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Discover Montserrat In Spain | Highlights, Directions & More

Discover the beauty of Montserrat, an excellent day trip option from Barcelona. Just 60 km northwest of Barcelona, this unique mountain range is famous for the surreal rock formations and the Benedictine monastery, Santa Maria de Montserrat. Home to the revered Black Madonna statue, Montserrat holds incredible cultural and spiritual significance in Spain. The journey from Barcelona is also a great way to admire stunning landscapes, making Montserrat a must-visit destination.

How to get to Montserrat from Barcelona?

By train

This is the most popular and convenient option. You can catch the R5 train from Plaça España station in Barcelona. The journey takes about an hour, and trains run every 20 minutes. Once you arrive at Monistrol de Montserrat station, you can either take the cremallera (rack railway) or the aerial cable car (Aeri) up to the monastery. The cremallera is a slower but more scenic option, while the cable car is faster and offers stunning views.

By car

If you're comfortable driving in Spain, you can also reach Montserrat by car. The journey takes about an hour from Barcelona city center. The easiest way to get there is to take the A-2 or AP-7 motorways, exiting at Martorell. From there, follow the signs for Montserrat. There is plenty of free parking available at the monastery.

Quick facts about Montserrat

  • Official name: Montserrat
  • Location: 08691, Barcelona, Spain
  • Number of visitors per year: 2 million visitors every year (approx.)

Plan your visit to Montserrat

Montserrat highlights

Montserrat Monastery

Montserrat Monastery is of great cultural and religious importance in Catalonia, dating back to the 9th century. Founded a millennium ago, its basilica, blending Gothic and Renaissance styles, houses the revered Black Madonna, a 12th-century Romanesque carving. Symbolizing spiritual significance, the Black Madonna makes Montserrat Monastery a pilgrimage destination with deep historical roots.

Santa Cova

From Montserrat Monastery take a scenic funicular ride to Santa Cova. Relish panoramic views leading to the revered landmark, known as the 'Holy Grotto'. This sacred site holds historical significance as the spot where the Virgin Mary was first sighted in Montserrat. Make sure to explore the adjacent chapel, constructed approximately 300 years ago.

Montserrat Museum

Montserrat Museum was established in 1963 and was designed by architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch. It houses a rich collection of archaeological artifacts as well as Renaissance and baroque paintings from Montserrat Monastery. Do not miss out on masterpieces by renowned artists like Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali, making it a must-visit destination in Montserrat.

Sant Jeroni

Take a hike from Montserrat to Sant Jeroni, the highest peak in the Montserrat mountain range. This trek has a low difficulty level, so anyone can set out to the top. On clear days, you get to see stunning 360-degree views of the plains of Lleida, Pyrenees peaks, Barcelona city, and the Mediterranean Sea.

History of Montserrat in a nutshell

8th & 9th Centuries: Moorish occupation during the Islamic armies' rule.

880 AD: The statue of the Virgin is found on Montserrat, leading to the construction of the chapel of Santa Maria.

1025 AD: Monastery of Santa Maria de Montserrat is built.

1811: French troops sack and burn the abbey and chapels during the French War.

1881: The abbey is made a basilica, and Our Lady of Montserrat is proclaimed Patron Saint of Catalonia.

19th Century: Reconstruction of the monastery is carried out in the late 19th century and Montserrat became a cultural and religious landmark in Spain.

Montserrat Tickets & Tours

Frequently asked questions about Montserrat

Why is Montserrat famous?

Montserrat is famous for its unique mountain range and the Benedictine monastery, Santa Maria de Montserrat. The region holds cultural and religious significance, particularly for the Black Madonna statue housed in the monastery.

What can I do at Montserrat?

Visitors can explore the stunning natural landscapes, visit the Montserrat Monastery and the Black Madonna, hike to Sant Jeroni, attend choir performances, and enjoy cultural exhibits at the Montserrat museum.

How can I get tickets to Montserrat?

Tickets to Montserrat can be purchased online in advance for a seamless day trip from Barcelona.

Are there guided tours available at Montserrat?

Yes, guided tours are available at Montserrat. These tours provide in-depth insights into the history, architecture, and facts of important attractions such as Montserrat Monastery.

Where is Montserrat located?

Montserrat is located in Catalonia, Spain, northwest of Barcelona at 08691, Barcelona, Spain.

How can I get to Montserrat?

You can reach Montserrat from Barcelona by train, bus or car. Trains run from Barcelona to Montserrat, and once there, a cable car or rack railway provides access to the mountain and the monastery. You can also opt for day trip tickets from Barcelona to Montserrat, where you will have transportation options to choose from.

What is the best time to visit Montserrat?

The best times to visit Montserrat are during the shoulder seasons of spring and fall, avoiding peak summer crowds. Weekdays are generally less crowded than weekends.