Les Ferreres aqueduct or Devil’s Bridge
I have a love of Roman ruins, so when I read about this little gem I just had to visit. My husband and I took a short trip to Barcelona and while there we decided to take a day-trip to the town of Tarragona. I had been there a couple years before and absolutely loved it. It is not touristy, or crowded and for me it is a perfect place to "feel the oldness".
To the north of Tarragona, right off the highway is a natural park where you can visit the remains of a Roman Aqueduct. It was declared a UNESCO site in 2000 and it is in very good condition. You can walk along the same path where the water flowed over 2000 years ago.
How we got there:
We left Barcelona from the Sant station. The ride is about one hour with scenic views of the mediterranean. We arrived in Tarragona and bought tickets for the L5 bus, the service that goes to San Sebastian and loops back to Tarragona. The bus left from the roundabout at the end of the Rambla Nova and headed North on the Carretera Nacional 240.
The stop is called Pont del Diable and it is literally by the side of the highway on an exit ramp! We made our way up the hill and found the entrance to the park.
The bus stop is literally on the side of the highway!
The plan was to join a free guided tour at 11am but when we arrived the sign said the tours were at 10am- the internet had lied to us!! We were on our own and didn't see many signs- those we did were in Catalan- but we figured out the general direction in which to go and set off. It is a big park, with several hiking trails over uneven terrain but after about 10 minutes we arrived at the Aqueducte de les Ferreres.
It is an impressive site and well preserved. Built by the Romans in the time of Augustus this bridge was part of the aqueduct that supplied the town of Tarraco (now Tarragona) with water. The water came from the Francoli River via conduction channels until it reached this ravine and then flowed via the bridge to the other side and then on to the city.
You can walk along the top, It is approximately 712ft (217 metres) long and 88ft (27m) at its maximum height. It probably feels as solid as it did back in the Roman times. The place is quiet and deserted, away from all trace of the modern world, and in the late summer heat you can almost hear the water flowing.
After getting my "feel the oldness" fix, we wound our way to the bus stop, which thankfully is still on our side of the highway and boarded the next L5 that came through. We continued north to San Sebastian where it looped around and brought us back to Tarragona. The whole expedition took about 2:30 hours and was totally worth it!
Tip for visiting: arrive earlier than 10 to try to catch the free tour and avoid the heat if you travel during the summer months. Wear sneakers or something like it as the ground is uneven and very pebbly (is that even a word?). And lastly, bring a snack and water and take advantage of some of the hiking trails. There is one that has an amazing view of the Devil's Bridge.
Lots of things to do at the Parc del Post del Diable
For more information: http://www.pontdeldiabletarragona.com