Biking Around Barcelona
Considered one of the world's most bike-friendly cities, Barcelona was made to be explored on two wheels. Between the coast and the mountains at the back, Barcelona is remarkably flat making getting around quick and easy, especially thanks to the 200km of bike paths (and counting. You can check a map of Barcelona's cycle paths here) which turn up in handy places around the city. The versatility of bicycles means that you can also traverse the narrow streets of the likes of El Raval, Barrio Gotico and El Born, where cars are a nightmare and metro and public transport limited.
Whilst all of the above districts are must-sees, it doesn't make sense to rent bikes unless you intend to get out of the centre, and beyond walking range, to some of the many cool sights outside the Old Town. There are tonnes of routes we could recommend, starting with a jaunt North to the former industrial area of Poblenou with modern attractions like Torre Agbar and the Park Diagonal, not to mention the beaches (in which case Steel Donkeys offer a funky tour!), or striking out all the way to the bustling village atmosphere of Gracia and on to Park Guell; whilst the liberty of two wheels means you could also pick off out of the way treasures such as the remarkable Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau. A Modernista marvel that most tourists don't know exist, the hospital was designed by Domenech i Montaner, an architectural genius who instructed his more famous contemporary Antoni Gaudi.
Above: Taking a break from the saddle by Bogatell Beach
If you really fancy some hardcore pedalling, then why not hire yourselves some mountain bikes and head over either to Montjuic, with its smorgasboard of cultural treasures such as Poble Espanyol; or tone the thighs with a trip right up to Tibidabo - it's the mountain peak topped with the church which you can see if you look to the back of the city! Whatever you decide, grab yourself a map, check the weather forecast, and read up on the best places to rent bikes in Barcelona below!
Barcelona Bike Rentals
Steel Donkey Bicycles
Famous for their off-beat and original tours around the city, Steel Donkeys are also your go-to guys for renting a set of wheels for independent exploration of the Catalan capital. Unbeatable prices (just 10 euros a day), central pick up and drop off point in the heart of the Gothic Quarter, and fantastic city, road and mountain bikes mean that you don't have to shop around...
Green Bikes Barcelona
Excellent rates, lean mean green machines and young international staff make Green Bikes a top place to hire a bicycle or two. Their office, in the Gothic Quarter, is a bit tricky to find however, but, as with all the most useful addresses in town, you can find their exact location on our map of Barcelona (just look under 'Services').
Baja Bikes Rental
Baja Bikes are a Dutch company, so you can be confident they know a thing or three about two-wheelers! Although they specialise in tours, they can also help you hire bicycles for independent sightseeing if you prefer to go it alone. Just get in contact with them via their website. The cost is 15 euros for 24 hours, and you'll need photo ID if you want to take advantage of their services.
Fancy the idea of seeing the city by pedal power, but too lazy to put in the legwork? Well why not enjoy a nice relaxing ride instead, courtesy of the friendly folk at Funky Cycle. Jump in one of their rickshaws (you can hail them down on Passeig de Colom, or reserve in advance) and you can cover much more ground than by foot, without ever breaking a sweat! Plus your driver doubles as an expert guide to the city.
Bike City Rent
Chic grey city bikes, with seven gears, available in a a central location just behind the Arc del Triomf: a great starting place for setting of for Gracia or Poblenou! Their rates are competitive, and you can also hire scooters at the same address. (NOW CLOSED).
More rental shops coming soon!
If you like the idea of seeing Barcelona by bike, but have no idea where to start then you might want to consider signing up for a guided cycle around the city's main attractions. Read more about Barcelona bike tours!
Definitely the best way to get around. We did a Steel DOnkey bike tour on our first day and had an amazing day out with a young Spanish guide called Maria. Then on the second we went back to the Green Bike store and did some more exploring by ourselves! After two days we saw practically the whole city!
reviewed by Liz from United States on Jan.19.2012
I used Green Bikes and was happy with the service. Grabbed a map and set off pioneer style to discover the city under teh Spanish sun!
reviewed by Jay Dawg from United States on Feb.16.2011
Thank you guys what a crazy time we had driving around Barcelona on our bicycles seeing everything in the whole city. It is very inexpensive to hire the cycles in general and there are many lanes for driving.
reviewed by Francois from France on Jan.12.2011
Two wheels is the only way to go around Barcelona. The roads are so flat for just seeing everything in town plus theres plenty of climbs out back if you want to head up to Tibidabo. Metro is hot as hell and slow and underground...
reviewed by Ian from Australia on Sep.08.2010