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5 best day trips from Barcelona
1. Day trip to Girona
As one of the most historically significant cities in Catalonia, Girona is a popular choice among travelers for a day trip from Barcelona. Dating back to Roman times, every corner of the colorful city is full of history and amazing things to see. Fans of “Game of Thrones" may recognize the epic staircase of the stately Girona Cathedral. Some of the other most prominent points of interest in Girona are the labyrinthine Jewish Quarter, the Passeig de la Muralla, and the Rambla de la Libertad.
How far is Girona from Barcelona?
By road, the 103-kilometer (64 mile) trip to Girona usually takes around 75 to 90 minutes. High-speed trains, however, can get you there from Barcelona in just 40 minutes.
2. Day trip to Sitges
With 300 days of sun per year, the seaside city of Sitges is the ideal place for travelers from Barcelona to get out of the city and live the “good life." Best known for its Riviera lifestyle, people heading to the “St. Tropez of Spain" should reserve some time for lounging around the city’s 17 fantastic beaches, like Platja de l’Estanyol or Platja Sant Sebastiá. Those who want to venture beyond the shore can visit sites like the Cau Ferrat Museum, the Iglesia de Sant Bartomeu, and Casa Bacardí. And of course, don’t miss out on some of the freshest seafood Spain has to offer.
How far is Sitges from Barcelona?
Just 41 kilometers (25 miles) away, it’s quick and easy to get to Sitges from Barcelona. By train or by car, you can reach the beach in around 40 minutes.
3. Day trip to Tarragona
An incredible combination of stunning vistas, historic sites, and pleasant beaches, a day in Tarragona makes for a truly special experience. Dating back to the 2nd-century B.C., the ancient port city has centuries of history and charm to offer travelers. A few of the must-see Roman sites include the Tarragona Amphitheater and the provincial Forum of Tarraco. Foodies can stop at the Plaça de la Font to enjoy dishes from the superb collection of eateries that line the square, while thrill seekers should make sure to head to Ferrari Land.
How far is Tarragona from Barcelona?
Head down the coast 100 kilometers (62 miles) to reach Tarragona. By car, the route usually takes one hour and 15 minutes (if you don’t stop to admire the view). On the train, you can get there in a little over an hour. The bus will take the longest, with travel times anywhere between one and a half to two hours.
4. Day trip to Montserrat
For any traveler looking to venture beyond Barcelona, Montserrat is a visually striking and fascinating place to spend a day. The mountaintop destination is best known for its jagged peaks and the monastery of Santa Maria de Montserrat, which houses the renowned Black Madonna statue. After a funicular ride up the mountain, visitors should take the time to check out the Museum of Montserrat and appreciate the awe-inspiring views. You can even hike up instead of taking the cable car if you’re feeling particularly active.
How far is Montserrat from Barcelona?
Montserrat is located 60 kilometers (37 miles) northwest of Barcelona. By car, the journey takes around one hour, while the train takes only 90 minutes. There is only one bus option to get to Montserrat. Departing from Sants Station in Barcelona, you will reach the mountain in about 90 minutes.
5. Day trip to Figueres
Visitors can expect a surreal day out and about in the Catalan town of Figueres. The birthplace of Salvador Dalí, Figueres is home to the artist’s self-designed museum — the second-most visited in Spain. Art buffs can view some of the Dalí’s most famous works at this strange and wonderful museum. Aside from surrealist art, Figueres has more to offer travelers, with attractions like Sant Ferran Castle, the Toy Museum of Catalonia, and Dalí’s old stomping grounds at the Duran Hotel and Restaurant.
How far is Figueres from Barcelona?
Figueres is located 140 kilometers (87 miles) north of Barcelona. On a high-speed train, you can be there in just an hour and 15 minutes, while regional trains take closer to two hours. By road, your travel time clocks in at around 90 minutes.
Barcelona day trip FAQ
What transportation option should I use on my day trip?
• Barcelona day trips by train
A comprehensive subway system within the city of Barcelona and great regional and high-speed rail make train travel a convenient and fast way to embark on a day trip. Some guided tours also include train transfer as part of the itinerary.
• Barcelona day trips by bus
The bus is usually the most affordable transportation option, though it will often take the longest. However, traveling by bus gives you a truly local experience and plenty of time to soak up the scenery. Many guided tours include bus transportation, often with pickup directly from your hotel.
• Barcelona day trips by car
Access to your own car is always a great way to travel around. A private vehicle allows you to venture off the beaten path and discover hidden gems along any route. Make a spontaneous stop to take in the view, or simply explore somewhere not served well by public transportation.
Should I take a guided tour for my day trip?
A guided tour is one of the best ways to take a day trip from Barcelona. Many guided tours take care of transportation, navigation, tickets, and even let you skip long lines. Some tours also include meals, saving you the trouble of having to do virtually any planning so you can just sit back and relax. Guided tours are an especially good idea for day trips with multiple destinations or entry tickets.
What should I pack for my day trip?
Where you’re planning to go will be one of the biggest factors in what to pack for your trip. Some destinations from Barcelona have practically year-round temperate weather, while others may experience more extremes. The type of ticket or tour you book may also affect what to bring, since many tours may provide everything you need for the day.
Other Sightseeing Options in Barcelona
Want to discover all there is to do in Barcelona? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Barcelona
We loved this excursion! The bus was lovely and scenery up the mountain was great. The church and monastery were incredible and i was so spiritually touched by the Back Madonna. The trolley down the mountain and then the great dinner were perfect! Our guide Pablo was wonderful!
Amazing from start to finish. Our guides were spectacular most especially Morak (hope I spelled his name right). Thank you for making this trip the highlight of our holiday! Highly recommended together with the wine tasting.
Anays was a fantastic guide- she was engaging, knowledgeable, and thoughtful. The tour was so beautiful and the end destination at the Caller del Mas vineyard was breathtaking (and delicious)
I was lucky to get Rog. He was very kind, patieent and told us EVERYTHING. I loved this tour, would definalety recomend it to friends and family coming to Barcelona <3
Excellent tour by an informed guide who was very familiar with the area, the history, and the people around Montserrat. He's a safe driver too. :)