Day 3: Montserrat

It was Christmas Day on the second day in Barcelona that I planned to go to Monastery area in Monistrol de Montserrat. The place is located in the middle of Montserrat – rugged mountain. It takes about one and a half hour from Barcelona by train and cable car. I could not find information about the earliest transportation in the morning to Montserrat on the Internet, so I woke up at 6 and got to Espanya around 7, where the train to Montserrat departs.

The street to Catalunya station of Metro around 6:30am on Christmas Day. There was almost no people except for me and police.

Although I got to Espanya station at 7, I found there that the earliest one was at 8:30… Even worse, there was nothing around the station. So, I took Metro to Barcelona Sants and had breakfast.

With one hour trip, the train arrived at Montsserat Aeri station at 9:40, where we transfer to the cable car. The view from there was beautiful. The weather was also fine on the day. The cable car goes up to the place in the center of the picture, between the both rocky hills.

The terminal of the cable car.

I started hiking toward Mirador de Sant Miguel, which is the cross in the center of the picture.

I got to the place from where I could see the Basilica over the valley. What a fantastic view, isn’t it?

By the way, Montserrat reminded me Japanese famous place, Mount Koya because of their similarities. Both are located amid the mountain and religious place. Mount Koya does not have such beautiful view though. Instead, it has very unique atmosphere that you could feel only when you are there. I recommend you visit there if you have a chance.

View of the bottom of the valley.

I hiked for half an hour more. The slope was substantially steep.

After the hike, I descended by funicular to visit the Basilica. The Christmas Mass was being held there.

Went down the mountain by cable car in the same way as ascending.

I was wondering if I stayed more in Montserrat. But I wanted to see a little bit more in Barcelona and had to get new digital camera because mine did not work well at all. So I took train at 12:48 and was back around 2 in Barcelona.

Went to a department store, Fnac, to buy new digital camera, but it was closed due to Christmas. Most of business was closed. It is not unusual to open shops for 365 days a year in Japan. So I did not come to the idea the shops were closed although I had similar experience two years ago in the U.S….

Therefore, all the pictures after Day 3 were taken by iPhone 4. If you noticed the differences in the pictures from previous ones, you deserve to use digital camera. If not, iPhone camera might be enough for you.

I gave up getting new camera and walked toward Ciutadella park.

After strolling the park, I went to Santa Maria del Mar.

It was a bummer that Picasso Museum was closed due to Christmas as well.

Came back at Casa Batllo around 4 and entered into the building. Audio guide was included.

Got back in the hostel after 6 and went out to have Paella and beer nearby. It cost about 15 Euros.

Went to bed early, around 8:30, with being tired by walking this day and in preparation for early flight of next morning.



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