Sant Julia routes
The Manyat route begins at the small village of Cert s, located at the foot of the La Creu mountain range. Right at the town entrance, the path leaves the main road on its left shoulder. The first part of the route, from here to Els Cortals de Manyat, follows a long-distance path (GR).
The most prominent exotic plant species in the nearby gardens include Scots elm (Ulmus glabra) and wild cherry trees (Prunus avium). Green santolina (Santolina viridis) is an aromatic plant that fills every dry and rocky area with its yellow, globular blossoms. Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is also quite abundant here.
As you ascend, the landscape will be dominated by forests of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris), which will be accompanied by Phoenician juniper (Juniperus phoenicea) in the sunniest areas.
The most common fauna in this part of Andorra are mammals, birds and the asp viper (Vipera aspis). Prominent are the goldcrest (Regulus regulus), the smallest bird in Europe, the northern wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe), easy to identify by the black spot on its eye, and the black redstart (Phoenicurus ochruros). The Pyrenean chamois (Rupicapra pyrenaica), one of the most spectacular animals in Andorra, prowls the rockiest parts of Sant Juli? de L?ria.
CertÚs: According to Coromines, this comes from the Basque word zarta, which means “sprout” or “branch” and has come to mean “end of vegetation”. Indeed, this is a town with almost no surrounding woods
From the starting point, 960 metres above sea level on the Bissisarri road, the path goes up the mountain. Due to the topography of the area, which is mainly oriented toward the north, the forest is cool and damp, an ideal retreat from the long and hot days of summer. The tree layer is dominated by Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris), with its reddish bark and greyish-green leaves, but hazel (Corylus avellana), large-leafed lime (Tilia platyphyllos) and birch trees (Betula pendula), all deciduous species, are also present. Also worthy of mention are wild strawberries (Fragaria vesca), liverwort (Hepatica nobilis) and ramonda (Ramonda myconi), of course, a very particular plant that is thought to be a survivor from before the last ice age, from the Quaternary period, and that always grows on walls of carbonate, mostly made of chalky rocks.
The most common birds that you may find along the route include the wren (Troglodytes troglodytes), notable for its powerful and melodious song, and the chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs). The tit (Parus sp.) can also be heard, chirping with more monotonous and metallic tones.
The woods of this area are also home to the roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), a forest-dwelling, black-snouted deer with a white rump and short horns.
Can˛lich: This word may come from Canonicus, which refers to canonical possession, or to a canonical building in another sense. We should also allow for the hypothesis that this is a syllabic metaplasm of the Latin word colonica, meaning “farm house, land of settlers”.
Route from Fontaneda to la Gallina pass
The Fontaneda path starts in the town of Sant Juli? de L?ria, at the Fontaneda bridge. The most common trees here are the European ash (Fraxinus excelsior), holm oak (Quercus rotundifolia) and downy oak (Quercus pubescens). You may also see some European nettle trees (Celtis australis) and walnut trees (Junglans regia).
A few minutes into the journey, you’ll reach the chapel of Sant Mateu del Pui d’Olivesa, which is formed by a small rectangular nave, reinforced by a semicircular apse built after the temple; it is believed that it was meant to substitute a square one when the Lombard masters arrived in Andorra. The door, on the west wall, is rather rudimentary and consists of limestone voussoirs. One night in the middle of the 19th century, the chapel was assaulted and burned down. It wasn’t until the beginning of the 20th century that the roof was repaired and raised about 50 centimetres.
The birds that you can hear here ľ and even see, if you have binoculars ľ include the cirl bunting (Emberiza cirlus), a rather rare species in Andorra, which sings dry and flat, and the African stonechat (Saxicola torquata), whose song is guttural
Fontaneda: From the Latin fons, fontis, meaning “fountain” or “spring”. Facing south, this small town extends below the sunny side of Mossers. It is crossed by Canal Gran river and the La Quera river, as well as by other small fluvial streams nearby.
La Senyoreta route
This route begins at the exit of Sant Juli? de L?ria heading toward Spain. A wooden sign marks the starting point. In the cracks in the stone walls near the path, you may be able to spot a very special fleshy plant with toothed leaves, white mountain saxifrage (Saxifraga paniculata).
You’ll see rather varied vegetation along the route, dominated by birch (Betula pendula) and cherry trees (Prunus avium). However, as you ascend, you’ll start to notice other species. Among the largest of these are the holm oak (Quercus rotundifolia) and downy oak (Quercus pubescens). Even higher up, you’ll be able to see a species that is quite rare in Andorra, the chestnut (Castanea sativa), a deciduous tree with rather large and shiny serrated leaves. Going up the path, you’ll enter a Scots pine forest (Pinus sylvestris) with boxwood (Buxus sempervirens) and, higher up, juniper (Juniperus communis) and gorse (Genista scorpius). The holm and downy oaks break up the hegemony of the pines.
The most prominent animals that abound in this area include the wood mouse (Apodemus sylvaticus) and the ever-friendly squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris). The rummagings of wild boars (Sus scrofa) betray their presence, as they tend to search for food off the forest floor.
La senyoreta: From the Latin word seniore, meaning “elder, person of authority”, which is behind the Spanish word se˝or and its derivations. Here, it is a place name referring to a maiden with dominion. It comes from a nice Lauredian legend about a young lady who, despite the different versions, is always very beautiful.
Sant Juli? de L?ria is the southernmost parish in Andorra. To the north and northeast, it is bordered by the parishes of Andorra la Vella and Escaldes- Engordany. On the east, south and west, it shares a frontier with Spain. It has a population of around 9,600 inhabitants.
The Lauredian cultural offering is rich and varied: the Museu del Tabac (“Tobacco Museum”); the sanctuary of Our Lady of Can?lich, the patron saint of Sant Juli? de L?ria; the Romanesque church of Sant Cerni de Nagol (11th-12th centuries); and the possibility of taking guided tours through the town, such as the People and materials and Lauredian stroll routes.
The most frequent vegetation in the parish is quite varied, due to its geographical situation and its topographical and geological diversity. The lower part, at about 850 metres above sea level, is dominated by Mediterranean plant life (basement floor). Forests of downy oak (Quercus pubescens) and especially Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) predominate at higher altitudes.
At the end of the hike, you’ll arrive at the Francol? mountain refuge, with capacity for 6 people, located at 1,865 metres above sea level, to the right of the stream on the sunny side of Els Llimois, on the plain known as Pletiu de M s Avall.
FrancolÝ: Gallinaceaous bird of the species Francolinus francolinus (black francolin), which resembles the pheasant. Considered a delicacy, it used to populate said place. Today, it is extinct everywhere.
Route from Juberri to la Rabassa
The route presented here leaves from the town of Juberri and follows a stretch of the GRP, the main national road that runs all over Andorra. The starting point is surrounded by black poplar (Populus nigra) and ash trees (Fraxinus excelsior), which benefit from the humidity produced by a small stream.
Abundant in this area are trees such as the cherry (Prunus avium), which produces sweet fruit during springtime. You may also see a fairly interesting tree that is rare in Andorra, the field maple (Acer campestre). Further along, you’ll see grape vines (Vitis vinifera) and some pear (Pyrus communis) and apple trees (Pyrus malus), as well as fields of tobacco. On the final stretch of the route, the path is surrounded by ash trees and a black mulberry tree (Morus nigra).
The most common animals that inhabit the area include small mammals like the least weasel (Mustela nivalis) and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes). Even if you are not lucky enough to see a fox, you may be able to infer their presence by the droppings they leave behind. Notable birds include the warbler (Sylvia sp.), the tit (Parus sp.) and the robin (Erithacus rubecula).
Juberri: From the Latin iugus, meaning “yoke”, but ending with erri, from the Basque meaning “place or town”. From this town, there are several different denominations and, perhaps, separate groups.
The Rocafort route starts from the Fontaneda road, in the parish of Sant Juli? de L?ria. From above, Rocafort mountain will treat you to fantastic, bird’s-eye views of the parish.
Along the route, on the riverbank, you’ll be able to see black poplars (Populus nigra), white willows (Salix alba) and ash trees (Fraxinus excelsior), in addition to lovely summer lilac shrubs (Buddleja davidii). The most common animals found in these parts include the viper (Natrix maura), which is not totally harmless, and the brown trout (Salmo trutta).
Further along, you’ll see a great variety of bushes, including Phoenician juniper (Juniperus phoenicea) and fly honeysuckle (Lonicer xylosteum). The blue rockthrush (Monticola solitarius) can also be seen, if time permits.
Along this route, you can also discover the Cova de l’?ssa, a small cave linked with a cruel legend that tells how a farmer killed a bear that lived there. After building a fire in the cave’s entrance, the farmer killed the bear with an axe when it tried to enter to save its cubs.
It must be mentioned that you can also enjoy views of the church of Sant Mart? de Nagol, a temple dating from 1048 that was built against the rock over a cliff, a fact that affected its orientation. The somewhat irregular nave is on a rectangular base, and the wall leaned against the rock on the north side. Due to its conditioned orientation, the north end has a semicircular apse, since the only access point is from the east side, where the entrance is located. It has four windows: one at the feet, one in the apse and two in the southern wall. The roof, built in the 20th century, has two slopes.
Rocafort: Roca comes from the Pre-Roman word rocca, of the same meaning, whose exact origin is unknown. The Catalan word fort comes from the Latin forte, in the sense of “resisting passage, hard to take, which forcefully resists being taken”.
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