Sitges is a small Catalan town located some 35 km from Barcelona known by so many things and beautiful for so many reasons.
Traveling to Barcelona and have an extra day or two? Sitges is a great place for one-day excursion or for a weekend trip.
If you have more time Sitges will not make you bored – you can enjoy a long sandy beaches, parties and nightlife, great restaurants, shopping and much more.
It’s maybe good to know that Sitges is a very gay-friendly place so, if you are homophobic… that’s just wrong!
Doesn’t matter if you are gay or not, as long as you are a logical-reasoning person without too many prejudices, you are gonna love this city.
The energy and dynamic of Sitges is incredible and the place itself couldn’t be more picturesque.
How to get to Sitges?
The closest city (and the closest airport) is Barcelona. From there you can reach Sitges in less than 1 hour by train.
The train (R2S) goes from Barcelona Sants each 20 minutes and one-way ticket costs around 4 euros.
It runs almost all the way along the coast so you will have a wonderful view.
The trip lasts around 40 minutes and the train will leave you in Sitges city center from where you can, normally, walk to your accommodation or take a taxi in case it is further.
ACCOMODATION IN SITGES:
In Sitges you can find different types of accommodation – luxury hotels with spa centers, hostels, camping, fabulous glamping, and also a big variety of budget, bed and breakfast options.
Fancy hotels are normally located a bit further from the center (few of them are located on the beachfront while the others are a bit further in the hills). You can find some great options with spa-centers.
If you are looking for a calm and relaxing stay, that may be a good option (if you are not on a budget of course).
In case you are interested in night life (which is quite dynamic especially in summer months) than, the best option would be staying in some of the hotels/hostels/bed&breakfast located in the center.
During the busy summer months, the prices of the accommodation go high since the demand is big so, if possible, book a bit in advance.
TRANSPORTATION IN SITGES:
Sitges is not a big town and all the main attractions are quite concentrated around the center and within walking distance. Otherwise you can rent a bicycle, scooter or take a taxi.
WHAT TO SEE & WHAT TO DO IN SITGES?
Sitges is known worldwide for its film festival – Sitges Film Festival – specialized in fantasy and horror films.
This festival is happening every year in early October and, according to the general opinions of the audience (we haven’t visited it yet) it is well worth of the visit if you are into horror & fantasy cinephile.
Another interesting annual event in Sitges is the legendary Carnival – in this city it’s particularly popular within the LGBTQ community (but also visited by anyone else).
Street parade of extravagant costumes, well-trained performances and all that followed by incredible parties is what you can see there.
The carnival takes place each year around the end of February.
Sitges Gay Pride is another important event happening normally in June and it is said to be incredibly fun – we haven’t visited it yet but have plans for this year’s one (which is postponed towards end of September due to the Covid-19)
These are just some of annual events happening in Sitges but not the only ones.
This city if famous by numerous events throughout the year and there is almost always something interesting happening there.
And about sightseeing and touristic activities, here comes the list of best things to do in Sitges:
1. For relaxing – BEACHES
2. For Culture & Art – MUSEUMS – Cau Ferrat Museum & Maricel Museum + Palau Maricel
3. For incredible view + taking great photos – Church of Sant Bartomeu & Santa Tecla
4. For getting to know curiosities about Bacardi Brand + cocktails – Casa Bacardi
5. For romantic stroll by the sea – Passeig Maritim
6. For drinks+music+party – Sin Street – Carrer de Pecat
If you are going to Sitges during the summer months, you should not miss visiting some of the beautiful beaches.
The thing I especially like about Sitges is that you can find all the different types of beaches there (or nearby).
There are family beaches, naturist and gay-friendly ones, long sandy ones as well as the hidden coves… there is of everything and everyone can find their spot under the sun.
Sitges has a coastal stretch of around 19km of beaches – rocky and sandy ones – for each taste and preferences.
There are 18 beaches in Sitges so more than enough of options.
Some of them are:
• Playa de Sitges is the most central one from where you can just walk to the nearby ones. It is long and sandy one, with all the main facilities and bars and restaurants just across the street. Usually quite crowded but still big enough so you can find your spot.
• Platja de Sant Sebastià – located to the east of the town close to the church. This one is not very big but very nice, sandy beach popular among families and locals with lots of bars and restaurants around and with a beautiful view on the church and nearby neighborhood.
• Platja de la Fragata – located just below the city church, similar to the abovementioned Sant Sebastia Beach, it is surrounded by many bars and restaurants where you can have lunch or drink. This beach is famous as a “sport beach” because it has a volleyball nest and offers some of the water sport activities (renting a pedal boat…). It is popular mostly among younger people.
• Platja de la Ribera – is one of the largest beaches. It has all the main facilities (showers, ramp access…).
• Platja de la Bassa Rodona – is the city’s main gay beach. It has chairs, umbrellas and pedal boats and kayak rental.
• Platja d’Aiguadolç – lays behind the Sitges marina. It is surrounded by mountains which gives a little bit different atmosphere then the previously mentioned, city beaches. It is known as naturalist beach but it is not exclusively naturalist beach (you can get in clothed).
If you are willing to invest more time and effort to getting to the more remote beaches (reachable by train, car…) some of the further ones are:
• Cala Ginesta is small, calm and quite isolated, surrounded by hills and caves with crystal clear water – reachable by car + some walking
• Cala Morisca – small, nudist beach located between Sitges and Garraf – reachable by car
• Platja de l’Home Mort – small, nudist beach visited mostly by gay people – reachable by car
• Les Botigues is a very long beach with good facilities – reachable by train (stop: Platja de Castelldefels)
Cost → these are all public beaches (no entrance fee)
Opening Hours → 24/7
2. MUSEUMS – Cau Ferrat Museum, Maricel Museum & Palau Maricel
If you are into museums and art, here is what Sitges has to offer.
Cau Ferrat Museum – today museum, once was the home of Santiago Rusiñol, one of the main characters of the Catalan Modernist movement. In this museum you can see collections of ancient art gathered by Santiago Rusiñol (drawings, paintings and ceramics, sculptures and furniture).
The Maricel Museum exhibits art collections from the 10th century to realism. You can see sculptures belonging to the Romanesque and Gothic periods, collections of ceramics, paintings and furniture dating from 18th and 19th centuries.
Cost → 13 e for Cau Ferrat Musseum & the Maricel Museum & Maricel Palace or separated each one 5 euros
*For more accurate info on the prices and types of the tickets visit the official website
Location → Cau Ferrat Museum
Time for Visit → 1 – 2 hrs
Opening Hours → 10 AM – 7 PM (from 01.03 to 30.06 & from 01.10 to 31.10
10 AM – 8 PM (from 01.07 to 30.09)
10 AM – 5 PM (from 01.11 – 28.02)
*Monday closed *Both museums are located at the same location
The Maricel Palace is one of the most representative buildings in the city. Here you can see: The Gold Room, the Blue Room, the Chapel Room, the Ship’s Room…
The Palace currently serves as a place for cultural events (concerts, lectures and presentations) and it is also being rented for civil marriage ceremonies.
Guided tours are organized every Sunday.
3. Church of Sant Bartomeu & Santa Tecla
This is the main cities’ church and the most recognizable landmark of Sitges. The church is overlooking the sea from a small hill and, due to its position, it is possible to see it from many places in the town. So, you will easily get the direction.
As you walk along the Passeig Maritim all along the beach you will arrive to the small square from where the stairs will lead you to the Church.
The main “attraction” is not really the church (even though it’s a nice and beautiful one) but it’s location – so close to the sea and with spectacular views overlooking the beach.
You can walk behind the church where you will find street vendors selling their hand-crafted goods or play the music.
If you are into photography you can make some great photos here but, in order to avoid the crowds, better go in the morning.
Otherwise, it is great spot for the evening stroll and sunset watching.
Cost → free
Location → Church of Sant Bartomeu & Santa Tecla
Time for Visit → 30-60 min
Opening Hours → 24/7
4. Casa Bacardi Sitges
Did you know that Bacardi (the brand) got its name by the surname of Facundo Bacardi Masso, Spanish businessman from Sitges, who founded the Bacardi rum distillery back in 1862?
I didn’t know it neither until visiting Sitges.
Well, now you know it – the founder of the famous Bacardi was originally from Sitges but living in Cuba where he started his experiments with the process of distilling rum and founded his, now legendary Bacardi brand.
In Sitges, there is a place that tells much better the whole story – it is called Bacardi House (Casa Bacardi) and there you can learn about the whole history of the famous brand and the family Bacardi from Sitges.
The Casa Bacardi offers a guided discovery tour where you will get to know about the beginnings of Bacardi, who invented the famous bat logo, learn about the rum production processes and the way they make cocktails (and also enjoys some after the tour).
Cost → 15 euros
Location → Casa Bacardi
Time for Visit → 1 hour
Opening Hours → from 12 PM to 2 PM & from 4 PM to 8 PM (From Wednesday to Sunday)
01.02 – 31.12
*for more accurate info on the tours, fees and opening dates refer to the official web page
5. Passeig Maritim
This is a long and wide promenade with the beach from one side and plenty of bars and restaurants from the other side of the street.
You can spend a nice evening just walking around and taking some drinks of tapas in some of the bars along the street.
If you are into roller blades or skateboard, this promenade is ideal for that.
Also, if going with kids, this area will give them plenty of space for running, playing or riding bicycle…
Cost → free
Location → Passeig Maritim
Time for Visit → 1 hour
Opening Hours → 24/7
7. Street of Sin – Carrer de Pecat
This is the main street for your night out in Sitges.
Besides all the above-mentioned attractions of the city, Sitges is also famous as a great party place.
The Street of Sin is packed with bars and clubs that host some spectacular parties especially during summer months. Some bars and clubs are exclusively gay while other welcomes everyone.
If you are not into parties, there are a lot of laid back bars and restaurants where you can have some drinks, cocktails and eat great Spanish food.
These are just some of the places we recommend to visit while in Sitges.
However, there is much more and, even though the city is not so big, there is plenty of thigs to do and everyone can find something interesting.
You can enjoy wonderful beaches, enjoy spa and relaxing strolls along the coast, make culture and art tours, go partying, explore local bars and restaurants for some great Spanish food and drinks.
If you like clothes shopping, add it as another interesting activity.
Sitges offers a great deal of unique and designers stores where you can shop clothes, furniture or house items.
Our ultimate recommendation – get lost in the town and enjoy discovering beautiful architecture of the houses, walks up and down the narrow streets and beautiful sunny weather (it`s almost always sunny).
All in all, if you are traveling to Barcelona don’t miss the opportunity to visit this beautiful city – you will not regret it!
And in case you already visited the capital of Catalonia, and want to explore some other Catalan town – give it a chance to Sitges. It will not let you down.
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