Barcelona Sants: Location map

It may win the award for Europe's most un-prepossessing station, but Barcelona Sants Estació is clean and modern inside.  It's Barcelona's main transport hub used by virtually all suburban, mainline, & high-speed trains - the TGVs from Paris arrive here too.  You'll find plenty of shops, bars & restaurants at Barcelona Sants, including a MacDonald's, and there's also a Tourist Information Office.

small bullet point  Station entrance & concourse

small bullet point  Which platform?

small bullet point  How to board a mainline train

small bullet point  How to board a suburban train

small bullet point  Tickets & reservations

small bullet point  Left luggage

small bullet point  Places to eat or drink

small bullet point  Sala Club lounge

small bullet point  Hotels near the station or in the old city

small bullet point  Walking, taxis & metro


small bullet point  Barcelona Estació de França

On other pages:

small bullet point  Trains between London & Barcelona

small bullet point  Trains between Paris & Barcelona

small bullet point  Trains from Barcelona to other European cities

small bullet point  Trains from other European cities to Barcelona

small bullet point  General information for European train travel

small bullet point  How to buy European train tickets online

Station entrance & concourse

Barcelona Sants exterior

Barcelona Sants facade, with taxi rank on the left.  The building above the station is the 4-star Hotel Barcelo Sants, a good place to stay overnight.

Barcelona Sants exterior

Main station entrance, at the right-hand end of the facade.

Barcelona Sants main concourse

Concourse:  Walk into the main entrance, forward past some retail outlets, and in front of you is the main (Access A) baggage control into the platform 1-6 departures area for for AVE, Euromed, Alvia, Avant, TGV, Ouigo, Avlo & Iryo high-speed trains.  Turn left here for the ticket offices (just visible in the background in this photo) and ticket gates to platforms 7-14 for suburban trains (Rodalies).  This photo was taken late at night with fewer people around.

Which platform?

The concourse is at street level, the platforms are underneath, reached by lifts, steps & escalators.

Platform numbers for each train are shown on the various departure screens & departure boards around the station.  There are two separate departure lists, one for mainline trains and one for suburban trains.  Below, an AVE from Madrid has arrived on platform 2.

Platforms 1-6 are standard gauge (4'8½) for AVE, Alvia, Avant, TGV, Ouigo, Avlo & Iryo trains to Madrid, Seville, Malaga, San Sebastian, Bilbao, Perpignan, Avignon, Marseille, Lyon & Paris, also Euromed trains to Valencia & Alicante.  These platforms are accessed from within a luggage-screened departures area.

Platforms 7-14 are Iberian broad gauge (5'6") and used by suburban trains (Rodalies) and Intercity trains to Valencia & Alicante.  These platforms are accessed through automatic ticket gates, but there's no luggage screening.

Barcelona Sants platform

How to board a mainline train

High-speed trains leave from platforms 1-6, meaning AVE, Alvia, Avant, TGV, Ouigo, Avlo & Iryo including those to Madrid, Seville, Malaga, San Sebastian, Bilbao, Perpignan, Marseille, Lyon, Paris, etc., also Euromed trains to Valencia & Alicante (but Intercity trains to Valencia & Alicante usually use Iberian gauge platforms 7-14).

Go to the correct access point, A, B or C:  For most departures, this means the Access A luggage control shown below, straight ahead of you when you walk into the main station entrance.  But if your train is shown on the departure board as Access C, follow the signs to the left, past the ticket office to the Access C baggage control at the side of the departures area.  There's also an Access B round to the right.  They all lead to the same place!

Go through luggage control:  You put your bags through one of the X-ray luggage scanners to reach the departures area above platforms 1-6.  Luggage control only takes a few minutes, there are no metal detectors so it's nothing like an airport.  Security staff next to each scanner may have a metal-detecting 'wand' but on a recent trip the 'wand' was used on me once in 8 trips and even then they failed to find the corkscrew in my left pocket or iPhone in my right one, it's basically security theatre.  Tip:  Put any Swiss Army knives or corkscrews in your pocket to avoid arguments if they see them in the scanner.

Ticket check:  Inside the departures area there's a cafe and toilets.  You wait in front of the access point for your train/platform, when boarding starts 10-20 minutes before departure, Renfe, Iryo or Ouigo staff will check your ticket and let you go down the escalator or lift to the platform.

X-ray baggage check at access to platforms 1-6, Barcelona Sants

Access A to the departures area for platforms 1-6.

Departures area at Barcelona Sants

Above:  Inside the departures area, passengers queue at the access point for platforms 3/4.  There's a ticket check before they let you go down to the platform.

How to board a suburban train

You'll find a row of ticket gates to platforms 7-14 in the centre of the station, opposite the ticket office.  Intercity trains to Valencia & Alicante also use these platforms, the QR code on your ticket will work the ticket gates, look for a gate with a red-glowing barcode scanner at the right-hand end of the row of gates.

If you have a ticket for a Renfe or Iryo long-distance train and want to use a suburban train to a station in the Barcelona suburban area (for example, Passeig de Gracia or Barcelona Franca) using the Combinado Cercanias arrangement, the QR code on your mainline ticket will work the ticket gates, look for a gate with a barcode scanner.

Barcelona Sants ticket gates to platforms 7-14

Ticket gates to platforms 7-14.

Barcelona Sants Rodalies ticket machines

Around the side from the ticket gates is a row of ticket machines for suburban (Rodalies) tickets with handy Next train to... screens above.

Tickets & reservations

Renfe mainline tickets & passholder reservations (1):  Walk through the main station entrance and turn left just before Access A luggage control.  The row of ticket windows on the right is for Renfe long-distance tickets & passholder reservations.

A queuing system operates, take a ticket from the pink machine (2) and wait until the screen above it shows your number.  When busy, it can take some time!

You'll find it easier to use the internet, or use a Renfe long-distance ticket machine (they have a touch screen and English language facility), although the ticket machines won't sell passholder reservations.

Renfe suburban tickets (3):  The row of windows to the left under the green departures board is for suburban (Rodalies) tickets including tickets to Latour de Carol or Portbou/Cerbère.  There are plenty of Rodalies ticket machines, these have a touch screen and English language facility.

Iryo ticket office:  There's a retail unit with a Casa Iryo ticket office & customer service desk on your left after you walk into the main station entrance.

Barcelona Sants ticket office

Left luggage office

There is a left luggage office (Consigna in Spanish) downstairs in the underground car park.  To reach it, walk over to the far left-hand/southern/platform 14 side of the station and follow the signs through the doorway between the toilets & Mercat del Estacio cafe.  Go down the steps or use the lift to the car park level below.

See the left luggage page for opening hours & prices.  Bags may be X-rayed before being left.

Way to Barcelona Sants left luggage office   Barcelona Sants left luggage office

Places to eat or drink

There are many retail and food outlets inside the station, including various cafes and McDonald's.  You could do a lot worse than the self-service restaurant end of the Mercat del Estacio on the far left-hand/southern/platform 14 side of the station, the meal option was affordable, filling and tasty.

Sala Club lounge

If you have paid the Premium fare for one of Renfe's AVE or Euromed trains, you can use the Sala Club lounge for up to 90 minutes before your train leaves, with complimentary tea, coffee, snacks & beer.  The entrance is inside the platform 1-6 departures area, on the platform 6 side.  Open 05:20-21:30 Mondays-Saturdays, 06:30-21:30 Sundays.  You can check opening times at

Entrance to Sala Club at Barcelona Sants
Sala Club tables & drinks bar.

Hotels near the station

The Hotel Barcelo Sants is the top choice for an overnight stop as it's directly above Barcelona Sants station and gets great reviews, with nice rooms, a great breakfast buffet and a delightfully kitsch space theme, see the photos below.

Other hotels near the station with good or great reviews include the AC Hotel Sants by Marriott (4-star, just 50m away), Nobu Hotel (also just 50m away), H10 Hotel Itaca (4-star, a 5 minute 400m walk from the station, their swimming pool may justify the walk), Hotel Catalonia Roma (3-star), Hostal Baler (2-star), Hotel Transit (1-star), Meeting Point Hostel (inexpensive private rooms & dorm beds).

Room at the Hotel Barcelo   Entrance to the Hotel Barcelo

A room at the Hotel Barcelo Sants, an excellent choice directly above the station.  To reach the hotel from the station concourse, follow signs to Access C, but keep on going past the Access C baggage scan area, past McDonalds and out of the station's rear exit.  Turn right along the back of the station until you reach the door shown above.  Inside the door there are lifts & stairs up to reception on the floor one level above.

Hotels in or near the Old Quarter

If you're visiting Barcelona for longer, I'd suggest booking a hotel in the old quarter, perhaps on or near La Rambla itself.  Here are some hotels in good locations with good or great reviews:

Hotel DO Plaça Reial (5-star, fabulous), Hotel Espana (4-star, one of Barcelona's most historic & well-known hotels in a quiet location just off La Rambla), Hotel MonteCarlo (4-star), Hotel Jazz (3-star with roof-top pool), Hotel Catalonia Portal de l'Angel (3-star with outdoor swimming pool, Gothic quarter), Hotel Curious (2-star, 50m from Las Ramblas).

Walking, taxis, suburban trains, metro


It's a 3.1 km 42-minute walk from Barcelona Sants to the top of La Rambla in the old city centre, see walking map.

It's a 3.7 km 50-minute walk from Barcelona Sants to Barcelona port for the ferries to Mallorca and Ibiza, see walking map.


There are two taxi ranks, one on the station forecourt (leave the station by the main exit and turn right) and one at the rear of the station just across the roadway from the Hotel Barcelo entrance door.  There are always plenty of taxis.  Barcelona taxi fare calculator.


Barcelona's modern air-conditioned metro links Barcelona Sants (Estació Sants) with all parts of Barcelona, see the metro website  Line L3 links Sants Estació with the Plaça Espanya and Liceu (the metro station half way along La Rambla) every few minutes.  You can buy a ticket from the touch-screen machines (with English-language facility) for a couple of euros and hop on the next train.

The metro entrance is on the right-hand/northern/platform 1 side of the station, to the right of the Access A baggage control to platforms 1-6.

Suburban trains (Rodalies)

Air-conditioned suburban trains link Barcelona Sants with the beautiful Estació de França every 10-20 minutes, journey time 15 minutes, line R2.  These also call at Passeig de Gràcia.  Suburban trains also go to places such as Sitges.  To check suburban trains routes & times use  You won't find these trains on normal booking systems!  Buy tickets at the station, or if you have a Renfe or Iryo mainline ticket you can make a connecting journey for free using the Combinado Cercanias arrangement.

Inside a Barcelona metro train   Barcelona metro train

Barcelona Estació de França  Location map

Barcelona's historic Estació de França is as quiet and beautiful as Barcelona Sants is ugly and busy.  Not so long ago the Trenhotel sleeper from Paris arrived here, but Barcelona França is now relegated to handling regional and suburban trains, all long-distance trains use Barcelona Sants.  You may recognise it from TV adverts, TV companies love it as a filming location.

How to transfer from Barcelona Sants:  Cercanias (suburban) trains of line R2 link Barcelona Sants with the Estació de França every 5-15 minutes.

Tickets & reservations:  If you need long-distance tickets passholder reservations for Spain, you may find it easier to use the two relatively quiet Renfe ticket windows here than the overloaded ticket windows at Barcelona Sants.

Barcelona Franca exterior

Barcelona Estació de França exterior.

Barcelona Franca booking hall

The main hall and Renfe booking windows.

Barcelona Franca trainshed

The trainshed.

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