If you are one of those persons who likes to have an active vacation SUCH AS KAYAK HOLIDAYS, you came to the right place!
There’s no better way to explore stunning Catalonia than to enjoy in kayaking along the picturesque Ebro river.
In this post, you will find out all the essential kayaking tips, a route that my bf and I took along the longest river in Spain, and some info about the charming surrounding cities on the riverbanks of Ebro river in Catalonia.
A COUNTRYSIDE ROAD TRIP TO EBRO RIVER/The Ebre River (Catalan)
8.00 am. The day before my birthday. My boyfriend decided to surprise me with a kayaking adventure. I had no idea where we are going, all I knew it will be on the radiant Ebro river which is 930 km long and running through Catalonia holding large stretches of amazing beauty. I must say I love road trips – short or long – especially driving through the countryside. Catalan countryside is remarkable and noteworthy with its green and lush landscape but almost desert-like in some areas.
The mountains are somehow sharp and while I enjoyed riding next to the wind with the scent of lemons and oranges, new mountains appeared and turn out to be smooth. I enjoyed opening the window and being closer to all those olive and palm trees while listening to El Camarón de la Isla – the gypsy god of flamenco or Gypsy Kings.
After a while, we finally came to our starting point – Móra d’Ebre.
The history of this dazzling town dates back to the Neolithic period, but remains of Iberian, Roman, and Arab towns have also been found. Unfortunately, the large number of battles in this region have left their mark and altered the landscape especially the buildings of this town as well as the surrounding ones (War of Separation, the War of Succession, the War of the French, the Carlist wars and the Spanish Civil War – the most recent in which Ebro battle was the bloodiest). Still, the city is gorgeous the way it is and more about it I will write a bit later. Now, let me show you the kayaking route that started from here!
KAYAKING ROUTE FROM MORA TO MIRAVET CASTLE
The route we took is a 13.30 km long way of pure paradise filled with the soothing sounds of nature! It is considered to be the middle length route and you will need approx. 4 to 5 hours to see the castle which comes as a cake at the end of a perfect dinner! You will probably go in the morning, same as we did because later in the afternoon wind starts blowing so it is not so pleasant to drive plus in some parts, it can be quite dangerous. Our guide gave us the map (picture above) and marked for us the dangerous parts and areas that we should avoid or the ones we shall visit.
We booked double kayak for more than 5 hours with a couple from Enblau and it turned out to be 60 euros all together with all equipment included. Some might say it is expensive because there are also a bit cheaper companies in the area, but Alba and her colleague were the only ones that spoke English (oops, we are still not so great with the Spanish language).
Above all, this kind of couple helped us with everything and they even gave me brief and careful instructions with a short practice class because I have never driven kayak until this time. Don’t worry, they will do this with you too. 🙂
The arcade bridge of Móra d’Ebre is the first thing you will notice in this cute town plus you will sail underneath it with the kayak. The bridge is an emblematic and characteristic monument of Mora de Ebro that forms part of the town’s skyline. It was built after the previous iron bridge was destroyed during the Battle of the Ebro.
The citizens are very proud of this lovely bridge as well with the galatxo of Móra La nova, which is a natural and protected area full of all different kinds of fauna.
WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT FROM THIS KAYAK EXPERIENCE?
During the entire journey, you will experience a certain level of tranquility, loneliness, and the calmness of the river while the only sounds that will cross your ear will be the extraordinary songs of many birds. The area of Delta Ebro is close by and it has more than 340 species of birds!
Of course in some parts, you will hear the bubbling of the river especially on those parts where the river is a bit faster and “dangerous”.
Amongst many enormous fish and birds, if you are lucky, you will also see some dragonflies and goats. The views will blow your mind! I felt like I’m in a fairytale or some fantasy movie and I definitely advise you to stop kayaking for a while, just laidback and enjoy surrendering with the great Mother Nature.
Along the way, you will see some interesting and historical, stone buildings, one more bridge and plenty of fallen trees. There were huge storms and floods at the beginning of this year, so many areas in Catalonia are still proof of how bad the storms were.
River Ebro in the Catalan area has some fluvial islands and this area here is no exception only the ones here are significantly smaller. When there is a flood, tiny islands along this route almost disappear.
Let’s assume it’s a nice day because who does kayaking in the floods time anyway? Take a break from driving in one of the small islands, eat something, chill and get some tan.
If you are brave enough, throw yourself in the river because it ain’t cold! Remember, you are far from the source of Ebro so it can only be refreshing. Perhaps it is chilly in the beginning, but you’ll be alright especially if it’s summer (it was above 30 Celsius Degrees when we were kayaking!). By the way, the last time I swam in the river, I was 10 years old or something like that. So…if I can do it – anyone can do it! 🙂
Don’t forget that rivers flow constantly and it can even so strong to pull you! Hold yourself or just get up and stand on your feet haha. The Ebro in this area of small islands is not so deep, more shallow-like.
Don’t miss the boat and once you are done with kayaking, stroll around Miravet city to explore every single corner of Templar’s castle because trust me – you will love it! The castle looks spectacular as from the river, so from the hill on which it was built.
The kayaking route Mora-Miravet is not the only route you can take in this area. Maybe you would prefer to take other stretches, or maybe you would prefer to make the outing shorter. If that’s the case, there are stretches that can be divided or you can take two different stretches in an all-day outing. The ball is in your court!Get My Adidas Cap
Middle length routes:
|Móra d’Ebre – Miravet|
Kayaking is not a dangerous sport unless you take dangerous paths. However, there are certain tips you should follow for the best experience you can have. If you are kayaking during the winter season, it’s important to bring a thermal sweater, a waterproof jacket, or a raincoat. The following tips will mostly refer to the summer season.
- You should wear comfortable clothes and footwear that can be soaked. The footwear should be preferably tight to the foot. Avoid wearing flip-flops as it’s easy to lose them plus it’s not comfortable at all. Slippers are a better option!
- Have some extra clothes in your backpack for changing after you’re done with kayaking. You will get wet! The company we choose had a yellow-lid-thing that you will notice (or you already did notice) on my photos and that keeps your valuable things safe from getting wet.
- IMPORTANT: bring enough water, food, anti-mosquitos spray, or something similar and sun lotion of at least 30 SPF. A hat/cap is a great idea too and sunglasses if you prefer. Bio bag or any bag to dispose the trash and carry it with yourself. LEAVE NO TRACES!
KAYAKING FOR THE FIRST TIME?
If it’s your first time trying a kayak, I recommend you to take a double kayak. In a lot of places, you will see people recommending an individual kayak for beginners, but I wouldn’t agree. Simply because it’s easier to drive in two than alone and to take some rest while the other person is kayaking. Besides, many people have problems with kayaking in the right direction and tandem kayak can help you master that while you are preparing for your individual kayak adventure!
PRO TIP: wear gloves to prevent blisters! It is not uncommon to develop blisters after even a few hours of kayaking and special kayaking gloves are designed to make gripping the paddle easier.
INTERESTING FACT: Alexander Doba was the first person to paddle a 7-meter sea kayak across the Atlantic ocean, a voyage that spanned 5394 km! DOBA RECENTLY KAYAKED
ACROSS THE ATLANTIC AT 70 ! (FOR THE THIRD TIME)
Let’s get back to our kayaking adventure! The company we book with has double kayaks with are a couple of central sits for the kids. So if you have kids, you can bring them to kayak adventure and sail together! Two adults and two kids can fit in these models of the kayak. Don’t worry, as I already mentioned, kayaking is not a dangerous sport! Once you are done kayaking and exploring Miravet plus its castle, stroll around charming МORA D’EBRE!
WHAT TO SEE IN MORA D’EBRE?
Móra d’Ebre is the capital of the comarca of the Ribera d’Ebre in Catalonia on the riverbank of the Ebro river. In Catalonia, almost every town has a fortress or a castle on top of the hill that were strategically built in the past to defend the city against the enemies. This delightful city has only 6000 citizens but millions of reasons to visit!
The old town of Mora de Ebro has the Mora Castle, a remarkable construction that dominated the river and that today still preserves its walls and towers. It is called “Castell de Móra” or The castle of Mora d’Ebre.
Built during the Muslim domination, this imposing castle was a direct witness of the war against French intruders and the Carlist Wars.
Today, it looks damaged still from the Spanish Civil War with some holes from bombs and although it looks a lot more damaged than close by Miravet castle, I advise you to visit it especially because there’s no entry fee!
Another of Mora de Ebro’s most notorious buildings is the Prioral church with different architectural modifications during history. The church is located in the Plaza de Baix and you can have a great view on it if you climb up to the main hill from where you can also see the Mora castle.
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