4 Landscapes - 4 Geniuses
The Costa Dorada is known as ‘the landscape of geniuses’, a route designed to discover the landscapes that inspired the work and personality of the four ‘geniuses’ – the musician Pau Casals, the architect Antoni Gaudí, the painter Joan Miró and the artist Pablo Picasso. Visiting these landscapes and museums will give you new keys to interpreting their work.
Explore the landscapes of Tarragona that inspired the four geniuses
Pau Casals - El Vendrell
Start your trip in El Vendrell, around 25 kilometers north of Tarragona. Explore the birthplace of Pau Casals and now the museum of one of the most celebrated Spanish musicians, overlooking the gorgeous beach of San Salvador. He lived in the house until 1939, when he was forced into exile, and he sadly never returned. With music as its central theme, this is a wonderful place to explore. Visit the Church of El Vendrell, where Pau Casals first played the organ at the age of nine. If you plan your visit here in July and August you will also be able to enjoy some of his music at the Pau Casals International Music Festival.
What to see and do
- Visit the Villa Casals, his house, garden and museum (with audio guide or guided tour)
- Listen to his music at the Baroque 18th century church
- Have a great meal at the Vil.la Casals beach front restaurant. We highly recommend it!
- Guided tour of the vineyards and degustation of the Penedes wine.
Antoni Gaudí - Reus
Your next stop is Reus, 40 kilometers south of El Vendrell, where the architect Antoni Gaudí was born in 1852. Discover all about the most famous pioneer of Catalan Modernism at the Gaudí Center and join the Route of Modernism, a self guided walking tour that will guide you through the city. Visit his family home in the Calle Sant Vicenç and the Sant Pere church, where he was baptised. After finishing high school in Reus, he left for Barcelona to study architecture. He stayed in regular contact with his friends and colleagues in Reus. Although Gaudí never actually designed any buildings in Reus, you will be able to see many Modernist architecture that was influenced by his work, for example the Casa Navás, designed by one of his contemporaries, Lluís Domènech i Montaner.
What to see and do
- Gaudí Centre: interpretation centre for all ages. (with audio guide or guided tour)
- Route of Modernism: discover the cradle of Catalan Modernism
- Intitut Pere Mata and the Casa Navás: A work of Art Nouveau by Lluís Domènech i Montaner. (guided tours available upon request)
- Vermouth Route: find out absolutely everything about Vermouth.
Joan Miró - Mont-roig del Camp
After your visit to Reus, head to the small village of Mont-roig del Camp, 20 kilometers south, where you’ll find the Mas Miró. The artist first came here in 1911 to recover from an illness. For 65 years, Miró spent his summers living here, finding inspiration for much of his artwork in the village and its surroundings. Mas Miró is the place where he painted many works that would put him in the international spotlight as a universal artist. You can explore the region on a bike tour, visit La Pixerota beach or the mountain of La Roca. Learn all about Joan Miró at the Centro Miró.
What to see and do
- Mas Miró: understand the relationship between the painter and the red land of Mont-roig (guided tour)
- The ermita of La Mare de Déu de la Roca: set in the red mountains. Panoramic views.
- Try the Mont-Rogetes: delicious carob biscuits washed down with a glass of Moscatel wine.
- Hike from the Ermita Mare de Deu to Mas Miró going through Miró's inspirational places. (7 km signposted route for all ages)
- Mountain Biking: Discover the singularity of the surroundings on wheels. Bicycles for rent available at the centro BTT Mont-roig.
Pablo Picasso - Horta de Sant Joan
The Route of the Geniuses ends in Horta de Sant Joan, just over an hour’s drive southwest of Mont-roig. Pablo Picasso lived in the village twice. On his first visit (1898), he arrived ill with Scarlet Fever, but after spending some time in the mountains and its nature, he filled up with new energy. He returned on a second visit (1906) during the Cubist Movement and painted the Reservoir at Horta and Factory at Horta de Ebro among others. Check out the Picasso museum and go for a hike discovering places that inspired Pablo Picasso during his time here. Did you know he stayed in a cave?
What to see and do
- Visit the Picasso cave at the National Park of Els Ports: Easy circular route of 3,1km. One hour hike, just perfect for the whole family.
- The Via verde or Green lane: Hike or bike this route along a former railway route. Fun for the whole family. Restaurants along the path for a typical Catalan meal.
- Speed painting competition: a great day of street art.
- Centre Picasso: Reproductions of all the artwork Picasso created here. (guided tour)
- Picasso's places: Route through the places Pablo Picasso visited during his stays in Horta.
Good to know - UHC tips
Enjoy the entire route with a multi admission pass. The "tarjeta Genial" includes free admission to the museums along the route and discounts on guided tours and many other activities. The price for the Tarjeta Genial is 15€ (children under 14 free) and can be purchased at any of the cultural centres along the route.
You will need between 2 to 4 days to complete the 4 artists and their landscapes.
If you are planning a visit and you're looking for a different and original place to stay, take a look at these suggestions.