COSTA BRAVA RURAL - Sant Pere Pescador
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ROUTE 0: Sant Pere Pescador
The village | "La Sopa" (The soup) | What to do
 
The village       St. Pere and Saldet

Sant Pere Pescador is located in the region of el Alto Ampurdán, in the heart of the bay of Rosas. The region spreads out over the left bank of the current low course of river Fluvià, about three kilometres from its estuary. Within Sant Pere Pescador's municipal limits there are six kilometres of beaches with very fine sand without constructions in view. This has made the region famous among those who love peaceful beaches without crowds. The tramontana (strong north wind) makes is possible to practice windsurf in unbeatable conditions, as well as enjoying the beaches. The river's estuary is also a perfect place for rowing, water skiing and sailing.
Sant Pere Pescador, despite what its name could suggest ("pescador" means fisherman), is an eminently agricultural municipality, although in recent years tourism has been a major occupation for the autochthonous population. The diversion of the river favoured the draining of the lakes and marshes in the area that have currently become very fertile lands. The urban area is surrounded by apple and peach trees. In the lower lands, those nearer the sea and the river, there is still a large marsh area that has great ecologic value. Illa Caramany, near the Fluvià's estuary, is a resting place for many migratory birds. Small boats can sail from the river to the sea, and those who love fishing will also find this river area an ideal place to practise their hobby.
The first document to mention the place, from 974, and others from the years 982 and 990 state that the settlement had, or had had, another name: "Villa Militiano quem vocant Sanctum Petrum". These documents confirm it was owned by the Abbey of Sant Pere de Rodes. The full name, as it has survived until our days, already appears on a donation carried out in 1060 by Countess Guisla d'Empúries to the Monastery of Santa Maria de Roses and the Episcopal seat of Girona which made reference to the parish church of "Sancti Petri Piscatoris".
The Castle of Sant Pere Pescador belonged to the Caramany family, originally from Fenollet and documented in the Alto Ampurdán since the first half of the 14th C. The high jurisdiction of the location was held by the Counts of Empúries. Around 1457, king Alfonso the Magnanimous ceded the county to his nephew Enrique, known as Prince Fortune, who used to live in Sant Pere Pescador, a village that had a relevant role in the war against Juan II.
In 1461 the prince and count Enric had had responded to the call from Catalonian MPs to free prince Carlos de Viana, although he later passed to the side of Juan II. In 1466 he accompanied queen Juana Enríquez and his young cousin Fernando, the future Catholic Monarchs. On October 24th of the same year, he seized the village of Sant Pere Pescador where the queen would live. The Parliament was also set up in Sant Pere until the end of November.
Sant Pere Pescador has an old quarter that is based around the parish church, a 17th C. building, and the Caramanys' castle-fortress. Ruins of the ancient wall can still be seen in the vicinities of the latter. The town grew to the south, where there are still buildings bearing interesting elements from the 16th and 18th centuries.

In the outskirts of the village there is a chapel dedicated to San Sebastián. According to the tradition, and recorded in the canticles dedicated to the Patron Saint San Sebastián, around 1640 a plague of cholera devastated the village. The inhabitants turned their prayers to God to free them from this terrible bad luck and San Sebastián acted as their intercessor, as the villagers considered him the lawyer against the plague. After many prayers the plague finally left the village, and the inhabitants organised grand festivities in Sant Pere to honour the saint. The acknowledgment was so great that they agreed to erect a chapel in his honour and dedicate him the Main Festivities. He is currently the municipality's patron saint and the main festivity is still held on January 20th.
 
"La Sopa" (The soup) | BACK TO THE TOP |
In the mid 19th C. Sant Pere Pescador started the tradition of celebrating the Carnival festivities with "La Sopa" (The Soup).
For many years, gypsy families camped in the vicinities of the municipality and on the banks of river Fluvià. They usually went into the town to beg for remains of "la sopa" at the noble houses. "La sopa" was the denomination given to the food the noble houses served the town's paupers and beggars in a time when poverty was very extended. In parallel, during the Carnival festivities, the gypsies organised dances, after which they would beg for alms.
Over the years, these two facts gave way to the tradition which consists in the youths begging for alms for the "carnival soup." Every one used to chip in: although money was never allowed, all donations were made in kind (chicken, rabbit, rice, beans,...), each person according to his/her possibilities. The last day of the Carnival festivities, all the goods that have been collected were taken to the Municipal Oven to be cooked. The chaplain blessed it and the young girls, after dancing the gypsy's dance, shared it out among the poor people. If there were no poor people, or if there was any left over, everyone had the right to take the ration he/she wanted home. This tradition is still followed. Each family in Sant Pere Pescador gives a voluntary contribution (currently it is in money) to the Festival Commission, who is in charge of organising a popular rice meal in the municipal park on Carnival Sunday where anyone (locals and foreigners) can eat as much "soup" as they want or can manage.
 
What to do | BACK TO THE TOP |
Sant Pere Pescador's privileged location in the heart of the Alto Ampudán, allows half day or whole day excursions to many interesting locations in this magnificent region. On this web page we have included several routes that you will probably find very appealing. Despite this vast offer, we recommend you dedicate some time to visiting our village and the marvellous landscapes that surround it.
A short stroll around the urban area allows visitors to discover the parish church, the Caramanys' castle-fortress, the old walls, the fountain in the main square and the chapel of San Sebastián.
Excursions can be carried out by foot or bicycle along the riverbank following the course of the Fluvià until reaching L'Armentera and L'ArbreSec..
It is essential to visit the Island of Caramany; although it cannot be accessed directly given that it is a protected area, it can be contemplated from the riverbank towards the beach. There are various paths that can be driven along.
The house has bicycles and a small boat for rent that can be used by our guests to carry out these excursions in an alternative manner.

Boat that can be used by our guests





COSTA BRAVA RURAL
Last Updated: 10/04/2017