Sanctuary of the Sagrada Imagen del Vilar

The Sanctuary del Vilar is an important religious building in Blanes, located outside the town. It is especially important because it houses the “image of the Virgin del Vilar”, responsible for protecting the town.

Set off to discover the history and the popular traditions of this town on the Costa Brava!

History of the Sanctuary del Vilar in Blanes

Located in a forest at around 4 kilometres from Blanes, this sanctuary is a complex that contains the hermitage, the church and its chapel as well as a large porch. The old hermitage is part of the Blanes Hermitage Route, an itinerary suggested by the Blanes Tourist Office.

The beginnings of the hermitage date back to the 14th century, but we know that it was restored in the 17th century. More specifically, the building was composed of a rectangular nave and a superb doorway that was richly decorated and made up of archways. You will also appreciate the beauty of the interior decoration, which has a number of “ex voto”. These are plaques and other offerings placed by the faithful to give thanks. Originally you could also admire decoration inspired by the seafaring theme, as is customary in the towns on the Costa Brava.

During the Spanish Civil War, the sanctuary was badly damaged and the image of the Mother of God, protector of Blanes only survived because it was hidden in the forest!

The Virgin del Vilar, protector of Blanes

The most significant signs of devotion to the Virgin del Vilar date back to the 17th century. Over the course of this period, many processions were held in Blanes to ward off illness and war and to call upon the protection of this local virgin. Her image was especially used in the 17th century in the hope of pushing back the French invasion during the War of Succession.

This popular tradition has crossed over the centuries and continues to be part of life in this seaside town. Every year on the last Sunday in October, the inhabitants of Blanes pay tribute to their patron saint. Acts of devotion bring tourists and locals together in a friendly atmosphere. A pilgrimage to the sanctuary is also organised on the Tuesday during Holy Week.

In any case, these are two events that you won’t want to miss if you visit Blanes out of season!

For a trip to the sea and sun all year round, choose the town of Blanes on the Costa Brava!

See the holiday rentals in Blanes.