The Secret Hermitages around Montserrat
One of the main and best known attractions in Catalonia is definitely Montserrat. A spectacular multi-peaked mountain range with a Monastery built at an impressive height. But this area hosts many secrets. Among them, a small multitude of hermitages. The best known are very close to the monastery (hermitage of Sant Miquel or hermitage of Sant Joan) but others are hidden in very peculiar but at the same time exotic places inside and up the Montserrat mountain.
Located at around 2.4km from the monastery, at an altitude of 1092m we find the Hermitage of Sant Antoni. In a way of speaking, because it’s not the kind of place you can simply find. It’s not well known by the tourists and it was considered the loneliest of all the hermitages. It belongs to the area of Tebaida, and it’s the furthest one from the Monastery together with the hermitage of Sant Jeroni. Some sections of the trail are not easily accessible and you must be prepared to walk for at least 1h 15min if you start from the monastery, with more or less 300m of altitude change.
On the edge of an imposing cliff, the hermitage leaves no one indifferent. The place is an unbeatable viewpoint on the southwest side of Cavall Bernat, an emblematic rock formation of the mountain, and much of the mountain range.
It is not known when this hermitage was built. It seems that at first it was in an even more inhospitable place and was later moved to its current location. At the end of the 15th century, it was restored and enlarged. Now, it even has its own “Moreneta“, the image of the black virgin of Montserrat.
Once a place of worship, today serves as a refuge for the many climbers who practice this sport in this area of Montserrat. Visitors maintain the place in a decent condition and they leave all sorts of handy items there, like food, camping gear, tools, medicines and even books and games! The most adventurous even dare to spend the night, or stay for several days. It also has a small diary where travellers can leave messages and share their thoughts. It offers a fantastic scenery for a retreat, and overall an unforgettable experience.