Thanks to direct train services from San Sebastian, your journey to sunny Barcelona can be comfortable and convenient, without the need to wait in long security queues or travel to far-flung airports. Take the train and the trip from San Sebastian-Donostia station to Barcelona will take under six hours on the high-speed Alvia trains by Renfe.
Arrive at the modern Barcelona Sants station and take the bus or the metro to the city centre. Spend your day admiring Gaudi’s striking architecture or head to the beachfront restaurants for some fresh seafood and tapas.
Settle into spacious seats and enjoy complimentary food and drinks by booking Confort (First Class) seats on your Alvia train. Find out more by scrolling down for FAQs and train times.
Renfe is the national train operator in Spain. It operates trains on the longest high-speed railway network in Europe, and the second-longest in the world. The country's major cities are linked up by the high-speed AVE and Avlo trains, while other long-distance routes are served by Altaria, Talgo, Alvia and Euromed trains. Renfe also operates cross-border services into neighbouring Portugal and France. Depending on which service you are travelling on, you'll usually find two classes on Renfe trains - Estándard (Standard Class) and Confort (First Class). Fare types range from the cheapest (but least flexible) Básico fare, to the more flexible Elige fares, to the Premium fare for seats in Confort carriages.
Renfe's Alvia services combine high-speed tracks with lower speed sections, reaching speeds of up to 155 mph (250 km/h) on international lines and 125 mph (200 km/h) on conventional lines. These trains connect the cities of Madrid, Barcelona and Alicante with the other main Spanish cities. Alvia offers two types of classes – Turista (Second Class) and Preferente (First Class). The latter has wider seats, carriages with fewer seats, offers complimentary food and drinks, free newspapers, and access to parking and Club meeting rooms.
Most of the train companies across Europe release their tickets around three to six months in advance, many of which can be cheaper the earlier you book. If you know the dates you want to travel, you may be able to find some cheaper train tickets from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants by booking early.§
Many of the train services in Europe are also popular commuter services, lots of train companies increase ticket prices during “peak hours” (generally between 06:00 – 10:00 and 15:00 – 19:00 on weekdays). If you can, consider travelling outside of peak hours to find lower priced tickets.
On some of the busier routes, you might also have the option to take a slower or connecting train. It may take a little longer than some high-speed or direct services, but if you have a little extra time on your hands, you might find a cheaper fare. Plus, you'll have more time to enjoy the view of the countryside!
For specific information about how to get your hands on cheap tickets, check out our European train tickets hub.
The average journey time by train between San Sebastián-Donostia and Barcelona Sants is 9 hours and 18 minutes, with around 4 trains per day. The journey time may be longer on weekends and holidays, so use our Journey Planner on this page to search for a specific travel date.
The fastest journey time by train from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants is 5 hours and 38 minutes.
Train ticket prices from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants can start from as little as €19 when you book in advance. The cost of tickets can vary depending on the time of day, route and class you book and are usually more expensive if you book on the day.
Yes, it is possible to travel from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants without having to change trains. There is 1 direct train from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants each day. Though there may be fewer direct services available depending on your exact departure date.
The first train from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants leaves at 06:28. Times and services may vary during weekends and holidays.
The last train from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants leaves at 15:33. Trains that depart in the early morning hours or very late evening may be sleeper services, time and services may also vary during weekends and holidays.
Trains travelling from San Sebastián-Donostia to Barcelona Sants cover a distance of around 249 miles (401 km) during the journey.