Visit of Vilafranca del Penedès
Fifth event of project CUT (Culture twinning) took place in Vilafranca del Penedès, located 50 km inland from Barcelona. Vilafranca del Penedès is a charming Catalan town, which is best known for being the centre of Cava production – Spain’s famous sparkling wine and for their famous Castellers de Vilafranca. Graced with a quaint old town centre with some notable Medieval landmarks, the town is surrounded by some of the largest Cava wineries in Spain and offers plenty of opportunities for wine tasting, gastronomic experiences and cultural and historical research of the town.
On the first day participants had a meeting debate. Tourist manager of Vilafrance del Penedes presented their tourism destination, areas of work. On panel discussion participants exchanged ideas about the methods for creating cultural knowledge, enhancing culture in society and enhancing the weight of culture in promoting quality of cultural tourism. After the debate, the participants had a chance to see a museum dedicated to wine, housed within a former Royal Plaace. Vinseum – a combination of vin, ‘wine’, and ‘museum’ – contains some 17.000 objects related to wine making in Catalonia, covering the introduction of vinification methods by the Ancient Romans up until the current day. At the end of our first day we visited a Cava winery. The tour included a visit of the property and an introduction to Cava making methods.
The next day participants had the opportunity to learn about the culture of “castellers” through a wide range of activities related to their world. They showed us how they promote and develop leadership and team building with their social, educational and sporting values. We also visited the group’s headquarters, which is Cal Figarot, Casa Via Raventós, a house located in downtown Vilafranca del Penedès and specially adapted for human tower building activity.
At the end of the day participants went together with their tourist guide on tour to see the most beautiful parts of the town. The most astonishing of the historic monuments in Vilafranca is the basilica de Santa Maria from 13th century. Gothic church, which was awarded with the status of basilica in 1920 by Pope Benedict XV, impressed all participants. They also took a look at other parts of center of Vilafranca, including two virtual reality points.
On the last day, the participants of the project experienced the pulse of the city by visiting the town market. Every Saturday the town centre comes to life as more than 200 producers set up shops on the main square of Vilafranca de Penedès from 8am to 2pm. The market is a perfect occasion for tourists to familiarize themself with local products and buy authentic souvenirs such as cured meats, olive oils and wine.
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