The municipality of Vall-llobrega, with almost 900 inhabitants, lies at the foot of the Gavarres hills and at the same time close to the sea.
The Raval de Baix or Raval de Mar (‘lower’ or ‘sea’ district) section lies in the lower part of the valley and constitutes the centre of the municipality: it includes the church of Sant Mateu, the rectory, the old school and the village hall. Its houses, from the 17th and 18th C., extend along one side of the road.
The church of Sant Mateu de Vall-llobrega, the present-day parish church in the Raval de Baix, has a single nave with two side chapels and a polygonal sanctuary. The ruins of the old church of Sant Mateu stand on a small plateau at the head of the valley, less than 2 km north-west of the Raval de Dalt or ‘upper’ district. This Romanesque church, probably from the 11th C., must have been abandoned when the new church was built in the Raval de Baix.
From the plain of Vall-llobrega, a number of solitary tracks and footpaths lead into the first hills and chains of the Gavarres, towards the Fitor sector. As the land rises, we get an excellent view over the plain, while in the background, not far away, the blue strip of the sea gradually broadens. The place name derives from the Latin Vallis Rubrica, meaning ‘red valley’ or ‘valley of red earth’.
Ajuntament de Vall-llobrega
Plaça de la Vila, 3