Going on a trip to Barcelona, and found yourself stumbling behind thousands of tourists? No worries, Barcelona has plenty of cultural sights and experiences to be done outside of the city that are just as good but with less visitors.
Imagine being in Barcelona admiring the many impressive cultural sights and relaxing on the beach. However, you want to escape the bustling city for a day or more to explore its surroundings and discover countryside gems that are less touristy. We have listed some incredible spots not far from the city, which are ideal either for day trips or for longer stays.
A few hours from Barcelona you can find the Pyrenees, a natural border that separates Spain from France. From Barcelona, day trips to this area can easily be combined with an activity; such as horse riding or archery lessons. One of Catalan’s most beautiful landscapes are hidden in this mountain range and is a true paradise for hikers, climbers, and those who simply love nature and want to experience new adventures away from the human crowds. Before ascending to 2000 meters above sea level you will pass oak and, red pine forests, and castles which have been around since before the first millennia. Your journey of discovery ends with a heavenly valley complete with granite peaks and glacial lakes shimmering under the sun. A truly breath-taking experience!
Closer to Barcelona, are the needle shaped Montserrat mountains, Catalonia’s most surreal yet stunning landscape. It is well-known for the Benedictine Abbey, a monastery hosting the Black Virgin Mary (La Moreneta) sanctuary. There are several Chapels, Basilicas, and museums, which you can visit, all of which are hosted by monks. Visiting these sights guarantees a cultural enrichment. Participate in a guided tour and learn about the rich cultural heritage of this religious area. This activity can also be combined with a helicopter tour giving you a birds-eye view of the impressive Catalonian landscapes and mountains of Montserrat. Alternatively, you can enjoy this with a tapas and wine tour guaranteed to expand your culinary knowledge. For the adrenaline junkies the mountain offers an excellent opportunity to take part in activities such as bridge jumping and climbing.
Situated on the coastal-north-west side of the city, is another of Catalunya’s site, a modern village known for its wines, Cava and perfumes called Alella. The village has a rich history and has been producing high-quality wines for centuries, enjoyed by the kings of Aragon during the Middle Ages. Today Alella is surrounded by charming wineries that produce amazing Cava, wines and vermouth and offer delicious tastings that can be paired with Catalan delicacies. As you head into the village, the public modernist art, amazing architecture, and luxury homes influenced and shaped by social, political, and cultural issues will astonish you. Get swept away by this small village and all the wonderful stories during a guided day trip. It is an amazing experience for those who appreciate wine, art, history, and food.
West of Barcelona and less than an hour’s drive away is another area famous for its wine named the Penedès. It is a superb and rural region surrounded by thousands of hectares of vineyards and pure nature, acknowledged to be home of the most innovative and modern Spanish growers. The region is best visited through a guided winery day trip, or can be combined with a horseback ride, helicopter ride, or a mountain bike tour to make it even more special. A perfect trip for wine lovers who appreciate something exclusive!
Girona, the capital city of the Girona province is a must see in May. With medieval walls, narrow-curving-cobblestone streets, beautiful cathedrals, and one of the best maintained Jewish Quarters in Europe, Girona is a gorgeous city to visit, and so thought the directors of the Game of Thrones who filmed parts of the series in the area. Best of all, in May, the city celebrates spring with Temps de Flors, a fully decorated festival with flowers of all sorts and colours. The streets will be transformed to art-installations, highlighted with music, lights, fountains, and stimulating scents of thousands of flowers. An enchanting experience you won’t forget!