Monastery of Sant Pere de Casserres | Cultural Heritage. Goverment of Catalonia.
Monastery of Sant Pere de Casserres A legendary monastery
The origins of the Benedictine monastery of Sant Pere de Casserres stand half way between history and legend. The latter explains that one of the sons of the viscounts of Osona and Cardona spoke only three days after being born to announce that he wouldn't live for more than 30 days. Once dead, they had to put his body on a mule that would walk without being guided. At the spot where the mule would stop, a monastery was to be constructed.

The version that speaks about the monastery's strategic position seems more likely, with the monastery situated in a very pronounced bend of the Ter river. Previously, it was the site of a castrum serrae or defence tower. It was a building that the viscounts would decide to convert into a monastery.

Ermetruit, viscountess of Osona, was the monastery's promoter, the only one from the Benedictine order in Osona. Construction began in 1005 and, seven years later, monastic life began; the church was consecrated in 1050.
With the exception of short favourable periods (when the abbey had the support of the local nobility like the lords of Savassona, Tavertet and Sau), the monastery was marked by misfortune. Only ten years after the consecration of the church, the abbey fell to the category of priory because it had less than 12 monks and in 1079 Sant Pere de Casserres came to be a "branch" in Catalan lands of the powerful abbey of Cluny.

Between the 13th and the 15th century, Sant Pere de Casserres entered into decline from famines, wars and epidemics, such as the Black Plague of 1348. In the 19th century, the monastery passed into private hands and was used as a farm and tenant housing. The current group is the result of a series of restorations, like those done by Camil Pallàs (1952-1962) and Joan Albert Adell and the County Council of Osona (1994-1998).

The temple is a compendium of the Romanesque: three naves separated by pillars and crowned by semi-circular apses. The decorative architectural elements also rigorously follow the "style" of time, with blind arches, toothed friezes and a small cloister with semi-circular arches supported on columns. The church's interior was completely decorated with mural paintings, although nowadays only a few very deteriorated examples remain.

Two elements, escape the canon: on one hand, the church measures longer in width than length, an uncommon fact in the Catalan Romanesque style. On the other hand, the bell tower is -unusually low- is no more than two floors in height. Two curiosities of the monastery's exterior must be highlighted: the rectangular shaped building that serves as hospital and the area where numerous anthropomorphic tombs are conserved.

Author of the photographs: Josep Giribet.

Plan your visit

What can I do?
  • The monastery offers guided tours in Catalan, Spanish, French, English, German and Italian. It also offers school activities throughout the year.
  • On July Saturdays the monastery hosts the Sant Pere de Casserres Summer Festival with cultural activities for all audiences.
  • You can complete the discovery of Catalonia in the year 1000 through several tours that include, in addition to Sant Pere de Casserres, other spaces such as the Episcopal Museum of Vic, the bell tower of the Vic Cathedral and the Jacint Verdaguer House-Museum.
Event hireCoffee Shop / Restaurant
June to September
From 10am to 7.30pm
From October to May
From 10am to 5.30pm
Non-holiday Monday (if Monday is a holiday, the monastery will be opened and it will close on Tuesday), December 25th and 26th and January 1st: closed
General: € 3
Reduced: € 1.50

They are entitled to the reduced rate:
  • Young people up to 21 who hold the Carnet Jove, the university card or the international student card
  • Individual or family hostel card
  • Over 65 years
  • Large families
  • Groups of more than 25 people
  • School groups accompanied by teachers

They have the right to free:
  • Children under 7 years old
  • Club Super 3 members
  • Members of ICOM (International Council of Museums)
  • Attendees to previously authorized acts (weddings, corporate events, etc.)

Special cases:
  • Free admission every June 29th, Sant Pere.
  • Guided tour: for groups of 8 to 35 people, the cost of the guided tour is € 3 plus the price of admission per person. For groups of up to 7 people, the price is € 24 for the whole group.
  • Tour packages: visit to the Episcopal Museum of Vic, the bell tower of the Vic cathedral and the monastery of Sant Pere de Casserres, € 10.45. Visit to the Jacint Verdaguer House-Museum, the monastery of Sant Pere de Casserres, food and gifts, € 39.90. More information and reservations at the Verdaguer Museum.
Monastery of Sant Pere Casserres
Carretera, BV-5213
08510 Barcelona
Tel. (+34) 937 447 118 / (+34) 608 892 200
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