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Barcelona Transportation

Getting There

Airport
Barcelona’s El Prat Airport is located around 7.5 miles outside of the city. The airport has three main terminals—the most recent of which was completed in 2009—and offers both domestic and international flights. It’s pretty easy to get here with direct flights from many hubs in the United States including (but not limited to) Newark, Houston and Atlanta. The airport can be accessed from Barcelona by car, metro, airport bus or city bus.
Train
Trains are a convenient way to travel around Spain and to points beyond. The main train station, Estació Sants, services both domestic and international rails. Renfe offers easy travel to points along the Costa Brava (such as Girona and Dali’s home, Figueres). The high-speed Tren de Alta Velocidad travels between Madrid and Barcelona, and from Barcelona to other points around Spain. For train travel from the UK and points across Europe, you can plan via the Rail Europe Travel Centre. Most long-distance trains offer both first- and second-class travel options.
Boat/Ferry
Trasmediterránea is the main boat service to and from Barcelona’s Moll de Barcelona dock. Grimaldi Lines also runs a ferry service which travels to and from Barcelona, Sardinia and Tuscany. Cruise ships often dock in Barcelona’s harbor.
Bus
All national and international long distance buses stop at the Estación de Autobuses Barcelona Nord. The Estación de Autobuses Barcelona-Sants acts as a secondary bus stop. You can travel from Barcelona on to France and throughout the rest of Europe.

Getting Around

Driving
Driving in Barcelona can be frustrating and dangerous. The speed limit in within the city limits is 80km/hour (50miles/hour) and it’s easy to get lost if you’re unfamiliar with the city’s winding streets. And if you manage to get where you’re going without loosing your mind, you then have to deal with problem number two—parking. Many of the Barcelona’s streets are simply too narrow to accommodate an automobile. But if you simply must, cars can be rented at the El Prat airport and around the city. Avis, Hertz and National all have outposts in the city. For information about driving rules and regulations, you can check out the transit authority.
Public Transit
Most Barcelonins rely on the city’s conveniently color-coded Barcelona Metro (TMB) network. The TMB Metro has nine lines that are both number- and color-coded. The TMB also runs the city’s bus network. Additional lines can be found on the Ferrorcarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya (FGC) network, which services both the city and its surrounding suburbs. The TMB operates city buses as well as special tourist buses. Each city TMB line is designated by a number and color. The TMB runs from 5am to midnight Sunday to Thursday, and from 5am to 2am on Friday. It runs 24 hours on Saturday. Tickets are a flat rate of €1.40 no matter where you go in the central zone, but if you buy multiple tickets it’s a better value. A T-10 ticket costs €7.85 can be shared by multiple riders. You can also buy a one-day unlimited ride pass for €5.90 or a month-long pass for €48.85. Two, three, four and five day travel passes are available, too: They are good for use on the subway, buses and trains (with restrictions) for €11.20, €15.90, €20.40 and €24.10, respectively. If you’ll be around for a week or so, we recommend the Barcelona Card which offers unlimited use of public transportation for up to five days.
Taxis
Regulation black and yellow taxis are plentiful in Barcelona proper, but can also be booked online at www.radiotaxi033.com (in Spanish) or www.catalunyataxi.com. Taxi’s aren’t particularly cheap and just jumping in a car will cost around €2. Then you’re hit with supplemental fees for toting luggage, trips to the airport, and travel after midnight on weekends and holidays. We recommend you just stick to public transportation and only rely on taxis when you really need to.
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