A museum outdoors
The Sanctuary, centre for pilgrims
Montserrat is a unique mountain in the world. The Benedictine Santa Maria de Montserrat Monastery is the most important landmark on the mountain.
It is one of the most famous monasteries in the Catholic world, as well as a centre for pilgrims. The sixteenth century basilica, a fifteenth century Gothic cloister and the Montserrat Museum (MDM) are interesting places for visitors. The Mare de Déu (Our Lady) image is the main point of interest and devotion for visitors to the Holy Mountain. It is in the basilica, made of carved polychrome and golden wood at the end of the twelfth century or beginning of the thirteenth century, affectionately known as the ‘Moreneta’ because the Virgin Mary's and Baby Jesus' hands and face are dark.
The famous Escolania (boys’ choir) is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. There are documents that show that the Escolania begun in 1307, although there are reasons to believe that it begun earlier still. A group of about 50 pupils live in the monastery and take part in the choir during the daily prayers in the sanctuary. One of the most beautiful things during the visit to Montserrat is to listen to the choir sing the famous Virolai.