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Here’s an ultimate list of stops you can make on any Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip! Feel free to use it as an itinerary or pick a place to make a stop during your drive.

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Over my 15+ expat years in Spain, I was driving from Barcelona to Valencia hundreds of times. For anyone based in the region of Castellon, both Barcelona and Valencia are the closest Spanish capitals to reach by car. Well, technically Barcelona is a 3-hour drive from my home – but it is still relatively close to plan occasional weekend getaways in the Catalan capital.

How to get from Barcelona to Valencia

The most popular ways to reach Valencia from Barcelona (and vice versa) are by train and by car.

For the train tickets, you can find the best deals via Trainline.

As to the car, it is still my favorite way to move between Barcelona and Valencia (even though I often take the train too). Having your own vehicle gives you the freedom to turn a simple drive into a new road trip across Spain.

In this article, you can find the list of my favorite places conveniently set on the way from Barcelona to Valencia. You can easily visit all of them in one week (or even two weeks), or pick a few favorites to explore on the go.

On most of Spain’s travel itineraries, visitors end up on one of these popular highways, connecting the main capitals of the Iberian Peninsula:

Therefore, it is really handy to know all the possible stops on the road. This way you can make the most of any drive and keep crossing new landmarks off your Spain Bucket List even on the move.

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Driving in Spain

Driving in Spain for the first time? – You might find handy this Driving in Spain Guide, with Expert Videos, 360 Driving Tours and an On-The-Go PDF.

From Barcelona to Valencia: Need to know

While I have driven from Barcelona to Valencia hundreds of times and my personal experience has always been positive, this itinerary is very touristy and unfortunately full of scams. Check out my Costa Brava post, where I share the details of current tourist traps. Most likely, nothing will happen to you, but knowing the current situation on the road might help you to be prepared.

Barcelona to Valencia: Where to stay

On the map below, you can find hotels and rentals for any taste. If you want to visit 3-4 places on this Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip, a great area to stay halfway through is Tarragona and Costa Daurada.

However, you can easily spend a day at every place I mention in this article, and turn this Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip into a one-week itinerary.

Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip: Top Stops on the Go

Sitges

Visiting Sitges

While the small town of Sitges is a popular weekend getaway from Barcelona, I have actually visited it on a Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip.

Sitges is known for the Sitges Film Festival and its LGBT-friendly atmosphere. This coastal town is often called Saint-Tropez of Spain, thanks to its beach vibes and lively nightlife. However, I would disagree with this comparison. During my French Riviera road trip, Saint-Tropez felt way less vibrant than Sitges. On the weekends this town is bustling with life even in the off-season, thanks to its proximity to Barcelona.

While in Sitges, I especially enjoyed visiting Palau de Maricel, one of the lesser-known Spanish Museums. This place was once a custom-made mansion of the American millionaire and art collector Charles Deering (1852-1927). Even though Deering left his Sitges residence in 1921 (taking most of his lavish art collection back to the U.S.) this place is still such an eye candy for art lovers in Spain.

Note: Palau de Maricel is not open on a daily basis, you must check the visiting schedule at www.museusdesitges.cat before traveling.

Top activities not to miss in Sitges:

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Palau de Maricel in Sitges – one of the lesser-known Spanish Museums

Vilanova i la Geltru

The small town of Vilanova i la Geltru is a popular stop for watersports and is mostly known for housing the Railway Museum of Catalonia – Museu Del Ferrocarril. It will be a must-stop for all the fans of the vintage trains.

Also, another cool museum to visit nearby is Museu Romàntic Can Papiol, a 19th-century house of a wealthy local family. Do not miss a unique Pasífae Monument either.

Popular water activities in Vilanova i la Geltru:

Tarragona

Tarragona is one of the most unique cities to visit on any Barcelona to Valencia Road Trip, known for some of the most iconic Roman Ruins in Spain.

For more details head to this post.

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Enjoying one day in Tarragona
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Tarragona is known for some of the most unique Roman Ruins in Spain

Reus

The small town of Reus is a must-stop on any Tarragona road trip. It is one of the most unique places in the Catalonia region ( since Reus was the birthplace of the iconic architect Antonio Gaudi, considered one of the most famous Spaniards ever).

Also, Reus is known as the Spanish capital of Vermouth. The city has a long-rooted tradition of drinking vermouth: back in the 19th century, Reus was one of its biggest producers in the world.

Last but not least, Reus is famous for the second-largest number of modernist buildings in Catalonia, after Barcelona. All of these unique locations form the route “Ruta del Modernismo de Reus” – you can get the route map at the Reus Tourist Office.

To read more about all the cool things to see and do in Reus, head to this post.

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Visiting the Gaudi Center during my weekend in Reus

Salou

Salou is one of the top destinations for family holidays in Spain, known worldwide for its Portaventura Amusement Park and the golden-sand beaches of Costa Daurada.

Only 15 minutes away from Salou you will find another trendy vacation spot in the area – Cambrils. Even though my last trip to Cambrils was a bit stressful, it is still a great stop to spend a few days on any Barcelona to Valencia road trip.

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Sunset in Cambrils
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Sama Park near Cambrils, one of the most unique gardens in Spain

Top experiences not to miss in Salou:

Top experiences to book in Cambrils:

Tortosa

The city of Tortosa ended up as one of the biggest discoveries during my 2023 travels in Spain. You can check out all the unique landmarks in the area via my Tortosa Travel Guide.

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Spending one day in Tortosa
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Tortosa ended up as one of the biggest discoveries of my 2023 travels in Spain

Deltebre

Visiting Deltebre

Deltebre (or Ebro Delta Natural Park) is one of the most unique wetland landscapes of Spain, known as a top birdwatching destination on the Iberian Peninsula. It is also a great place for adventurous activities in Spain.

Top things to do in Deltebre

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Kayaking the Ebro River

Peñiscola

Peñiscola is a charming coastal town, known for its stunning Castle of Pope Luna, one of the most iconic GOT filming locations in Spain.

You can read more about Peñiscola in this post.

If you are doing this Barcelona to Valencia road trip in February, do not miss the Artichoke Gastronomic weeks in the nearest small town of Benicarlo.

Also, those of you who love birds might enjoy visiting the nearest Jardin del Papagayo – it is still one of my kids’ all-time favorites in Spain.

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Visiting Peñiscola
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The views from the Pope Luna Castle in Peñiscola, one of the dreamiest Spanish castles

Benicassim

Benicassim is a great idea for a relaxing beach getaway in Spain.

You can read the full story of our last family weekend in Benicassim in this article.

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Our Benicassim family getaway
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Riding a bicycle in Benicassim

Vilafames

While Vilafames is not located exactly on the road from Barcelona to Valencia, it is a great off-the-beaten-path stop for the fans of secret Spanish villages. However, Vilafames is a trendy spot for the locals on any road trip across the Castellon region.

Built on a reddish rock, Vilafames is full of winding medieval streets, cute flower pots, and ancient ruins. Here, you can also visit a charming Modern Art Museum MACVAC, one of the secret Spanish museums.

On the top of the hill, you will find the remains of Vilafames Castle, conquered by Jaime I from the Moors in 1233 (during the famous Reconquista – learn more via my list of Spain documentaries).

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Vilafames is also a popular day trip from Benicassim
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Vilafames is a great stop for the fans of cute small towns in Spain

Castellon

The city of Castellon is an easy stop on any Barcelona to Valencia road trip.

You can not miss the central square Plaza Mayor, the XVII-th century cathedral Santa Maria de Castellon, a 60-m tall bell tower El Fadri, and the Spanish Post Office building. The local museum Museo de Bellas Artes has a free entrance and a nice collection of traditional pottery for fans of Spanish Ceramics.

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The city of Castellon is an easy stop on any Barcelona to Valencia road trip

Vall D´Uxo

The most unique caves of the Valencia region are the Caves of San José (also called Sant Josep), which can be found in the small town of Vall DUxo. It is one of the popular adventurous day tours from Valencia and a unique spot for kayaking in Spain. These caves are known for housing the longest navigable underground river in Europe.

If planning this Barcelona to Valencia road trip in advance, you can book Espeleokayak Experience in Sant Josep Caves (check availability).

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Espeleokayak Experience in Sant Josep Caves (check availability)
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Espeleokayak Experience in Sant Josep Caves (check availability)

Sagunto

The town of Sagunto is a popular stop on any Barcelona to Valencia road trip for the fans of the Roman ruins in Spain. Besides the remains of the hilltop Roman Castle, this town is also known for the oldest traces of the Jewish presence in Spain (dating back to the 2nd century).

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Sagunto is a popular Valencia day trip

Manises

Manises is one of the most unique places to visit for the fans of the traditional Spanish Ceramic arts and crafts. You can read more about all the top local landmarks in this post.

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One day in Manises

Valencia

If you plan to spend a few days in Valencia, under the Valencia hashtag you can find tons of articles and itineraries. In particular, I recommend you check out One Day In Valencia, How to Spend a Weekend in Valencia, and One Week Itinerary for Valencia.

Barcelona to Valencia road trip on the map:

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For more Spain travel tips and itineraries check my Pinterest boards Best of Spain and Spain Travel Collection.

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