Barcelona is a very walkable city, though for those less able, or those who enjoy trying out the local transport, then the TMB Metro is the go. There are 6 lines - L1, L2, L3, L4, L5 & L11, plus also part of the network is the funicular railway that runs from Paral·lel metro stop to Parc de Montjuic.
The metro runs from 5am to midnight Sun-Thu and from 5am to 2am on Fri & Sat. Some of the lines criss-cross in the centre of Barcelona, though you may find you seem to walk for ages underground to change from one line to another.
Tickets can be bought from the ticket office at each station or from the ticket machines which operate in a few different languages. You can buy single tickets or books of ten single tickets if you are planning a few single trips during your stay.
If you are planning a few trips within the same day you may be better off buying a one-day pass (T-Dia), which costs 5.25 euro for zone 1 (Feb 2007). Or depending on the length of your visit, and how often you think you will use the metro, you may want to consider a 2, 3, 4, or 5 day pass.
Full details of all the tickets and pricing can be found on the website below.
BCN has 5 lines of Metro. There is also another subway trains system in the city, the "Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat", and the difference is that these depend on the Regional Gov instead of the Municipal Authorities...
Price: 1,05 euros. This allows you to use ONLY the metro, but there are 1 day "all transports" tickets (from 4,40 to 12,50 euros, depending on the zone) that allow you to use any transport inside the city for 24 hours (http://www.tmb.net/cat/titols/t_dia.jsp)
There 2-3-4-5 days travel cards, valid for Metro and bus. You can buy them online at the web below or at the Metro stations.
Metro And Bus Tickets
You can buy tickets for individual journeys for the metro at 1.30 Euros per ticket. But if you are here for more than one day or intend taking more than 5 journeys on the metro or buses it's best to buy the T10 ticket .
The transport ticket you choose to buy depends on how many journeys you intend to make. If you don't want to be concerned with buying travel tickets and you want a ticket that gives you unlimited number of journeys during your stay then it is worth considering the Barcelona Card
In general the Barcelona metro system is easy to use. The trains and the stations are clean and safe.
There are good signs. Trains run frequently. There is a digital sign on every track that announces the time till the next train (and its number and destination). I never waited more than 5 minutes for any train.
The different lines are all colour coded, which makes it quite easy, usually, to find the track you want.
The abono 10 [or T10] card provides 10 rides for only Euro 7.70 rather than paying Euro 1.35 for each ride (September 2009). The same card is good for the trams and the buses too. Tickets can be bought in machines at every station. Careful! The machine for credit cards does not take cash and visa-versa! Most of the machines have full explanation in English.
With all that - when you have to change lines it can be a trek from one place to the other. At times I walked for more than 10 minutes, going up stairs and down, around corners and taking escalators.
Trying to find Line R5 for Montserrat was difficult. Only time that I actually had to ask directions.
Some of the stations have only steps, no lift, nor escalators - and they can be difficult with many, many steps to climb.
There is a good metro map here:
Metro is the most convenient way of getting around Barcelona and is very easy to use, with colour coded lines. You have various money saver choices of tickets - I was there for 3 days and opted for a 10 use ticket which cost around 6 euros I believe. This is just one ticket that is stamped every time you go through to the metro platform. Then my friend and I shared a 10 use ticket - very useful if you do not need to use the full 10 on one person - just pass it back to the other person once you have gone through the barrier.
In order to get from one general area to another, the subway is the best bet in time and money. The system has a very efficient run operation, and the cars are clean inside, with many running every few minutes to avoid long waits. the grid connects with the rail lines at Plaza Espanya, and all bus routes are next to the exit points. The subway lines are easily followed and the connection between routes is good.
A fare for one ride is 1,40 Euro, but a ten ride discount ticket then averages 80 Euro cents. There is a free time of 75 minutes that you cane take a bus to connect to subway line, or visa versa that is free if you get on within that time frame.
Barcelona is mainly a pretty old city with a whole bunch of new structures and "barrios". But the most popular places for tourist are located at the "older" areas of Barcelona, which means narrow streets. Narrow streets equal, few parking spots, and few parking spots mean expensive.
There are a lot of cars also, since the high price of housing has made that a lot of people buy outside of Barcelona, but they still work in the city.
If you will be visiting for a few days and have limited time, don´t bother renting a car.
Metro stations are the best way to move around and the fastest way. You can buy a 10 ride card for about 6.00 euros which allows you to transfer twice within 90 minutes. You can combine the metro with the bus system also, and the new "tranvia".
With the public transportation system, you will save time, money and will be more ecological.
When I was in Barcelona I used to travel a lot by underground. The metro system runs all over the city.
I should recommend to buy a T10 ticket. This is valid for 10 travels and can be used by different persons. You can buy it at every tube station.
The best way to get around Barcelona (other than walking which can be quite exhausting and time consuming for larger distances) is by using the Metro. It is an affordable and efficient alternative to taxis, buses, and walking. There are 5 main lines that cover the city quite well. Look for the sign to your left and if you're staying there for several days, invest in the 10 trip card or weekly card.
A bit of advice, the electronic ticketing machines do not accept US credit cards. We tried it and it did not work. Also, you may be better off avoiding the Metro if you're traveling with luggage in tow. Many stations do not have escalators and as such, make for a difficult trip. Take a cab on those days unless you know you can carry the weight with no problem.
Good public transport for big, popular cities are very important and Barcelona is no exception. There really is no need for a car (parking is a nightmare). The ideal way for me to get around this wonderful city was by the modern and easy to use Metro.
Almost every area of interest is serviced by one of the stations or at least links to the next mode of transport - Monjuic/Tibidado Funiculars and trams for example.
Very easy to use, purchase a ticket for the journey either at a machine or kiosk (most kiosks had people there at all times). You then feed the ticket into the entrance machine and you can then travel as far as you want, even changing lines at connecting stations. Keep your ticket handy for any inspections.
There are different types of tickets you can purchase, from a single trip ticket (€1.10 when I was there last) up to 90 day passes. This web page will show you every type of ticket available and prices:
For my 3 day trip with a friend, we bought the T10 ticket which allowed us to travel 10 trips. There is only one card so you pass it to your companion(s) for them to use after entering.
*Small tip - Some of the escalators only work when you stand on the mat at the bottom.
The metro is definitely the fastest way of getting around Barcelona.
Metro fares cost 1,05€. If you are planning to use the buses or metro more than 5 times buy a T10 ticket (valid for 10 trips) for €5,60. You can also get T50/30 tickets for €23,40 that are good for 50 trips in 30 days.
these travel passes are also valid for busses.
Lines 2,3,5 from 5:00 to 24:00
Lines 1 and 4 from 5:00 to 23:00
Friday, Saturday and the day before a public holiday:
All lines from 5:00 to 2:00
Sunday and public holidays:
All lines from 6:00 to 24:00
Should two or more public holidays fall one after the other the first day has following schedule:
All lines from 6:00 to 2:00
Barcelona has a very large and confortable underground net.There are a few cloyred lines and the one going to the main spots is usually the red one(ramblas, plaza catalunya, passeig de gracia exc.If you plan to use public transports a lot, it's convenient to buy the t-10, it is a ticket valid for 10 trips you can use in underground or busses and it costs 6,10 euro.
The Metro is great for seeing ALL of Barcelona. Stops are relatively handy and clearly marked all over town. Plus, the metro is nice and clean and runs til pretty late, meaning you can be at a restaurant you've heard about it one part of the city and get back to your hotel in a totally different part of town safely and quickly.
I recommend buying the ticket valid for 10 metro journeys. Even if you're only there a couple of days, you can share it with a friend by passing it over the barrier, giving you 5 trips for 2 people! It's great value for money.
Many of the sights in Barcelona are within walking distance from each other but some are further away and most of them can be reached by metro. In Barcelona there are six different lines, each with a different colour and number. The metro is running between 5am - midnight on Sunday - Thursday. On Friday and Saturday they are running between 5am - 2am.
I bought a T10-card which is valid for 10 rides (one zone) on the metro, buses, FGCtrains and rodalies. You can change between the different transports and each ride is valid for 1 hour and 15 minutes. You can buy the cards in machines at the metro entrances, using cash or bankcards. A T10-card was 7.20 Euro (February 2008). I lost my card and had to buy a single ticket later. It was 1.30 Euro.
The Barcelona metro system is very easy to navigate. In addition, many of the main tourist attractions are very easily accesible from the metro stops.
The tickets can be bought in all different denominations. For example, you can purchase a single fare ticket for 1,15 euros or a pack of 10 tickets (a T-10) for 6,30 euros. There are also several day passes available.
The website below is very detailed and helpful. You can find a subway map on this site. You can also do searches for where you want to get to and the website will tell you which line and stop to get off at to get there.