This hike was one of the most beautiful ones that we did on our trip! It was a fairly long drive from our campsite south of Barcelona but so worth it. An hour’s drive inland from Barcelona lies a mass of jagged rock spires, standing out above the gentle hills surrounding it. It’s the toothy outline of the multi-peak mountain that gives it the name Montserrat (“saw mountain”). It’s highest point, Sant Jeroni. stands 1, 236 meters above sea-level and can be reached by funicular or aeri and hiking trails. The first funicular station on the mountain is at the monastery built on the mountain some way up, called Santa Maria de Montserrat.
Hiking to the top
We arrived early and found parking near the aeri (I think it was free). The start of hike was marked with yellow paint marks across the road from the parking. From here we hiked up to the monastery hidden in the mountains to see the Black Madonna.
From there we headed upwards again to Sant Jeroni. The path was very steep and it took about five hours to reach the top. The route was part trail and part stairs, winding around the massive boulders and offering stunning views over the valley.
Take the aeri down
When we were almost at the top, the path lead us through some beautiful forest as a thunderstorm started. By the time we reached the mountain peak, it had cleared enough for us to enjoy an amazing panorama. On the not so good side, daylight was running out and we were super tired. Luckily, we managed to catch the last aeri going down the mountain.
What to pack
The weather can change quickly in summer, so you might want to pack sunscreen, sun glasses and a hat as well as a light raincoat. Bring cash with you to catch the aeri or buy snacks. It might be a good idea to bring a generous amount of food to eat wile you’re hiking as the hike is quite a calorie burner! Make sure that you have a big water bottle and refill it at the monastery before continuing. It’s important to wear comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots.