Barcelona: the city celebrated for its history, its beaches, and its architecture. The only thing that’s missing, in my opinion, is nature. Besides some cool parks, there aren’t any spectacular natural sights, right? Well, that’s exactly what I thought, but it turned out I was wrong. A dear friend of mine recommended visiting Montserrat and when I got there, I was more than surprised.
How do you get to Montserrat?
Montserrat lies 60 km northwest of Barcelona and is easily accessible by car as well as public transport. The car ride takes approximately one hour and if you’re travelling by train, you can expect to travel for 1,5-2 hours. Don’t worry, both the car ride and the train ride are very scenic. You’ll love it!
What is there to be seen?
Montserrat welcomes most of its visitors for its monastery. It’s a Benedictine monk mountain retreat of significant religious importance. In 880, a small group of shepherd children saw a bright light descending from the sky in the Montserrat mountains. They also heard angels singing and the music filled their hearts with joy. They brought a local vicar to the scene and he witnessed the same experience as the children. The visions always occurred in the same location in a cave on Montserrat mountain. When this cave was explored by the religious elders of the community, they found an image of the Virgin Mary: the Black Madonna. And from that moment on the cave became a holy sanctuary for pilgrims.
What about nature?
The monastery is an amazing sight to see but the natural beauty surrounding it is simply breathtaking. You see, the monastery is located on a mountain and that mountain has very unique shapes and colours. I highly recommend going up by Funicular because it’s an amazing place to hike and to relax. On top of that, the view is spectacular!
This place is very close to Barcelona and offers a beautiful monastery, spectacular nature and fascinating history; it would be a shame not to go! Thank you, Eline, for recommending it!