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Barcelona Hop On Hop Off Bus At Placa Catalunya

Hop on – Hop off Buses in Barcelona

by Christian Petzold - updated November 30, 2022

The diversity of Barcelona leaves you with the challenge of how to get the most out of the city. With the Hop on Hop off Bus, you have the perfect solution, for a day or two of convenient sightseeing.

There are two of these tourist buses in Barcelona: the official Barcelona Bus Turístic and the Gray Line / City Sightseeing affiliated Barcelona City Tour.

In 2022 both operators of the buses changed from a calendar day system (1 day or 2 days) to an hourly system (24h or 48h). So with these new ticket types, you have got the advantage of starting your sightseeing day in the afternoon or even in the evening if you like.

Hop On Hop Off Both Buses in Barcelona

If you are on a very tight budget though, then the Barcelona Card will offer you free transport on the city’s bus and metro network as well as discounted admissions at a lower price.

The advantage of the hop on hop off bus tours is that they are a combination of a guided city tour and independent sightseeing. Whereas going by subway or public bus often is more hassle than enjoyment, on the sightseeing buses travelling from one attraction to the next on the open deck is a great experience itself.

You can either plan your desired journey upfront or hop on the bus, get inspired by the audioguide or the routes and make plans while riding through the city.

By stopping right in front of most major landmarks, the busses will solve all your logistical issues on a great sightseeing day trip.

1. What do both Hop on Hop off Bus Tours have in common?

Both the purple-green painted Bus Turistic and the red Barcelona City Tour cover all the city attractions with their route network. In fact, 26 of their 35-40 stops are the same for both options.

The majority of these stops are on two main routes and you can change from one route to the other on several combined stops. All routes are only driven in one direction, so if you miss a stop you either need to walk or you would have to complete the whole round, which takes around 2h30 on the main routes.

With your ticket, you can use the different routes of a bus company without limits, but you cannot use the other company’s buses!

Since both companies are regulated by the Barcelona city council, they offer precisely the same price!

The bus fleets both feature open-top buses with electric retractable roofs so they can be covered in the event of rain.

Both buses offer mobile tickets for travellers’ convenience. No need to worry about printing tickets with these two companies.

A discount booklet, map, audioguide, and headphones are all part of the package when booking with these bus companies. The audioguides feature multiple languages for travellers to learn about this unique city in their native tongue.

Customers can enjoy free Wifi onboard the buses, which is very convenient for those of you who do not have data plans abroad.

Children under four years old travel for free, which makes both of the bus options great for families as well as your wallet.

If you have a disability, require handicap access, or need assistance, both buses are handicap accessible for your comfort.

1.2 Barcelona Bus Turistic and Barcelona City Tour routes on a combined map

Blue Line = Bus Turistic / Red Line = Barcelona City Tour

2. What is unique about Barcelona Bus Turistic?

Bus Turistic offers three routes running in the summer. During winter, Bus Turistic runs on two routes.

The two main routes (blue and red) take about 2h30 to complete, in case you do not get off the bus. In summer, the additional green route takes about 45min.

On peak days they operate more than 60 buses, so on average the waiting times are a bit less than on the Barcelona City Tour bus, but there are more people using this service.

This bus tour covers an extra area in the northwest of Barcelona. What does this entail? In comparison to the Red Bus it has additional stops at Teleferic de Montjuic, Gracia, Sarria and Monestir de Pedralbes. If you have a particular interest in any of these areas within the city, then the Bus Turistic is a better choice.

Bus Turistic has 37 unique stops.

For those of you who speak Norwegian and/or Turkish, this company offers these languages in the audioguides.

2.1 Prices & Routes

This tour costs 27€ for a 24h ticket if you book it online (thanks to a 10% online discount). The price on the bus is 30€.

Red Route:

  • Plaça Catalunya
  • Casa Batlló – Fundació Antoni Tàpies
  • Passeig de Gràcia – La Pedrera
  • Francesc Macià – Diagonal
  • Estació de Sants
  • Creu Coberta
  • Plaça d’Espanya
  • CaixaForum – Pavelló Mies Van der Rohe
  • Poble Espanyol
  • MNAC
  • Anella Olímpica
  • Fundació Joan Miró
  • Telefèric de Montjuïc
  • Miramar – Jardins Costa i Llobera
  • World Trade Center
  • Colom – Museu Marítim
  • Port Vell
  • Museu d’Història de Catalunya
  • Port Olímpic
  • Zoo
  • Pla de Palau – Parc de la Ciutadella
  • Barri Gòtic stop

Blue Route:

  • Plaça Catalunya
  • Casa Batlló – Fundació Antoni Tàpies
  • Passeig de Gràcia – La Pedrera
  • Sagrada Família
  • Gràcia
  • Park Güell
  • Tramvia Blau – Tibidabo
  • Sarrià
  • Monestir de Pedralbes
  • Palau Reial – Pavellons Güell
  • Futbol Club Barcelona
  • Diagonal – Les Corts
  • Francesc Macià – Diagonal
  • Eixample
  • MACBA-CCCB

Green Route (Only in Summer)

  • Port Olimpic
  • Playa Bogatell
  • Poblenou
  • Parc Diagonal Mar
  • Forum

Download the map here: Barcelona Bus Turistic – Route Map (PDF-Download).

3. What is unique about Barcelona City Tour?

The Red Hop on Hop off bus has two routes operating in the city of Barcelona.

Compared to the Bus Turístic, the average waiting time is slightly longer. This is due to their company offering fewer buses, however, there are typically fewer people on the buses.

This bus has 32 unique stops on its two routes included in the journey.

Speak Hindi? No problem, the audioguide includes it in its language portfolio.

3.1 Prices & Routes

Like the Bus Turistic, the tickets cost 27€ for 24h thanks to a 10% online discount. The price on the bus is 30€.

East / Green Route:

  • Plaça Catalunya
  • Catedral-Barri Gòtic
  • Port Vell
  • Museu d’Història de Catalunya
  • Barceloneta
  • Platja del Bogatell*
  • Nova Mar Bella*
  • Forum*
  • Glòries-Torre Agbar
  • Sagrada Familia
  • Recinte Modernista Sant Pau
  • Park Güell
  • Tibidabo
  • La Pedrera
  • Casa Batlló
  • Plaça Catalunya

West / Orange Route:

  • Plaça Catalunya
  • Arc de Triomf
  • El Born- Ciutadella-zoo
  • Passeig Colom
  • World Trade Center
  • Jardins de Miramar
  • Fundació Joan Miró
  • Anella Olímpica
  • MNAC Museo Nacional de Catalunya
  • Poble Espanyol
  • Caixa Fòrum-Pavelló Mies Van Der Rohe
  • Plaça d’Espanya
  • Estació de Sants
  • Camp Nou (F.C. Barcelona)
  • Plaça Pius XII-Palau Reial- Pavellons Guell-Monestir de Pedralbes
  • l’Illa Diagonal
  • Av. Diagonal
  • La Pedrera
  • Casa Batlló
  • Plaça Catalunya

Download the map here: Barcelona City Tour – Route Map (PDF-Download).

4. General Tips, Recommendations & Advice

Bring water. Staying hydrated is vital, especially in the summer months. Even if you choose to be on the bus the entire time, it is long enough that you will get thirsty. If you do hop off and walk, all the more reason to drink plenty of water.

Buying tickets in advance is the best way to avoid waiting in line. Purchasing your tickets in advance is advantageous for both bus companies regardless of the price differences.

Pack your sunscreen. The lovely sea breeze from the top of the bus feels fantastic on your face in the hot summer months, however, this does not offset the strong UV rays. The sun here is intense. Make sure to wear sunscreen and reapply. Nobody wants a sunburn during their Mediterranean adventure!

Barcelona 838716 1280

5. Hop on Hop off bus & harbour cruise

Barcelona City Tour offers an additional boat option for a 45min cruise of the harbour and the Mediterranean beaches. The beautiful city coastline sparkles as you sail away with the sea breeze kissing your face.

The bus stop at the famous Columbus statue at the bottom end of La Rambla is right next to the boat pier in the old port. Take a short break from the city to relax on the water before you continue your sightseeing journey on the next bus.

Hop On Hop Off And Catamaran

By booking this combo tour option, you will also save 10% online and only pay 34,40€ per adult for the 24h ticket including the harbour cruise! Children under the age of four enjoy this combo bus and boat tour for free.

6. Book online with a 10% discount!

  • Hop On Hop Off And Catamaran

    Hop on Hop off Bus & Boat

    Experience the Barcelona Hop on Hop off AND go on a boat ride! Get two amazing views on the City, from the convenient open-top bus and from the Sea.

    Duration: 24h or 48h
    From: 37,80 Book Now
  • Barcelona City Tour 25 10

    Barcelona Red Bus - City Tour

    5 stars
    79%
    4 stars
    13%
    3 stars
    8%
    2 stars
    0%
    1 star
    0%

    Enjoy all attractions on your own pace in 24h or 48h with the Barcelona Red Bus. Book NOW to skip the line, sit back, relax & admire the beautiful City.

    Duration: 24h or 48h
    From: 29,70 Book Now
  • Barcelona Bus Turistic 25 10 1200px

    Barcelona Bus Turistic

    5 stars
    69%
    4 stars
    26%
    3 stars
    5%
    2 stars
    1%
    1 star
    0%

    Mobile eTicket, 3 routes & busses every 5 minutes. Explore the city on the official Barcelona Tourist Bus at your own pace. Book Online & save 10%!

    Duration: 24h or 48h
    From: 29,70 Book Now

7. General FAQs

7.1 What if I want to get off the bus?

Feel particularly moved by the audioguide or compelled to stay longer in a particular area? No problem! With these bus tours, travellers can hop off and explore further.

When you feel you are ready to hop back on and enjoy the ride, it is simple and easy to re-join the tour at your convenience. The buses run in 5 – 15 minute intervals (depending on the season).

7.2 What do the buses look like?

This bus is a double-decker; therefore, all travellers can find a comfortable spot for their journey.

Barcelona is known for its sunshine. Soak up plenty of vitamin D on the roof of the bus, which is open-air and features spectacular views of the city. If on the rare occasion it is raining, no worries, there is a roof cover when needed.

If you choose to go with the Red Bus, you are looking for a red-coloured bus; the Bus Turistic comes with a purple-green design.

7.3 How long do the buses run?

Both buses start operating at 9 am and end around 7 pm during winter and 8 pm during summer.

Comprehensive in nature, each route lasts around two – to two and a half hours, thus you walk away feeling like you have not missed anything.

The Hop on Hop off Bus boasts multi-language audioguides which share in-depth knowledge about what you will see and what is right in front of you.

Simply hopping on these bus tours unlocks Barcelona, as you travel through neighbourhoods and take in the various sites.

Do you have any open questions? Please comment below and we will reply quickly.

39 thoughts on “Hop on – Hop off Buses in Barcelona

  1. I want to buy 14 tickets 2 days Bus tickets as individual may hop on hop off differently, do I need to buy online one by one? If buy as a group, do we need to go all along everytime ?

    1. Hi William,

      You can make one reservation for your group and you will receive individual mobile tickets for each participant. So you dont need to travel together all the time.

      Cheers,
      Christian

    1. Hi Catherine,

      The bus cannot stop right at the cruise terminal, because there are actually 7 different cruise terminals at three different piers in the port of Barcelona.

      However, from each cruise terminal you can take the 10-15min ride on the port bus for around 4€ up to the Columbus Statue. Here you can hop on the next bus every 5-10 minutes.

      Cheers,

      Christian

  2. We are arriving via Norwegian Cruise line and will be disembarking the cruise when we arrive. Is it possible to get on the bus at the port and bring our luggage with us and get off near our hotel?

    1. Hi Tricia,

      Yes, this will be possible. There is space on the bottom floor of the bus if you have got some luggage.

      Hope this helped,

      Christian

    1. Hi Fabiola,

      On the Bus Turistic from Plaza Catalunya it is 3 stops to Sagrada Familia. That will be 15-20 minutes approximately.

      The red City Tour bus takes a different route that from Plaza Catalunya first goes down to the port and the beach before going up to Sagrada Familia. So with this bus calculate around 1h (winter route) and 1h30 (summer route).

      Best regards,

      Christian

  3. We are coming to Barcelona in March & want to see Sagrada Familia, Park Guell & Picasso’s museum. Which of the hop on hop off buses would be better? We have 2 days & staying at the Catalonia 505 in Muntaner. Do any if the buses stop close by?

    1. Hi Sharon,

      For Sagrada Familia, Park Guell & Picasso’s museum both of the buses have the same stops.

      From your hotel it will be a 10 minute walk to the next stop. You can actually check the direction, by putting in the hotel name or address onto the google map of the bus routes: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1ULBcMl6KdVNB1zKChvx5dHhBk25wQlua&usp=sharing

      Just select the next stop on the map and click the icon for directions.

      Best regards,

      Christian

    1. Hi Ekaterine,

      Yes, you get a discount of 20% on the Barcelona Bus Turistic with the Barcelona Card.

      Saludos,
      Christian

  4. Can I take my suitcases on the bus and get off at the nearest stop that you have to the cruise terminal since I will embark on the MSC cruise.

    Thanks

    1. Hi Geliani,

      Yes, you can take your suitcases and then get off at the Columbus Statue at the bottom of Rambla. From there it is 10 minutes with the Port Bus (4€) to the cruise terminals.

      Best regards,

      Christian

  5. I do want to use your services; however, I want to stay in the area of Las Ramblas (I think?) Can you kindly tell me what areas to look for (4) star hotels near Las Ramblas and near Hop On Hop Off Buses? Thank you!

    1. Hi Doris,

      There are many hotels in the area, I would look in the Eixample neighborhood around Passeig de Gracia and Placa Catalunya – there you are close to both, Rambla and Hop on Hop off bus stops.

      Hotel Indigo for example is very nice, but there are more than 50 4-star hotels in the area.

      Best regards,

      Christian

  6. I will visit Barcelona during March 23-26, 2020. Will stay in Barcelona Princess. Which Hop On Hop Off bus stop I will be close to?

    1. Hi Quamrun,

      There is a stop of both hop on hop off buses right infront of your hotel at the roundabout at the bottom of Rambla del Prim, however, this stop is only operational in summer, starting 29th of March for the red bus city tour and 3rd of April for the Bus Turistic.

      So unless you have got some flexibility to change the dates of your stay, you would need to take the yellow metro line to the city centre (Plaza Urquinaona) to get on the buses at Plaza Catalunya.

      Best regards,

      Christian

      1. Thank you. This is helpful.

        I have few more questions. I guess i can buy bus/metro ticket in any metro station. Is there any tram line/stoppage close to Barcelona Princess? How much it would cost to take a taxi to go Plaza Catalunya from the hotel?
        Thanks once again.

        Quamrun

        1. Yes, correct, you can buy a metro ticket in the station (cash or card payment), the price per ride is 2,40€. There is a station 3 blocks from your hotel, just ask reception for directions.

          A taxi will cost you approximately 10-15€ to Plaza Catalunya.

          Best regards,

          Christian

  7. We will be staying in the Jazz Hotel. How will we get to the bus stop. Only for two and half days. Which bus is near and best to see all that is possible.

  8. We will be staying at the Nobu Hotel in the Eixample district, April 1-2, 2023. Which stop is the closest on which bus line to our hotel?

    1. Hi Mike, you can see all stops on our google map above. If you enter your hotel name you can see the next stop nearby and it will even show you the route to walk there.

      In your case it is very easy, the stop at Sants train station is literally just in front of your hotel!

      1. Which line stops at the Sants train station? Barcelona Turistic or Barcelona City Tour? I couldn’t tell by entering hotel name on the map!

  9. Can you purchase your ticket from any stop? We are staying at U232 and want to walk to the nearest stop to stat our journey.

    1. Hi Sue, Please use this map to see the closest stop to your hotel: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1ULBcMl6KdVNB1zKChvx5dHhBk25wQlua&ll=41.38949718218621%2C2.1664949999999905&z=13

      At the top just click on the search icon and enter your hotel name. It will show you your hotel right on the map with the bus stops, so you can pick the most convenient stop for you.

      It is possible to buy your ticket at the queue at each stop, but we recommend to buy the tickets online. It just takes 2min on your mobile, you actually get a 10% discount and you can jump on the bus right away.

  10. URGENT REPLY NEEDED !

    Hello Christian,
    My dad & I just landed in Barcelona on April 18th and checking ou on April 21st. I’m sooooooooo confused on which buses to take, and which routes (which colors) to take in order to see as much as possible of this city ?

    Can you help me please ?
    Thanks,
    Tania

    1. Hi Tania,

      The buses have the same price, so if you do not have any other preference, then just look for the one that has the closest stop to your hotel.

      Once you have decided on the bus, just get the tickets on your mobile (for the 10% discount and to hop on the bus right away at any stop) within 5min while having breakfast or while walking to the stop. For the next two days there is still enough availability.

      Enjoy the tour!

  11. Hi Christian
    We are in Barcelona 9-11 Sept and plan to buy 48hr tickets for hop on hop off. I cannot find the bus stop on goolge maps for Park Guell, and from the look of the City Sightseeing tourist map, it looks a long way from the park entrance. As one of our group has mobility problems, would it be possible to get a taxi from the stop 6 to the park entrance? Is there a taxi rank in the vicinity?
    Thank you

    1. Hi Shirley,

      Yes, it is indeed a fairly steep 10min walk from the stop to Parc Guell. There is no taxi rank nearby, but you will easily be able to flag one from the street.

  12. Hi Christian,

    I was wondering, are there any restaurants at any of the stops where my group can stop for breakfast or lunch? Thanks!

    1. Hi George,

      It is difficult to recommend anything specific here because plenty of restaurants are close to any of the stops.

      Maybe doing a stop in Placa Catalunya is a good idea because of the wide variety you have there, and also you will be able to access both of the lines after your break.

      Another good option will be the stop at the seaside in Port Olimpic. Here, you also find plenty of restaurants, and the beach invites for a relaxing break from the bustling city life.

  13. Hi Christian. My group of 12 seniors citizens will arrive on NCL’s Viva in Barcelona on 11/10/23. Will there be a pick up bus stop near the cruise terminal? If not, how do we meet up with the nearest bus stop and what would that cost?
    Regards, Gene

    1. Hi Gene,
      The closest stop from the cruise terminal is at the Columbus statue, at the entrance to the port.
      To get there you need to take the port bus from the cruise terminal (10min ride, 4€ per person). Alternatively you can also take taxis (around 20€ each) or walk around 20-30min (depending on which terminal your ship is docked.

    2. Hello, will be in Barcelona in June, 2024. I am leaning toward Bus Touristic. I noticed some road closures on Google maps near Gotic area where we are staying . Is there an alternative route the bus is taking? Also, do the buses only run in one direction so you can go back one or two stops if you wanted? And, if I buy a 48 hour ticket does that time run consecutively or can I do 24 hours on a Thursday then the next 24 hours starting Saturday? Thank you! The information in this site comparing the two bus lines has been so helpful.

      1. Hi Joan,

        The buses do only run in one direction on the route, so you cannot go back. Some roads are blocked for public traffic, but the buses can pass through with a special permit.

        The tickets now are valid for hours instead of calendar days, but the hours need to be consecutive. So for 24h starting Thursday and 24h starting Saturday you need to buy separate tickets.

        Hope that helped!

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