Barcelona, the largest city in Catalunya, is an incredibly lively, international destination filled with art, fantastic restaurants and bars, lovely people, and an amazing nightlife.
While there is tons to do and see in the city, the region of Catalunya offers so much more than city life. From quiet, sandy beaches to lush mountains, your beautiful Catalan day trip is only a few hours from Barcelona.
Sitges – 45-minute train ride from Barcelona
Just a 45 minute train ride away, this gorgeous, laid-back beach town is the perfect place to relax and unwind without going too far from the city center. With white sand and the clear Mediterranean Sea, Sitges is far less chaotic than the beaches located by Barcelona, such as Barcelonetta or Badalona. Spend the day lounging on one of Sitges’ 17 beaches, stroll through the winding streets of the old quarter, and dine at a seaside restaurant, such as La Punta de Sitges, Karmela Terracita, or Alfresco. Day well spent!
Montserrat – 1-hour car ride
The Montserrat Monastery is a must-see, if not for religious purposes, then for the spectacular views and magical energy. After taking the train from Plaza Espana to the base of the mountain, you can either hike to the top or take a leisurely cable ride to gaze at incredible mountain peaks and rock formations. The monastery itself is absolutely magnificent, with massive stain glass windows, high ceilings, and sleek wooden pews.
Cadaques – 2-hour car ride
Slightly further away from Barcelona, this gorgeous fisherman’s village near the border of France is the perfect day trip for art lovers as well as anyone who wants to discover a glorious hidden gem of Catalunya. Cadaques was once highly frequented by world-renowned artists such as Pablo Picasso and Joan Miro, who deemed it the most beautiful village on earth. This all-white coastal town tucked away among the Catalan mountains resembles an island in Greece, and is a wonderful place for a fun family trip or a romantic getaway.
Begur – 1.5 hours by car
Located about two hours north of Barcelona, this lesser-known beach town is packed with stunning smaller coves like Sa Tuna and Aiguablava. The town itself is virbrant and colorful, while still maintaining a truly untouched sense of history. The gorgeous medeival castle rests on the top of a hill, with an unparalleled view of the the ocean and mountains. The old quarter is filled with twisting, cobblestone streets with traditional Spanish architecture, stylish boutiques, and delicious restaurants.
Gillian lived in Barcelona during several months.