If you have some extra time in Barcelona and you want to get to know Catalonia outside the big city, there are plenty of phenomenal towns that you can visit nearby. In fact, many of these cities that are located just outside Barcelona are some of the most beautiful European cities I have ever seen.
Don’t sell yourself short and miss out on what Catalonia really has to offer when you visit Barcelona. From beach towns with the white cottage feel, to mid evil villages, and Roman ruins you can find it all, and its just a short trip and a few bucks away. Here are the 5 best day trips from Barcelona:
Girona: This is by far my favorite city in Catalonia. It is sparkling with charm and will be sure to melt your heart with its romantic mid evil feel. The city is located just 1 hour from Barcelona by train and costs about 11 euros each way. Once you arrive make sure you head to the old city and you can find out why it was recently filmed for the notorious Game of Thrones.
Sitges: For all you beach lovers out there, Sitges takes the gold in Catalan beach towns (in my opinion). This cozy little town is filled with typical white cottage homes, churches and bakeries. It’s located right on the water and is a nice little get away from the big city of Barcelona. It’s about 1 hour away and 6 euros to and from Barcelona, totally worth it.
Tarragona: What makes this town so special is its typical beachy feel alongside ancient Roman ruins. Tarragona is perfect to explore ancient history and hit the waves right after. It’s also about 1 hour from Barcelona and costs only 8 euros each way.
Montserrat: This place is absolutely breath taking and is known for its rigid saw like shaped rocks. It’s about 1 hour from Barcelona by bus and then you get to take a cog wheel train to the top of the monastery. For a small fee you can go into the monastery where you will experience the beauty and history of Montserrat. I have seen many monasteries during my travels and this one was surprisingly beautiful and totally worth a visit. To top it off, you can enjoy its beautiful picturesque views.
Costa Brava: This region is 30 minutes to 3 hours away from Barcelona depending on what part of the coast you want to visit. It’s special for its beautiful rocky Mediterranean beaches and village feel. Depending on where you choose to visit in Costa Brava it may be best to rent a car, otherwise there are some towns like Tossa De Mar that are easy to access by bus.