By Jackie De Burca, Author of Salvador Dalí at Home (release October 2018)
To take in the Dalí Triangle at your leisure, it’s best to do it over at least a 2 day period. From Figueres to Cadaques, or from Figueres to Púbol, is around a 40km journey, and from Cadaques to Púbol is a 60km trip. In terms of a travel itinerary, if you are coming from Girona town, it may suit you to visit Púbol first, and then go on to Figueres and finally Cadaques. Of course, whilst this is logistically more sensible, it does mean that you won’t see the museums in the order of how Dalí spent his life, if that is something that you would like to do.
Friends of the Dalí Museums
If you intend to do the Dalí Triangle, and you are an admirer of his work, it may interest you to know that for €1 more than you will pay as an individual entering the three museums, you could become a Friend of the Dalí Musuems.
The annual costs are as highlighted below, and by becoming a friend, you will gain free entry to the museums, along with events, gatherings and talks. There are cultural trips, conferences, film projections, excursions, and surrealistic window dressing competitions in the shops of Figueres. The association was founded in 1993, and today is a popular, dynamic body with members around the world.
To join the association the annual costs are:
- €35 for an individual
- €50 for a family
Entrance guide to the musuems:
- Dalí Theatre Museum Figueres – €14 for an individual
- Dalí House Museum Portlligat, Cadaques – €11 for an individual
- Gala Dalí Castle House Púbol – €8 for an individual
The Dalí Triangle is split between these three places in the province of Girona:
1. Figueres Dali Theatre Museum – surrealist collection and Dalí Jewels
Gala-Salvador Dalí Square 5, Figueres 17600, Phone: 972 677 500
Details of opening hours and ticket prices are here: http://www.salvador-dali.org/museus/figueres/en_index.html
This is where you’ll see the broadest selection of Dalí’s work, with pieces that span his entire career. The Dalí Theatre Museum was inaugurated in 1974, and needs to be appreciated as a whole. The artist conceived the world’s biggest surrealist object in order to give you, the visitor, a tangible experience of being inside his unique, captivating world. The museum was run by Dalí’s close friend and co-painter Antoni Pitxot i Soler, who helped him to set it up until late in his life. He passed away on 12th June 2015.
When the mayor of Figueres, in 1961, proposed this to him, Dalí said:
“Where, if not in my own town, should the most extravagant and solid of my work endure, where if not here? The Municipal Theatre, or what remained of it, struck me as very appropriate, and for three reasons: first, because I am an eminently theatrical painter; second, because the theatre stands right opposite the church where I was baptised; and third, because it was precisely in the hall of the vestibule of the theatre where I gave my first exhibition of painting.”
Apart from the large variety of works that you can see of Dalí’s there, you can also lose yourself in the wonder of the works that he created specifically for the museum, such as Mae West room. Additionally there are pieces from a good selection of other notable artists housed there, including works of El Greco, Antoni Pixot and Marcel Duchamp amongst others. He is buried in the theatre museum’s crypt.
2. Portlligat, Cadaques – Dalí’s home workshop – the Dalí House Museum in Portlligat
Portlligat, Cadaqués 17488 – Phone: 972 251 015
Details of opening hours and ticket prices are here: http://www.salvador-dali.org/museus/portlligat/en_index.html
This was where Dalí both lived and worked from 1930 until 1982, at which stage he started living at Púbol Castle after Gala’s death. As you can imagine, this is the place where the man himself and his life are most tangible.
Although you will have reserved your ticket beforehand, you do need to arrive at least 30 minutes before your visit is due to commence, to pick up your ticket. The visiting process is tightly organised, as small groups of up to 8 people are let in every ten minutes. So if you don’t pick up your ticket, at least 30 minutes before, you will lose it and it can be sold to someone else. You need to give yourself plenty of time for the journey, because of this and also as the road is wavy, and of course gets very busy in the height of the season. Even out of the main season, the 40km trip from Figueres to Portlligat, Cadaques, can take around an hour. Once you go in, the visit itself takes around 50 minutes to an hour.
3. Púbol – Gala Dalí Castle House
Castell de Púbol, Gala Dalí Square, Púbol-la Pera 17120 – Phone: 972 488 655
Details of opening hours and ticket prices are here: http://www.salvador-dali.org/museus/pubol/en_index.html
Dalí bought the castle for Gala in 1969, and he moved there when she died in 1982, having enterred her there. Apparently she took lovers right into her eighties, and it is said that Dalí could only visit her by way of a written invitation.
If you wish to visit the castle last, in keeping with the logical order of Dalí’s life, one suggestion is to go here at the end of your Dalí Triangle trip, and then continue on to Madremanya. Less than a 10 minute drive away from Púbol, is this wonderful stone village, which appears to have stood still in time. If you want to know more about it, check out our Madremanya Travel Guide.
The Dalí Triangle – Some Essential Facts
When making your travel plans, please note that on many Mondays, the museums are closed, as they are on New Year’s Day, Christmas Day and a few other days throughout the year. Each link below lists these. Also you need to arrive at the museums at least 45 minutes before their closing time, which of course would give you a tight amount of time to appreciate them fully anyhow!
You cannot use flash photography in the museums, if you do so, your camera will be temporarily taken from you. For those with reduced mobility, please note that the access in the Dalí Theatre Museum in Figueres is limited, and isn’t actually possible in the Dalí House Museum, in Portlligat, Cadaques. No animals are allowed in any of the museums, with the exception of guide dogs for the blind. You can’t eat, drink or smoke in the museums either, with the exception of the Dalí by Night, which is at the Figueres Dalí Theatre Museum, for a month during the summer, each year. During that event, visitors are offered a glass of cava.
To do the Dalí Triangle it is necessary to book beforehand, with the exception being the Dalí Theatre Museum in Figueres, where you can only reserve for groups of over 25 people – you can find all the relevant information on this website:
DID YOU KNOW ABOUT….?
Salvador Dalí’s Brother Salvador
When Dalí was born, he was named Salvador after his older brother who had died 9 months earlier of gastroenteritis. His parents told him from the age of five, that he was his older brother’s reincarnation. He took this concept on board and believed in it, and images of his dead brother, Salvador, appear in some of his later works, such as the 1963 Portrait of My Dead Brother.
Summers In Cadaqués
His family went to their house in Cadaqués during the summer holidays, and Dalí played football there with his childhood friends, FC Barcelona players, Josep Samitier and Sagibarba. He also discovered modern painting, in 1916, while there, through Ramon Pichot- a local artist, and his family, who went to Paris quite regularly. His father, who was a middle class lawyer and notary, organised an exhibition of his charcoal drawings in their home, in 1917. His parents built his first art studio in Cadaques.
His mother died when he was just 16 years old, and this is what he said about her death:
“was the greatest blow I had experienced in my life. I worshipped her… I could not resign myself to the loss of a being on whom I counted to make invisible the unavoidable blemishes of my soul.”
His wife was Gala Dalí, who was born Elena Ivanovna Diakonova, to an intellectual family in Kazan, in the Russian Empire. She was previously married to French poet, Paul Eduard, and was a muse for Dalí and an inspiration for a a number of other artists and writers.
In 1969 he bought the castle in Púbol for Gala. Apart from being his muse and wife, Gala was also 10 years older than him and already had a child from her previous marriage. She didn’t take to motherhood however, in fact she apparently hated it. Dalí’s father disinherited him because of his marriage, which did last until Gala’s death. She is seen many times in his work as a model, and is frequently portrayed in religious roles, such as the virgin, in the Madonna of Port Lligat. His immense love for her is evident in his work.
However she was not flavour of the month with lots of people, and there are numerous descriptions of her published, such as being a monster of hype and megalomania..being rat-eyed and so on ..In an article that was published in 1998 in Vanity Fair, it i said that Gala only allowed Dalí to visit her in the castle, by written invitation. She continued to take lovers when she was in her eighties! If you want to know more, you can read the Vanity Fair feature, which has the title Dali’s Demon Bride.
His creations were in the fields of painting, sculpture, writing, drawing, photography and film. Below are some of his best known works.
1931 – The Persistence of Memory
1935 – Face of Mae West Which May Be Used as an Apartment
1936 – Soft Construction with Boiled Beans (Premonition of Civil War)
1937 – Swans Reflecting Elephants
1939 – Ballerina in a Death’s Head
1944 – Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening
1964 – The Temptation of St. Anthony
1948 – The Elephants
1952 – Galatea of the Spheres
1954 – Crucifixion (Corpus Hypercubus)
Salvador Dalí Basic Facts
His full name is: Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech (Dalí is the first family surname and comes from his father’s side and Domenech is the second family name, from his mother’s side)
Date of birth and death: Born 11th May 1904 in Figueres – Died 23rd January 1989 in Figueres
Father: Salvador Dalí i Cusí – lawyer and notary
Mother: Felipa Domenech Ferrés
Wife: Gala Dalí – Born Elena Ivanovna Diakonova, to an intellectual family in Kazan, Russian Empire. She was previously married to French poet, Paul Eduard, and was a muse for Dalí and an inspiration for a a number of other artists and writers.