This fairy tale town should be a must see on everyone’s list of places to visit in Spain, and these top things to do in Miravet prove that there’s something for everyone here. Whether you are content with wondering the beautiful little streets and pausing to photograph the stunning views, or you want a little more adventure on your trip to Miravet, you won’t be disappointed.
We visited Miravet on a gloriously sunny day in September, when the sun sparkled off the flowing River Ebre, and the cactus fruits lined the pathway to the castle. This town stole our hearts, so much so that we came back several more times before the end of our holiday here, and we would happily have spent even more time here if we could have.
We have put together a guide on the best things to do in Miravet, so that you can get the most our of your visit here. Whether you only have a day to spare, or you’re staying nearby, there is enough in Miravet to fill a whole holiday. It’s somewhere you really must visit while you’re in Spain.
Where Is Miravet?
Miravet is a municipality in the Province of Tarragona in Catalonia, Spain. It lies along the famous and important River Ebre and has a rich and interesting history. Miravet is the perfect place to head for a quiet week (or weekend) away because of it’s convenient location. It’s only two hours from Barcelona, so it’s possible to visit for the day if you want to escape to the countryside. It’s only an hour from Reus airport, which provides regular flights from the UK.
A Little History
Miravet has a rich and complex history, spanning for hundreds of years. It was originally an Iberian settlement and after was occupied by the Romans, though no Roman buildings remain. It was later used by the Moors and was one of the last Islamic strongholds in Catalonia. With the arrival of the Templars in 1153 and the construction of Miravet castle, the village gained importance and became subject to numerous battles and wars.
Things To Do In Miravet
Discover The Castle Of Miravet
It’s the striking castle of Miravet sat on top of the hill that makes this town so enchanting. It really does look like something straight out of a Disney film. The Castle is of Andaluz origin, but was later converted by the Templar Knights into a Castle Convent, around the middle of the 12th century. It is considered to be one of the best examples of Templar construction in the Western world, and Miravet Castle has been declared a Monument of Cultural Interest.
You can visit the different rooms of the castle of Miravet, such as stables, cistern, kitchen, refectory, warehouses or the important Romanesque church. There are also some amazing views of the surrounding countryside.
How to get there: It is possible to drive all of the way up to the castle, but you should be aware that the streets are cobbled and very narrow-not the most fun to drive on! If you can walk, you should park in the centre of town in the carpark opposite the town square and walk up to the castle. It is a steep but rewarding walk, with incredible views over the river and the mountains. Just follow signs to ‘Castell’, or keep heading up towards it! Make sure you come up (or down) to the castle on the river side, as these give the best views, and come down (or up!) through the old town, so you can experience both routes.
Cost: Adults, 5 euros. Children, 3 euros. If you don’t fancy paying for entrance then you can use the viewing platform for free, so the climb is still worth it for some spectacular views!
Opening times: Tuesday to Sunday, including public holidays.
- From December 16 to February 28: from 10am to 4pm
- From March 1 to May 31: from 10am to 5.30pm.
For more information, including details about access and guided tours, visit the official Miravet Castle website here.
Cross The River – A Unique Thing To Do In Miravet
This may sound like a strange thing to add to the list of things to do in Miravet, but crossing the river here is quite a big event, and something you should definitely give a try.
Here you will find a Pas de Barca, a traditional type of boat with a wooden platform over it, tied by a metallic cable to both shores. Up until the 1960s the majority of villages in the area had this type of river crossing, but the only two that remain today can be found in Miravet and Flix. It is unique because it uses the current from the river to power it, enabling it to make the crossing. Pretty cool to know it’s been eco-friendly for decades.
It is possible to cross this way by car or foot (it can carry three cars at a time). We took the car across and it was a truly unique experience! Especially with such clear river water, making it possible to see a range of fish as you cross.
Opening Times: Every day 8: 00 – 13: 00 and 15: 00 – 19: 00 (or sunset during the winter months). Sundays and holidays open at 9:00 a.m. Weekends from March to December do not close at noon. August : every day 8: 00 – 20: 00
Be aware that the crossing closes in bad weather. You’ll find a red flag waving at the crossing point when it is not safe to operate.
Explore The Old Quarter Of Miravet
Under the watchful eye of the magical castle, Miravet’s old town sprawls down the hill in what looks like a jumble of old houses and churches. Make sure you take time to wander the little streets, which all lead to new sights and views. Don’t miss the Jewish area and the old Renaissance Baroque church, the medieval river mill and old shipyard pier. There are also plenty of little shops and cafes to explore as you explore, so make sure you pop into a few and have a little browse. Miravet is particularly famous for it’s pottery, and it’s worth having a look at some of the beautiful creations being sold here.
Check Out The Old Church
The old church of Miravet sits in the centre of the town. It is a Renaissance temple built between the 16th and 17th centuries by the Hospital Order on the space where the old mosque of the Muslim population was once found. The interior is laid out in a cross shape and the dome is impressive. You will find the remains of Baroque paintings and the altar, a stone table made by the Templars in the 12th century. This was originally from the castle, and moved at a later point to the the church.
During the Civil War a bomb struck the dome but did not explode. Many fine features of the church were destroyed and it was abandoned when a new church was built elsewhere in the village. Luckily for us, in the 1980’s the building was restored as a cultural centre and it is now open for Easter and summer, or at special times.
You can only visit the church through a guided tour, but it’s still pretty impressive from the outside, so make sure you check it out!
Visit The Shipyard
The Shipyard is also known as the salt mill, because it was used to unload goods (such as salt) that were bought to the village by boat. It is believed to date back to the 11th century. The shipyard in miravet was a popular place to be as women would often come down here to wash their clothes by the river. People guess that the building is either Arabic or Templar, but no final decision has been reached! It’s a pretty place to see, so keep an eye out for it on your way to the castle.
Pack A Picnic For The Pier
A strange thing to say, but this pier was perhaps my favourite place in Miravet. Not the actual pier, obviously, but the view from it. Pack a picnic breakfast, lunch or dinner and head to the pier to enjoy. You can dip your toes in the water while you gaze at the most beautiful view of the castle and village, and you have the sound of the river meandering past as you eat. It’s a pretty special place to watch the world go by.
Cycle The 3 C’s – One Of The Most Energetic Things To Do In Miravet
If you’re feeling energetic then the perfect way to burn some calories is by hiring a bike and cycling the route of the three C’s. The C’s translate well into English, and the route will take you to The Castle of Miravet, The Cave Wonders of Benifallet with it’s stunning stalagmites and stalactites and the Modern style Cathedral of Wine in Pinell de Brai. The wine tasting here will make the ride back even more enjoyable. Don’t worry though, if you don’t have the adventurous spirit for all that action then you can always just drive instead!
See Miravet From The Water
Another fantastic way to experience the River Ebro is to take the ferry that goes from Mora d’Ebre to Miravet. The ferry runs from the end of June until early September. It’s an enchanting way to approach Miravet, and you’ll be able to see the town from one of the best angles possible-from the river itself.
If you’re feeling a little more active (or want to burn some calories from all that wine tasting!) then why not take a canoeing trip down the river instead. There are several companies in the area that offer canoe trips that will take you along the River Ebre and past the beautifully scenic Miravet. We can recommend Ebroasis, an outdoor company based in nearby Ginestar that offer a range of fantastic trips.
Go Potty For Miravet Pottery
Miravet is famous for it’s beautiful pottery, and has a long tradition of making ceramics for centuries. It’s wonderful that this tradition is kept alive today, with 7 active workshops in La Ravel, a small neighbourhood on the outskirts of the village.
Remains of Iberian and Roman pottery were discovered in the village, but the pottery still being made today has its origin in Arabic typology. Although the materials have changed, the characteristic glazes and colours remain the same.
The Miravet stonemasons were traditionally called the canters, and have always lived apart from the rest of the community because of the smoke from the ceramic ovens. They also wanted to be closer to the raw materials they used. Changes of growth in the population has caused their ‘base’ to move around over the centuries, but interestingly the stonemason’s office has been documented in Miravet since 1650. The stonemasons settled in Ravel dels Canterers in the 19th century and are still there to this day, keeping alive this traditional craft.
It is a great place to visit, and you can go and see one of the seven remaining workshops found here to learn more about the craft, see the wood-burning ovens in action and the rafts for unused mud. You will also find the remains of old bakeries and abandoned workshops, along with a chapel. Miravet even hosts pottery workshops if you find yourself inspired to have a go!
The Raval dels Canters is located at the entrance to Miravet on the T-324 road that comes from Móra d’Ebre and Benissanet.
Take A Fishing Trip On The River Ebre
The River Ebre is a rich fishing ground, and it’s possible to catch some pretty enormous ones! With fish like catfish, pike and carp, you can expect a good day out. You can choose between morning or evening fishing trips, or even head out at night if you’re keep to catch something really big. There are also fishing experiences for kids that take place at the rivers edge.
Get Adventurous In The Mountains
The mountains surrounding Miravet are just spectacular, and it would be a crime not to explore them while you’re in this area. The mountains here are known for being some of the best climbing grounds in the world, and no matter what your level of experience you can enjoy them. Try climbing, mountain biking, via ferrata or canyoning for some adrenaline pumping experiences.
Miravet Cherry Festival
If you’re visiting on the second Sunday of the month of June then you’re in for a sweet treat. The Miravet Cherry Festival takes place here at this time every year, and you will find plenty of cherry delicacies, including pastries and liquors. Even if cherries aren’t for you, the festival creates a great fiesta atmosphere and is a great place to immerse yourself in some tradition and culture.
Day Trips From Miravet
Sant Carles De La Rapita
Sant Carles de la Rapita is a pretty Spanish town on the sea front, and is the perfect place to visit if you’re in need of some time by the sea. It’s only an hours drive from Miravet and from here you can explore the Delta Ebro, try out some watersports or dine on freshly caught sea food. Find out more about Sant Carles de la Rapita in this extensive guide.
An hour from Miravet, high up in the mountains, lies the stunning Siurana. This village has views to die for, and a rich history to boot. Find out more about this gem of a destination here.
Game Of Thrones Castle – Peniscola
Peñiscola is a short drive away. It is a striking Templar castle that overlooks the sea, surrounded by narrow streets and pretty shops and restaurants. It’s well worth a day trip, especially if you’re a history fan, or a Game of Thrones fan, which was filed here in 2015-perhaps you will recognise it!
If you’re after a little more action then head to the port city of Tarragona, It would be easy to spend a day here, visiting the numerous historic attractions, wandering the peaceful gardens and dining out on tapas and ice cream.
Where To Eat In Miravet
With a population of only 800, there is only a small choice of restaurants in Miravet. We found it made for a nice change to the overwhelming choice of places to eat you usually get, but if you’re big on food then you may want to explore some of the restaurants in surrounding areas too. Before you do move on, check out these well rated options.
Where To Stay In Miravet
Mas de Xim This beautiful property is situated in Miravet and has it’s own outdoor pool, wifi and private parking. It also has the most incredible surroundings. If you’re looking to truly unwind then look no further!
Miravet Palace If it’s views of the river you’re after then this place won’t disappoint. Right in the heart of Miravet, this artists accommodation has rooms with balconies overlooking the River Ebre for a little of something magical.
How To Get To Miravet
One of the great things about booking a holiday to Miravet is it’s proximity to other major attractions and it’s accessibility. It’s only an hour from Reus and two hours from Barcelona, making it easy to reach for a short weekend.
The best way to visit Miravet is by car. Public transport links to this area of Spain are few and far between, and will involve a mixture of buses and taxis. Hire a car from the airport to make your trip cheaper and more enjoyable. Find out how we got a great deal on our hire car from Reus here.
Parking in Miravet is easy to find. There is a main car park just opposite the village, and it’s possible to park around the village square (just check the restrictions on the sign for up to date information).
Hopefully this guide has inspired you to pay Miravet a visit. You won’t be disappointed! If you have any questions about this incredible village then don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!