From 2 to 13 years old
Under 2 years old
12 October 2023


At the doorstep of the Aigüestortes National Park and less than 15 minutes from the Baqueira Beret ski resort lie Arties and Garós, two charming villages that, due to their scenic, architectural, and cultural value, belong to the Association of the Most Beautiful Villages in Spain. In this guide, we’ll reveal what to see in Arties and Garós so you can make the most of your stay in these picturesque villages.

A Stroll Through Their Streets

Both villages are the perfect size to explore on foot. Wander through their cobbled streets lined with typical Aranese-style houses, stop at the Garona River bridge to enjoy the views and the sound of the flowing water, or visit their shops in search of some local souvenirs. Among the shops in Arties, you’ll find several boutiques selling handmade crafts and locally sourced gourmet products, as well as a bakery and a wine cellar for the days when you want to dine in your apartment.

Restaurants in Arties and Garós

Speaking of gourmet products, another thing to see – or rather, taste – in Arties and Garós is their delicious cuisine. If you feel like dining out, both villages have several restaurants where flavor and quality ingredients take center stage. In Garós, you’ll find various options for local cuisine, featuring dishes like olla aranesa (Aranese stew), pâtés, cheeses, and game and fish dishes. Meanwhile, in Arties, you can find everything from local cuisine to Italian, grills, pintxos bars, and even fusion cuisine with South African or Thai influences. Looking for a good après-ski plan? Arties also offers several options perfect for relaxing with a drink in front of the fireplace.


Santa María Church, Arties

Continuing with the list of things to see in Arties, one of the most emblematic monuments is undoubtedly the Santa María Church, an original construction from the 12th century that has been exposed to different architectural styles over time. It features the oldest Romanesque-style main wing, a bell tower with a Gothic-style clock, and even Baroque altarpieces from the 17th and 18th centuries hidden inside.

Arties Castle

From the Santa María Church, you can see part of what was once the Arties Castle. Although today only its consolidated ruins remain, its historical value allows us to travel back to the 12th century to learn more about the history of this small town from its Romanesque past. After several wars, demolitions, a reconstruction, and more demolitions, Arties Castle still preserves part of its walls and a circular tower – located to the west of the church – where the entrance gate was once located.

The defensive concerns of the time can also be seen in some houses in Arties, such as Casa Paulet – located next to the river – with its Renaissance-style windows and arrow slits on the facade, or in Casa Portolá, a stately home that is now connected to the Parador de Turismo and has a well-preserved defense tower on its facade.

San Julián Church of Garós

Garós boasts another heritage gem, the parish church of San Julián. It’s a Romanesque church from the 12th century that underwent reforms in the 15th century, incorporating the Gothic-style apse, the altar paintings from the 16th century, and the large bell tower from the 17th century. As an interesting fact, did you know that the clock on the bell tower originally belonged to the Santa María Church in Arties? Continuing with the intriguing details, legend has it that the bell tower once housed a 3-meter skull belonging to the warrior Gegant Mandrónius, who fought against the Roman invasion in the village of Betlán.

Additionally, in the rear part of the church, there is an important archaeological site with early Christian remains, and its ancient necropolis is under study.

Arties Thermal Springs

On the outskirts of Arties, just a lovely 5-minute walk along a path surrounded by pines, firs, and hazelnut trees, you’ll find the Arties thermal springs, also known as Bahns d’Arties. These modern facilities feature two outdoor pools of sulfurous thermal waters, open for bathing from June to October. It’s undoubtedly a perfect plan to relax your muscles after a day of exploring the Aran Valley, with a soothing bath in waters at approximately 39°C, all while enjoying mountain views.



While walking through the streets of Arties, you may come across various colorful cow sculptures. In fact, in the main square of the village, Plaza Ortau, there is a monument to the cow featuring a welded iron sheet sculpture representing the typical Bruna breed from the Pyrenees.

Furthermore, every June 23rd, on the occasion of the San Juan night, Arties celebrates the Taro Festival. Declared Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO, the festival involves felling a large fir tree, subsequently burning it, and parading it through the streets of Arties until it reaches the Town Hall square. In its origins, it paid tribute to the pagan sun god, Abelio, to thank him for the arrival of good weather and bountiful harvests. Today, it is celebrated and honored with the Taro monument, a bronze sculpture that the Naut Aran Town Council dedicated to these ancestral festivals.

Excursions from Arties and Garós

Arties and Garós are surrounded by peaks that exceed 2,000 meters in altitude, offering a unique opportunity for hiking and exploring the many trails available. One of our favorite excursions leads to the base of Montarto, and you can do it on foot or with snowshoes in the winter season. It’s a relatively easy and beautiful route, passing through spectacular fir forests and crystal-clear streams until you reach the Restanca Refuge – where, with luck, you might spot ibexes, redstarts, wild boars, roe deer, or foxes in their habitat.

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Located a 5-minute drive from Garós, Arties has a pharmacy, a medical center, a bank, and a tobacco shop for all your needs during your stay in FeelFree. On the road between the two towns, there is a gas station that sells firewood and pellets. Furthermore, in Arties, there are two municipal charging points for Tesla vehicles, which also serve universal electric vehicles.