Barcelona is one of the most famous cities in the world, the Catalan capital is home to some fantastic architecture and stunning scenery and attracts an estimated 32 million tourists every year – but what is it like for cycling? A bustling city may not be the first port of call for those seeking tranquil roads and mountains to climb, however despite its size and population Barcelona has all of this in spades on its doorstep. And, after giving you a guide to cycling in Majorca and cycling in Girona it’s time to give you a guide to cycling in Barcelona!
Road Cycling Barcelona
One way get the most out of riding in a new place is to hire a local guide to show you the way & help you to get out of town. CycloCat is a great resource for off-road routes and ideas about where you can reach from Barcelona.
If you’re looking for more than a couple of days of cycling from Barcelona we recommend taking a 40 min train ride east and making Girona your base. Plenty of local Barcelona riders regularly make the journey to their sister city and make the most of a weekend or day-trip to add variety to their riding.
Climbs Near Barcelona
If you’re looking to get off the road and test yourself with some climbs then these are some spots near Barcelona to check out!
- Santa Fe de Montseny
From Sant Celoni this climb is one of the most popular in the area, whilst the gradients are not particularly challenging (4.8% average) it is the length (24km) that mean that is can be a tough climb if you do not pace your effort!
This climb is stunning however choose the right time to attempt it as the roads can get extremely busy during peak seasons with tourists visiting the monastery at the top. The name of the climb translates from Catalan as ‘saw mountain’ due to the jagged peaks of the rock which are spectacular to see. The climb itself is 8.5km long with a somewhat challenging 6.9% average gradient and gets steeper at the top – so save energy!
Although Barcelona can be great for road cycling the best riding in the region really is further North towards the Pyrenees around Girona where there are a wealth of climbs and a mixture of terrain.
Gravel & MTB Barcelona
Of course, you could avoid the roads altogether and hit the trails! Why not explore the Serra de Collserola Natural Park, the trails on Montjuic & the limestone hills of Parc de Garraf. Cyclo Cat offers the best resource of routes & every January hold an annual gravel ride from Barcelona to Girona.
Barcelona Cycling Culture
Whilst Barcelona has amazing cyling on the road, gravel and climbs it also has a great cycling culture that can really enhance any trip to the region.
Best Bike Shops in Barcelona
One of the best bits about Barcelona is the amazing bike shops and city cycling culture. Be sure to visit Velodrom & Brompton Junction to complete your Barcelona Cycling experience.
Whether you’re stopping for coffee on a ride or just on the hunt for a caffeine fix whilst exploring the city. Check out On y Va for coffee and brunch or Nømad Coffee for a home-roasted cup.
Barcelona is packed full of incredible places to eat for cyclists on all budgets. Top of our list is Flax & Kale for a fresh, healthy feed and tiny Tapas bar La Cova Fumada to try ‘La Bomba’, a Barcelona specialty.
Barcelona Cycling Day Trip
On top of the culture Barcelona is perfect if you’re looking for a cycling day trip – either explore the city or take in some scenery.
- Brompton Bike Tour of the Famous Sites – cruise along Barcelona’s network of cycle paths on a Sunday for a perfect day out.
- Head to Girona – Girona is a mere 40 minutes away by train and is home to some of the best road & gravel riding in Catalunya. Rent a bike and guide from Eat Sleep Cycle and take in the scenery or simply explore the beautiful medieval city.
Bike Friendly Places to Stay
If you’re racking up the km in the saddle whilst exploring Barcelona then you’re going to need good spot to rest your head (and keep your bike safe). Here are some bike friendly places to stay whilst you’re in Barcelona.
- If you’re a cyclist on a budget stay at Bed & Bike Barcelona a bike-friendly hostel in a great location
- Try Hotel Villa Emilia for a spot of 4* Luxury for excellent value. Enjoy an evening on the rooftop bar & soak up the views.
- It’s well worth spending a few nights in Girona if you’re a keen cyclist!
Cycling Trip to Barcelona
We hope the above has piqued some interest in a cycling trip to Barcelona or has helped you plan out some of your next tour when here. If you’ve any questions about cycling in Barcelona or would like to find out more about our Barcelona cycling tours then us give us a call now on +34 972 649 131 or contact us online for more info.
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