Barcelona has been voted the best beach city in the world, and it’s amazing to live somewhere you can pop down to the beach for a swim after work! But at the weekend it’s nice to escape the crowds of Barceloneta and head for a quieter beach. Luckily, there are loads of beaches within easy reach of Barcelona on public transport, so here are our top eight beaches near Barcelona – that’s two months’ worth of weekend beach trips! 

Garraf 

Just a couple of stops along from Casteldefells, the beach at Garraf is small but very picturesque, with a bakcdrop of cabanas. Originally old sheds where fishermen used to store their gear, they’ve now been repurposed as cheerful green and white beach huts with wooden verandas. The seabed shelves in quite gently but deeper water isn’t too far out, and there is a chiriniguito with a terrace where you can get snacks, drinks and icecreams. 

How to get there: Get the train in the direction of Sant Viçent de Calders from Passeig de Gracia. The station is right next the beach, so you’ll be relaxing on the sand five minutes after getting off the train! A return journey costs around 6€. 

Sitges 

A historic haven for the gay community, Sitges is a beautiful little coastal town just south of Barcelona, fronted by sandy beaches. If you like a buzzy beach day Sitges is the place for you – lots of chiringuitos playing music, and you can wander the cobbled streets and check out the church if you want to break up your sunbathing with some sightseeing! 

How to get there: Get the train from Passeig de Gracia to Sitges. The train station is maybe a 10 minute walk from the beach, but just follow the roads that slope down and you’ll get there quickly enough! Return tickets cost around 8€. 

El Prat

The El Prat beach backs on to a delta reserve, so there are no hotels, busy roads or beach bars in sight! The beach is very clean and popular with families but never overcrowded. There are a couple of chiringuitos at the start of the beach but towards the end it’s unspoilt and lovely. You can also see the planes coming in to the airport but the noise isn’t too intrusive.

How to get there: Take the airport train from Passeig de Gracia to El Prat de Llogregat. Directly outside the train station doors there are bus stops. Get on the PR3 bus and get off at the last stop for a blissfully quiet beach day. You can use your T-10 so the journey there and back will only cost you 2€.

Castelldefells

The beach at Castelldefells boasts kilometres of a wide, sandy beach. Even when it’s busy, there’s always plenty of space. The seabed shelves gently on this beach so it’s good for those who aren’t confident swimmers. It can be quite windy, so bring along a kite, and make sure your beach umbrella is fairly robust. There are plenty of chiringuitos and beach bars so you don’t need to worry about bringing your own supplies!

How to get there: Take the Vilanova i la Geltru train from Estacion de Francia or Passeig de Gracia and get off at Castelldefells Platja. The beach is a couple of streets away! The return ticket costs around 6€.

Port Ginestra

Next door to Castelldefels, this beach is a little cove just past the marina. It’s backed by a rocky cliff, and the train to Sitges goes through a tunnel at the top. There’s just one small chiringuito, but if you want to bring your own drinks there’s a little supermercat just before the marina where you can stock up on cold drinks.

How to get there: Take the L94 bus from Universitat and stay on until the last stop. When you get off, walk past the marina to your right if you’re facing the sea and keep on walking – around 10 minutes – until you get to the beach. You can use your T-10 on this bus too.

Ocata

You’ll always be able to get a spot on this enormous beach north of Barcelona. The sea shelves in quite sharply, so if you’re not a strong swimmer don’t go beyond your depth. It’s very popular with volleyball teams so you might even get the chance to watch a volleyball tournament from the comfort of your sunlounger!

How to get there: Take the Maçanet train from Plaça Catalunya – Ocata is nine stops along. When you get off the train you’ll be able to see the beach, so just head out of the station and on to the sand! A return ticket costs around 6€.

Badalona

The first beach north of Barcelona, you can still see the city’s skyline from the sand. Popular with families, the town reaches right down to the beach and there are some nice bars and restaurants along the front. There’s also a really long pier with an engraving at the end, showing you how to identify the wind from the direction it’s blowing (it’s usually a tramontana wind). 

How to get there: You can get the metro – the purple line goes to Badalona and the beach is a ten minute walk from the station. There’s also a train which leaves from Plaça Catalunya and costs around 5€ for a return journey. 

Sant Pol de Mar 

The furthest out of our top ten, it takes almost an hour to reach Sant Pol de Mar but the trip is worth it! There are a few different beaches around Sant Pol de Mar. The main beach is nice but head north for some more secluded little coves. You’ll also want to spend an hour or so exploring this picturesque fishing village! There are some great restaurants right on the beach where you can get a menu del dia. 

How to get there: It’s the Maçanet train from Plaça Catalunya. It’s a very scenic journey, with a train line that goes right along the coast providing lots of lovely sea views, and costs around 8€.