An Insider’s Journey From Pamplona to Barcelona

Overview

Snow-dusted peaks, green valleys, and centuries-old alpine villages make the Spanish Pyrenees irresistible hiking country. We’ve selected the best trails in the mountainous heart of this splendid realm, from Ordesa National Park, nestled along the French border, to Catalonia’s Aigüestortes National Park, with its rock peaks and centuries-old pine forests. We’ll hike to craggy ridges where mountain goats scramble, explore valleys where the ancient Aragonese dialect is still spoken, and ramble the back lanes of stone-built Pyrenean towns. Our Trip Leaders introduce us to fantastic local wines and Basque, Aragonese, and Catalan culinary specialties along the way, and our final day has us hiking to tiny Andorra and across the Catalan Pyrenees, ending with an exploration of the renowned cultural hub of Barcelona.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-3
Pamplona / Ordesa National Park

From Pamplona, we head right to the idyllic Ansó Valley for a hike from the medieval village of Ansó to Siresa, a town with an imposing 11th century monastery and classic stone houses. In Ordesa National Park, one of the most spectacular mountain settings in Europe, we savor 360-degree panoramas of jagged peaks on our hike to the Cola de Caballo, a waterfall just below the sheer face of Monte Perdido (11,000').

 View Lodging
Days 4-6
Aigüestortes National Park / Aínsa

One of our hikes starts right from our hotel and takes us along the Ara River, and we’ll enjoy an afternoon in medieval Aínsa, whose old quarter preserves the traditions of the Pyrenees. We cross beautiful Aigüestortes National Park from west to east on our hike over the Portarró d’éspot (8,000'), the highest point on our trip, with a descent to the glacial lake of Sant Maurici. On our picnics, we’ll feast on the array of cheeses and cured meats that make Catalonia famous.

 View Lodging
Days 7-9
Andorra / Barcelona

In Andorra, a principality nestled between France and Spain, our panoramic ridge trail brings us to medieval Bescaran, graced by a Romanesque bell tower and offering wonderful views of the Pyrenees. After a pastoral hike in Catalonia’s green hills amid the sound of sheep and cattle bells, we head to Barcelona to explore its Old Quarter and Gaudi’s fanciful architecture. Depart on Day 9.

 View Lodging

Highlights

Highlights

Hike in breathtaking Ordesa National Park, with its sheer limestone canyons and waterfalls
Discover ancient stone-built towns full of mountain traditions
Stay in charming and historic mountain inns
Savor northern Spain’s culinary treats, from jamón serrano to grilled Pyrenees lamb
Explore Barcelona’s exceptional artistic and architectural heritage

Details

Length: 9 days
Cost From: $5495  
Arrive: Pamplona, Spain
Depart: Barcelona, Spain
Lodging: 8 nights hotels
Meals: All meals included except 2 dinners (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

7 hiking days on moderate to strenuous trails, 3-7 hours a day, altitudes between 4,500-8,000 feet, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day’s hike). This is a strenuous hiking trip, read “What the Trip is Like” for more details.