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Montserrat Monastery and Nature Park

Spectacular view of the Catalan countryside

From afar, the 1,236-meter-high mountain offers a magnificent view. From the top, you can experience panoramic views extending far into the hinterland of Catalonia.

The mountain of Montserrat with the Benedictine monastery of Santa Maria de Montserrat is located approximately 45 km northwest of Barcelona. Montserrat offers plenty to see and discover, making it ideal for a half- or full-day trip.

The natural park boasts an incredibly beautiful landscape: fresh air, breathtaking views of the Catalan hinterland, and numerous scenic hiking trails leading to deserted hermitages. Nature lovers will adore Montserrat.

And of course, the monastery: Here you can experience a wealth of culture, including the museum, the basilica, and the famous Black Madonna, a destination for pilgrims from all over the world. Culinary delights of Catalonia can be savored in several fine restaurants with panoramic views.

Traveling to Montserrat Monastery

Getting to Montserrat by public transportation is spectacular and very easy.

From Plaça Espanya station, the FGC (Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat) R5 line (Barcelona Manresa) departs every 20 to 40 minutes. The journey to Montserrat takes about an hour. A highlight of the journey is the ascent to Montserrat Monastery via cable car (Aeri de Montserrat station) or rack railway (Monistrol de Montserrat station). The R50 line follows the same route but is less frequent and does not stop at the Montserrat cable car. You can find the R5 line schedule here.

At the "Aeri de Montserrat" station, you can transfer to the cable car, or continue one more station to "Monistrol de Montserrat" station. From there, a rack railway departs every 20 minutes, taking you directly to the monastery atop Montserrat. The 15-minute journey is worth it.

Tickets for the journey

Here is an overview of the various tickets for arrival and the attractions on site. Our special recommendation is the "Tot Montserrat" ticket, an all-inclusive package for your Montserrat excursion.

Trans Montserrat - all means of transportation to the monastery

Ticket Trans Montserrat - Train from Barcelona + Rack Railway + Moreneta Access

  • Tickets for Montserrat Mountain Card: Train from Barcelona + Rack Railway + Moreneta Acces
  • The "Trans Montserrat" ticket includes all transportation modes to visit the monastery and the Montserrat mountain range from Barcelona
  • Ideal for self-guided stay at Montserrat
  • Subway ticket in Barcelona
  • Train ticket to Monistrol de Montserrat station
  • Rack railway ticket to the monastery
  • Funicular ticket to Sant-Joan for the mountain range
  • Funicular ticket to Santa Cova (not operational year-round)
  • Access to the Montserrat sanctuary and the Black Madonna

Info & booking

Our tip: Tot Montserrat - transport passes, attractions, dining

Tickets for Tot Montserrat Card: Public Transport from Barcelona + Lunch

  • We recommend this package because with the "Tot Montserrat" ticket, you get an "All-Inclusive" trip to Montserrat. From your hotel to Montserrat, you have all the tickets you need to explore the area and ride the funiculars for the best views. Visit museums and enjoy delicious food.
  • Metro ticket for Barcelona
  • Round-trip train ticket R5 from Barcelona Plaça Espanya to Monistrol de Montserrat
  • Ticket for the rack railway to the monastery (the Aeri is no longer selectable in place of the rack railway)
  • Ticket for the Sant Joan funicular
  • Ticket for the Santa Cova funicular (not operational year-round)
  • Entrance to the audiovisual gallery
  • Entrance to the Museu de Montserrat
  • Access to the Montserrat Sanctuary and the Black Madonna
  • Lunch at the Montserrat buffet restaurant
  • You can determine the time for the round trip yourself

Info & booking

Tickets for Montserrat Experience

Montserrat Experience: Transport passes, tickets for attractions and lunch

  • The "Montserrat Experience" is a ticket for the attractions on Montserrat. Ideal if you travel by car, motorcycle, or train.
  • Entrance to the outdoor museum
  • Entrance to the Montserrat Museum
  • Entrance to the audiovisual room
  • Access to the Montserrat Sanctuary and the Black Madonna
  • Audio guide and brochure
  • If you are traveling on your own, we also recommend tickets for the Aeri de Montserrat. There are parking lots and a train stop there. If you want to drive directly to the monastery by car, you can park near the monastery (fee required).

Info & booking

Tickets for Montserrat cable car: ascent and descent

Cable car to Montserrat

  • Enjoy panoramic views of the Catalan landscape from the "Sky of Catalonia"
  • Round-trip ticket for the cable car
  • Free Wi-Fi

Info & booking

Tickets for one way:

Guided tour from Barcelona with rack railway + choral performance

Tickets for Montserrat: Guided Tour from Barcelona with Rack Railway + Choral Performance

  • Discover the abbey that houses the famous Black Madonna
  • Transport by bus from Barcelona
  • Ticket for the rack railway to Montserrat
  • Guided tour in Montserrat (English, Spanish, and Catalan)
  • Access to the Basilica
  • Entrance to visit the Moreneta (Black Madonna)
  • Choir performance by the Escolania de Montserrat
  • Duration: 6 hours

Info & booking

Arrival by car

Those arriving by car or motorcycle enjoy one of Spain's most scenic winding roads.

Getting there is quite straightforward: take the A2 highway, exit at Martorell, then take the National Road N II until the Montserrat junction. It's about 70 km from the center of Barcelona.

There is a paid parking lot in front of the monastery.

Trips to Montserrat Monastery and Natural Park

Have a good time: book a private or open excursion and experience a beautiful day in a wonderful setting in comfort.

Private excursions to Montserrat

Private excursions to Montserrat

Here we present several private excursions to Montserrat Monastery and Natural Park. The tour guides are exclusively for your group.

More information and booking...

Open Montserrat Excursions

Open Montserrat Excursions

In the open excursions to Montserrat you are together with other travelers. Here we show you several very nice tours to the monastery mountain and the surrounding area.

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Hiking in Montserrat Natural Park

From the monastery itself, there's about a 300-meter ascent to the peaks of Montserrat. A cogwheel train runs almost to the summit. From there, you can hike along several well-maintained and signposted trails through Montserrat Natural Park. Several trails of varying lengths lead from the mountain station of the funicular to the abandoned hermitages. You'll be rewarded for your efforts with breathtaking views of Catalonia.

While the trails are well maintained, sturdy footwear is essential. Most trails require moderate fitness levels, but you can also find easy and challenging trails in Montserrat.

Please stay on the designated paths to protect the delicate and sparse vegetation!

Our tip: Take the funicular to the top and hike down the approximately 6 km trail to the monastery.

The Montserrat Monastery

The mountain massif is situated amidst a very beautiful natural park. Even the journey by train and cogwheel train or cable car, or by car or motorcycle along well-maintained and winding serpentine roads, is a foretaste of what awaits you at the summit of Montserrat.

Bird's-eye view of Montserrat

Upon arriving at the Montserrat Monastery, an indescribable view unfolds all the way to the Collserola Mountains overlooking Barcelona and to the Pyrenees.

The monastery of Montserrat itself is not particularly architecturally remarkable; it's the setting into which the buildings were integrated that captivates.

Museum of the Monastery

In the museum of the Montserrat Monastery, you can see works by significant artists such as Dalí, El Greco, Monet, or Giordano. Additionally, there are archaeological and liturgical exhibits.

The Black Madonna 

Many visitors come solely to see the statue of the Black Madonna, the patron saint of Catalonia. The figure, also known as La Moreneta, dates back to the 12th century and presides over the high altar in the monastery's basilica. It is revered in Catalonia, and pilgrims and visitors from all over the world come to the pilgrimage site.

The statue, carved from wood, owes its dark appearance to the choice of wood and the aging process. The statue is often adorned with a golden crown and mantle.

The boys' choir Escolania de Montserrat

In honor of La Moreneta, around 50 choirboys from the "Escolania de Montserrat," the boarding school choir of the monastery, perform church hymns - Salve Regina and Virolai - daily (Mondays to Saturdays at 1:00 p.m. by the boys' choir of the monastery school, Sundays and holidays at 12:00 p.m.).

The Escolania is the oldest music school in Europe. The choir was first mentioned in records in 1307. Approximately 40-50 students aged 9 to 14 attend the school. They can stay overnight and spend their free time there, although it is not a boarding school.

More about the Escoliana de Montserrat

The parents of the choirboys pay 20% of the tuition fees, with a significant portion covered by the Catalan Ministry of Culture. The remaining amount is covered by a foundation. If parents are unable to pay their share of the tuition fees, the "Fundació Abadia de Montserrat 2025" also covers this.

In addition to singing, students learn to play the piano and another instrument of their choice.

Boys' choir Escolania de Montserrat

History of Montserrat

The mountain of Montserrat has had religious significance since pre-Christian times. A temple dedicated to the worship of Venus was built here by the Romans before Christ. The first documented mention of Montserrat in 888 reported the construction of an initial monastery around 880 AD. It was hermit monks who had built various hermitages on Montserrat. The monastery was then founded in 1025 through the expansion of the hermitage of Santa Maria.

The Black Madonna, found in the 12th century and still the destination of pilgrimages today, is attributed with miraculous deeds. These attributed miracles led to the strong growth of the monastery.

In the 16th century, during the transition between Gothic and Renaissance periods, the basilica of the monastery was built. The Black Madonna is preserved in the basilica.
Numerous famous personalities made pilgrimages to Montserrat: Pope Benedict XIII, Columbus, Cervantes, von Humboldt, King Ferdinand and Isabella, Charles I, Philip II, and Louis XIV.
On his second voyage in 1493, Columbus named an island in the Caribbean Montserrat.
In 1811, the monastery was largely destroyed by Napoleonic troops. The Benedictine monastery was rebuilt.

During the Franco dictatorship, the monastery resisted. Catalan continued to be spoken there despite the ban, and masses were held in Catalan. Hundreds of Franco regime's persecuted were hidden here. 23 monks were executed as a result.
This resistance makes the monastery today an important symbol of Catalan identity and the struggle against oppression. The Catalans are still grateful for this.

Why visiting Montserrat

There are many reasons why you should visit Montserrat:

  • We particularly want to highlight the natural beauty of the mountain landscape. The "serrated mountain" is spectacular and the views are breathtaking.
  • If you enjoy hiking, the many trails through the mountains offer you plenty of opportunities to admire the beauty of the region. There are hiking trails for all skill levels.
  • In addition to the monastery, there are other cultural attractions. For example, the Museu de Montserrat with an impressive art collection.
  • Montserrat is an important pilgrimage destination with a Benedictine monastery that houses the Black Madonna, a significant religious symbol.
  • Even if you are not religious, you will surely be impressed by a concert of the boys' choir of the music school.

Plan enough time for the excursion. The fresh air on the mountain, the great views, the cultural offerings, and the peace and spirituality that you experience even as a non-believer create an exciting contrast to the city.

Book here transfers to Montserrat

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Topseller guided Montserrat excursions

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Important information

Find Hotels nearby

Phone: +34 938 777 765

Opening times
7:30 to 20:00

Museum of Montserrat
Daily: 10:00 to 17:45

Audiovisual room
Monday to Friday: 9:00 to 18:45
Weekends: 09:00 to 17:00

Daily: 8:45 to 18:45

La Botiga (shop)
Mon. to Fri.: 09:00 to 18:45
Weekend: 09:00 to 17:45

daily: 12:15 to 16:00

Queviures (Supermarket):
Mon. to Fri.: 09:00 to 18:45
Weekend: 09:00 to 17:45

Admission museum:
Regular: €8.00, reduced €6.50.

Tips for visiting Montserrat

If you are visiting Montserrat on your own, it's advisable to arrive early. On weekends and holidays, it tends to be busier, but it doesn't get overly crowded. There can be queues in front of the Black Madonna.

Since there's a lot to see and do on the mountain and in the monastery, it's difficult to provide an exact time recommendation. We've had good experiences when allocating about six hours and leaving some flexibility towards the end. If you plan to do some hiking, consider adding an additional 2-4 hours.