Santa Cecilia and Hermitages
There are some 15 chapels, former hermitages, dotted over Mount Montserrat.
formerly subject to the dioceses of Barcelona or Vic, they were all abandoned
when the hermits were forced to flee before the French invasion in 1811. Though
they were later rebuilt, few were inhabited once more and most were finally
abandoned in 1822, after which the buildings began to deteriorate. All that
remains now, in some cases, are the walls.
More information about hMore information about hermitages see the
Natural Park website.
Monastery of Santa Cecília stood some four kilometres from that of
Montserrat, on the road to Can Maçana. The church, simple and austere, basically
that same as that originally built in the 10th century, is one of the purest
examples of early Catalan Romanesque art. The three apses, with Lombard arches.
correspond to the nave and two aisles in the interior, with hammer-carved stone
walls that were originally whitewashed. The building is harmoniously integrated
into the landscape, forming a beautiful site. The Monastery was founded
between 942 and 945 by Abbot Cesari. The community was never large, and the
monastery was finally merged with that of Montserrat in 1539. Today, Santa
Cecília houses a mountain refuge.
Hermitage of Sant Joan
Is one of the most accessible from the Sanctuary. To
reach it, we take the funicular railway of the same name. From the station at
the top, we can enjoy splendid views of the monastery.
Herrmitage of Sant Onofre
Perches on the rocks. Here we can see the cistern,
excavated into the very stone.
Hermitage of Sant Miquel
Though documented as far back as the 10th century, the
present builging is a much later reconstruction, inagurated in 1870.
Hermitage of Sant Jeroni
We take a path that starts at the upper station on the
Sant Joan funicular railway line. Taking around an hour and a half, this is one
of the most beautiful walks in Montserrat Natural Park, as it culminates at the
peak of Sant Jeroni, the highest point in the mountain (1.236 m).
Hermitage of Sant Dimes
Before the hermitage was built, a fortification stood
here, built at the command of King Peter of Aragon. Later, some 30 bandoleers
made this their stronghold, robbing pilgrims until they were finally driven off
by a group of countrymen. The original building was left in ruins and the chapel
was built, though it now houses a weather station.
Hermitage of Santa Anna
By the María mountain torrent, beside the crossroads of
the paths leading to the other chapels, not far from the monastery, for which
reason this was where the hermits came twice a week to hear mass.
Hermitage of La Santa Creu
Has been conserved, along with the two cisterns, still in use. This one of the
few hermitages inhabited in modern times, its last occupant being Father
Basilio, who died at the age of 78 on 23 December 2003.
Herrmitage of La Santísima Trinitat
Are remains of some of the walls, the cistern and the Chapel of El Sant Crist,
More rooms were added to the hermitage in the 17th century as, along with the
Hermitage of Sant Dimes, it had direct access to the monastery via a staircase
with 660 steps.
Hermitage of Sant Benet
Was built in 1536 to shorten the distance between the two hermitages. All that
now remains, however, is a chapel-shaped building built later, and now used as a
Hermitage of Sant Jaume
Are the wall foundations, now half-hidden amongst the vegetation. The hermitage
stands on a rock known as "Gorra Marinera", and which commands five views of the
monastery. From here, the hermit could hear the church organ and monks choir at
song and prayer.
Hermitage of Santa Magdalena
Remains of walls and cisterns are conserved.
Hermitage of Santa Caterina
Situated below a rock at the springs of the Santa Caterina mountain torrent, built in a grotto
that now serves as a refuge for climbers and hikers.
Hermitage of Sant Antoni
Over the "Paret dels Diables", near "Cavall
Hermitage of Sant Salvador
At the foot of the rock known as "l'Elefant".