Barcelona: Let’s Go To Spain…well To CATALUNYA!
How many of us have thought of visiting Barcelona, Spain? Many of us for sure! Few people know that Barcelona is not all about Spanish culture, but more about Catalan culture. Spain is made divided in various regions that over the history have been under different domains, Arabic, Aragonese, etc. These regions hold a very strong cultural and political heritage, it is not surprising that the word “independence” is often used by its citizens. Barcelona, with its entire region, Catalunya, is the first one to be considered on that aspect. Just few facts: an independence referendum was made few months ago. At schools Catalan is the used language for teaching and all the signs all around the region are in Catalan, can you see the Catalan Influence?
Why we started with this historical prelude? Well because only knowing these basic things we can understand the true essence of Barcelona and Catalunya. This affects all aspects of his daily life: from the food, sport, culture, etc.
After this brief introduction we’re ready to go! Let’s get to the point: how to reach Barcelona?
Plane, car or train? How to go to Barcelona.
BY PLANE. I always choose that option. Get to Barcelona takes only two hours by plane, from all the major European cities, London, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan, Rome and so on. If you’re traveling across Europe that option will allow you to have more time to spend in the City, be less tired. This is also the cheapest option, unless you travel at Christmas Eve, booking the day before. From Milan, I traveled some 20 times to Catalonia, and I’ve never spent more than € 50-70 round trip: this by plane!
BY CAR. From Milan, Barcelona is 12 hours driving away, and it would cost some € 400-500 (fuel and highway), or some € 100-125 per person if you share the car with 4 people. Crossing the Alps from Italy toward France you can choose the fastest path, toward Frejus (over € 50 tunnel fee), or you can pass through Ventimiglia-Nice by the Cote d’Azur. Honestly it is worthy to visit the French Riviera, and more that few hour are needed: Nice, Monte Carlo, Cannes, St. Tropez, and then Marseille, Montpellier…that wuold make the journey quite long.
In conclusion: Car or plane? I say “plane (low cost flights) for sure”!
ON THE TRAIN. What about the train? The train is too expensive and the travel would last some 15 hours.
Airports & Terminals
You can choose between many options. In the past the most common connection was with Ryanair to the airport of Girona, located some 90-120 minutes east side of Barcelona. Nowadays air companies such as easyJet, Vueling offer good deals to Barcelona El Prat (the main airport, pretty close to downtown). And I highly suggest you to always fly here, forget about Girona, too far, too long the whole journey and too expensive if you consider the price for the connection from Girona to Barcelona too. EasyJet uses Barcelona Terminal 2C and 2B (the old one). If you prefer arriving in the new Terminal 1, you should catch Vueling (few euros more expensive than easyJet and Ryanair). But consider that the best choice would likely be flying with easyJet, Terminal 2 is well connected by train with Barcelona Sants Train Station. From Barcelona El Prat T1, you can even catch a bus that will take you directly to Plaça Catalunya, in the heart of Barcelona.
Public Transportation to and from Barcelona Downtown
If you listen to me, use easyJet and then take the train from Terminal 2B to Barcelona El Prat to Barcelona Sants Train Statio. Tickets are valid as well for the Subway, buses and trams. The airport is located in zone 2, so if you will stay in the city, you should buy 2 individual tickets zone 1 & 2 (one to go to the hotel and one to return to the airport), and then buy a one or more days ticket for just zone one which will give you unlimited rides. This option is perfect if you don’t wanna be thinking about transport tickets anymore during your holiday. If you’re a bit more organized and you already know where are you going and how many rides you’ll need to take, you can choose the 10 rides ticket (zone 1), this card can be used also “together” with friends at the same time, it is not a personal ticket, and it could be be the most economic choice.
Well I gave you some tips and good suggestions on how to get to Barcelona, its airports and about how to get to Downtown, optimizing costs. We will discuss accommodation, food and entertainment in another article! Keep following us! 😉