Montserrat, Catalonia: how to get there and what to see. Description of the monastery, photos, ticket prices 2023, how much do excursions cost.
Montserrat is a mountain range and monastery in Catalonia. It is considered one of the main attractions of the region and Spain as a whole.
The Monastery of Montserrat is located about 45 kilometers northwest of Barcelona. The complex is built at an altitude of more than a kilometer in the middle of the mountain range of the same name.
Which itself is worthy of mention because of its unique beauty. Montserrat literally means “mountain-saw” in Catalan.
The rocks look especially wonderful at dawn or before sunset. Bathed in the rays of the rising or setting sun, they turn into incredible juicy beige-pink tones.
The highest peak of the mountain range, Sant Jeroni, has a height of 1,236 meters. Tourists can climb it on foot from the upper station of the funicular.
There are wonderful views from the observation deck. On a clear day, even the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean are visible in the distance.
How to Get
Getting to the Montserrat Monastery from Barcelona is extremely easy – even if you don’t want to rent a car and don’t arrive on your own one. Since there are two railway stations nearby, also there is a bus route.
By train, you need to go along the R5 line from Plaza de Espana to Montserrat-Aeri station. Then you need to use the cable lift. We study its working hours and prices here: cremallerademontserrat.cat/en /.
If you want to go up to Montserrat by funicular, take the train a little further, to the Monistrol de Montserrat station.
Buses to the monastery depart from Barcelona’s University Square only in the morning.
The cost of a group excursion to Montserrat from Barcelona starts from 50-55 € per person.
Santa Maria de Montserrat
The first mention of the abbey in this area dates back to the end of the 9th century. And the oldest surviving monastic buildings were laid in 1025.
The Benedictine monks who founded the monastery here felt completely safe here. And in the literal sense, they looked down on the Moors who had seized Catalonia in their time.
Subsequently, the Montserrat Monastery became one of the pilgrimage sites. And the wooden statuette of Black Madonna stored in it, as if made personally by St. Luke, is said to work real miracles. Catalans call her “La Moreneta” and consider Black Madonna the heavenly patroness of the region.
The Cathedral of Montserrat, built in the 16th century, is also famous. Every day the Escolania de Montserrat Boys’ Choir sings inside.
The monastery also has an art museum, where a collection of icons is collected, as well as pictures by El Greco and Caravaggio, Picasso and Dali. Unfortunately, tourists cannot visit the local library, where unique manuscripts are kept.
Tickets to the monastery cost from 18 € per adult visitor. You can buy them trough the site tickets.montserratvisita.com.