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The Insider's guide

Judith Perxes runs Pyrenees-based adventure sport travel operator Paddle in Spain.

Why should people visit Sort and the Pyrenees? This place is gorgeous, with lots of attractions to offer – it’s like a sweet candy waiting to be opened. Most people when they get here, they get impressed by its natural environment, the high mountains, and the Noguera Pallaresa River, which is a mecca for white-water adventure lovers.

What’s Sort like? Sort is the main village of the area located at the base of the Catalan Pyrenees. It’s a great holiday destination in the summer with its big range of outdoor activities, such us white-water rafting, kayaking, and canyoning. The Noguera Pallaresa River Festival takes place in the last week of September, and is a great chance to paddle with people from all over the world. There are kayak clinics and you can enjoy a whole week getting a good taste of the Spanish way of life. And in winter, from December to March, it’s a great destination too – we have trips with snow shoes, sleg dog rides, and snowmobiles. (noguerapallaresariverfestival.com)

What about eating and drinking? There are meals for all budgets, from the classic sandwich with everything and patatas bravas at one of the local bars on the main street of Sort, to some elaborate meals with proper wine tastings from local vineyards. Nights are warm, and there are lots of bars and pubs from which to enjoy the Spanish sunset. In summertime, don’t miss all the different local celebrations in the surrounding small villages.

What’s your favourite thing about the area? You’ll be made to feel welcome in Spain any time, no matter where you are.


The taste of spain: Tapas 

You’ll be living off these small tapas portions of Spanish snacks. Here’s a guide to our favourites.

Gambas al ajill: Garlic prawns turn up everywhere from swankier restaurants to beachside shacks. But, be warned, they load up on garlic so people will know what you’ve been eating
a day later. Exquisite with a few glasses of white wine.
Patatas bravas: Basically potato wedges but, in Spanish, bravas means fierce, which gives you an idea of what to expect from the spicy Tabasco sauce. Probably the most common Spanish tapas.
Pulpo gallego: This Gallic-style octopus is served all over Spain these days, most often with a familiar recipe that involves cooking the octopus and serving it up with boiled potatoes, a squirt of olive oil and sweet paprika. Delicious.
Mejillones rellenos: In Spain, stuffed mussels are known as tigres, after they’ve been breaded and fried. They go down a treat with a few cold cervezas.
Tortilla espanola: The humble Spanish omelette is considered the national dish, made with eggs, potatoes and onions.


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Adventure holidays in the Pyrenees
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