If you want to go to Montserrat on your own, there’s an easier way. 

POSTED BY PINKY

I must admit. Guided bus tours are the easiest way to get anywhere. Just book, board, and enjoy the ride with your very own tour guide.

Another easy way is taking a point-to-point bus, like the one that takes you directly from Barcelona to the Monastery in Montserrat and back. The only downside to this is there’s only one trip to Montserrat (morning) and only one trip back to Barcelona (afternoon). Always check the latest Autocares Julia bus schedule (bus only, no guide) here.

There are those like us, however, who on this particular trip with my in-laws preferred to take our own sweet time or have some flexibility time-wise when we got to our destination. But finding your way around the local transit system can be pretty intimidating.

This is exactly how going to Montserrat on your own can feel like. Specially since getting to Montserrat from Barcelona – and back – requires taking the metro, train, rack railway or cable car, and possibly the funicular. Both ways. Each mode of transport with its own separate ticket.

Wouldn’t it be simpler if we can just buy one ticket to cover everything, sparing us the headache of deciding which tickets to buy?

With Tot Montserrat, we can.

TOT MONTSERRAT TICKET

Translated “All Montserrat”, this ONE TICKET includes all return trips via Metro and train, choice of rack railway or cable car, funicular, entry into the museum, PLUS a buffet lunch! All for 46.95€ per person.

We were staying in an apartment close to Plaça de Catalunya, so it was convenient to get to the Tourist Information Centre located just below the Plaça to purchase them. But they’re also available at the Plaça d’Espanya station and stations along the Llobregat-Anoia line.

There was a line getting to a TI staff to buy our Tot Montserrat Tickets so fortunately, we decided to purchase it the day before our planned visit. Make sure to bring your passport with you when you buy your ticket.

HOW WE GOT TO MONTSERRAT AND BACK

Below is a simple outline of what we actually did.

From Plaça de Catalunya to Montserrat Monastery

* Metro from Plaça de Catalunya to Plaça d’Espanya 

* Train from Plaça Espanya to Monistrol de Montserrat

* Rack railway from Monistrol to the Abbey

* Funicular from the Abbey to Sant Joan

From Montserrat to Plaça de Catalunya

* Funicular from Sant Joan to the Abbey 

* Rack railway from the Abbey to Monistrol de Montserrat 

* Train from Monistrol to Plaça d’Espanya

* Metro from Plaça d’Espanya to Plaça de Catalunya 

Please note that we didn’t take the cable car option nor did we proceed to the Chapel of Santa Cova, but these are covered by the Tot Montserrat ticket.

A steep ride on the side of the mountain between the Monastery and the top aboard the Sant Joan funicular

TOP TIPS

1. If you want to hear the 1pm performance of the Escolanía, I suggest buying your ticket the day before your planned trip to Montserrat. You need to get to the Abbey early enough in order to get any kind of space. Forget about seating if you get there close to 1pm. The aisle or steps to the side chapels are all you’re going to get – IF you’re even lucky to get inside at all.

2. Bring your passport when you buy your ticket at the Plaça de Catalunya visitor’s centre or any other station, for that matter.

3. From the Plaça Espanya METRO system, you need to transfer to the Plaça Espanya TRAIN system.

4. Get to Plaça Espanya early to allow enough time to find the R5 train line to Montserrat. Any station entrance from the road is good. Follow the way to the R5 line. When in doubt, ask for help.

5. There are 2 ways to get from the Montserrat train stop to the monastery: by cable car or by rack railway/funicular. Your ticket covers all options, so to those with a fear of heights, the rack railway/funicular is perfect. However, please take note of the correct train stop in Montserrat for either option.

* If going via cable car, it’s the Montserrat Aeri stop.

* If going via rack railway/funicular, it’s the Monistrol de Montserrat stop.

6. Check the latest train schedules and synchronise your trip down from the monastery to the train station, bearing in mind that there is only one train per hour between Montserrat and Barcelona.

* Check Cable Car schedules here

* See Funicular/Rack Railway schedules here

* Find Train schedules here

7. You can hike to the highest point in Montserrat, Sant Jeroni, from the Sant Joan funicular stop. Wear sensible shoes in case you decide to do this.

8. You might also be interested in going to the chapel of Santa Cova, the hillside grotto where the Black Madonna was said to have been hidden during the Moorish invasion and years later found there by the shepherds.
All these may sound a bit complicated at first but it’s doable, I assure you. As I mentioned in my previous post about this trip (read about it here), we found that the journey itself actually added another dimension to the experience and became part of the adventure.

Just remember: when in doubt, ask.


Tot Montserrat ticket inclusions:
* Return metro ticket from Plaça de Catalunya.

* Return train ticket from Barcelona-Plaça Espanya to Monistrol de Montserrat.

* Return ticket on the Cremallera or Aeri to Montserrat.

* Unlimited use of the Sant Joan and Santa Cova funiculars.

* Entrance to the audiovisual exhibit “Montserrat behind Closed Doors”.

* Admission to the Museu de Montserrat.

* Meal in the self-service restaurant at Montserrat.