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Rock climbing accessible by public transport from Barcelona

I am sure you already heard about Barcelona being a great Digital Nomad destination. Sun, beach, paella… But what about rock climbing? If you are into climbing, you will know Catalonia as the home of some of the best climbing routes worldwide. It’s not uncommon to have the likes of Adam Ondra, Janja Garnbert or Chris Sharma spending their winters in Margalef, Oliana or Siurana!

The main downside of these routes (like most climbing areas in the world) is that they are quite remote, and not easily reachable by public transport. And that’s a problem for most digital nomads, as usually we are car-less. 🚶‍♀️

But don’t worry, we have good news! Catalonia is FULL of climbing areas, so there are plenty of them reachable by train or bus from its capital. 🎉

In this article, you will find a selection of different spots, with slightly different characteristics. Perfect to check out any time of the year.

1. Garraf Platja

Located just 30 minutes from Barcelona Sants (one of the main train stations) you will find Garraf Platja. Great climbing by the sea with plenty of sport climbing. An amazing selection of routes will satisfy all the levels, as you can find routes from 5a to 8a+. Perfect to go with your friend that wants to discover this sport. As well as with the one that is a semi-professional climber.

It sounds like a perfect spot but… don’t go in summer if you don’t want to get roasted! Not much shade around, so a great place to enjoy during sunny winter and spring days, but not in the summer. 🥵

  • Areas: Pas de la Mala Dona, Balcó del Teixi, El Coti

  • Grades: 5a to 8a+

  • Routes: 100+

  • Climbing style: sport

  • Best time to go: from October to April

  • How to reach it: take the R2S train line to El Garraf, 33 min from Barcelona Sants

  • Approach: 25 min walk

2. La Falconera

La Falconera is next to Garraf Platja with a similar style of climbing. The twist? It’s amazing for multi-pitch routes, both traditional and bolted routes.

Even if the location makes it great for winter climbing, the climbing is in a nest falcon area 🐣, as the name suggests. Because of this, climbing is forbidden there between Jan 16th and May 31th.

  • Areas: La Falconera

  • Grades: 4b to 7a

  • Routes: 20+

  • Climbing style: single-pitch sport, multi-pitch sport and traditional multi-pitch

  • Best time to go: from October to mid-January

  • How to reach it: take the R2S train line to El Garraf, 33 min from Barcelona Sants

  • Approach: 15 min walk

3. Les escletxes del Papiol

This is a really different spot, also located 30 minutes by train from Barcelona. This sector is less demanding, having many more beginner-friendly routes. Even so, you will find plenty of challenging routes, climbing up to 7a+!

Escletxa means fissure or crevasse in Catalan, and this is what you will find there! Climbing inside a natural rock crack will provide a fresh shade, so the spot is perfect for when the weather is hotter and you need to hide from the sun. 🥵

Heads up, the routes are quite short and some routes are slightly polished (newbies – polished means slippery and a bit used up). That said, it’s a great summer escape and good to introduce some friends to climbing!

  • Areas: Diposit, Carretera.

  • Grades: 5a to 7a+

  • Routes: 66

  • Climbing style: sport

  • Best time to go: all year round

  • How to reach it: take the R4 train line to El Papiol, 22 min from Barcelona Sants

  • Approach: 20 min walk

4. Penya Senyal

Penya Senyal is a smaller sector and slightly harder to reach, as it requires half an hour’s walk from Castelldefels (reachable by train). 39 routes ranging from 5b+ to 7b+ of high-quality limestone!

This sector is facing south, so you should probably avoid summer times.

  • Areas: Penya Senyal.

  • Grades: 5b+ to 7b+

  • Routes: 39

  • Climbing style: sport

  • Best time to go: from September to June

  • How to reach it: take the R2S train to Castelldefels Platja, 25 min from Barcelona Sants

  • Approach: 30 min walk

5. La Foixarda

Barcelona is always sunny, isn’t it? Well, I don’t like being the carrier of bad news… but even in Barcelona it rains from time to time. 🤷🏼‍♂️ You can always choose to hide inside an indoor climbing gym, or maybe in your favourite sangria bar. 🍷 But if you want, you can still enjoy some outdoor climbing. And without leaving the city! 💪

Go to la Foixarda, located in Montjuïc mountain! There you will find a crazy urban tunnel, completely free to access, where you can find more than 150 routes ranging across all levels. You can also leave your rope at home and just enjoy the multiple bouldering and traverse routes.

Be aware of not getting confused by La Foixarda climbing wall, an indoors wall built next to the tunnel.

  • Areas: La Foixarda.

  • Grades: 4 to 8b

  • Routes: 150+

  • Climbing style: sport and urban bouldering

  • Best time to go: all year round

  • How to reach it: it’s within the city, so there are plenty of buses depending on where you are. Is also easily reachable by walking through the nice Montjuïc mountain, or cycling if you don’t mind a few steep streets.

This is just a selection of really easy-to-reach areas, but there are many more around! There are a lot of spots around the city you can enjoy, and a lot of great weekend escapes with world-famous routes.

Have you ever climbed around the area? Let us know about your experience in the comments! 💬

Safe climbs! 👋

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