Peralada stands on top of a small hill in the very centre of Alt Empordà. Its strategic location has meant that this town has been an important crossroads since ancient times. The historic nature of Peralada can be contemplated at every step. The municipal area also encompasses the village of Vilanova de la Muga. Peralada became one of the main capitals of the Empordà region throughout the entire Middle Ages. Numerous buildings and monuments remain from its period of splendour, a real delight for visitors, who can explore and discover the secrets of this thousand-year old town.
Sant Domènec cloister is a 13th century Romanesque monument and is all that remains of the Augustinian convent founded in the second half of the 11th century. The real highlight of the cloister lies in a series of capitals decorated with biblical and profane scenes. What is now Sant Martí church dates back to the end of the 18th century, but it is thought that the first church was built in the 9th century. Peralada castle is gothic in style but underwent renovations in later periods. It is now the headquarters of Peralada casino and also constitutes the most representative image of the town. Its large towers stand impressively, surrounded by magnificent garden areas.
Carme convent is a gothic building that currently houses the Castle Museum. We should mention its cloister and its church, which conserves exceptional polychrome wooden coffering. The gothic cloister and church are two of the convent’s original buildings and can be visited. A library with nearly 80,000 volumes and over 1000 editions of El Quijote is another great attraction to be seen here, followed by the Glass Museum, which holds some of the best and largest collections in the world. And finally, the Wine Museum was created in the winery in the 60s, which was where Peralada wines were made until then. All the items and objects on display are related to the culture of wine in its different stages.
The Sant Domènec Cultural Tourism Centre is an interactive and dynamic space to learn about Empordà’s cultural, natural and artistic heritage. A wonderful audiovisual presentation talks about the life of one of the most important Catalan writers of medieval times: Ramon Muntaner. Sant Domènec cloister is a 12th century Romanesque building and is the emblem of these socio-cultural facilities which also acts as a cultural centre, regularly holding art exhibitions and conferences.
Right in the centre of the village of Vilanova de la Muga, is the 11th century Santa Eulàlia Romanesque church.