The monastery Sant Esteve is one of the main sights in Banyoles, the first mention of which dates back to 822. The Benedictine Monks had built the monastery in place of a late Roman church, some remnants of which can still be seen in the vault of the monastery.
Sant Esteve's construction had followed the chain of inflicted damages and constant restorations. The original church was knocked down in mid-10th century, and replaced by another at the end of the century. The next hundred years brought the demolition of the Roman monastery and its immediate replacement. The earthquakes of the 15th century had left their mark as well. In the middle of the 17th century the bell tower, the Roman courtyard and parts of the church disappeared. The new bell tower, built in 1695, has survived and is part of the structure today. Other parts of the monastery that we see today are Neoclassic structures.
The Sant Esteve monastery church has one central nave with three apses and one bell tower. The most prominent part of the facade is the late Gothic church gates with side spires and a large stained-glass rose window. The interior of the church is spacious and very reserved. There are nine chapels in total.
The courtyard of the monastery is a very important spot for the Benedictines, as here are the entrances to the monastic cells, here is the space for walks, congregations and talks. The courtyard is formed by 48 semicircular arches, with every third arch being reinforced by a pier, and there is a forged iron well in the centre of the yard. The southern part of the Sant Esteve Monastery still has remnants of a Medieval abbey.