Montserrat is a cliffside Monastery and Village high on the Montserrat Mountain in Catalonia, Spain. Dating back to the 10th Century A.D., the monastery has been home to a succession of Benedictine monks for hundreds of years and continues to this day, with monks still teaching and giving thanks within the ancient walls and in the Benedictine Abbey.
The monastery is 48 kilometers (30 mi) west of Barcelona — just a short drive or train-ride away from Central Barcelona — and is often referred to as “the most sacred site in all of Spain.” The first national park in Spain, the surrounding lands and the mountain itself encompass the Greater Montserrat Park and is renowned for both the Montserrat Complex and the parkland and hiking trails that meander through the mountain and foothills.
One of the greatest sights to see when visiting Montserrat is the centuries-old architecture of the complex that anchors itself into the steep sides of the Montserrat Mountain. aside from the sheer beauty of the location, there are a number of sights to see within the complex itself including shops, dining, a music store, and the museum which holds works of art from El Greco, Picasso and Salvador Dalí.
Basilica of Montserrat
In the Basilica of Montserrat, mass is still held nearly every day, which you too can attend when you are visiting Montserrat. You can also see performances by the Montserrat Choir, the oldest continuous choir in all of Europe. Choir performances are usually held at midday and are open for all visit to listen.
Montserrat, Spain Hiking Trails
There are a number of hiking trails that wind around the mountain in the area, and hiking them is one of the most popular activities for those visiting Montserrat. Hiking trails include:
- Montserrat to the Degotalls
- Monastery to Santa Cova
- Sant Joan Funicular (upper station) to Montserrat (via Sant Jeroni and Flat of Els Ocells)
- Sant Joan Funicular (upper station) to Montserrat Monastery (via Path of La Serra Llarga and the Holy cave)
Montserrat, Spain By Train
Travel to Montserrat is especially easy via the Espanya train (Red and Green Lines). There are trains leaving the Barcelona Station every hour on the half-hour, and it is a short ride — about 1 hour. The train will stop at the Montserrat Cable Station where you can decide how you want to travel the rest of the way up the mountain and to the Monastery; either by taking the Rack Railway, or by using the Cable Car System.
Montserrat, Spain By Cable Car
Another short ride — consisting of only 5 minutes — the cable car will whisk you away to the monastery thousands of feet high. The ride itself is fairly intense, and if you are afraid of heights, you might want to take the Rack Car.
Over 60s ticket:
Children (aged 4 – 13):