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Barcelona tours - Barcelona views: walk along Collserola ridge to Tibidabo

All photos © Mr Baldie. More.

Overview

This walk along the long high ridge behind Barcelona gives you spectacular views of Barcelona and the Mediterranean, as well as north along the Serra de Marina litoral range, south over the Garraf massif, and inland towards the peaks of Montseny, Montserrat, and the Pyrenees.

Itinerary

We start with a climb through a hillside neighbourhood composed of Andalusian (gypsy) immigration from the end of the dictatorship. Despite harassment from the council, the top end of the neighbourhood is still substantially self-built, with a couple of interesting bars, some well-kept gardens, quite a lot of poultry, and the occasional pig (1/2/3/4/5/6).

The walk along the ridge mixes classic Mediterranean coastal scenery with a lusher environment, basically depending whether we're on the sunny side or not. Although the partner-swapping club has closed, there are also a couple of isolated bar/restaurants with good food and wine. We'll also see (and if you warn me beforehand can enter) the shaft of a 19th century iron mine and part of the pre-modern water supply system.

The standard edition of the walk finishes at the grand 1880s-1950s basilica (Gothic chapel built on top of Catalan-Byzantine one) at Tibidabo, the 512m peak you can see from the centre of town. There's a rather strange funfair pioneered by money-laundering snakeoil salesman, and there's a nice bar with good snacks and light meals nearby.

The final bit takes us past Norman Foster's massive 1992 telecom tower and some very pretty modernist and Swiss-style early 20th century villas to the next village, and we then take the funicular 158m down to town via one a 1906 gem of a station.

Optional extension

Instead of taking the funicular, we can extend several more kilometres south, with yet more views of Barcelona and of the Llobregat delta to the south. The descent takes us through some superb rose gardens to the metro stop nearby FC Barcelona's Camp Nou stadium and its trannies carpark attendants, ahem.

Details

Grade leisurely
Base Barcelona (Meeting point information here, where relevant - make sure you have the right one!)
Location tags Barcelona, Barcelonès, Catalonia, Catalunya, Cataluña, Collserola, Tibidabo, Torre Baró,
Theme tags archaeology, art, history, nature,
Your guide(s) Mr Baldie
Walking distance 13 km / 8.08 miles
Walking time 4 hr
Total return travel time from base to walk 0.50 hr
Total time from "hello" to "goodbye" 5.10 hr
Fiestas and markets in places we go through - combine a walk and some partying or shopping!
  • end of June (Andalusian-style fiesta mayor)

Note that there are also events in most places on January 6 (Three Kings), Carnival, Easter, April 23 (St George), June 23 (St John), and September 11 (Catalan regional/national day)

Photos

Coming soon! Please try the overview or itinerary for pictures.

Comments

  1. [...] In a ruined house on one of the variants of this walk. [...]

  2. [...] A popular photography course, copied from a neighbourhood magazine produced by Alejandro Pérez, an enterprising Nou Barris estate agent, encountered on this walk: [...]

  3. [...] with good views of the power station: Serra de Collserola, Premià to Premià, Santa Coloma to [...]

  4. [...] and figs gathered this afternoon with la Primitiva Hermandad de la Primera Sueca on a variant of this walk. Some of the blackberries are being turned into liquor, and I found this whilst fishing around for [...]

  5. [...] and neighbourhood at peace, from the lower stretches of the Turó de la Rovira, looking towards Collserola (the lone building is Torre Baró) and with the snowy Turó de l’Home and Matagalls in the [...]

  6. [...] because it doesn’t seem to have occurred to witnesses of the following incursion from this walk on the Collserola hills behind Barcelona to this Gracia walk, near Plaza Lesseps, presumably making use of the 2-mile [...]

  7. [...] Otherwise to continue Cerdanyola-wards take the stone path that bisects Lliçà and Alta de Roquetes heading uphill. I think you then take the 2nd path on the left, which takes you in about 10 minutes up to the summit with splendid views over Barcelona and the Maresma. You then follow the ridge for about 5 minutes, passing on the right an old iron mineshaft on the right and a path back to an old research station on the summit. [Official walk that includes this bit.] [...]

  8. [...] coffee, shots and doughnuts in an Andalusian bar in Nou Barris (one of the many variations on the Collserola ridge route) when a ridiculously sleek blue car with XXL wheels drew up outside and a gent with gorgeous black [...]

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