Distinct markings on the city roads designate spaces specifically for use by light transport vehicles, and in parallel to these are lanes allocated for use expressly by bikes and mopeds. Specially equipped bike lanes even exist in the pedestrian zones. Local residents and tourists have abundant options from which to choose when it comes to their leisure time, such as a trip to the outskirts of Barcelona, a journey to Badalona, a getaway to the trendy and vibrant Sitges, or simply a bike ride around Barcelona proper.
You can choose from the great variety of Barcelona bicycle routes, for there are over 120 kilometers of bike paths both along the coastal areas and inside the city. In addition, the infrastructure for bicycles has been designed with a thorough attention to detail, ensuring that travel by bike is an affordable, convenient, and eco-friendly way to get around the city. Biking is also an extremely popular option among advocates of a healthy lifestyle in the city.
- When traveling by bicycle, you can choose, for example, a route that starts at Plaza Universidad, turns onto Carrer Enric Granados, passes along the boulevards, reaches Avinguda Diagonal, and heads to Plaza España; from there, you can take the escalator up to the mountain of Montjuïc. You also can ride down the mountain to the main port, cross Avinguda del Parallel, and finish the bike ride on the beaches of Barcelona, where the sea breeze is sure to revitalize your spirits, while the restaurants and bars will help you “recharge your batteries.”
- If you start from the very heart of the city—Plaza Catalunya—and take a ride along the main street in El Born district, Via Laietana, you will pass the marina full of yachts and reach the waterfront. From there, you can bike along the beaches and stop at one of the most picturesque places to swim or eat. It is best to avoid going to Barceloneta by way of the Ramblas boulevard, for this famous road is packed with crowds even during the tourist off-season, and you will not be able to bike easily here.
- If it is your first time in the city and you would like to visit the key tourist landmarks, it is a good idea to start your ride from Via Laietana, ride down toward Ciutadella Park, where you can stop and take a walk, then head to the Arc of Triumph along the way to Sagrada Familia. It is always possible to embark on a bike ride along Ronda Verda, a chain of bike lanes and routes that stretches for 72 kilometers and traverses not only Barcelona, but also Badalona, Sant Adrià de Besòs, Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Hospitalet de Llobregat, and several other towns on the outskirts of Barcelona.
Plaza Universidad in Barcelona
Via Laietana - principal street of El Born district
Chain of special bicycle paths called Ronda Verda
You can find an interactive map for these routes on www.rondaverda.cat, choose your point of departure, and create a personalized route based on your individual preferences. Another great option is to take a ride to the small town of Ullastrel, which is famous for its architectural monuments and olive oil festival. Along with the majestic views of the Pyrenees, Monserrat Mountain, and the seacoast, you will have a chance to see Güell Colony, a creation of the great Gaudi, and to ride across the municipalities of San Joan Despí and San Andres de la Barca on your way back. If you are a fan of mountain biking, it is simply a “must” to embark on the Collserola route. Collserola is a district that still belongs to Barcelona, but it features a vast park that bears the same name and has incredibly fresh air, huge oak and pine trees, and a 20-km route called Carretera de les Aïgues, from which you can enjoy astonishing vistas over the city of Barcelona.
If you take a ride through Sarrià district, in 7 kilometers you will find yourself near the well-preserved Santa Creu d’Olorda monastery, a monument of Roman architecture. After climbing 6 kilometers higher, you will have the chance to admire the view from the mountain of la Creu d’Aragall. If you are really in love with mountain biking, you should visit Rat Penat, the location known as “the Spanish roller coaster.” If you prefer art to sports, take advantage of the special route through Laberint d’Horta Park. It is such a pleasure to bike among the masterpieces of landscaping and design featured here. Moreover, you can organize a special Gaudi tour and visit all of this genius’s architectural sites by bike, as marked on the bicycle map of Barcelona. This bike route might include Passeig de Gràcia, Sagrada Familia, and, of course, Bellasguard tower in the Sarrià district.
Even those who are interested in neither extreme sports nor famous artwork can have an unforgettable experience on a bike tour. The tapas tour is the most popular Barcelona bicycle tour, for this is exactly what many tourists come to try in the Catalonian capital. This hassle-fee tour includes biking, walking, and tasting samples of the national cuisine as you visit the best restaurants and bars in the city. Still another route passes through the streets and waterfront areas of Barcelona to Camp Nou stadium, the dimensions of which are guaranteed to impress any football fan. If you book a guided tour to this world-famous sports arena, you will be able to rest a bit while enjoying the stadium before you continue your bike adventure around the city.
Renting a bicycle in Barcelona
“Bicing” is the most famous bicycle rental service in the city, and it is a fixture of the public transport system here. In order to use this service, you must activate a special card. You can get a Bicing card after registration at www.bicing.cat. Information about the fees can be found on this website as well. In general, an hourly fee is charged for bicycle rentals. If, for some reason, you fail to return the bike to any one of the parking lots within the city in 24 hours, the penalty is severe.
Otherwise, the rental price is relatively low. If you prefer private rental services, there are several options in the city, and the only decision left to you is to choose the option you like best. Company Mattia46 features a good price policy: bike rentals cost 5 euros and up, and scooters start at 15 euros. Un Cotxe Menys – Bicicletes is a slightly more expensive company, yet it is famous for receiving Catalonian Tourism Diplomas. The most pleasant nuance of this company’s price policy consistently attracts more clients: the longer the rental period, the lower the price is. Accordingly, for 2 hours, the charge is around 7 euros, for one day, 15 euros, and for two days, 25 euros. Another rental company, Budgetbikes, offers the following prices: 9 eurosfor 4 hours and 12 euros for 8 hours. A second day of rental costs only 10 euros and is offered as a bonus. This company’s stock consists of Dutch bicycle brands. Plus, this rental service has longer working hours and remains open until 21:00.
Dbike-us company offers bikes starting at 3 euros per hour and mountain bikes from 4 euros per hour. This company’s stock also features electric bicycles and offers its clients tours around Ciutadella Park, Gothic Quarter, Passeig de Gracia, and Sagrada Familia. A tour for two people costs 26 euros each, for three people, 22 euros each, and for four, 20 euros each. Another rental company with incredible prices is Rent-a-bike Barcelona. Here, a bike for a day will cost you only 5 euros and a motorbike, 20 euros. Since the rental agreement with this company always includes mandatory insurance, the prices run slightly higher. Here, you can always find professional and premium quality bikes. In addition, this company enables you to book an exclusive tour that is often entirely different from those offered by other agencies. There is also an option to organize a tour following your own predesigned route, including stops at sites that are not as popular among tourists.
The addresses and phone numbers of the rental services can be found on their websites, where you can browse the options and services and even choose a bicycle brand beforehand. All the companies’ websites feature photos of their main models as well as more detailed information. All of the rental companies are open until 19:30 or 20:00.
“INEEDSpain” is always prepared to organize an individual or group bike tour for you. We are here to help you organize Barcelona excursions as well as trips outside the city, provide detailed information about major places of interest and rental services, and assist you in selecting the options that work best for you.