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Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer 15Km circular route

Spectacular mountain route from former grand monastery via Montsant cliffs & mountain plateau to Clot del Cirer natural spring & Roca de miso viewpoint

Updated: Nov 20, 2022 by: Barcelona Travel Hacks Views: 623

About Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

The Montsant mountain range is about 20Km inland behind Tarragona city and is part of the Catalan Pre-Coastal Range. The main peaks are Roca Corbatera (1163 m), Pilo dels Senyalets (1109 m) and La Cogulla (1063 m). The Serra de Montsant, meaning Holy Mountain Range is named because there were many hermits living in the mountains in early Medieval times. Today Montsant mountains are a protected natural park.

This circular 15km route starts and ends at the Cartoixa d'Escaladei monastery museum located at the foot of the Montsant sierra.

Cartoixa d'Escaladei Monastery Museum

The Carthusian monks followed a model of life marked by silence and prayer, combining hermitistic loneliness with the auspices of community life. The monastery was founded in 1194 with a concession from King Alfonso I, for the purpose of forming a settlement on newly conquered lands. The donations and purchases that took place later turned the monastery into a feudal lord responsible for the county today known as Priorat and famous for grape growing and wine production.

Escaladei was a very wealthy and powerful monastery earning money from land rental of the very profitable grape fields and was known for its splendour between the 16th and 17th centuries. This wealth was used by the Carticans monks to undertake a profound architectural remodelling. From the first half of the 19th century onward, the confiscation of land owned by the Church and the looting produced during the popular uprisings caused the monastery to be abandoned.

Today, The monastery is being preserved with some sections undergoing extensive restoration works. The monastery is a museum that can be visited at the start of this hiking route. I would allow 30 to 60 minutes to explore the inside of the monastery.

The route starts from the Monastery museum and heads up into the mountains via abandoned monastic ruins of La Pietat and grape fields. At the foot of the cliffs the path is traversed in several sections by steep ravines with chains to aid the climb. The top of the mountain is a plateau with several summits such as Punta Alta del Boter (1007 m), La Guardiola (1014 m) and La Cogulla (1062 m). Between La Guardiola and La Cogulla is a large natural cave often used by mountain goats to take shelter from the wind and rain.

Further along the route we take a path going down into a natural basin with a spring called Clot de Cirer. From here we go back up to the plateau and follow a cliff top path at Roca de Miso that gives spectacular views of the Montsant cliffs and grape fields down below. From here the path descends down the side of the cliffs into a forest that emerges into the grape fields leading back to the monastery.

Visiting Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

The route does involve some steep sections up some short ravines that have chains to traverse ascents of up to 2 metres so is not a route for anyone that has difficulty with hands and feet ascents or suffers from mild vertigo. It is possible to do it with dogs but you may need 4m of rope and a dog harness or at least three people to manhandle the dog up the chains section. If your dog is the size of a pony then it is probably not viable!

The best time of year to visit is during the harvest at the beginning of September or any time over winter due to the coastal location never receiving heavy snow fall like the Pyrenees.

Allow 6-8 hours to complete this route. A MEDIUM level of fitness is required.

For a complete weekend this hiking trip can be combined with a second day of hiking in Siurana. Staying overnight in Siurana.

Cartoixa d'Escaladei Monastery Museum Opening Hours & Tickets

Ticket office closes 30 minutes before closing time.

Poboleda Grape Harvest Festival

The first Saturday of September, 2nd September 2023, Poboleda celebrates a festival based on old fashioned harvesting techniques. Visitors can take part in the harvest early in the morning by accompanying villagers to the vineyards, followed by a popular open-air breakfast in the village. The grapes harvested are then crushed in the old way and the fair continues with wineries offering wine tastings.

What to take with you for Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

I pack for wind when doing this hike because it is along a ridge line.

I recommend 3 to 4 litres of water because this is a dry mountain range.

Small 30L Hiking Rucksack

Small 30L Hiking Rucksack

Includes high visibility fog and rain waterproof cover in zip compartment at bottom of rucksack.

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Gore-Tex Hiking boots

Gore-Tex Hiking boots

I prefer ankle high boots on mountain trails for the ankle support and increased stability over rocky trails.

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Full length Running leggings

Full length Running leggings

For running in the hills around Barcelona or as a base layer for high mountain trails.

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Emergency Rain jacket

Emergency Rain jacket

Small pouch lightweight Waterproof jacket for emergencies

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Compact First Aid Kit

Compact First Aid Kit

Small lightweight first aid kit

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Phone Case for watersports

Phone Case for watersports

IPX8 waterproof floating and submersible case & Lanyard. Permits photos and touchscreen use.

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warm Wool socks

warm Wool socks

With toe and heel reinforcements that give good padding.

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Convertible Trousers

Convertible Trousers

Lightweight convertible trousers that zip down to shorts

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Base layer short sleve

Base layer short sleve

Thermal short sleve skin tight top

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Mid layer Top

Mid layer Top

Light weight cotton quick dry T-shirt

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Fleece jacket or Jersey

Fleece jacket or Jersey

Light weight warm fleece

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Head Torch

Head Torch

USB rechargable Head torch

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Summary of Prices

Train/Bus Fare Entry Ticket Additional Information Train/Bus Fare Entry Ticket Additional Information Adult € 20.00 FREE Child € 20.00 FREE Group/Family Ticket? Cartoixa d'Escaladei monastery museum 10+ people 3 Euros entryNotes Walk is free, Cartoixa d'Escaladei monastery museum 5 euros entry

Getting to Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

Address: Rambla de la Cartoixa S/N, Escaladei. 43379

This area is not served by train or bus and is uniquely accessible by car, being 1h50m drive from Barcelona.

Park OUTSIDE of the monastery parking area gates so that when you return from the hike and find the monastery is closed your car is not locked inside.

Documents for Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

Click on any one of the 3 PDFs to view in full screen and download.

\'Escaladei

Escaladei village Monastery map

Author: Barcelona Travel Hacks

\'Escaladei

Escaladei Monastery brochure

Author: www.patrimoni.gencat.cat

\'Montsant

Montsant mountain range map

Author: www.parcsnaturals.gencat.cat

Wikiloc Trail for Montsant Escaladei & Clot del Cirer

A0270 - Montsant Escaladei and Clot del Cirer

Spectacular mountain route from former grand monastery via Montsant cliffs & mountain plateau via Clot del Cirer natural spring & Roca de miso viewpoint

Distance: 14.17 Km

Difficulty: Moderate

Return Travel Fare: 20.00 EUR

Transport Network: Car

Weather for Morera de Montsant


Mountain Forecast weather for Serra de Montsant


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