Madrid to Barcelona by train Find train times and tickets

Prices explained

Prices explained

At Loco2 we believe in price transparency. We use real data from Loco2 searches to estimate the cheapest fares you should be able to find for your journey.

The cheapest price is the lowest fare we've ever found for this journey. These prices can usually be found by searching when booking opens but they vary due to availability, which depends on factors like the day of the week or time of year.

More popular journeys include 30 day advance and 7 day advance prices. These are updated every two weeks using prices we've found by searching exactly 7 or 30 days from the most recent Thursday (we picked Thursday because this is when average prices are usually found).

30 day and 7 day prices fluctuate based on demand and availability at the time of search. For example, the 7-day price in summer is likely to be more expensive than the same journey in winter.

Prices are sourced in GBP and converted to other currencies using the daily market exchange rate.

We're always seeking to improve how price-checking works, and we welcome feedback on how we can make it better.

More advice about how to find the cheapest tickets can be found in our infographic.

  1. Cheapest price £30.00
  2. 30 day advance £62.50
  3. 7 day advance £70.50
  • First train
  • Last train
  • Avg changes
  • Fastest journey
    2hr 30m
  1. Travelling by train from Madrid to Barcelona is easy and so fast - only 2 hrs 30 mins - that the train is now taking a lot of trade away from Europe’s busiest air route. This new rail route between Spain’s two largest cities opened in 2008, and on every weekday about two dozen AVE trains speed between Madrid and Barcelona. On Saturdays and Sundays, you’ll still have a choice of about 16 trains in each direction.

    The 621-km journey from Madrid to Barcelona is very popular, so you’ll need to book well in advance to get a bargain fare. Cheap tickets are few and far between on peak time departures from Madrid on this prime business route. You’re more likely to strike a good deal if you travel very early in the morning, in the middle of the day or in the evening.

    There is also a once-a-day slow Regional Express train from Madrid to Barcelona. With three dozen stops en route, it takes over nine hours. The train leaves each morning from Madrid Chamartin. The Estrella overnight train which once linked Madrid and Barcelona was withdrawn in April 2015 - customers who once favoured that overnight option had shifted to the much improved daytime services.

    Booking normally opens about 90 days prior to travel, though the Spanish rail operator often releases tickets in batches as early as 120 days in advance. If you're having trouble finding tickets, contact us and we'll email you when booking opens.

    Madrid to Barcelona

    Madrid to Barcelona

    Take a direct high-speed AVE train from Madrid to Barcelona. At peak times Madrid to Barcelona trains depart every 30 minutes, with the fastest services taking just 2 hrs 30 mins to reach the Spanish capital. Trains that stop up to four times along the way may take 30 to 40 mins longer. These fast trains all depart from Madrid Atocha and arrive in Barcelona at Sants station.

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Other journeys to Barcelona View all journeys to Barcelona

Country guide

Trains to Spain

Read our country guide

Child and youth passengers

The definition of "Child" and "Youth" varies by country and rail operator. This is why we ask for the age of young passengers.

Sometimes children below a certain age can travel without a seat for free. If you want to guarantee a seat for child passengers, enter '6' as the age of the child.

Read more about child and youth passenger ages. See also youth discounts and railcards.

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