Barcelona is a stunning city filled with incredible architecture, and both beautiful ramblas as well as narrow, cobblestone streets. It's filled with delicious food and rich culture, history and nightlife. However, it's also filled with people. The streets are busy, sidewalks crowded, and there seem to be smokers everywhere (Tony once got asked if he had a lighter while he was on a run!). Alright, so it's not obviously a city conducive to the running lifestyle, but there are actual some great places to run in Barcelona. Here they are:
Passeig de les Aigues
As I like to call it, this is the funicular run. You need to take a train (and funicular) to get here, but I think it's well worth the time spent (15-25 minutes).
The Passeig/Carretera de les Aigues is a 9km track half way up Mount Tibidabo with amazing views up to the Tibidabo Cathedral and amusement park and all of the way out to Barcenoleta. The views are incredible, but what I love most about this run is there are no stoplights and no smokers, so you can just cruise in the fresh air.
- Take a train (S1 or S2) to the Peu de Funicular stop. IMPORTANT - this is a small station, so only the middle car train doors open. Once on the train, you should see a light under the Peu de Funicular stop. If there's a light, your train's doors will open at the stop :).
- Once off the train, take the stairs up as far as you can go. Do not exit the train station.
- At the top you'll see elevator-like doors to get on the small car that is the funicular.
- Press the middle button for Passeig de les Aigues and you'll have arrived!
The Trail: Once you've exited the funicular and get to the trail, you have two options.
- If you go right you'll have a 5k path (10k round trip) that's mostly flat with a steep downhill at the end.
- If you go left you'll have a 4k path (8k round trip) that's pretty much entirely flat.
Both trails end in a parking lot, so you'll know when you should turn around.
This is a fun and challenging run around the park that hosted the 1929 International Exhibition and the 1992 Olympics. There's a great 5k loop that you can choose to start at the Magic Fountain or the close by Plaza España. You'll climb a bit (around 300 feet), but with climbing come some great views.
I like this loop because it's a great way to see some sights while getting in a workout, and it's relatively open trails/sidewalks, so you won't be fighting through too many pedestrians to keep your pace. There are also some great gardens on the back side of this run, so if you want to add distance, it's relatively easy to do so.
In case you missed the link above, here's the route map: https://goo.gl/maps/HR9a48Kyp1z
This is likely the easiest place to run for most people on a short visit to Barcelona and it can be incredibly beautiful (especially if you're an ocean lover like me!). I wouldn't recommend this run during peak travel season unless you're an early bird, but as long as you're not visiting Barcelona June-August, this will be a great run.
You can start from anywhere, but I enjoy running from the Arc de Triomf through the neighboring park and down to Barcenoleta. Once by the sand on Passeig Maritim, you can go to the right on Barcenoleta for about a mile out the the W Hotel. If you head to the left you have about 3 miles of ocean boardwalk that's gorgeous, but a little bit further from the beach. If you're staying anywhere around Avenida Diagonal, I really enjoy running down towards the Diagonal Mar area (to the left) and cutting back through the city on Diagonal because it has a large center ramblas that's very runner friendly.
Check out the map here: https://goo.gl/maps/5FLxmAQMLdo
Is there somewhere you love running in Barcelona that didn't make the list? Let me know!