The bustling town of Banyoles possesses buildings dating from
the 12th century, and grew around a much earlier Benedictine monastery.
The town is famous for the pre-Neanderthal Banyoles jaw, a replica of
which is in the Museu Archeològic Comarcal Banyoles. This is the
oldest remains of a Catalonian.
buildings make Banyoles appear to be a somewhat drab town on first
impressions, but the town is lively, interesting and entertaining. The
activity is focussed around the shops, restaurants, bars and galleries
of the porticoed Plaça Major. In addition to the Archeological
Museum, the Natural History Museum is also worth a visit. Many meals
offered here tend to be well flavoured with Garlic.
There is a wide choice of sports for the more energetic with Banyoles
having been named as Catalonia's Primary Sports Location. Activities
available include Rowing, Canoeing, Cycling, Horse riding, Archery,
Climbing, Orienteering and general Activity Centres.
The town is most famous for it's large lake, Estany de Banyoles,
which is 2 kilometers from the centre and was the rowing venue for the
1992 Barcelona Olympic Games.
With a length of two kilometres and a perimeter of six kilometers, it
is a centre for rowing, hiking, rambling and swimming. Boats are
available for hire on the eastern side of the lake. Around the perimeter
of the lake there are seven large ponds, including Can Sisó, the
water of which inexplicably turns red in winter.
Another attraction, three kilometers north of Banyoles is the Caves -
Coves de Sarinyà. Excavations here have revealed over
30,000 objects. Evidence of habitation dating back a hundred thousand
years have been discovered, together with remains of elephants, lions
and panthers. Cave dwellers would trek to France to return with more
suitable material, as the local flints were brittle
Nearest Airports are: