Montserrat Mountains are just an hour drive away from Barcelona, Spain. This second most visited place is Catalonia is worth visiting because of its natural beauty and spirituality. The Unique thing about these mountains is that they look like a carving and not just a mere usual shaped mountain. Poets claim the mountains were carved by the Angels with a golden saw, Geologists blame nature at work. Either way, its unique !!
I really wanted to check out this place and so we booked a bus tour from Julia Travels- Placa de Catalunya. It is easy to get there on your own, but I preferred the tour as It was including a guide. It is always better to take the guide, as they tell you a lot of things about the place which you might not be able know from elsewhere. This is also a good place for climbing/Trekking up the hill, But I chose to get there by train and just sit back and enjoy the nature’s beauty. The first thing we saw when we reached was the “Stairway to Heaven”
The “Stairway to Heaven”
A monument of about 9 cement blocks stacked together to look like a stairway. It is said that the stairway leads to heaven, not technically though. Due to the lack of safety standards, tourists are not allowed to climb the stairway as they might fall off to their deaths. However, since there are no security guards around the monument, many brave hearts climb it when the guards are not looking. And as I didn’t want to take risks on my Spanish trip I didn’t try any stunts there.
As I entered the main premises of the monastery, I was bewildered with this view.
And after entering Santa Maria, We walked upstairs to go near the statue of Virgin Mary called as “Black Madonna”
The “Black Madonna”
It is the beautiful cathedral of the Black Madonna of Montserrat called as the Santa Maria. The entire view inside the monastery is Fascinating and the atmosphere is electric. Whether you are religious or not, visiting the Black Madonna at Montserrat is a spiritual and worthwhile experience.
The statue is behind a sheet of glass. However, one of her hands that is holding a sphere (which symbolizes the universe) is not behind the glass. It is tradition to touch the sphere and take blessings. As I was standing right in front of “The Virgin Mary”, I was totally awestruck and spellbound. The golden view there is so mesmerizing that you feel you are in a different world altogether.
I sat there for some time, totally immersed with thoughts like, Who would have made such a beautiful monastery ? Since how long must this place be existing? And how lucky I was to witness all this. The atmosphere is so calm and spiritual that you don’t want to talk and interrupt the divine feeling you get there and Just soak in !
The Ave Maria Path (Cami de l’Ave Maria)
While getting out from the monastery towards the exit, is this place, If you want to light your own candle for the Virgin, you will need to purchase one from the cages. They are sold on the basis of trust – simply choose the size of the candle that you would like to buy and put the correct change in the box provided (you will need to have the correct change, unless you would like to make a donation).
The weather kept fluctuating. While we were going up the mountain, it was sunny, after we reached it rained and while returning we could see some snow at the corner’s of the road. So I’d suggest to Dress warmly. Montserrat being on top of a mountain has a strong wind. Bring a warm coat.
This piece of wonder is a must visit if you are in Spain. There are plenty of unique spots here to take a perfect picture. After I returned home, I was reminiscing the day I spent there !