Tired of Barcelona? Do you have an extra day and want to see a more Catalan city? Great, a day trip to Girona from Barcelona is a fantastic idea.
Girona is a great small city near Barcelona just about an hour north. The city is well connected, with fast trains serving multiple times a day. It’s a fantastic idea for a day trip from Barcelona.
The old town is particularly charming and photogenic, perfect exploring its small streets and getting lost. One day will suffice to visit Girona’s main sights, but a weekend in Girona is also a great idea.
Day Trip To Girona – What To See In Girona?
Girona is well connected with Barcelona, by train and bus. Board a train in Barcelona and discover a new medieval old town in just about an hour.
What to expect?
Girona boasts a beautiful medieval old town, Jewish heritage, Roman city walls, and fewer tourists than in Barcelona. It’s worth it and I am sure you’ll love it.
Girona Bridges Over Onyar River
From Girona’s train station, one can easily walk to the old town. The first stop should be the gorgeous riverside. Don’t miss the city’s picturesque bridges.
The Onyar river baths the old town. Two beautiful bridges cross it in the central section, not far from the station: the Pont de Pedra and the Pont de les Peixateries Velles (designed by Gustave Eiffel) are the most interesting bridges in Girona.
From there, one can already feel the old town. It feels like embarking on a trip back in time. So, head north towards the “Carrer de la Força”, and from soon you’ll reach the Jewish quarter and Cathedral
The Cathedral of Girona
The Cathedral of Girona is a landmark of the city – and one of its most appealing sights. This sight alone is already worth the day trip to Girona.
The current Cathedral has the widest Gothic nave in the world (22m) and 2nd widest of all styles after St Peter Basilica in Rome. At a maximum height is 45m, the cathedral stands out and can be seen from afar.
Its construction started in the 11th century in the Romanesque style. Construction continued in the 13th century in the Gothic style. Finally, the current exterior facade was completed in the 17th century in the Baroque style. The bell tower was completed in 1590 AD.
The Museum of the History of the Jewish Community and The Old Jewish Quarter (El Call Jueu)
From a cultural point of view, the Jewish quarter in Girona was one of the most important Jewish communities in Europa until the end of the 15th century. Currently, it remains one of the best-preserved ancient Jewish quarters in Spain.
“Call”, the Catalan word for Jewish quarter, originates from the Hebrew word kahal (קהל). Documents prove the existence of a Jewish community as soon as in 888 AD.
The Museum of Jewish History offers a great opportunity to learn more about the Jewish community in Catalonia and Girona in particular. Alternatively, we recommend discovering the old quarter around Força street, in the old town.
Monestir de Sant Pere de Galligants
This monastery is one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Catalunya. Already present in the first half of the 10th century, unfortunately only the church and the cloister survived.
The monastery is near the Roman Walls and thus make a nice visit just a few minutes away from the old town.
Where to Eat in Girona?
This restaurant offers a great daily menu lunch menu for about 14.50EUR.
Mes Cub (+Cub)
A selection of good burgers, and beers – what else?
This place makes delicious crepes and is located just in the old town.
Where to Sleep in Girona?
Ok, you just fell in love with the place and it turns out you want to stay for a night. Or you decided to combine it with a visit to the Dali Museum in Figueres.
There are a couple of hostels and a handful of good hotels. Booking ahead is recommended as during high season the city accommodation options are just not enough.
Bed in Girona Hostel
This is a new small hostel located in the old town. Located in a beautiful house, this place is one of the most affordable options, and probably the best for backpackers and solo travelers looking for a hostel in Girona.
Pensio Borras Guesthouse
A classic, very friendly and homey place. No-nonsense, clean, and located in the center. Cozy single and double rooms.
Hotel Condal Girona
This is a professional hotel located inbetween the train station and the old town. Clean, and ready.
How to get to Girona from Barcelona?
Trains are the best option to reach Girona. About 4 trains an hour from 6-22h depart from Barcelona Sants or Passeig de Gracia train station, last one at around midnight. Fast trains take 38 minutes (16.20EUR), slower trains take about 1h20min (9.50EUR).
Monbus runs two buses an hour from Ronda Universitat (nearby Pl Catalunya).
Car is very convenient, and the ride takes about 1h on very well-maintained toll highways (freeways also available).
Day Trip To Girona: Final thoughts
Girona makes a great day trip from Barcelona and is very accessible throughout the year.
While some call it the true Catalan capital, it certainly remains a lot quieter than Barcelona.
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In any case, Girona’s history and architecture will make a fantastic day trip from Barcelona.