Hiking Marine Mountain Range Park near Barcelona
Do you want to go hiking and see the best views of Barcelona? Learn about local cultural heritage, experience the wildlife of Catalonia? Do you want it to be a convient day trip from Barcelona? I’ve got just the thing: Marine Mountain Range Park (Parc de la Serralada de Marina). This hike takes about 4h including breaks, covering 12km of distance.
How to get to the Marine Mountain Range Park from Barcelona
It’s actually super easy to get to the park even on public transportation. Take Metro line 1 to Fondo or Line 9 Nord to Singuerlin and then walk about 20min uphill to the respective nearst entrance. If you go to Fondo, you will pass a few shops and bakeries that make it easy to get food for your hike before you head towards Parque forestal La Bastida. The trailhead is a lookout point at the end of Carrer de Lincoln in Badalona.
There are picnic tables and playgrounds for children, the trail is well maintained.
Cross carrer de Santa Eulàlia onto Sant Jeroni de la Murtra to see the tower of Torre Pallaresa. Unfortunately it is private property, so you won’t get very close, but is on the way Aqüeducte. Take a right at the fork and keep your eyes peeled for a very well hidden tiny trail without a sign on the right, leading to the antique aquaeduct.
Apparently it was built in the 1860s to bring water to Barcelona. The seven arches are now barely visible as the vegetation grows wildly around it. In the spring this means wild flowers bloom at its feet. A trail passes underneath the structure that leads you straight to the monastery.
Sant Jeroni de la Murtra monastery
The monastery is a place of solitude and silence, restored by Francesca Güell i López. It originates from the 15th centry. On Sundays there are guided visits (only) and from Tuesday to Saturday it opens its gates to visitors from 10am to 1pm. Make sure to call ahead if you want to see it on a Sunday, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to book your tour.
Ermita de Sant Climent
From the monastery you hike uphill, partly along the GR 92 to Ermitag de Sant Climent. The GR92 trail is marked white and red, hard to miss. It is part of a coastal trail that leads all along the Catalan coast line. On top of the mountain, look back at the view over the monastery, the hills and Badalona, all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. The little chapel at the top is a great place for a little water and layer break. It gets windy on the ridge, you may want to add a layer at this point.
Hike down on the trail that is lined by cypress trees. It looks almost Italian, like a path in Tuscany. Extremely well maintained trails lead along the ridge. On the left side a narrow trail leads to Dolmen natural. There is a sign, but it is visible only if you look from the oncoming side.
The short detour is worth it! Where else do you get the chance to see a megalithic tomb from the bronce age? A large granit block rests on large rocks. Genís Ibánez discovered the cave in 1955 and found some vases that proved its meaning to humans. The trail leading to the cave is overgrown, so I highly recommend long pants, no matter what time of year you visit. Otherwise be prepared for scratches from thorny shrubberies on the sides.
Trace back your steps to the main trail and turn left towards Puig Castellar. As if there hadn’t been anough to discover so far, here’s a real highlight. Ruins of a village atop a mountain that was home to the Laietani between th 6th century BC and the 2nd century BC. The Torre Balldovina Museum did a fantastic job making it a place for education and recreation.
A lookout terrace invites the instagram models. Benches in the shade offer a place to rest. Interpretive signs in Catalan, Spanish and English tell the story. It is popular with families but also teaches adults a ton about how people used to live back then and the animals you can expect to see here: eagles, falcons, weasels, warblers and many more.
Torre de vigilancia Charlie
When you feel educated enough and have enjoyed the panoramic views from the summit enough, it’s time to descend. You can head towards the look out tower Charlie, hard to miss, further west along the ridge. From here, the trail leads downhill on the backside of the mountain back towards Badalona. Smell the wildflowers along the way!
When you reach civilization again, a series of staircases lead you down towards Carrer Milton. At the end of that road, turn right onto Av. de Catalunya and two blocks later you will see the metro sign for the Singuerlin stop of Line 9. From there you can go back to Barcelona.
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