Sant Boi de Llobregat is a quieter alternative to nearby Barcelona and is a better base for those who want to explore the region by car as well as be near the airport at neighbouring El Prat de Llobregat. Highlights include the 13th century St Baldiri Church, the ancient Roman baths and the centrally located La Muntanyeta Park. Although it’s not on the beach, a coastal-bound motorway goes right through the town, giving clear access to both Barcelona and Sitges.
Who to Book With
Barcelona–El Prat Airport is very close and is the best place to pick up car rental. Avis, Europcar, Hertz, Sixt and National Atesa are all on hand here and cars can be had from both terminals. There are also local services in town but it’s easier to pick up from the airport. Use our comparator website for good rates.
Best Time to Go
The weather is nice year-round, although the Barcelona area is best avoided in the height of summer (July and August) due to excessive heat and busy roads. Spring and autumn are rainy though warm. Try to visit in May/June or September for the best combination of nice temperatures, light traffic and attractive rates.
Need to Know Essentials
Be sure to have ready the following documents when collecting car hire:
- A United Kingdom driver’s licence, plus your passport
- The confirmed reservation printed out
- The credit card used for the booking
For more info, read our FAQs.
This area of Barcelona is much less congested than the city proper and is connected by main routes A-2 and B-20, which both serve Barcelona. The airport is just a six mile (10km) trip away and the road quality is excellent. When sightseeing, try to avoid driving in the centre of Sant Boi de Llobregat as there are a lot of busy one-way streets.
Our Guide to Spain contains more detailed driving information.
Trains and the metro system of Barcelona serve Sant Boi de Llobregat via Sant Boi station in the eastern part of the city. Trains and buses come by here all day, though getting about the town itself is chiefly by bus or taxi. You don’t need car rental to get to Barcelona, but it is worth organising for daytrips.
Rail services run between stations Molí Nou-Ciutat Cooperativa and Sant Boi towards the river, but there are no train services within Sant Boi de Llobregat itself. The town is concentrated in a relatively small area around the park, which is less than two miles across, but unless you are staying within the city, you may need to drive. Metro fares start at around £1.70 per ride.
Some bus services run around Sant Boi de Llobregat, including the SB3 from the bus station to Avenue General Prim near the park, with fares starting at £1.70 per journey. If you don’t fancy driving here, there are regular Barcelona Nord buses to and from Barcelona, including to Plaça Espanya and the university, along with night buses. Services are cheap and run on time.
Taxis are metered and are okay for getting around Sant Boi, although it’s best to use the train or metro when heading to Barcelona. Rip-offs are not uncommon. It is best to take a taxi from a taxi rank or to phone ahead. Su Taxi (+34 936 408 080) and Radio Taxi Baix Llobregat (+34 936 303 030) are both reliable.
Having car hire in this part of the world is a must. There are beaches both sides of Barcelona, including along the Costa Brava to the north and in Sitges to the south, while the ancient city of Tarragona is within easy reach. If you have time, take the fine drive inland to Montserrat to see the Black Madonna.
Barcelona – The capital of Catalonia is the main draw in this area. It is one of Spain’s liveliest centres, with a rich collection of Gaudi-inspired buildings and several good beaches. There’s a lovely old town in Barcelona, too, along with a revitalised harbour and more than a few plazas and tapas joints to tickle your fancy.
Tibidabo – Do this nice 30-minute drive from Sant Boi de Llobregat via the B-20 highway and wind your way along the Carretera Sarrià a Vallvidrera for the finest views over the city. There’s an amusement park here complete with a big Ferris wheel and scary rides, along with a tram ride, a beautiful church and some decent hikes. The highlight, however, is the view over Barcelonaâday and night.
Sitges – A charming alternative to bustling Barcelona, and just a 30-minute drive in the opposite direction, is gay-friendly Sitges. It boasts a nice wide beach, a pleasant promenade for strolling and a carnival atmosphere at festival time. It is expensive but there’s plenty of parking.
Tarragona – Just an hour by car along the coast (southwest) is one of the region’s highlights, Tarragona. It is on the coast, too, and has a stunning old town with plazas and quaint alleys for wandering, along with a Roman amphitheatre and an aqueduct. The beach isn’t half bad either.
Montserrat – Less than an hour’s drive northwest of town is this peculiar monastery set amid a striking mountain range. To get to Montserrat, visitors must park at the cable car station before being whisked seemingly vertically into the hills. Highlights include hermitage caves, the Black Madonna (La Moreneta) and extended hiking above the monastery. The on-site Museum of Montserrat is also intriguing.