Guidebook

The 8 Best Trail Runs in Barcelona’s Parc de Collserola

Barcelona is one of the best cities in the world for trail running—get the scoop here!

Description

With a population of 5.5 million people, the Barcelona metropolitan area is the “most populous metropolitan area on the Mediterranean coast, and one of the largest in Europe,” according to Wikipedia. Even though Barcelona is such a populous city, it nevertheless has incredible access to the outdoors!

While many of the other major cities in Europe such as Paris, London, Berlin, and Rome are located on flat land devoid of any topographic changes, Barcelona, on the other hand, is sandwiched between the Mediterranean Sea on its southeastern side and a low mountain range on its northwestern side known as Collserola. Most of the Collserola mountain range has been designated as a national park, known as Parc de Collserola (“Collserola” for short). Despite being surrounded by cities on all sides, this massive park covers over 8,295 hectares of protected land.

The easy access to the mountains combined with the strong running culture of Catalunya has made Barcelona one of the best cities in the world to be a trail runner. The city itself is populated with great runs, but it takes very little effort to get out of the city and up into Collserola for true singletrack running.

The locals take every advantage of this easy trail access! Every day, the trails teem with runners out for everything from a quick after-work jog to an ultra-distance excursion deep into the mountains. It’s also common to be out in the mountains trying to complete a loop and to run across an entire area of the trail system that’s blocked off for one of the many races and events held in the park.

If you’re trying to figure out where to start, look no further than this guidebook. Here, you’ll find everything from a quick run on the Carretera de Les Aigues to the 76km Gran Trail Collserola route, Barcelona’s backyard ultra trail race. In between these two extremes, Barcelona to Sant Cugat and Trintat Nova to Vallvidrera Funicular both stand out as exceptional point-to-point routes. Whichever route you choose, you’re guaranteed a fantastic mountain adventure just minutes from Barcelona’s tireless energy!

Sources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barcelona_metropolitan_area
https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parque_natural_de_Collserola

Gran Trail Collserola
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Gran Trail Collserola

75.5 km
2,887 m
2,887 m
Barcelona Trail Races, also known as Ultratrail Collserola and Gran Trail Collserola, is Barcelona's backyard ultra trail race.
Severe
Private
Carretera de Les Aigues Loop
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Carretera de Les Aigues Loop

16.3 km
299 m
299 m
Run along a smooth gravel road with gorgeous views of Barcelona and the Mediterranean.
Easy
Private
Barcelona to Sant Cugat
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Barcelona to Sant Cugat

9.5 km
318 m
342 m
An inspiring point-to-point route running from Barcelona all the way to Sant Cugat del Valles.
Easy
Private
La Muralla China Loop from La Funicular
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La Muralla China Loop from La Funicular

7.4 km
246 m
247 m
A short loop through the forest of Collserolla.
Easy
Private
Carretera de Les Aigues from Funicular Mid-Station
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Carretera de Les Aigues from Funicular Mid-Station

8.0 km
128 m
128 m
A mellow run with beautiful views of Barcelona
Easy
Private
Trinitat Nova to Vallvidrera Funicular
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Trinitat Nova to Vallvidrera Funicular

12.0 km
617 m
334 m
A beautiful ridgeline traverse of the Collserola mountain range.
Moderate
Private
Collserola North Loop

Collserola North Loop

14.0 km
543 m
543 m
A medium-length loop through the northern reaches of Collserola.
Difficult
Private
Midnight Trail Loop
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Midnight Trail Loop

12.8 km
441 m
440 m
An easily-accessible loop route connecting some of Collserola's most popular trails.
Moderate
Private