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Edward50

Barcelona to Montserrat on our own

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Our group of four arrive in Barcelona next April on a Thursday. We are there two days and would like to travel to Monserrat on our own.

 

We have discovered that there is an "all inclusive" return transportation ticket that cost 46.70€ p.p. It is referred to as Tot. The voucher includes metro, train to Montserrat, Rack rail or cable car to the monistary, admission audio/visual presentation, lunch, admission to the museum and unlimited travel on both funiculars that take you to separate viewing areas at the mountain top.

 

We have a few questions.

 

Do they sell Tot at the metro station? If not where is the nearest outlet from the port.

 

I read somewhere that the ticket has to be validated at the train station. This does not seem logical as the ticket is supposed to include metro travel. Hard to travel free on the metro when you have to validate your ticket at the train stop. Is this validation a fact?

 

We could buy the tickets on the web but would like to wait until our arrival date to decide which day, Thursday or Friday. Depends on the weather. If the weather seems fine for both days, which day would you choose?

 

What time would you take the metro to connect with the train to Monserrat. We were hopping to avoid the huge bus tours.

 

Do you think we are better to just take a tour from the ship? This is what we usually do but as we are in Barcelona for two days we thought we would go a little crazy and do it on our own.

 

Has anyone used the Tot ticket? What did you think? How was the lunch.

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No, you cannot buy the Tot Montserrat at the metro station. Buy it at Placa Espanya, where you catch the train to Montserrat. You can use the metro ticket for the return.

 

We went to Montserrat on a Thursday last August, but I've never been there on a Friday to compare.

 

We tried to arrive via metro to Placa Espanya about 20 minutes before train departure, to make sure we had sufficient time to purchase tickets from the machines.

 

No; I do not think a tour from the ship would be better. It's much better to go on your own so that you have sufficient time. You can really spend a lot of time there. It's beautiful.

 

We bought the Trans Montserrat, not the Tot Montserrat. The food in the cafeteria (for the Tot ticket) did not look too appealing, so I was happy that we did not purchase the included lunch. Instead, we went into the nearby shops and purchased fresh bread and cheeses to make our own sandwiches for a picnic. We didn't go into the museum, but I've read that people enjoyed it.

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We did this 7 years ago(!), so don't know if anything has changed. We were in Barcelona for 4 days and got our ticket from the tourist office under the Placa de Catalunya (at the top of Las Ramblas). We used the metro from there to the Sants station to get the train (and I think we validated the ticket at the metro station). I think we aimed for a train leaving Sants about 0930. Assuming you get to the Sants before the train comes in, steel yourself for a run! As soon as the train comes in, run to the train, otherwise everyone else will push, barge etc their way on and you will end up standing for an hour! (at least, thats how it was with our train!). If you use the cable car, you want Monserrat Aeri station, which is the one before Monserrat Monistrol for the rack railway. There are indicators in the train to tell you which station you are approaching. Walk off the end of Monistrol platform and you you are at the rack railway.

We did do the lunch which was included, but it was average cafeteria fare...nothing to write home about.

I would definately do the tour 'on your own' so that you can 'come home' when you like. Its easy to do and loads of others will be doing it too...just follow the crowd!

 

Simon

Edited by sddsddean

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We DIYed Barcelona to Montserrat back in 2011, My suggestion is go early. I think there is a train leaving about 7:40am.

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No, you cannot buy the Tot Montserrat at the metro station. Buy it at Placa Espanya, where you catch the train to Montserrat. You can use the metro ticket for the return.

 

We went to Montserrat on a Thursday last August, but I've never been there on a Friday to compare.

 

We tried to arrive via metro to Placa Espanya about 20 minutes before train departure, to make sure we had sufficient time to purchase tickets from the machines.

 

No; I do not think a tour from the ship would be better. It's much better to go on your own so that you have sufficient time. You can really spend a lot of time there. It's beautiful.

 

We bought the Trans Montserrat, not the Tot Montserrat. The food in the cafeteria (for the Tot ticket) did not look too appealing, so I was happy that we did not purchase the included lunch. Instead, we went into the nearby shops and purchased fresh bread and cheeses to make our own sandwiches for a picnic. We didn't go into the museum, but I've read that people enjoyed it.

 

I think we will head yours and others advise and go with the Trans Montserrat ticket. At 29€ for return train ticket, plus metro and funicular it is a great bargain. We were thinking of sharing a taxi to the Plaza Espanya to avoid the port shuttle then a metro. Any thoughts on this.

 

Thanks everyone for your input.

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Would you recommend the cable car or the funicular railway?

Edited by Langoustine

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Would you recommend the cable car or the funicular railway?

 

Someone who is afraid of heights would not want to take the cable car.

 

Although we would have liked to take the cable car for the thrill of it, we chose the funicular railway because it took longer (so we could enjoy the views at a slower pace), and we could sit down and be hands free to take pictures. Actually, I assumed that people would need to stand in the cable car but I don't know for sure.

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Thanks. Heights don't bother me as long as I'm in no actual danger of falling (I call it Conditional Acrophobia), and I've been in cable cars before, but taking more time on the funicular does appeal to me.

Edited by Langoustine

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We DIY Monserrat while on a one week pre-cruise stay in Barcelona 4 years ago. Since we were staying near Placa Catalunya, we took the metro from there to Placa Espana, caught the very first train which I believe is about 730am to Monserrat. Since only the funicular runs that early, we took that from the train station up to the mountain. There were less than a dozen people on the train at that time. We had Monserrat to ourselves and it was wonderful. You really get the sense of the sacredness of the place. We attended the mass there since it began after we had toured the church. During the mass we saw the long lines of people waiting to see the Black Madonna. After mass we encountered the hordes of people outside, since most tour buses had arrived by 10am. We hike up the mountain above the church and had a light lunch of wine, cheese and bread purchased at one of the cafes. We returned by funicular and train by the early afternoon.

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This is a very easy DIY day. We loved doing it on our own and setting our own pace.

 

Two things: if you happen to be there in the early afternoon, take in the Mass at 1300. The Boys Choir is famous, its origins dating back to the early 1200s. They sing daily at the Mass, except in July. Check the Montserrat website.

 

Also, if you are interested in seeing the Black Madonna up close, get in the line IMMEDIATELY when you arrive. (on the far right as one approaches the church) The line can take hours. The Black Madonna can be seen at a distance, however, from within the basilica.

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We DIY Monserrat while on a one week pre-cruise stay in Barcelona 4 years ago. Since we were staying near Placa Catalunya, we took the metro from there to Placa Espana, caught the very first train which I believe is about 730am to Monserrat. Since only the funicular runs that early, we took that from the train station up to the mountain. There were less than a dozen people on the train at that time. We had Monserrat to ourselves and it was wonderful. You really get the sense of the sacredness of the place. We attended the mass there since it began after we had toured the church. During the mass we saw the long lines of people waiting to see the Black Madonna. After mass we encountered the hordes of people outside, since most tour buses had arrived by 10am. We hike up the mountain above the church and had a light lunch of wine, cheese and bread purchased at one of the cafes. We returned by funicular and train by the early afternoon.

 

 

grmmybtty thanks for the detailed explanation. Did you get the cheese and bread at a cafe near Montserrat?

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Tickets ate explained here https://www.fgc.cat/eng/bitllets_oci_turisme.asp Cheapest tickets is COMBOS MONTSERRAT R/T TRAIN + RACK TRAIN zone 4 at 19.30 euro. Then they go up from there depending what one wants. Other tickets include funiculars in Monserat, lunch, etc.

 

Network map is here https://www.fgc.cat/eng/planol.asp Train is R5 to Manresa.Schedule is here https://www.fgc.cat/downloads/horaris/R5_Manresa_juliol2012.pdf

Edited by hkto

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