Thursday, September 6, 2018

Unforgettable Day Trip to Spain's Montserrat Monastery

It would normally take several moons of planning before the wife and I would embark for an overseas trip.

By luck, the system engineer who was sent by their UK office to our oil and gas plant in Africa to assist us in our expansion project is a half-Spanish and half-Brazilian lad. We spent a couple of weeks working in our control system hence I had befriended him. Upon learning that his mother is a Spanish I asked him which places are good for day trip if we would be staying in Madrid and Barcelona. He replied that when in Madrid I should visit Toledo and when in Barcelona I should visit Montserrat Monastery.

That was it! We escaped to Montserrat during our stay in Barcelona.

That was one of the most unforgettable places we have visited in our life. Probably because we have never been to such kind of place before; the panorama was simply stunning. While exploring the monastery which is nestled on a mountain, the feeling was surreal and blissful at the same time. Luckily, the weather was perfect too.

We booked online a 5 hour group tour at "Get Your Guide" tour company for 98 Euro for two person. We were fetched at 10 AM at Plaza Catalunya. We can go there actually by train but my Spanish friend told me that it is better to go with a group tour so as to gain more info about Monserrat and to enjoy the view since the train would be travelling inside a tunnel from time to time. He was correct, we learned why the place was called Montserrat and the legend or story about its Madonna.

Parking at the foot of the mountain

Funicular Station

After an hour our bus arrived at the parking area at the foot of the mountain. We took a funicular that hugged the mountainside while on our way to the monastery. Funicular fee is included in the tour package.

Upon reaching the monastery, the wife and I opted to separate from the inclusive group walk tour; we hate walking group tour actually. We prefer to explore the place by ourselves in our own pace. Having visited several European museums we decided to forego the monastery's museum.


We had plenty of time for selfies and sweet moments while sitting on the edge of the cliff and enjoying the view and the mountain breeze. I consider them as priceless moments in this life where our bond gets stronger and deeper. We would surely treasure those memories when we get older and unable to travel anymore.

Due to time constraints, we didn't bother taking another funicular that reaches the mountain peak nor walking downwards to "Cross of San Miguel." Haha.. It was actually my fear of having panic attack that prevented us from visiting those places; the wife and I won't forget our experience when I had a panic attack while climbing Arc de Triomphe in Paris. One of the perks of getting old, lol.

The Basilica

L'Escolania de Montserrat

At 1 PM we watched and listened to L'Escolania de Montserrat - one of Europe's oldest boys' choirs. You should reserve your place inside the church at least 30 minutes before they start otherwise you'll end up standing. This is the main event of your visit to the place. We learned about the history of the boys' choir from our tour guide.

After the boys choir event we had a sandwich in one of the restaurants. Our bus would wait for us at the parking area of the monastery at 3 PM. So we had ample time to enjoy the jaw-dropping panorama.

The bus left the place through the winding roads of the Montserrat mountain.

Montserrat Mountain

From afar, Montserrat Mountain looks like a jagged sawtooth. In fact, it is where Montserrat has derived its name.

We have visited several touristy places in Europe and the wife and are in one in concluding that Montserrat has its own charm and magic. Trust me, you won't be disappointed in having a day trip to this place when you are in Barcelona City.

We regretted not booking our "skip-the-line" Sagrada Familia entry from this tour company. Instead we booked our Sagrada Familia ticket from "Isango" which failed to send our entry voucher on time. They ruined our Barcelona vacation.

Read my Isango review: Dad's Review: Beware of "Isango" or Local Barcelona Tour


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