Travelling to Barcelona

Above: Parachutes 5 euros in the case of emergency

Below: Save your energy for when you get there

By air

Barcelona is served by El Prat Airport, situated 10km southwest of the city centre. The Aerobus runs every 15 mins and takes about half an hour to reach the centre, whilst trains also run into town. The major carriers from the UK are Iberia, British Airways and BMI, whilst cheap airlines Easyjet, Jet2, BMI Baby, as well as the dreaded Ryanair, all fly to Barcelona too. The latter of course have saved themselves a few cents by depositing you a hundred odd kilometres down the road in either Reus or Girona Airport. Get your thumb wagging. From the US try Iberia, Continental or Delta for direct flights or prepare to change at Madrid.

By rail

As you might expect Barcelona is well connected by rail to the capital Madrid (around 8 trains a day, journey time 2.5hrs), as well as Valencia down the road (16 trains a day, approx. 4.5 hours). A ticket to Madrid is expensive however (around 120 euros) and a cheaper option for those on a budget is the overnight train, which also saves a night in a hostel. If you're a backpacker on your way to or from France trains connect to Montpellier, via Perpignan on a daily basis. Timetables can be checked at RENFE. Head to the central train station - Estacio de Sants - for any long distance journey.

By bus/coach

Arriving or departing by bus or coach brings the traveller a wealth of options, normally well-priced if a trifle slow and uncomfortable vs. arriving by train. Check out Alsa's website, the Spanish partner of Eurolines for tickets to Paris, Portugal or even Morocco. Domestic options abound. Head to the Estacio del Nord for all intercity travel.

By car

If you fancy being the star of your very own road movie and you have a long attention span driving to Barcelona is possible from the UK or Europe. The French border is 188km away, about an hour and forty minutes drive on the freeway (120 kmph speed limit).

By boat

You can reach Barcelona by ferry from Genoa (three times a week, journey time 18hrs) whilst hedonists can travel to and from Palma (Majorca) and Ibiza from Barcelona's port. Tickets aren't cheap however, with a one-way trip to the latter costing over 100 Euros at last count.

Barcelona travel

We flew in with easyjet and got to our hotel (GranVia) with - everything went according to plan.

reviewed by Brian Wood from Spain on Apr.09.2015

I think the best way to travel to Spain and especially to BCN are coaches. European bus/coach serwices are very complex and reach large cities and small towns.
Coaches are comfortable, equipped with toilets, air conditioning, reclining seats. Transportation of luggage is included in the ticket price. Tickets can be purchased online in advance, this is the best method. You can also make the purchase at many bus stations or travel agent. There are a lot of good websites on coach travel in Europe. Tickets can be purchased from any place in the world, sometimes restrictions are for holders of American Express cards.

reviewed by Dominic from United Kingdom on Oct.22.2014