida and Roca Negra filled up the valley bottom and formed a plain that is today much wider and more fertile than it otherwise would have been.
At Coll Satrapa you come to Itinerànnia signpost G117 and the route changes direction. Turn left towards ‘Santa Pau (per Coll de Boixeda)’ and continue to climb, now on the shadier north face of the mountain.
Cross over a track and immediately take a path off to your left. From here you continue up to the summit of Sant Julià del Mont, where there is a triangulation point. This is the highest point of the walk (907 m), although you can still ascend a few more metres if you climb to the top of the bell tower of the ruined church.
The Church of Sant Julià del Mont was once part of the Benedictine monastery that was established on this summit in 866. Within a century it had come under the control of the monastery of Banyoles.
The descent begins next to the information board about Sant Julià and heads north to where, at the end of the downhill, you come to Itinerànnia signpost G116 Sant Julià del Mont. Turn left towards ‘Santa Pau’ and begin to drop rapidly. At the end of the footpath, turn left and continue downhill.
A little further on you come to a broad track, which you should follow right. This track takes you out to a broad saddle on the ridge, where you should keep straight on and a little to the left of the ridge top as the track U-turns away to the right. Further on, cross straight over the same track and then come back to it once again. Turn right to a metal gate and out
to Coll de la Boixeda and Itinerànnia signpost G118 Coll de la Boixeda.Continue towards ‘Begudà’ and after just a few minutes you come to signpost G994 Camí de Sant Abdó, where you should follow the green sign towards ‘Sant Abdó i Sant Senén’. In just 25 min you will then reach this small mountaintop church. From the church, follow the marked path down to Itinerànnia signpost G25 Coll de Palomeres, where you should head right for ‘Santa Pau 1h 45 min’. After a walk of around 35 min you will find yourself back at signpost G994, from where you should continue back to Itinerànnia signpost G118 Coll de la Boixeda, and then right down towards La Boixeda, Mascou and the centre of Santa Pau.