Montserrat monastery in Spain: 5 things to know

The Montserrat in Spain is a must-see sight

The Montserrat monastery in Spain is epic but it can be confusing getting there. Here's how to do it.

Top 5 things to know before visiting:


The Montserrat monastery — proper name: Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey — was founded in 1025. It’s built against the Montserrat Mountain and the site is stunning. The monastery site includes two funiculars, a basilica and a museum. The Virgin of Montserrat, also known as the Black Madonna, is a revered figure in the basilica and I saw many people visibly moved for having seen it.


The Montserrat monastery is about 50 km (30 miles) from Barcelona. Plan for the better part of a day to visit.

1. Start at the Placa Espana rail station, which is easily accessible from throughout the city.

2. At Placa Espana, catch the R5 line towards Manresa. It’s not well signed.

3. Get off at the stop called Aeri de Montserrat to take the cable car up to the monastery.

4. Get off at the Monistrol de Monserrat stop (it’s the one after Aeri de Montserrat) if you plan to take the train (Cremallara de Montserrat) to the monastery.

5. Some people also get off the R5 train and then hike the rest of the way up to the monastery. (But why?! LOL)


You can buy tickets online or at the Placa Espana station, either from a vending machine or at a staffed ticket booth. You’ll have to choose whether you want the cable car ticket or the cremallera ticket. There is also a bundled Tot Montserrat ticket that includes a meal.


Montserrat is 1,236 metres (4,055 ft) above the valley floor and is much cooler than Barcelona. Dress warmly and if there’s a chance of rain, bring an umbrella.


There is a hotel on the site, the Hostal Abat Cisneros, that dates back to 1563.

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Find more travel inspiration on my Instagram, @JuanitaNg.