A selection of some of the best day trips from Barcelona
Spending some time in Barcelona but would also like to explore what Catalonia has to offer away the capitol city? Here we share a selection of our favorite places and things to do outside of the city. Please note that these suggestions are based on using a car. If you are using public transport please refer to our Barcelona day trips by public transport post.
Day trips to the Costa Brava
Located to the North of Barcelona the Costa Brava contains some wonderful beaches and fishing villages. There’s loads of different sections of the Costa Brava to choose from and all offer different facets to the traveler.
If i were to list all the places to visit on the Costa Brava this would turn in to a long essay so i will give just two suggestions here. Cadaques at the end of the Cap de Creus peninsula is one of our favourite places in the whole of Catalonia. Two hours by car from Barcelona the town is a wonderful place to spend a day. More details about what to do in Cadaques and surrounding area can be found here.
The second part of the Costa Brava is the area around Begur and Palafrugell, around 90 minutes from Barcelona. Here there’s a whole host of beaches to choose from many of which have restaurants where to dine on or close to the beach. More information about what to do in Begur can be found here.
Costa Brava Medieval villages
The province of Girona is not only about the beaches of the Costa Brava. There’s many interesting medieval villages in the region to explore. If history, interesting architecture and wandering around ancient cobbled streets is your thing then read more in our Costa Brava Medieval villages blog post.
Visit a Vineyard
Probably not the best idea of a day trip if you are driving however there’s a wide range of Barcelona based tour agencies offering wine tours close to Barcelona. Another option would be to hire a driver for the day and this is something Charming Villas can help arrange.
Catalonia contains no less than 10 distinct wine growing regions each offering its own unique growing conditions and varieties of grape. I don’t have enough space here to list each region in detail but more information on the Emporda wine growing region can be found here.
Day trip to Montserrat
A classic day trip from Barcelona and one which is advertised online by many Barcelona based tour agencies such as visitarmontserrat.com. Montserrat is a beautiful and oddly shaped mountain range which reaches a height of 1236m above sea level. Among the hills is a famous Abbey which was founded in the year 1025. If driving to Montserrat please do not leave any valuables inside the car when you park up. We once had some clients whose hire car was broken in to and valuables were stolen.
Visit Girona and Figueres
This is a trip which can also be made by train from Barcelona. The high speed AVE train connects to Girona in 35 minutes and Figueres in just under an hour. The main draw of Figueres is without doubt the Dali museum. This world class museum could fill up a whole day just by itself. When i am helping my clients plan day trips i always stress that if the museum is on the list of things to do then this should be the main focus of the day. Unless you are planning a very early start and late finish then i do not advise multiple destinations in the same day.
Girona, bigger than Figueres, is arguably a more interesting and picturesque city to spend a day. Whereas Figueres is all about the Dali museum Girona has more variety of things to see and do. The Cathedral has been made famous since it was chosen as a filming location for the HBO series “Games of Thrones”. A number of locally based tour operators offer guided visits of the city exploring the various filming locations within the city.
Girona also has a wide range of shops and artisan markets to browse as well as its very own Las Ramblas. Not as big or famous as Barcelona’s Ramblas nonetheless it is a pleasant place to stroll or sit and watch the world pass by.
Vacation homes on the Costa Brava and Barcelona
Charming Villas Catalonia offer a hand-picked selection of high standard vacation rentals on the Costa Brava and Barcelona. We offer our clients a free Costa Brava concierge service and help plan activities, day trips and extra services. Let us guide you through the villa selection process helping you choose the best property for your needs.