Once you’re in Barcelona the best ways to get around are on the underground and by using the city sightseeing tourist buses. Take a look at our page on the Barcelona Card which offers useful travel discounts and cheap entrances to some of the city’s top attractions.
Take the Metro
The Metro is probably the easiest way to get around the city but you may need buses or suburban trains to reach some places. It’s a good idea to buy the 10 journey “Targeta T-10″ which gives you ten single journeys within Zone 1 in the central area of Barcelona (See Metro Map). This ticket provides worthwhile savings over single tickets and is valid on the Metro system, RENFE local trains, city buses and FGC suburban trains. It can be used on the RENFE airport train but NOT the airport bus.
The “Targeta T-10″ allows you to transfer between different modes of transport within a 1hr 15mins period on the same ticket. Therefore, you can leave a Metro station then jump on a bus provided the journey is completed within the time limit. Buses run along most city routes every few minutes. You can also buy one ticket and share it provided you pass it back to the other person as you go through ticket barriers so it isn’t necessary to buy two tickets for two people.
Tickets are sold at all Metro stations and at the airport as you approach the train. The “Targeta T-DIA” is an alternative ticket that you might be interested in which allows for unlimited travel on all these forms of transport for one day. Or better still buy a Barcelona Card which includes all transport on the Metro as well as the RENFE train from the airport. Children under four years of age travel for free.
Distinctive black and yellow Barcelona taxis swarm the streets of Barcelona. There’s a basic charge as soon as you get in the taxi then a meter charge per kilometre as well as additional charges for putting luggage in the boot. More often than not you’ll manage to flag down a taxi on any of the main streets, however, there are major taxi ranks at Plaça de Catalunya and at the bottom of the Ramblas near the Plaça de Colom. For transfers from the airport it’s well worth pre-booking an airport shuttle.
City Bus Tours – Bus Turístic
This is the best way to visit Barcelona in a day or two with all tours beginning from in front of El Corte Inglés in Plaça Catalunya. You can get on and get off the bus at any one of the programmed stops (listed below) on the three routes which include stops at nearly all of Barcelona’s main tourist attractions. Buses come every 20 to 30 minutes. Tickets are valid on all routes and are sold on the bus along with an informative leaflet on the places you can visit. Alternatively, you can buy your ticket online and print out a voucher which you present on the bus.
1) Northern Route (Red Line):
Plaça de Catalunya – Casa Batllo – Fundacio Antoni Tapies – Passeig de Gràcia /La Pedrera – Sagrada Família – Gracia – Parc Güell – Tramvia Blau/Tibidabo – Sarria – Monestir de Pedralbes/Col·lecció Thyssen – Palau Reial/Pavellons Guell – Fútbol Club Barcelona – Francesc Macià/Diagonal – Pelai/Centre d’Art Contemporani (MACBA).
2) Southern Route (Blue Line):
Plaça de Catalunya – Casa Batllo – Fundacio Antoni Tapies – Passeig de Gràcia /La Pedrera – Francesc Macià /Diagonal – Estació de Sants – Creu Coberta – Plaça d’Espanya – Caixa Forum/Pavello Van Der Rohe – Poble Espanyol – MNAC – Anella Olímpica – Funicular de Montjuïc – Fundació Joan Miró – Miramar/Jardins Costa i Llobera – World Trade Center – Colom/Museu Maritim – Port Vell – Museu d’Historia de Catalunya – Port Olímpic – Vila Olímpica – Place de la Citadel/Zoo – Pla de Palau – Barri Gòtic.
3) Forum Route (Green Line):
Port Olimpic – Platja del Bogatell – Forum – Parc Diagonal Mar – Poblenou (The Green Line only operates between March 14 and September 28)
Along with the Bus Turístic bus tour ticket you will also receive vouchers for significant discounts at various tourist attractions in Barcelona. Check the Bus Turístic website for more information.
Along the waterfront you’ll see cycle taxis known as Trixis which are a novel way to have a look around.