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The Spanish Tuscany

By Linda Tancs

Matarranya (Matarraña) is a Spanish gem bordering Catalonia and Valencia. Dubbed the Spanish Tuscany for its natural and cultural highlights, each part of the region boasts its own delights, like vineyards, olive groves, cheese and black truffles. Named after the Matarraña River, its most rugged terrain is the Puertos de Beceite range, a scenic area with a significant forest mass. Historically, the earliest civilization is evidenced by prehistoric rock art of the Iberian Mediterranean Basin (known as Levantine art), a UNESCO World Heritage Site encompassing over 700 locations. If you’ve never heard of this locale, it wouldn’t be surprising given that it is relatively unknown outside the immediate area. It’s reachable from Barcelona or Valencia by bus or train, and Reus airport is an hour or so away.

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