5 star rating: Highly Recommended Beautiful scenery and hike. The tour guide was really informative and at the same time interesting. Great photo ops. Most definitely recommend the tour. At Monsterrat, I'd recommend buying some local cheese from one of the vendors, a fresh bread from the bakery shop there, and hike to the top of Montserrat for lunch! Reviewed by: Cathreen A, Netherlands, March 2010
5 star rating: Highly Recommended Wow! This tour was wonderful! Our meet up with the tour very easy... our guide Gemma excellent, friendly, interesting and of course a great driver too! The trip to Montserrat had breath taking views! Listening to the boys choir, checking out the "Black Virgin" taking the beautiful trails...everything was wonderful! And then to top it off going to the Cava Winery was great! It was all better then we expected! Reviewed by: V. & M. J, United States of America, March 2010
5 star rating: Highly Recommended This was a great trip the small group is a million times better than a huge tour bus, and our guide Robert was excellent - laid back, funny, and gave us a lot of free time to explore on our own, which was exactly what we were looking for. We basically wanted to get out of the city for a day to see some smaller towns and go hiking, but didn't want to worry about arranging our own transportation or walking around in a herd of 50 people - this was the perfect solution. We had such a good experience that we booked a second day trip with the same company Explore Catalunya to the Costa Brava as soon as we got back. As an added bonus, our guide was able to tell us about a few local events happening in Barcelona as well, that weren't tourist traps. Highly recommend this trip, as well as the company. United States of America, August 2009
Pyrenees and Mountain Village Small Group Day Tour
Tour Summary -
The only day tour from Barcelona that takes groups into the Pyrenees mountains.
This is a wonderful chance to step foot in the spectacular Pyrenees mountains and take the mountain train up to nearly 2,000 metres (6,000 feet).
First port of call is the beautifully maintained mediaeval town famous of Vic. It's well know for it's bustling market, old quarter, and traditional way of life.
Before lunch, we head up into the Pyrenees, first stopping at the stone-built village of Queralbs, from where we catch the rack railway high into the mountains.
Full Tour Description -
This is a perfect tour for anybody wanting to truly escape the city and immerse themselves in nature. Not to mention that you'll also be visiting one of the world's most famous mountain ranges.
We leave Barcelona at 8:30am from outside the Hard Rock Cafe the departure pint for all of our Day Tours from Barcelona. Very quickly, we leave the city behind us as we head north.
Our final destination may be the mountains, but on all of our day tours we try to include as much variety as possible. Just an hour from Barcelona, and half way to the Pyrenees, we stop for a short break in the ancient town of Vic.
In keeping with our philosophy of giving you as much time as possible to explore on your own, we head first for the Market Square where we will give you an introduction to the town and suggestions of what to see.
You'll have plenty of time to stroll around the town centre taking in the cathedral (a mixture of styles ranging from Romanesque to neo-classical), and some magnificent renaissance and baroque buildings; or to simply relax while having breakfast in the heart of the town: a beautiful arched square (one of the biggest in the country) where the market and other major events are held.
Our visits to Vic coincides with traditional market days, something which has been taking place every week for over a thousand years!
From Vic, we continue up to the Pyrenees. Before we board the train, we will briefly visit Queralbs, which, at an altitude of 1,236 metres, is the last vehicle-accessible village on the way up to our mountain valley destination.
This tiny mountain village has a population of only 200 permanent residents living in a rambling collection of traditionally built stone houses. Perched on the side of the mountain, this impossibly quaint, picture postcard beautiful hamlet is one of the most memorable parts of the day.
Here, you will also be able to see the Church of Sant Sadurní de Fustanyá, built from stones so perfectly-hewn that legend says it was built by the fairies and witches said to inhabit the surrounding caves.
From Queralbs, we take the last 6km of the impressive rack railway up to an altitude of 1,964 metres and into the stunning mountain valley of Vall de Núria. Thanks to the mountain railway, you’ll be able to get high into the mountains with no effort at all.
If you love hiking, then ask the guide to show you some routes, there's something for everyone - from the hard and strenuous to light and easy. You'll have plenty of time to hike well away from the valley and truly experience the solitude of the mountains.
In the valley you’ll also find the sanctuary, originally built to house pilgrims to the valley, and which takes its name from the Virgin de Núria. Her image, buried in the earth, was reputedly unearthed by a very persistent ox!
In the valley, you can enjoy the unspoiled scenery, sharing it with unusual birds and animals ranging from Gryphon vultures to chamois, and golden eagles to marmots, and take one of the many different walks, of varying levels of difficulty, or you can try horse riding, open air bowling, archery lessons, crazy golf, or boating on the lake. If that seems too energetic, another option is to enjoy some of the traditional Catalan dishes available in the valley’s restaurants.
From Queralbs, the return to Barcelona begins, arriving there at 7:30pm.
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Small Group Day Tour from Barcelona
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Departure point: Tours depart from opposite the outdoor cafe of the famous Palau de la Musica off Via Laietana. The exact address in C/ Palau de la Musica, 1 - 08003 - Barcelona
Inclusions: Professional guide.
Lunch and refreshments
Important information: Customers need to call during office hours to confirm their booking. Our office hours are: Monday to Friday, from 9:00 AM to 14:00 PM and from 16:00 PM till 19:00 PM. Lunches - are not included. However we stop in places where there are a wide range of lunch options to suit all budgets.
In November, the Rack Railway closes for maintenance. During this time, we will offer an alternative route into the Pyrenees.
All return times are approximate.
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Departs: Tue, Thu, Sat
Departure time: 8:30am
Leaves from opposite the Palau de la Musica
Price: 95 euros