Our stories

A snowstorm to remember

As the last guests of the Christmas season were getting ready to leave,  it began to snow in the Alta Garrotxa… and a few days later the Filomena front brought us a snowstorm to remember.
If you choose to come to El Serradell in wintertime we will give you a detailed update of the weather forecast and the state of the roads.
Visit our profile on Instagram for more great photos of El Serradell dressed in snow in January 2021.

Bori Sa, zen meditation retreat center

About 2 km away from El Serradell the Kwan Um School of Zen of Catalonia has its retreat centre, Bori Sa. Our neighbours at the centre offer daily practice and monthly retreats with programs which are open to everyone regardless of previous experience. If you are interested in meditation take advantage of your stay in Serradell and get to know them!

The 'wifi station' at El Serradell West

Marie Bendler is a French painter and sculptor who fell in love with El Serradell and Alta Garrotxa when she first stayed at the house, back in 2010. Since then, she has visited El Serradell a number of times. Marie is the author of the ‘wifi station’, which she herself installed on the fireplace at El Serradell West: a composition of hand-decorated stones from Alta Garrotxa, inspired in the baetylus of ancient times (stones which were the object of adoration because it was believed they contained divine life). At El Serradell East, Marie has left us some of her graphic amulets.

The Gitarriu get-together cancelled

Normally, each year on the first Saturday of October we hold the traditional ‘aplec’ or community get-together on the grounds surrounding Sant Andreu de Gitarriu church, to which the neighbours and friends of Alta Garrotxa are invited.
Due to the COVID-19 restrictions we have been forced to cancel this year’s event.
We hope to be able to invite everyone to a very special edition in 2021!

Protecting our local heritage

On June 20th a group of passersby dislodged and removed the enormous millstone which has crowned the Faja crossroad for many generations, just half a kilometre away from El Serradell. Fortunately they were stopped when they were about to load this small piece of the local heritage of Alta Garrotxa onto their van. Click here to see the millstone and the cross of Faja before the attempt to steal it. Soon, with the help of Sales de Llierca Municipal Council, we will place the millstone back in its original place, duly fastened to prevent any further robbery

Our first guests after the confinement

Towards the end of the confinement period El Serradell reopened and received the first guests from the Girona healthcare area: Pat and Ale and their wonderful family, who stayed in El Serradell East for over a month. They helped us out with several tasks during their stay (such as with assembling the pool!) and they have left their mark with many small details. We will miss them. Thank you very much for helping us to get through the difficult weeks we went through this spring!

Sheep in transhumance

In the beginning of June we provided accommodation for shepherds on the Arkàdia Project: Victor and his sheep are on the move year in year out. In winter the shepherds and their herds descend to pastures near Cap de Creus close to the sea with its milder climate. When the temperatures rise and the pastures dry out on the lowlands they head up once again to the green mountain pastures of the Pyrenees to spend the summer. Thanks for grazing your sheep on the fields of Serradell and see you again in October!

Deconfinement routes

During the months of the lockdown, the Itinerànnia trekking routes network (2,500 km) through the Garrotxa, the Ripollés and Ampurdán counties launched the #caminosdedesconfinamiento challenge on Instagram and Facebook. The goal is to upload at least one photo of a route in each municipality that the trekking routes cross (108 In total!) El Serradell took part with photos of Itinerànnia routes that go through Sales de Llierca and Alta Garrotxa.

Improved access and signposting

This March the Municipal Council of Sales de Llierca collaborated in installing new signposting to Serradell on the two forest roads (from Sadernes and from Sales) making things easier for our visitors. In February the Council also repaired parts of the road damaged by the storm, Gloria. Now both roads are in good condition and suitable for all types of vehicles.

The Gitarriu bell

Xavier Pallàs has published an inventory of the Garrotxa’s 180 bell towers, which features architectural and historical details. According to his research, in the XVIII century Gitarriu church still had its two bells, which disappeared during the Civil War. In 1960 a new bell was installed which was the object of various thievery attempts, until in 1975 it was removed to the little village of Pont de Molins, where it still rings from the parish church tower.

Trekkers: be cautious in the mountains

The Generalitat Firefighters sent out a helicopter to help in the rescue operation of a trekker lost near Serradell, who was forced to spend the night outdoors. Fortunately she was found the next day safe and sound. Please always follow these recommendations during your mountain outings.

Buddhist monastery for a week

For one week we received a group of Buddhist monks as guests in El Serradell. The monks were from Plum Village, the first monastic community founded by the Zen master, Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) in the west. For us it was an honor and a whole new experience. Thanks for visiting us!