Route Ribelles and Hostal de la Muga (from Sadernes). Route 7 Parishes Alta Garrotxa

The church of Sant Julià de Ribelles is Romanesque and was consecrated in 947. Inside, part of its pre-Romanesque structure relating to its consecration is still visible. The church was reconstructed in the thirteenth century and a second nave added

Modality
  • By foot
Region
  • Alt Empordà
  • Garrotxa
Towns
  • Albanyà
  • Montagut i Oix
  • Sales de Llierca
Time
  • Between 3 and 4 hours
Difficulty
  • High
Time
  • 4h (anada)
Distance
  • 10,3Km
Hide elevation maximum
  • 876m
Hide elevation minimum
  • 268m
Ascent
  • 792m
Descent
  • 217m

Start at the church of Santa Cecília de Sadernes and pick up the track that heads north up towards Vall de Riu. Almost straight away you’ll come to signpost G33 Sadernes, where you should continue on towards ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’.

Follow the track and the yellow paint marks (as well as the green-and-orange waymarking of the routes devised by the Alta Garrotxa Consortium) as far as signpost G32 Molí d’en Galceran. Continue following directions to ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’ along the track and over a bridge, Pas dels Aures, and then on past an impressive rock outcrop on your left crowned by the remains of a castle, Castell Sespasa. Cross the river again on a bridge with no retaining walls to reach the last of the three car parks along this track.

Without leaving the track, walk on to signpost G40 Pont de Valentí, where you are indicated left down towards ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’. Cross the bridge and come to Hostal de Ca la Bruta, once an inn for travellers that has recently been restored. Turn right and come to a junction of paths: keep right again alongside the river. Soon, you have to cross straight over the broad track leading to a house, La Quera, to pick up the old trail to the church of Sant Aniol d’Aguja. Follow the yellow paint marks until they take you back down some steps to the track leading to a farm, La Muntada. Keep on along this track until you come to a small car-park off to your right; head through this small space and on to the river. Cross using the rough stepping stones and follow the river on the opposite bank as far as a weir, La Resclosa del Gomarell.

Here you will find signpost G37 La Muntada with indications pointing you on to ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’ along a well-trodden path that rises and falls as it follows the river. Drop down to some well-made stepping stones just below the swimming hole of Gorg del Citró. A little further on cross again back on to the left-bank and continue until you come to a crossroads of six paths at Coll del Molí de Sant Aniol and signpost G38. Continue towards ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’, now also following the red-and-white GR-11 long-distance footpath signage.

At signpost G39 Sant Aniol d’Aguja start climbing up towards ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’ (leaving the GR-11 and the green-and-orange markings behind) through a thick holm-oak forest. The path zigzags up to a pass, Collet de Clarioles, and signpost AG12, which points you on to ‘Sant Julià de Ribelles’. This next section of path begins to climb steeply and gain altitude quickly; be careful on the steep sections of Pujant d’en Llebre, where you may have to use your hands, and then on the slightly vertiginous cliff-top stretch as far as the abandoned house of Can Llebre. Here, you leave the more open stretches behind and head back into the forest of downy oak with box understorey, where a few clearings provide magnificent views back down the Sant Aniol valley.

Keep on to a small open area, Coll de la Bassa, where a pond often forms after rain. Turn left and climb up to a large oak following the yellow markings that take you into the forest along a path through a dense stand of box trees. Turn sharp right and from one of the gaps through the trees you will get your first views of the church of Sant Julià de Ribelles, still some minutes away. Continue on to Collet de Can Queller and the track that runs from Mas Moretó to Hostal de la Muga. Cross the track and pick up a path that in a few minutes will take you out on to the track to Sant Julià de Ribelles. From here, climb a little up to reach the church.

Once you have visited the church, retrace your steps to Sadernes. If you feel like walking further, the path to Hostal de la Muga is well marked.