Planning to take a Mediterranean cruise? It’s a great idea!
- If your budget is a little tight, don’t forget to consult the offers on PromoCroisière.com: some dates are discounted up to -70%.
Of all the possible stops in the Med, Barcelona is probably the most fascinating. Here is our advice for making the most of your Catalan stop. But we warn you: it might seem too short…
Cruise company excursions…top tip or not?
- Cruise companies always offer excursions leaving from the boat. They have the advantage that they are completely arranged in advance; if you opt for this solution, you don’t have to worry about anything at all.
- However, the disadvantage is they are much more expensive than the services you will find in the city, and they also don’t offer any flexibility (so no one will wait for you if you happen to want to pop into a boutique or two along the way) and they also include a large number of participants. Not to mention the “mass tourism” side of things…
Alternatively: Use a professional guide
As a stop off will only last a few hours, it’s impossible to see all the sites, particularly as they’re not all near each other.
However, it is possible to discover some of the most special sites. Check out our guided tour suggestions lasting three hours each. Choose whichever you like according to your time and budget.
We particularly recommend
Sagrada Familia and Parc Güell and Barcelona in the blink of an eye
A private and exclusive tour, specially designed for a cruise stop-off in Barcelona.
This is a comprehensive tour that’s specially designed for cruise travellers in Barcelona. It lasts 4 hours and it is a made-to-measure tour.
The tour costs €250 for 1-6 people (for 7 people or more, please contact us) to which you must add the cost of the entry tickets if you choose to visit a monument, as well as transport fees. Expect to pay around €35 for a taxi and around €10 using public transport. In this case you will have less time to visit the sites but you will make a considerable saving. It’s up to you!
Getting to the city centre from Barcelona port
If you decide to make your own way around Barcelona or meet your guide in the city centre (although they can meet you at the port, the guide will adapt to your needs), you will need to take a taxi or a shuttle. Note that both add a special supplement when traveling to and from the port.
- You can also book a taxi on this site.
Check out our article on Barcelona: arriving on a cruise ship, for everything you need to know.
Booking queue-cutting tickets, and the best way to get around
If you don’t want a guided tour, it’s important to be very organised to make the most of your time in Barcelona.
Don’t waste time queuing
The most touristic monuments should really be worth the trip! If you haven’t booked a ticket in advance then you risk being disappointed with the 2 hour wait to get into the Sagrada Familia.
Access to Parc Güell is controlled in a similar way with a maximum number of visitors permitted per hourly slot. It would be silly to make your way there just to be told at the ticket office that the only tickets on sale are for the next day!
To avoid disappointment there is only one solution, and that is planning and organisation. It is very easy to book your tickets online in advance, so why not do that!
Getting around quickly to see as much as possible
It’s great if you can avoid wasting time when visiting sites, but its also important not to waste too much time in public transport! Here are our five time-saving solutions:
- Taxi: Taxis have their own lane, just as the buses do, and it’s certainly the most comfortable way to get around.
- Tourist bus: it is a more expensive way to get around, but if you’re in a hurry, the price is justified! You will pass all of the tourist attractions without having to think about anything at all. It’s a quick and efficient solution.
- GoCar: this is the most fun mode of transport! These little 2-seat cars can park freely in scooter spaces and make the most of the tourist route suggested by the GPS provided.
- Vesping: if you’re looking for a more rock’n roll way to get around, then why not hire a Vespa with Vesping. They also offer a GPS with each hire with a pre-programmed route to help you discover the really unmissable parts of the city.
- Electric bike: Finally, if you’re only feeling a little bit active, you can opt for an electric bike. It’s very pleasant, practical and eco-friendly, and will help you get up those steep hills!