The institute of Space Sciences (IEEC-CSIC) is located in the Campus of the Autonomous University of Barcelona (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, hereafter UAB) in Bellaterra. This is a huge campus, with lots of buildings for schools and institutes of all kinds.
Bellaterra is a town just outside the Barcelona Metropolitan Area, and it can be reached very easily from downtown Barcelona or the airport using public transportation.
From the Airport to Plaça Catalunya via public transport
The recommended method is to get to Plaça Catalunya
from the airport
by train, by the "Blue Bus" or by taxi. The train (renfe) departs from the railway station close to the airport every 30 minutes and it costs <10€; it gets to downtown Barcelona in 30 minutes. The 'Blue' Bus (labeled "Aeroport") departs from the airport every 15 minutes and takes ~30 minutes to arrive to Plaça Catalunya (its final destination). The price is also <10€. By taxi the ride takes about 15 to 20 minutes and the price should be of the order of 40€ or less.
From Plaça Catalunya to the UAB Campus
Once in Plaça Catalunya, or along any of the stations of the S2 or S5 line, the easiest way to get to the UAB
is to take the train called Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya
Enter the Ferrocarrils underground station at the beginning of the "Ramblas
", a street everyone knows in Barcelona.
Once there follow the sign of the Ferrocarrils. At the Ferrocarrils station there are trains departing to several end destinations. To get to the UAB, take the train in the direction of Sabadell
). Trains leave towards Sabadell every 10 minutes on working days, and at somewhat longer intervals on weekends and holidays. The trip takes about 35 minutes and costs <3€.
The name of the stations and the final destination (Sabadell) are displayed in luminous panels at the appropriate isle, and also on the side of the trains themselves. On working days there are additional trains that come to the UAB as final destination, without continuing towards Sabadell; these are labeled line S55
Staying at the Hotel Campus?
If you are staying at the Hotel Campus
(inside the Campus of UAB) and want to get there from Barcelona, it is easier to get off the train at the Bellaterra stop, just one station before the UAB station, and from there walk to the hotel via the marked (paved) pathway through the forest.
The station of Bellaterra is at the edge of the campus, about 300 m away from the hotel. There is always someone at the train station, and it is advisable to ask there for directions to walk opposite to the Bellaterra town, towards the Campus.
From the UAB station one can also walk to the hotel, but it is farther away, about 600 m along an ascending path.
Staying at the Hotel Augusta, or other hotel nearby in Gracia?
If you are staying at the Hotel Augusta
, the easiest way to get to the Institute is to get the FGC train just at the corner of the hotel, in Gracia station. This station is a few stops up from Plaça Catalunya, in the right direction for coming to UAB.
Staying at the Hotel Sant Cugat?
Another option is to stay at the Hotel Sant Cugat
. Sant Cugat is a small city located a few kilometers away from Barcelona, across the mountain and the Collserola Park. It can be easily reached from the city center of Barcelona, since it is located in between Barcelona and the UAB. Thus, to go from Sant Cugat to the UAB, you can take the FGC line as well, and it will be about 15 minutes away. Both the FGC Sant Cugat station, and the the old benedictine abbey of Sant Cugat (constructed by 1190) are at a few minutes of walking distance from the hotel.
Taxi to FGC station of Sarria, then train
An alternative way of coming from the airport to the UAB is to take a taxi to the FGC station of Sarrià, located at the end of "Via Augusta", and enter the train there. The taxi to the Sarrià Station takes the same time than to Plaça Catalunya, but one is already almost halfway to Bellaterra by train.
From the airport to UAB directly by taxi
Of course, you can also take a taxi directly from the airport to the UAB Campus. The price should be of the order of 50€, can vary a little depending on traffic. See the map below and tell the taxi to leave you in the roundabout towards the north-east of the map --assuming top is north- (Av. de Serragalliners). You can easily walk from there.