8 things to see and do in Montserrat
If you are staying at the Hotel Florida Park ****, you can not miss the essential excursion to Montserrat. The Massif of Montserrat, called the sacred mountain, is located just over 1h from Santa Susanna.
In the Massif of Montserrat is the Monastery of Montserrat, an important place of pilgrimage and the most important places in Catalonia.
There are many activities that can be done in just one day in Montserrat.
Let’s get to it!
1. Ladder of understanding
Before arriving at the monastery from the car park, you can see on the left side of the road the stone monument dedicated to Ramon Llull.
The ladder of understanding is also called the stairway to heaven. It is a sculpture made of stone blocks representing the stone, the flame, the plant, the animal, the man, the sky, in angel and God.
2. St. Mary's Square
After the previous monument, following the street to the bottom, you will find an arch that gives access to the monastery grounds.
The first thing you will see is the Plaza de Santa María you can access the monastery, the basilica and the Museum of Montserrat.
To highlight this square are the viewpoints of five arches with representations of different saints located on the right and the Gothic cloister located on the right.
3. The Atrium of the Basilica of Montserrat
We found the atrium, an interior courtyard full of details. On the façade you can see the 12 apostles who preside over the courtyard and below them, is the main entrance to the basilica.
On the left side of the door, is the Camino de Ave Maria, it is a passage filled with thousands of lit candles. On the right side, we have the access to go up to see the Moreneta.
4. La Moreneta de Montserrat
The Moreneta (Virgin of Montserrat or Mare de Déu in Catalan) is a 95cm Romanesque carving made of poplar and beech wood. It is the virgin that the bishop of Manresa found in the cave, the patron saint of Catalonia and the reason why thousands of pilgrims climb to Montserrat.
A mistaken assumption about the Moreneta is that its dark color is an effect of candle smoke, but nothing could be further from the truth. The Moreneta has the dark color due to aging over the centuries of the varnish that protects it.
It can be visited every day from 8:00 to 10:30 and from 12:00 to 17:45. Admission is free but to see the Image of the Virgin you have to book the place on the website of the Abbey of Montserrat.
5. Listen to the children of the choir sing
It is one of the oldest children’s choirs in Europe and dates back to the fifteenth century.
You can listen to the children singing from Monday to Friday at 13:00 and 18:45, and on Sundays at 12:00 and 18:45 inside the basilica.
Admission is free but you have to reserve the place on the website:
6. Visit the Museum of Montserrat
Located in Plaza Santa María, it contains an important collection of art, goldsmithing and archeology with more than 1300 pieces. Inside you can see the paintings of some of the best known painters in the world such as Picasso, Monet, Caravaggio, Dalí or El Greco among many others.
The ticket costs 8 euros and you can buy it at the museum’s box office. Open only on weekends from 10:00 a.m. to 5:45 p.m.
On April 27, the day of the Virgin of Montserrat, this museum can be visited for free.
7. Ride the Sant Joan funicular
Going up on the Sant Joan funicular is one of the most interesting activities to do in Montserrat. Both from the funicular and from the Mirador de Sant Joan, located at almost 1,000 meters of altitude, you can have incredible views of the mountain and the majestic monastery.
The funicular leaves every half hour from both the monastery stop and the Mirador de Sant Joan stop.
The price of the ticket is about € 9.10 each way or € 14 return. It can be purchased at the ticket office of the funicular as on the website of Cremallera i funiculars de Montserrat.
8. Hiking trail through Montserrat
One of the activities that you can not miss is the hiking route through the sacred mountain.
From the Mirador de Sant Joan, at the top of the funicular, there are several very short routes that you can do to see the different hermitages that are in the mountain of Montserrat.
If you dare to make longer routes, you can take a look at the following website: