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Europe Travel: Montserrat, Spain in an Afternoon — Activity Recommendations

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This is a list of activity recommendations for an afternoon in Montserrat, Spain. Nestled between serrated rocks in a valley outside of Barcelona, Montserrat is a pilgrimage site with a basilica and monastery dating back to the 11th century.

The basics

  • Montserrat, Spain
  • Travel to Montserrat from Barcelona, Spain, a one hour drive.

Map of Locations

Day 1: Arrive to the Montserrat and park in the car park. Proceed towards the basilica.

Basilica – A religious site has been situated here since the 11th century. The basilica that you see today dates to the 19th century. Inside the Basilica is the Black Madonna.
Black Madonna – Black Madonnas can be found all over the world. The one in Montserrat is special because Pope Leo XIII declared the Virgin of Montserrat the patroness of Catalonia in 1844. Housed behind a glass case, the Black Madonna Tradition holds for visitors to touch or kiss Madonna’s hand (which hangs outside of the case) while opening your other hand to Jesus. You may also hear people refer to the Black Madonna as “The Virgin of Montserrat” or “La Moreneta”.
Sant Joan Funicular If you take the funicular to the top, you’ll have sweeping views at 1,000 feet above sea level to the valley below and the Pyrenees. At the top is an information center and the starting point for many hikes. Detailed descriptions are available for hikers.
Hike — There are a number of hikes available in Montserrat. Take the cable car to the top and stop through the information center to learn about different hike options.

Our hike recommendation:
What You Will See
: The Pyrenees and the flatlands of the Llobregat valley
Difficulty: The walk is rated as “very easy” with a slope of only 20 meters and is an opportunity for meditation.
Time + distance: This hike takes approximately 50 minutes to complete a 3.2 kilometer walk.
–Walk on the road towards Monistrol.
–At the Mirador dels Apostols building, take a left onto the path that runs parallel to the highway
–Follow this path for about 25 minutes until you reach “Degotalls”
–Turn around and return back

Views of the valley outside of Barcelona.

The walk towards the basilica from the carpark.

Walk around the grounds of the basilica.

Lighting a candle for a loved one.

If you have the time, take the cable car up to to the skyline to hike. Details about hiking path options are available at the information center.

Pick up some local made snacks and jams prior to departing Montserrat.

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