Parc de la Serralada de Marina
The city of Barcelona is nestled in between the Mediterranean sea on one side and green hills on the other. Because of this wonderful geographic situation, Barcelona has it all. City life, beach life and even hiking and mountain biking are possible within close proximity.
After having made several hikes in the Collserola National Park, like the famous “Carretera de les Aigües” Read more about Carretera de les Aigües here , we decided it was time to find a new area to explore. On a sunny Sunday afternoon we took the metro to Santa Coloma de Gramenet. Santa Coloma is a small city but it feels more like a suburb of Barcelona seeing it’s still on the city’s metro network. From the metro stop we had to walk a few streets up to a small carpark from where we could enter Parc de la Serralada de Marina, a national park in the hills just north east of Barcelona.
The Serralada de Marina proved to be an excellent choice to spend a few hours hiking and having a picnic. With green hills and the fresh smell of plants and flowers it’s the perfect antidote to city life and the sweeping views over the city and the surroundings make climbing uphill more than worth it. We also saw beautiful butterflies and other interesting insects along the way.
Besides the flora and fauna that you can find in the park, there are also some historical sites that are more than worth a visit. On one of the hill tops you can find a very small, 17th century, shrine. The Ermita de Sant Climent. The path leading up to the shrine is lined with beautiful, elegant cypress trees.
Another hilltop is home to an even older site, Poblat Iberic, an Iberian Iron Age village! This archaeological site is absolutely magnificent and remarkably well preserved. The village, also called Puig Castellar after the hill it’s located on, covers an area of about 5000 square metres. It was inhabited from the 6th century BC to the start of the 2nd century BC by a community called Laietani. This community was part of the Iberian culture, a culture that developed between the 6th and the 1st centuries BC along the Mediterranean coast. Iberians had a written alphabet and they worked with iron and pottery and used grain mills. Puig Castellar is the most important Iberian settlement that has been discovered in the area of Barcelona. You can still clearly see how the village was built with it’s narrow streets and small houses al along. There are signs with interesting information around the site to explain what this settlement was like back in the days.
Parc de la Serralada de Marina combines nature and history perfectly well. It’s not a busy place and not very well known, even to locals. So if you feel like seeing something a bit different, a hike in this national park is absolutely recommended.
To visit Parc de la Serralada de Marina:
Take the Metro L9, to Singuerlin. From the metro you walk along Avinguda de Catalunya. Then follow Avinguda de la Primavera until you get to Carrer de Garcilaso de la Vega. Follow this street to the end where you find a small car park. From there you will see a track leading into the hills. There are several tracks winding up in different directions so take your pick from there. You will be able to see Poblat Iberic quite easily when you get a bit higher and there are orange marks along the track that lades up to the village.