Best Day Trip from Barcelona + 8 Other Amazing Options

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Heading to Spain and looking for the best day trip from Barcelona? This guide has the top one not to miss, plus plenty of others to add to your itinerary! 

Barcelona is arguably one of the most famous cities in Europe. Home to the Sagrada Familia and spectacular beaches, it’s a top destination for Europeans and other travelers worldwide. 

Barcelona was my first trip abroad, so it definitely has a special place in my heart. Since my first time visiting this amazing city in 2014, I have been back a few times and always find new and exciting things to do. 

While visiting the Catalan region, taking some day trips is a must so you can see more of the history and culture of Spain. Here are the best day trips from Barcelona! Make sure to save this guide as you plan your itinerary for Spain. 

aeriel view of barcelona, mountains in the distance, famous landmarks in barcelona can be seen like the christopher colombus statue

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Best Day Trips When Visiting Barcelona 

Once you’re done exploring Barcelona, here are the best day trips not to miss:

1. Montserrat 

If you’re searching for the number one day trip not to miss, make sure to book or plan for a Montserrat day trip from Barcelona. While many people opt for a guided tour, you can also take a train directly to Montserrat from Barcelona. 

Most people visit Montserrat to see the stunning mountain ranges and explore the area’s natural beauty. 

It’s a popular place for hiking, and each trail gives you a unique perspective of the mountains. Try the Saint Jeroni Trail or the walk up to St. Michael’s Cross for the best hikes suitable for all hiking levels. 

If you’re not into hiking or you want to have a more relaxing day, there are still plenty of other things to do in Montserrat, including:

  • Tour the inside of the monastery, where you’ll see stunning painted ceilings and the famous Black Madonna statue. 
  • See a performance from the famous Montserrat boy’s choir.
  • See famous works from Picasso and Monet inside the Montserrat Museum
  • Enjoy amazing food and wine at one of the restaurants in the plaza near the monastery. 

Check this out for a great tour to Montserrat!

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Getting to Montserrat

Booking a tour is a great way to see the best of Montserrat. However, you can get to Montserrat on your own by either car, train, or bus. Renting a car is expensive, even for the day, so I recommend the train or bus option. 

The train is the easiest option because it doesn’t have too many stops. You can catch the R5 train from Placa d’Espanya. If you want to get to the top of the mountains from where the train drops you, you can go hiking or take the cable car. 

2. Andorra 

A Barcelona day trip to Andorra takes a lot of planning since it’s a bit further away than some other options on this list. Andorra is a tiny little country between France and Spain. It’s right in the middle of the Pyrenees Mountains, so the main attraction here is skiing. 

Most people do this as one of the top weekend trips from Barcelona in the wintertime, where they stay in a ski resort for a few days and enjoy the mountains before returning to Barcelona. 

Taxes also operate differently here, which is why many tourists come here for duty-free shopping. You can get some nice items, including luxury goods and expensive alcohol, for a small price. 

This tour to Andorra looks great!

andorra in the winter, snowy valley in the middle of two snow capped mountains, houses and other buildings in the valley, barcelona day trips to andorra, barcelona day trip to andorra, weekend trips from barcelona

Getting to Andorra

This is one of the Barcelona day trips where renting a car is your best option. You can reach Andorra in two and a half hours, and the drive is easy. 

Alsa Bus Company also has direct buses to Andorra. It will take about 4 hours if you choose to go by bus. 

You can also book a tour. Most tours are full-day tours, and they will take you around the entire country and have planned activities before driving you back to Barcelona. 

3. Girona

One of the best and easiest Barcelona day tours is Girona. It takes less than an hour to get there, so it’s also a good choice for those who only have time for a half-day tour. 

Many of the alleys and cobblestone streets were used as Game of Thrones filming locations, so GOT fans will have fun wandering around the medieval town and recognizing some of the places. 

The Girona Cathedral is also a place you must visit as the Gothic Architecture is stunning, and the famous Tapestry of Creation Museum is inside.

If you are in Barcelona in May, Girona should be the first Barcelona day trip you plan, as there is an amazing flower festival. Expect Girona to be very during this time. For flower fans, though, and those who like to learn about gardening, the extra people in the city shouldn’t hinder their enthusiasm. 

For a tour to Girona, check this out!

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Getting to Girona 

Girona is one of the best day trips from Barcelona by train because you can take a high-speed AVE and get to Girona in about 35 minutes. You can catch the trains several times a day from Barcelona Sants. 

4. Sitges 

Even though Barcelona has some stunning beaches, they get busy and overcrowded. If you want to visit the beach and have a quiet, fun day in the sand, Sitges is the best day trip from Barcelona. 

Most people come to Sitges for a peaceful walk on the beach or to swim in the ocean since the water is very calm.

If you like seafood, you should dine at one of the many beach restaurants, as they have freshly caught fish and other fantastic options. 

Sitges is a very romantic little town, so it’s one of the best Barcelona day tours for those traveling with their significant others. If you feel like you want to spend the night here, there are many boutique hotels where honeymooners stay, as well as others on a romantic getaway. 

sitges as seen from the shore, boats in the harbor, cathedral and palm trees seen in the distance, barcelona day tours, barcelona day trips

Getting to Sitges 

The train to Sitges only takes about 45 minutes, so it’s the best option. If you’re on a tight budget, you can also take the bus to Sitges, but it will take longer as there are several stops. 

5. Cadaques 

Cadaques is a lesser-known Barcelona day trip. It does get overcrowded with tourists in the summer. If you’re in Barcelona in any other season, you will find Cadaques to be calm and relaxing compared to the hustle and bustle of Barcelona. 

Here are the top things to do in Cadaques:

white painted home in cadaqeus, blue painted window over a patio with two small chairs and a table, porrted plants hanging from the balcony railing, day trips from barcelona

Getting to Cadaques 

Cadaques is a little complicated to get to by bus and train because the journey takes over two hours and many stops along the way. Rent a car to get to Cadaques or do a small group tour. 

6. Tossa De Mar 

Tossa De Mar is an incredible little sea town for a beautiful Barcelona day trip along the Catalan coast. Doing a walking tour once you arrive is a must. The town is small and highly walkable,, although the cobbled streets and uphill roads make walking a little challenging in some areas. 

Most walking tours start along the beach, where you can walk in the soft sand. You’ll go up small alleys and streets until you get to the lighthouse. The final 20 minutes to the lighthouse is the most challenging part of the walk, but the views at the top make it all worth it. 

You can also go inside the lighthouse and see what remains of the castle at the top, although most of the castle is in ruins now. 

Here are some other things to do in Tossa De Mar:

view of tossa de mar from the top of the castle, beach and sea below, mountains in the distance

7. Figueres

For Salvador Dali fans, Figueres is the top day trip from Barcelona. Dali was born in this small Catalonian town, and now people from all over the world flock here to see his birth city and to visit the Salvador Dali Theatre Museum

The museum is the most extensive collection of Dali’s works, and you can see pieces from his lifespan, including sculptures, paintings, and jewels. 

If you know anything about Dali, you know he was quirky, and his art is very unusual. The museum was designed similarly, and there are many fun interactive exhibits. 

After touring the museum, head to one of the many restaurants or cafes downtown in Figueres. El Motel is one of the most popular choices. It’s small, so you might need to wait for a table during the summer or other busy travel seasons. 

up close view of the front of the salvador dali museum in figueres

Getting to Figueres 

There is a high-speed train to Figueres, and it takes about an hour. You can also rent a car if you prefer. The drive will be about an hour and a half. 

8. Tarragona 

Although now a beautiful Spanish town, Tarragona used to be part of the Roman Empire and was known as Tarraco. The Roman ruins are a UNESCO World Heritage Site, so you must tour them here. 

The best part about the ruins is the amphitheater because there is a stunning view of the Mediterranean Sea from the top. 

Tarragona is also home to beautiful beaches where you can lounge and tan during the summer. 

Like most Spanish cities, Tarragona has an old town area with a cathedral, small shops, and plenty of cafes to get coffee and lunch. 

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Getting to Tarragona 

Tarragona is only 30 minutes from Barcelona when you use the high-speed train. There is also a cheaper regional train, but it takes a little longer as the journey is a little over an hour. 

9. Costa Brava

Costa Brava is one of the places to book a guided tour since it’s a bit further from Barcelona. You can either go on a small group or a private tour. Private tours are better if you want to choose the cities you prefer to visit along Cosa Brava, as there are many different options. 

Costa Brava is a path along the coastline with many small fishing villages. Begur is the most frequently visited town because the beaches are stunning and are home to many festivals throughout the year. 

There is also a huge 16th-century castle. If you’re feeling active, you can climb to the top and get nice views of the city and coast below. 

Want to visit Costa Brava? Check this out!

colorful homes in costa brave, day trips from barcelona

Getting to Costa Brava

As mentioned, booking a tour is the best way to see Costa Brava. This way, you can travel to many coastal cities and see what each one offers. 

Some cities, including Begur, are hard to reach on public transport, which is why booking a tour is the way to go. 

For example, to get to Begur, you must take a train to Flaca and then take a taxi the rest of the way. 

Don’t Miss These Fantastic Day Trips From Barcelona! 

Ready to take the best day trip from Barcelona? Check out Montserrat as part of your Spanish tour, and then book one or two of these other amazing Barcelona day trips. 

If you’re short on time, I recommend visiting Montserrat and at least one coastal town, as the Catalonian coast is breathtaking. 

Are you heading to Barcelona? Which of these day trips are you going to take? 

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