Day trips from Barcelona are the best way to discover all Catalonia has to offer. Many of the city’s surrounding towns and villages are well worth a visit, each unique in their own way, and many are accessible by public transport.
With summer officially upon us, escape the hustle and bustle of the city and bask in the tranquility on the coast, in the mountains or in quaint villages.
From discovering Catalonia’s medieval past, exploring some of the most beautiful beaches on the Costa Brava, to trying typical Catalan cuisine in charming squares, we’ve got you covered for a whole range of day trips from Barcelona.
This stunning fisherman’s village is home to whitewashed houses and narrow cobbled streets. Called the most beautiful part of the world by Dalí himself, here you’ll find the artist’s house-museum, where he lived with his wife Gala.
This day trip from Barcelona takes around 2 and half hours by car, yet parking spots are limited, so get there early!
Check out our complete guide to a day trip to Cadaqués from Barcelona here for more tips on what to do and see.
Calella de Palafrugell
Calella de Palafrugell has managed to conserve the charming essence of a sleepy fisherman’s town on the shores of the Mediterranean, and this day trip from Barcelona is reached by bus (Sarfa) until Palafrugell. From Palafrugell to Calella you should take another bus.
After taking a refreshing dip in one of its hidden coves, why not try the tasty rice dish of arros caldós at El Didal, with a stunning terrace that overlooks the shoreline. Then take a stroll through its winding streets as you shop for souvenirs or for yourself.
Looking for the perfect end to the perfect day? Grab a delicious ice cream at L’Enriqueta Gelateria in the Sant Roc “Cala” as you watch the sun setting over the bay.
Another great day trip from Barcelona is the bustling town of Sitges. Only 40 minutes from the city by train, which stops at Estació de França, Sants and Passeig de Gràcia.
Sitges is well known for being a LGTBI destination and its world-famous nightlife. Don’t miss Carrer del Pecat for a rather sinful tipple, frequented by Dalí and Picasso.
At the heart of Sitges is a great deal of history and culture. Discover its fine examples of modernist and colonial architecture, visit its many museums and beautiful churches, or head there in the month of October to catch its famous film festival.
Read more about this great day trip from Barcelona here
Tossa de Mar
Another essential day trip from Barcelona is the beautiful seaside town of Tossa de Mar.
The first thing you’ll notice about Tossa de Mar is its stunning castle overlooking the bay. The short walk up is definitely worth the beautiful views at the top. What’s more, a stroll through its charming old quarter with cobbled streets, stairs, viewpoints, churches, hidden squares and more, can’t be missed.
Tossa de Mar has it all – in addition to is main beach and the Platja de la Mar Menuda, there’s also the hidden rocky Codolar cove, which is the most picturesque of all. Also, don’t leave without trying the local dish of cod in a spicy tomato sauce, cim i tomba.
The mysterious mountain of Montserrat, named after its jagged appearance, makes for a perfect day trip from Barcelona. Cloaked in myth and legend, it has revered by many as a site of spiritual pilgrimage since 1200.
Steeped in history and natural beauty, here you can visit the Benedictine Monastery of Santa María de Montserrat and the Monsterrat Museum, go for hikes in the beautiful surrounding national park and to the pilgrimage site of Santa Cova, and discover its 15 chapels.
From Barcelona, it’s easy to reach the base of the mountain by public transport and then take the cable car or cremallera train to the top.
Discover how to make the most of your day trip to Monsterrat in our article here.
Travel back in time on a day trip from Barcelona to this picturesque town. Be sure to stroll through its old quarter and visit its spectacular cathedral – which might look familiar to Game of Thrones fans – and the Sant Feliu Basilica, in addition to the medieval city walls, the Arabic baths and the charming Jewish quarter.
Before getting the train back to the city, don’t miss the colourful houses along the banks of the River Onyar
Thirty kilometres from Girona lies the quaint town of Besalú. Dating back to the 10th century, it is home to a castle-fortress, churches, monasteries and stone city walls.
Top on your list of things to see has to be the emblematic 12th-century medieval bridge, which is the perfect spot to take stunning photographs. Only an hour and a half by car, don’t miss this day trip from Barcelona.
Last but not least, is the medieval village of Rupit. Nestled in a rich green valley in Osona, you’ll never want to leave this hidden gem.
Perfect for a quiet day trip from Barcelona, cross its famous rope bridge, walk its steep cobbled streets lined with stone houses – the most famous being Carrer del Fossar – and enjoy a drink in its quaint Plaça Major. We hope you enjoy these day trips from Barcelona as much as we do! Let us know which is your favourite.