Until the Roman conquest of the Iberian Peninsula, the area served as a settlement for an Iberian people, the Ilergetes. The town became a municipality, named Ilerda, under the reign of Augustus. It was ruled by the Moors from the 8th century, and reconquered in 1149. In 1297, the University of Lleida was founded, becoming the third oldest in the whole of Spain. During the following centuries, the town was damaged by several wars such as the Reapers' War in the 17th century and the Spanish Civil War in the 20th century. Since then, the city has been in constant urban, commercial and demographic growth.
Lleida has a temperate semi-arid climate. Winters are mild and foggy though cooler than places on the coast while summers are hot and dry. Frosts are common during winter although snowfall can occasionally fall, averaging 1 or 2 days. Precipitation is low, with an annual average of 369 millimetres (15 in) with a peak in April and May and another peak in September and October.
- 1 Lleida Pirineus railway station, Plaça de Ramón Berenguer IV. Lleida is on the AVE train route from both Madrid and Barcelona. If you land in Madrid Barajas, it will be a direct AVE trip of approximately 3 hours. If landing in Barcelona El Prat, the direct AVE train ride will be only an hour.
Lleida is a good place to change from a train to a bus towards Andorra (Andorra has no rail connection) and buses can be a cheaper but slower alternative to buses in general. The bus station of Lleida is situated 1.3 km from the train station into south-west on street Carrer Saracíbar 2. (Buses from Andorra or Barcelona may stop also in train station.)
- Alsa Direct bus from Madrid (€27), Barcelona (€20) and Andorra la Vella (€19).
- Montmantell[dead link] Direct bus from Andorra la Vella (€18).
Given the excellent connections towards Madrid and Barcelona, it might seem a bit pointless that this town have its own airport, but it indeed has one, but connections are rather limited.
- 2 Lleida–Alguaire Airport (ILD IATA). There are a few flights from Spanish islands, the odd flight to the UK and for some unfathomable reason Arkia flights from Ben Gurion Airport in Israel.
Lleida is quite small and you will easily be able to get to all parts of it on foot. There is a very efficient city bus system as well. Multiple lines of bus service are available from the train station.
- 1 Cathedral of St. Mary of La Seu Vella, Apt. de Correus 1013. Oct-Apr: Tu-F 10:00 - 13:30, 15:00 - 17:30; Sa 10:00 - 17:30; Su holiday 10:00 - 15:00. May-Sep: Tu-Sa 10:00 - 14:00, 16:30 - 19:30; Su holidays 10:00 - 15:00. A previous church was converted into a mosque in 832, reconsecrated as a church in 1134, and used as army barracks in the 18th and 19th centuries. This church sits atop the highest point in the city, nice viewing. Adult €6, senior or student €5, child free.
- Castillo de Gardeny, Turó de gardeny. Small castle.
- Parc de la Mitjana, Carrer Xavier Puig i Andreu. Park in northeastern part of the city.
- 2 Auditori Enric Granados.
- 3 CaixaForum Lleida.
- 4 Lleida Museum.
- Pecaditos, Avinguda de Balmes, 13. the local pub in Lleida. Cheap drinks and tapas. Often frequented by locals and expats.