Barcelona is gaining a reputation as a viable destination for travellers with a disability or limited mobility. Despite still ironing out some accessibility issues the Council are working hard to make the city fully adapted for wheelchair and scooter users. Many are now claiming that it is one of Europe's most advanced cities in terms of mobility and accessibility.
For personal advice and insider tips from a Barcelona resident who uses a scooter it is worth checking our An Interview with Cosmoscooter (Scooter and Wheelchair Hire Company) on Advice for Tourists With A Disability.
Unfortunately Barcelona Council do not have specific office or centre allocated for tourism for Wheelchair and Scooter users. It is, therefore, necessary to check which branch you should go to collect the information that you need. We have liaised with Tourist Information for both Barcelona and the whole of Catalunya to find out the specific services that they offer to tourists using wheelchairs and scooters.
In this article I have covered what tourist information is on offer, where to go to get the information and how to find the tourist information centres.
The Tourist Information Centre in Palau Robert deals with tourism for the whole of Catalunya. It is, therefore, useful, if you are thinking of taking a trip outside of Barcelona to some of the other parts of the region.
They offer a detailed booklet called Turismo Accesible detailing the areas in the region that are considered most suitable for travellers with a disability. The areas covered are:
- Vall de Boi
- Val d'Aran
- Pallars Sobirá
- La Seu d'Urgell
- La Molina - La Cerdanya
- La Garrotxa
- Ruta Dalí
- Costa Brava - Alt Empordá
- Vic - Osona
- Costa Brava - Baix Empodá
- Ruta del Císter
- Garraf - Sitges
- Costa Daurada
- Delta de l'Ebre
For each of these areas the booklet covers issues such as whether they have:
- Adapted beach
- Aquatic chairs
- Adapted cycling
- Adapted kayaking
- Accessible museums and monuments
- Adapted golf
- Guided tours
- Adapted horse riding
- Adapted lodgings
- Adapted trains
The booklets are available in: Catalan, Castellano, English, German and French. On the day that I visited Palau Robert they did not have any of the English editions available. However, the staff were both multilingual and helpful and explained that they could go through the book with me if necessary.
For wine lovers Palau Robert also provide a small pamphlet dedicated to wine tours for travellers with a disability. It offers wine cellars, restaurants, accommodation and guided tours that are suitable in the wine region of Penedés.
|Palau Robert's Gardens|
Palau Robert itself is a beautiful building with beautiful gardens. The tourist information is located on the first floor. It is accessible via lift and has adapted bathrooms.
Centro de Informacion Turistica de Cataluña - Palau Robert
Passeig de Gràcia, 107
08008 Barcelona, España.
Tel: +34 93 238 8091
How to get to Tourist Information Office - Palau Robert
Metro: Diagonal (Green Line, L3 and Blue Line, L5)
Hop on hop off sightseeing tourist bus stop
Nearest stop for Tourist Information Office - Palau Robert is "La Pedrera" with the "hop on hop off" sightseeing bus
Passeig de Gràcia / Diagonal: 7, 22, 24, V15
Diagonal / Pau Claris: 6, 33, 34, H8, V17
|Plaça de Catalunya|
Tourist Information in Plaça de Catalunya deals with tourism specifically for Barcelona. In general, they are less well-equipped than Palau Robert with information for tourists with a disability. However, there are a few useful pamphlets on offer.
A book has been collated by Barcelona Council called 'Guia de la Barcelona Accessible'. This book covers Barcelona area by area pinpointing restaurants, bars, hotels and attractions that have access for people with a disability. Unfortunately the book is only available in Castellano.
On the day when I attended the centre they had no books available to buy. However, the staff were helpful and explained that they have one to use on site and could take the time to go through it with somebody if they came to tourist information.
Alternatively, they said that the book could also be purchased from the City Council Building in Plaza San Miguel.
- A print out listing 'Wheelchair Accessible Monuments'
- The Metro Map with a key pointing out the Metro stations with wheelchair access.
- A free directory to Barcelona hotels - each key in the book shows whether the hotel has wheelchair access.
Tourist Information in Plaça de Catalunya is located at the bottom of a long set of stairs. There is a stair lift allowing accessibility for wheelchair and scooter users. However, if you have a larger model of scooter it may be worth telephoning ahead to check that it will fit on the lift.
Turisme de Barcelona
Placa de Catalunya, 17
08002 Barcelona, España.
Tel: +34 93 285 3834
How to get to Tourist Information Office in Plaça de Catalunya
Metro: Catalunya (Green Line, L3) and (Red Line, L1)
Hop on hop off sightseeing tourist bus stop
Nearest stop for Tourist Information Office in Plaça de Catalunya is "Plaça de Catalunya" with the "hop on hop off" sightseeing bus
Plaça Catalunya: 24, 41, 42, 55, 67, 68, H16, Aerobús
Tourist Information in Barcelona are not always particularly well-equipped or organised. It can be frustrating making a trip to one of their offices for a specific piece of information only to discover they do not have it on that day. Therefore, before making the visit, it is worth calling ahead and letting them know what piece of literature you require. They may even be able to answer your queries over the phone and save you the journey. On the day I visited they were all out of the English versions of their literature for people with a disability. If you are relying on this information to organize your trip we highly recommend you ask them to send the information to you well in advance of your trip.
Barcelona is a city that is slowly becoming more and more accessible for the traveller with a disability and limited mobility. Hopefully the information on offer will follow suit and will soon be as accessible as the city itself.