The Collsacabra or Cabrerès region is a 142 square km area of natural beauty in the heart of Catalunya. It borders with the Plana de Vic to the west, the Sau/Ter Valley and Guilleries to the south, the Cabrera mountain range to the north and the Garrotxa valleys and plains (Olot) to the East. It lies mainly within the county of Osona, but includes wilder areas of the counties of La Garrotxa and La Selva. It includes four villages: Rupit, Cantonigrós, l’Esquirol and Tavertet. Tavertet is literally built along 200 metre high cliffs that contain fossils from its prehistoric past when this part of Catalunya was a shallow sea, followed by an uprising of the land, thousands of years ago. Tavertet is the nearest village from l’Avenc, around 3km away. The cliffs ('cingles' in Catalan) below l’Avenc are some of the highest and most spectacular and form a natural protection barrier to the South and East that was probably why l’Avenc was originally built here. The resulting area is a balance of natural beauty and culture which captivates the visitor from day one. Whether you walk, cycle, or just sit and watch the changing scenery and breathe in the history, you will love it!
Flora and fauna in this area is abundant. There is ample vegetation of more than 300 species of plants, bushes and trees. The sunnier hillsides are covered in Mediterranean oak; the north sides boast graceful beech tree forests whereas the evergreen oak trees grow in the crags, fields and near the cliffs. In the damper depressions there is hazelnut and poplar as well as holly and butcher’s broom. Fern and herbs of all sorts that delight even the most discerning botanists grow between the rocks and along the pathways.
There are wild animals in this area but they are not easily spotted except by their tracks or if you catch them in flight, as often happens with our Griffon vultures. If one is patient and quiet it is possible to see squirrels, badgers, foxes, martens, wild boar and many species of birds, some very rare or native to our cliffs such as the Egyptian vultures, sparrow hawks, alpine swifts and kestrels. Salamanders and toads come out on the damper days and need to be avoided or carefully removed when driving. Please drive slowly and with care.
The network of paths to hike, cycle, ride or just stroll around is not very well sign-posted yet but with a little common sense and a map the area is not difficult or dangerous to navegate on foot or by bike.
With the support of the Catalunya-La Pedrera Foundation, the surrounding area of l’Avenc has three marked walks to enjoy the best spots around the protected area. You’ll be able to visit the ancient tombs, the cliffs, the overhanging rock cave, and jutting out lookout rock: La Roca Llarga.
Itinerary 1. Streams of Abeurador and Avellanosa and the cliffs:
Time: 1 hour
Distance: 3.3 km (2 miles aprox.)
Description: Circular itinerary that goes past two streams (normally dry) and then goes towards the cliffs and above one waterfall and pastures, where cows graze. There are lovely views from the cliff edge, but be careful!
Itinerary 2. Collet de Rajols:
Time: 2 hours
Distance: 4.2 km (2.6 miles aprox)
Description: Circular itinerary that follows the Abeurador stream and into a beech wood until you get to the summer pastures above l'Avenc. You'll go past ancient toumbs excavated into the rock, past a small cave like shelter and lovely views from Rocallarga view point.
Itinerary 3. Rajols Farm and Pla Boixer area:
Difficulty: Easy/ Medium
Time: 2 hours
Distance: 4.8 km (2.9 miles aprox)
Description: Circular itinerary that goes past the Pla Boixer area, where box bushes grow in big numbers and passing by pastures of Rajols farm. You can come back the same way (main road) or make it a circular road and go upwards to Collet de Rajols and past the Rocallarga view point and back to l'Avenc.
AquaTerraClub: Kayaking in the Sau reservoir
La Vall: Horse-back riding (near l'Esquirol)
Anigami: Team Building Activities