As soon as I declared the news of my move to Barcelona, I started to receive messages of friends and family that told me how much I would love Barcelona and its surrounding. I’m not going to lie to you: I knew that as well – even before I set my feet on its ground. You see, any place that has beaches and mountains a short distance away is already high up on my preferred list.
On my third day in Barcelona I had already visited the beach. And on my tenth day, I had been to the mountains.
My trip to the mountains was a relaxed one. No steep ravines or glaciers – just nature at its finest.
Montserrat is a popular hiking, climbing and trail running destination. Its geological structure was formed over millions of years and has given the name it is known for today. In Catalan, Montserrat, means saw mountain.
Can you see why?
Montserrat is an easy ride away from the city of Barcelona. There is a cercanías (or… slow train) going every hour from Plaça Espanya towards Manresa (R5). When purchasing your ticket, you’ll have to decide whether you want to reach Montserrat by Cable Car (Aeri) or Funicular (Cremallera). Make sure you know which ticket you’ve purchased as these leave from two different stops and they are not interchangeable. This means that, if you get off at the wrong stop, you’ll have to wait for a full hour to get the next one or be brave and hike your way up (which isn’t easy).
If you are not afraid of heights, I really recommend to take the Aeri – the view is impressive!
Montserrat has many different trails that vary in difficulty and distance. The fun thing is – you can combine many of them together creating a hike that meets your objective and physical condition!
Since I was a bit lazy that day and only arrived around 1pm, I didn’t have time to see all I wanted to see (in fact, I missed out on one of Montserrat’s main attractions – the Monastery). I did manage to hike to the highest point, Sant Jeroni (Saint Jerome) and back. Here are some of my favorite shots.
Route: From Sant Joan Funicular (upper station) to Montserrat (via Sant Jeroni and Flat of Els Ocells) – Montserrat Route nr. 5
Length: 7.5 km
Duration: 2 – 2:30 hrs
Difficulty: Fairly easy (although there is a sharp ascension to Sant Jeroni)