Wheelchair Access in Barcelona

barcelonaWhen I lived in Barcelona I used to love it when people came to visit me. I would put on my tourist guide hat and wander around the city showing off my favourite coffee shops, restaurants and attractions.

During my time in Barcelona I received a phone call from a friend in the USA who said that she was thinking of coming to visit me with her disabled daughter, but was concerned about flying, getting around the city and finding a hotel with disabled facilities. My friend had never travelled long-haul so this was a big step. I told her not to worry and that I would check out the city to see how wheelchair friendly it was.

I travelled around Barcelona by metro, bus and taxi. I went to see the hotel where my friends wanted to stay and I even rang up to find out about wheelchair access at the city’s most popular tourist attractions. I was convinced that Barcelona is a wheelchair friendly city so I knew that they wouldn’t have too many problems.

I helped my friends to book airline tickets to Barcelona and they added a request with their reservation for special assistance and access requirements. They were more than impressed with the service. They were also pleased with the hotel they stayed at. When booking we were unable to notify that they needed a spacious room with wheelchair access. When we called to confirm the booking, the staff were more than helpful and assured me that my friends would have a room with wheelchair access.

Perhaps one difficulty is using the metro in Barcelona as line 2 is the only one which has a lift at every stop. I think that wheelchair users are best to take the bus or a taxi. The streets of Barcelona and most of the major tourist attractions have ramps suitable for wheelchair users. The only problem we had was at Park Guell as there is no access to the area where the famous bench is. However, it is easy enough to get to the upper level and look down. You have to have someone strong to push you though. Overall, Barcelona is very wheelchair friendly, so don’t hesitate in travelling to one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations.

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