Judy and Mark are travelling with their friends Sarah and Joe, and Joe is passionate about Salvador Dali. This is why he convinced them to hire me to take them on a day trip to the Dali Museum in Figueres. Plus they are Jewish, and in the same day we’d be also visiting the charming town of Girona famous for its Medieval Jewish Section.
I picked them up at the Arts Hotel, by the beach, where they are staying. Our driver was punctually waiting for us there, as usual.
The ride to the Dali Museum takes about a couple of hours, and this time I use it to get to know my guests better (so I can adapt my explanations to their style and interests), give them some information about the Barcelona suburbs that the highway crosses, and I also give them some background about Salvador Dali’s life and art, so by the time that we arrive to the Museum, they are already familiar with him and are ready to focus in the artworks, rather than learning other stuff.
The life of Salvador Dali is always fascinating: I love explaining stories about how he is because passions and obsessions developing his life, and how he carefully planned his own personal branding (in a time when no one was really marketing themselves yet!).
The outside of the Dali Museum is also surprising: Golden bread decorating the red walls, and giant eggs crowning the tower… I make sure to warn them that in the Museum they will also be surprised at every corner, and that that was exactly Dali’s goal. It looks more like a fun-fair than a museum!
Judy and Mark were fascinated about the famous Basket of Bread painting, and Joe found hilarious the tridimensional double image at the Mae West Room. Sarah ccouldn’t really pick one favorite it piece of artwork from the Museum, and I quite agree with her: it is so difficult to choose only one!
After almost 2 hours in the Museum, that flew so fast that it didn’t feel like that much time, we went back to the driver who took us to Girona. It’s about a 45 minute drive, in the direction back to Barcelona.
The Old Town of Girona has lots of treasures to discover,but since they were interested in the Jewish history on it and they were fine walking, I took them on a stroll around the medieval walls first, until we reached the area near the Gironella tower, where the Jewish community sheltered during the attacks in 1391. It is a neat walk, although I don’t recommend it for people who can’t walk uphill or do stairs. We also stopped 5 minutes to visit quickly the charming medieval Baths.
Then we headed down back to the Old Town Girona, passing the Cathedral (although this time we didn’t go in because they preferred to do with the Museum of History of the Jewish instead later). With it, though, took some pictures at the foot of the impressive 90 baroque steps that lead you there.
The medieval Jewish Section is located by the Cathedral. I showed them the distribution of the area and state alleys with lots of steps, and then we visited together the Museum of History of the Jewish. Their favorite part was the 2nd floor, that focuses on the medieval life of the Jewish and Girona, and the prosecution they suffered until their final expulsion in 1493.
It was now time for lunch, and I took them to a local traditional restaurant where we enjoyed a nice meal. The weather was nice, but we thought it would be a bit too cold to eat outdoors, so we stayed inside instead.
And after lunch, we went back to the car and drove back to Barcelona. The heavy Catalan meal was making its effect: their eyes were closing despite of them, so I let them doze most of the way.
If you’d like to learn more about this tour, check out my Girona and Figueres tour in one day.