That Saturday we woke up early without trying and decided to organize an improvised plan. We had wanted to go to the medieval city of Montblanc, so without further delay we set off.
Montblanc is in the region of the Conca de Barberà and is located halfway to everything: an hour and a quarter in car from Barcelona, one hour from Lleida and half of Tarragona, which made it a key city during the Middle Ages. The city was founded in 1163 by Alfons I el Cast (first king of the Catalan-Aragonese crown).
We arrived there a few minutes before eleven in the morning and headed straight for the tourist office, since at eleven o'clock there is a guided tour of the city. Luckily, the guide arrived a few minutes late and gave us time to buy tickets for the visit.
The visit begins in the old church of Sant Francesc, dating from the thirteenth century and where the tourist office is currently located. The church belonged to an old monastery that was located just outside the wall. Currently, the church is used as a multipurpose room for different uses of the town and, in fact, when we were there, it still had the remains of a party that had been organized there the night before on the occasion of the village festivities.
When leaving the church we skirt the wall until we reach the Portal tower of Sant Jordi. This portal is one of the best preserved of the wall, which is constantly being restored and rebuilt. The wall has a length of two thousand meters and in part it has been preserved to date because houses were built in the past, taking advantage of the walls of the wall and even some of its towers are inhabited today. Little by little, the city council buys the houses that are still built on the walls and demolishes them, but it is a long and expensive process.
The portal of Sant Jordi receives this name because it is said that right there, Sant Jordi killed the dragon and saved the princess. It is not that the legend is true, but Joan Amades, the great Catalan costumbrista, ruled that the legend took place in Montblanc and, in fact, during the medieval week the feat of Sant Jordi is recreated. After passing through the tower of Sant Jordi, we enter the ancient city, which over the years has undergone many modifications and there is hardly any trace of its medieval past.
Our next stop was the church of Sant Miquel, dating from the thirteenth century. The facade is Romanesque and the interior ceiling, which is made of wood, has been recently restored. The interior is gothic and of a single ship. It was the old church of the town and a few centuries after its construction, as they were small, they decided to build another. From this church it should be noted that it was here that three General Courts of Catalonia were held in the years 1307, 1370 and 1371. The church of Sant Miquel can only be entered with the guided tour, since it is normally closed.
After the visit to the church, we went to the Regional Museum of the Conca de Barberà. In this museum we visit the lower part dedicated to the historical trades of the region, which many have now fallen into disuse, such as the squeaky. Each trade had a dummy that represented how the trade was done. On the other floors of the museum there is history and art of the region, but we did not see them with the guided tour.