Barcelona is among Spain's most popular tourist traps that's heaving with culture, food, art, and history. As well as when it's been explored in full, people to this stunning Calatan city will find much more beauty, adventure, and fun when they escape to the nearby journey retreats.
The surrounding region has more incredible sights and activities, along with a decent number of them are easily reached by road from Barcelona on the exact same day. From captivating coastal towns with postcard-perfect beaches to wide-open nature-laden spots and medieval historic cities overflowing with stories and remnants of history, the next Catalonian gems are some of the top contending road trip destinations set across this enriching and exciting part of Spain.
Montblanc is really a stunning medieval town around an hour . 5 west of Barcelona, and a striking spot that's the place to find the Prades Mountains and a host of historic attractions. Most interestingly, visitors can learn about the area's old ties to the cooperating followers of different Abrahamic faiths, which was not really a common occurrence in ancient European history. Naturally, amongst the town's most remarkable sights are its churches, such as the striking Roman-Gothic convent of Sant Francesc, which goes back as far as the thirteenth century.
About 40 minutes southwest of Barcelona may be the pretty coastal town of Sitges – a place of lavish luxury and exuberant nightlife. Home to beautiful beaches, exciting nightclubs, and even the Sitges Film Festival that attracts a global audience, this town is an all-rounder for travelers in need of a fantastic few days in the Catalonia region.
But it's not solely the roster of glitz and glamor that Sitges beckons its visitors for; it's also an incredible spot for exploring rich historical sites and interesting museums. Toss in its superb restaurant offerings, which town truly is one of this list's most ideal for discerning road trippers and day visitors. As well as for the ones that come to Sitges for the grub: don't forget to test the town's famous signature dish – Xató.
8 Tossa De Mar
For folks interested in sampling a number of Catalonia's pristine beaches plush with soft sands and calm water, Tossa de Mar just an hour and a quarter from Barcelona is really a no-brainer choice. Conveniently, beach-goers will also find an abundance of retailers and restaurants near its shores, so they'll remain well-fed with delicious delights in their chillaxing day's sun, sand, and sea. What's more, Tossa de Mar also provides a number of lovely historical sites, including its fortified medieval town – one that's similar to a Game of Thrones set that could rival the ancient strongholds of Croatia's Dubrovnik at this.
Sticking on the horizon and visual from many miles away, Montserrat is really a majestic Catalan mountain range dotted with a lot of historic sites and spectacles of natural beauty. It's a favored region near Barcelona for adrenaline junkies and adventure lovers, with its highest peak of Sant Jeroni rising to 1,236 meters above sea level, it's easy to see why. If mountaineering is a little too adventurous, then your more leisurely thrill-seekers will enjoy Montserrat's gorgeous trails that take them towards the mountain tops, as well as the area's other trekking routes, that are less-taxing options for people who can't stomach such heights.
6 Costa Brava
Looking for paradise beaches away from the crowds? Then search no more, for Costa Brava is where to become if sun and fun out of sight from the masses of tourists is the order from the vacay. The seasides here are notably less crowded compared to popular city beach counterparts, and although there are seemingly far fewer people, visitors can continue to look for a number of beaches well-equipped with modern facilities and amenities.
In addition, this beautiful town's natural splendor has subsequently produced a prolific arts scene; home to a number of fascinating museums containing masterpieces from Picasso, Miró, and Dalí – prominent artists who have been inspired through the impeccable scenery – Costa Brava is really as much of an art aficionado's heaven as it is a seaside bunny's paradise.
Dating to ancient eras, Tarragona an hour or so along with a quarter southwest of Barcelona is a historically significant Roman city teeming with incredible sites to explore, including several well-preserved Roman ruins which have achieved UNESCO World Heritage Site status. As the former capital of Hispania Tarraconensis was one of the most important metropolises within the entire Roman Empire, visitors have a lot of enchanting historical gems to discover. Other old-world treasures within the city to seduce history buffs range from the cultural artifacts of the city's dedicated archeological museum, where folks can learn about the various cultures that carved Tarragona into what it's today.
Situated in Northern Catalonia around an hour and a half from Barcelona, Girona is full of fun for visitors who hold history full of their hearts. The place to find lots of historic buildings and a well-preserved, centuries-old quarter, it's a location that attracts probably the most enthusiastic of history fanatics and photographers. Actually, it's so photogenic that the historic district and native cathedral have even appeared in many films occur ancient times. Overall, Girona is in no short supply of historic wonders to marvel at this could be considered some of Spain's most striking, including ancient roman structures, old religious buildings, and perhaps probably the most well-preserved Jewish quarters in Europe.
Visitors of Figueres usually descend for this particular reason: it's the birthplace of the globally famed artist, Salvador Dalí – an intriguing proven fact that, when coupled with its plethora of historic attractions and entertaining activities, makes it an urban area worthy of any Spain-bound road tripper's bucket list whether they're an art-and-history-fan or not.
Taking center stage is obviously the Dalí Museum – a bizarre yet fascinating building by which visitors can watch a diverse collection of his equally bizarre and fascinating works. Also around the must-see list in Figures is definitely an interesting technology museum that takes visitors on the technological journey through the decades, in addition to a scenic castle stemming to the 18th century. All of this at just an hour and a half or so from Barcelona helps make the drive worth every mile.
After all that adventure and excitement elsewhere in Catalonia, it's only normal to crave some peace and quiet – and that's exactly what Begur entices its visitors with when they drive the hour and a half from Barcelona to the doorstep. A tranquil coastal town in Catalonia's east, visitors who choose to include breathtaking Begur to their itinerary won't be disappointed; it's a peaceful place with quiet beaches unlike those in Barcelona, with some lovely historic sites added too for good measure. Certainly one of its beautiful, hundreds-of-years-old sites is the imposing local castle, which does look just a little unnatural given Begur's unpretentious town center.
Bottles up, for it's time to venture to Catalonia's epicenter of viticulture. Nestled just under an hour west of Barcelona, the sprawling Penedès wine region produces some of Catalonia's highest abundances of wines, as well as a number of its most diverse. From rich reds, fragrant rosés, and crisp white wines to their sweet, sparkling, and dry variations, those who can't resist a glass of wine (or ten) will be in their element when touring the various vineyards and wineries dotted about this sensational region's verdant landscapes.