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Holidays

Barcelona

14 replies

beyondtheshed · 05/01/2020 16:13

We are driving down to the French/Spanish border this summer and wondered about visiting Barcelona. Can we drive into the city, or are we best leaving our car outside and taking a train in?

Does anyone have any recommendations of places to stay for either option (driving in, or staying outside and public transport in)?

We will be me, dh, dmil, and one dc aged 12.

We don't have a huge budget - up to 100 euros a night. Happy with very basic accommodation as long as it's clean and safe.

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handbagsatdawn33 · 05/01/2020 19:18

Please don't drive !
Traffic is horrendous. Last time we were there, DH wouldn't listen to me.
As a result, I was waiting in the hotel lobby on Las Ramblas while he got the car from the Car Park.. I could see it, but it took 90 minutes for him to arrive. And then at least another 90 minutes to get on a road (any road!) out of town.

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thenightsky · 05/01/2020 19:41

Christ, don't drive into the city! We did, once. Took us 4 hours to go about a mile. And we managed to knock over a moped rider who whizzed up our inside with no lights on (it was 10pm and dark).

We used to stay out at Torroella de Montgrí and go into Barcelona by train from Gerona after that first horrendous attempt.

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sanitygirl · 06/01/2020 15:00

I stayed at this hotel on the coast near Barcelona with my kids for a couple of nights last year - it was easy getting the train into the city. Also there are some great places to eat on the beach nearby.
Looks like they have parking. We really enjoyed it there www.hotelrocatel-playacanetdemar.com/en/Home.aspx

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Leflic · 06/01/2020 18:18

We have done a few road trips ( Italy and France) and prefer to park outside and get a hotel in the centre.
Petty crime is rife and the tourist advice (especially with foreign cars) is to park in a car park with security.The airport would be good I guess as transport to the city centre us frequent and easy to navigate. You can only book within 180 days of travel though.
Hotels in Spain are good value and often very good spec compared to France or the Uk. I’d recommend the H10 chain. They have them all over Barcelonas centre.The one next door to Casa Mila is fantastic and good value ( over your budget maybe) but there are cheaper options starting at €95 in August and they have small pools and good facilities.Hotel Principal just off the Ramblas is also good value. Massive rooms at the front with double balconies. It’s counted at Raval which is the dodgy bit but although there is a red light area a few streets further back it’s all in the other direction and not really an issue.

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LeGrandBleu · 07/01/2020 06:22

Agree to what previously written, however you might need to raise your budget. A 100 euros/night for 4 in summer is extremely low for any hotel. The cheap hotels are called hostal, but even for them 25 / person/night is too low. Your best chances are Airbnb.

Driving and parking in Barcelona is complicated and police is very quick to remove cars when wrongly parked or to issue fines if you overstayed.

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beyondtheshed · 08/01/2020 15:56

Thank you all. Leflic where do you park if you park outside and get the train in?

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Leflic · 08/01/2020 16:55

Not done Barcelona as I said but in Rome and Milan we just asked on trip advisor and posters gave us advice about the easier ones near public transport. Both actually ended up being in the office district and not too far out.
It was to make the point that staying inside the city is better than going in and out everyday. We did that with Florence and Valencia and both were a massive pain frankly.

Barcelona airport has a bus in for tourists, theres the cruise port which has parking pretty much in the city. The train station is grotty and not particularity close to anything. The Bus station Nord has proper parking
But trip advisors forum can give you better up to advice

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beyondtheshed · 08/01/2020 19:01

Thank you, sorry, I hadn't read your original post properly. I'll go and have a look on TripAdvisor. Thank you for your help.

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ReviewingTheSituation · 12/01/2020 10:29

AirBnB is illegal in Barcelona. There are places advertised on the AirBnB site, but you take a risk by booking one.

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maddy68 · 12/01/2020 10:50

I part live in Barcelona , there are loads of places to park on the outskirts of town. I don't have a car there (no need and it's a ball ache) there is a new congestion charge being introduced too so stay out of the centre.

Air b n b does exist still but landlords face a £10k fine for listing properties so I wouldn't advice it!

Cheap accommodation can still be found in Barca in the season but you really have to look

There is virtually no crime so it's really safe except for the bloody pick pockets so make sure you keep everything in a bum bag

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rrg1 · 13/01/2020 08:26

The high-speed AVE train takes 38 minutes from Girona to Barcelona. There is parking at the railway station, however nearby you can park cheaper, I think about €8 per day, or for free, if you are prepared to walk across town.
Bookings can be made here: www.renfe.com/EN/viajeros/index.html

However, availability is usually around 60 days ahead. As there are 4 of you opt for a 'mesa' fare, basically 4 seats around a table, as they are cheaper. If your MIL is over 60, she can buy a Targeta Dorada for €6, which offers discounts between 10%-50% depending on the day, time and service. The discount is bigger on the slower MD and regional services.
If you prefer a slower service, which will bring you into the centre of Barcelona, then you can depart from Flaca where you will find free parking. Here are details:
rodalies.gencat.cat/en/horaris/
Although the services from there are slower, you may find the journey time faster, as you avoid having to get from Barcelona Sants station to the centre.
As far as accommodation, if you let me know what you are looking for I can offer a wealth of advice. However, you will get far more information from Tripadvisors Catalonia and Barcelona forums, as they are very active with many local and experienced contributors.
www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowForum-g187496-i43-Catalonia.html

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Hellohah · 13/01/2020 08:33

Stayed in Barcelona a couple of years ago (was the April half term - not the summer). We stayed in SmartRoom Barcelona, was £30/night for 2 - so really cheap. It's right near the main train station (5 minute walk) and was easy to get around from there.

www.smartroombarcelona.com/en/?utm_source=goodle-search-ad2&gclid=CjwKCAiAx_DwBRAfEiwA3vwZYiLnAMhv2KRoLqvC0gAcjI5rJr8GXq7cgSE2qp2LKYhmB9GYB9KDzhoCH2UQAvD_BwE

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rrg1 · 13/01/2020 08:33

With regard to AirBnB in Barcelona and Catalonia it is NOT illegal! However, you do need to ensure a property you rent is government registered, so ask for the HUT registration number and you can check against the Government website lists:
establimentsturistics.gencat.cat/rtcwebguies/AppJava/cercaEstabliments.do?pst=6&lg=

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Touchofclass · 13/01/2020 08:40

We went last Jan and stayed in Catalonia Park Putxet in Lesseps which was a couple of stops away on the underground tube. If we went back we would stay there again. It was cheaper in Lesseps for every day things in shops etc. Cans of beers were pence in the shop in Lesseps but added up to a lot more in the city same with Tobacco and general bits in the shop.

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