Short trip to Sitges, Monserrat, Colonia Güell and Cardona
The best way to complete your trip to Barcelona is to visit any of the many interesting locations that surround the city. Visiting such places as Port Aventura, Girona or the Catalonian Pyrynees are always among the top choices, but there are other attractive destinations less than one hour away from the city’s downtown. Among the highlights you can find places like Sitges, Montserrat, Güell Colony or Cardona.
Short trip to Sitges
In the Garraf region, some 45 minutes away from Barcelona, you will find the coastal town of Sitges. Best known for its big cultural events, Sitges is a cosmopolitan location replete with beautiful beaches, excellent gastronomy and a plentitude of bars and nightclubs. Here, you can visit the city’s old walls, the church, the Bacardi Family Museum or the Palau Maricel. Other big events worth living out while at Sitges are its carnivals and art and film festivals, especially the International Fantasy Film Festival.
Stroll around Güell Colony
Another fun experience is visiting Colonia Güell. This old textile colony was founded in 1890 and can be found a mere 20 minutes away from Barcelona, at Santa Coloma de Cervelló. There, you will be able to lose yourself in the modernist social atmosphere of the 20th century. Its old textile factory now hosts a magnificent display on the life the colony used to have back in its day and on the artist Antoni Gaudí. Another of its main attractions is found at its church’s crypt, another masterpiece by Gaudí, widely considered one of the fundamental pieces of 20th century global architecture. Inside, you will be amazed by the leaning columns, the combination of different materials and how it all perfectly blends in with its tree-covered surroundings.
Some 50 minutes away from Barcelona you will find one of the loveliest places in the entire province: the Monserrat Natural Park. This mountainous area, located next to Llobregat River, hides the Basílica Real, a very important place for Catalonian culture as it hosts the wooden Virgin of Montserrat (or Moreneta) sculpture. The wonderful natural surroundings and the presence of this sanctuary honoring Cataluña’s patron saint, make Montserrat one of the most famous and visited places in Spain. To enjoy the natural park at its fullest, it is best to take the rack railway that joins the base of the mountain with Santa Maria de Montserrat Monastery. The trip demands 15 minutes that can be spent admiring the wonderful view of the park.
Another of the most interesting places around Barcelona is found at Cardona. This municipality, around one hour away from Ciudad Condal, is famous for having the Montaña de Sal cultural park, where you can visit the world’s most important salt mines in the world. As you tour the mines, you will get to check out the old mining facilities, go around tunnels more than 86 meters (94 yards) deep, visit photographic displays and equipment rooms. The municipality also offers a small medieval village to discover, full of Romanesque and Gothic temples, such as the San Vicente de Cardona Church, and the impressive beauty of its natural park.