Circuit de Catalunya – spectators’ experiences

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Vitantonio Liuzzi, Toro Rosso-Cosworth, Barcelona, 2006Tell us about your experiences of visiting the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona.

You may wish to include:

  • When you visited the track
  • Where you watched from
  • How easy it was to get to
  • How much of the track you could see
  • What support races there were
  • What you liked and didn’t like
  • How much it cost and whether it was good value

Please use the reply box below to leave your comments.

Are you going to the 2011 Spanish Grand Prix? Chat with other F1 fans who are going to the race here: 2011 Spanish Grand Prix discussion

39 comments on “Circuit de Catalunya – spectators’ experiences”

  1. – 2006
    – Formula 1 Paddock Club, Renault VIP Guest (We got food, guided tours of the paddock and Renault facilities)
    – 20 minute drive from centre of the city, another 20 to get through traffic and into Paddock Parking
    – Starting grid/Endline/Last & first corner
    – GP2 and a couple others, can’t remember name
    – 0€ (Sponsor invitation. No luck this year)

  2. – 2007
    – Turn 1 grandstand F — all around the track on Friday
    – Quite good — Subway from Las Ramblas to train station, 45 minutes of train journey and 20 minutes walk.
    – Pit exit 1,2,3 corners + Turn 5,6,7 and 8. I think the best grandstand in regards to a large area of sight is grandstand L
    – GP2 which I watched and Porsche Supercup
    – The compact size of the track was great, and the atmosphere was very good. I also think the grass areas of general admission was very good and we hung a lot around there. That’s the ticket I would be next time. The track side food was horrible, and the prices of beer was too high.
    – The ticket was as alway too high priced, but Barcelona is a very nice city and both the hotel and flight was very good value. We stayed in Las Ramblas and payed 360 Euros for the race tickets and 260 Euros grand total for hotel and plane tickets. Too bad the race was boring, at least the saturday GP2 race and F1 qualifying was a hoot.

  3. * When: Spanish Grand Prix, late April 2008
    * Where: Grandstand J, between pit exit and turn 1
    * Easy to get to: 40 minute bus ride from hotel to track
    * How much you could see: pit exit, turn 1 (Elf) and part of turn 2 (Renault), exit of turn 5 (Seat), turn 7 and entry of turn 8 (Campsa).
    * Support races: Formula BMW, Porsche Supercup, GP2
    * What you didn’t like: reaction of Spanish fans towards L.C. Hamilton: very childish
    * How much it cost: don’t remember; probably too much. ;)

  4. 2009 Spanish GP
    Grandstand H

    Good event as far as what is happening on the track. As far as logistics around the cricuit…organisation was extremely poor. Very few people to give information. No shuttles from Montmello to the track. Shuttle from the “track” to station non existant after the race. Taxi drivers only taking fares to Barcelona for 100euros. When you pay 400+ euros for a ticket you expect better organisation. F1 should set standards for service. You wouldn’t see this in Aus, Japan, etc. Pick up your act F1 and Circuit de Catalunya.

  5. When: Spanish F1 GP 7-10 May 2009

    Where: Main grandstand opposite Brawn garage for Friday practice. Then for quali and race we had seats in stand G.

    View: From Stand G you get one of the best views of any circuit, as you get to see the cars as they snake their way through the “stadium” complex before entering the chicane and final turn/pit entry.

    Access: We camped on the campsite next to the track for 45 Euros per car (our car contained 5 people & 3 tents) for the whole 5 days. Apparently if you turn up on foot you get in for free!! Access to the track was a 5-10min stroll. However if you want to sample the hospitality of Montmelo, which is the nearest town approx 1.5 miles from the circuit, be prepared to walk. There are no buses/shuttles from the circuit to Montmelo and the Taxis only want to do the big money trips to Barcelona. However at the end of the night, if you can find one, the taxi’s will do shorter runs.

    Support races: Formula BMW, Porsche Super Cup, GP2

    Liked: The pit lane walk and driver’s autograph session available to all those with a 3 day ticket on the Thursday afternoon. The campsite atmosphere.

    Disliked: The lack of transport and the extortionate prices of food & drink especially inside the track. Finding out that friends we had made on the campsite had had belongings stolen from thier tents whilst they were sleeping in them!!

    Cost: Ticket prices are high but if you book early enough big discounts are available. 40% off 2010 prices if you book before 31/07/09. As i have already mentioned the cost of food & drink inside the circuit is nothing less than daylight robbery: 4.50 Euros for water/soft drinks, beer 330ml 6 Euros, 500ml 8 Euros & 1 ltr 12 Euros. The only food available as far as i could see were “frankfurters” for 6.50 Euros!!!

    If you do head into Montmelo prices are cheaper, but shop around as prices do vary considerably. If you can find the local Lidl supermarket you can pick up a case of 24 500ml cans of beer for 8 Euros. As we had a hire car for the weekend we stocked up with plenty of these. A taxi from Montmelo back to the circuit camp site will cost you 15 Euros.

    Value for money: Certainly not, especially in this current economic climate. It was noticeable how many empty seats there was this year compared to last year.

    Having said this we will no doubt be returning once again next year for the friendly atmosphere as we met some really nice people from all over Europe.

    1. ron lightfoot
      21st January 2010, 12:47

      Can you tell me please what is the camp site lick any facilities water , toiletes ect is it noisy any sort of organisation on where you pitch or just a free for all .what day does the camp site open do you have to pre book ??

  6. does anyone have the actual dates for Barcelona next year please ?

  7. Back the Brits
    2nd September 2009, 18:41

    Which airport did you fly into?

  8. When :- spanish f1 gp 2008 and 2009

    Where :- general admission

    View :- Turn 7,8, and 9 i find the best but good views in most places been round most of the track during the weekend.

    cost :- 120 euros for weekend pass . Tip keep your ticket stub and get half price access the folowing year :-).

    Access :- 2008 stayed in santa susanna on the coast ( had to go on weeks holiday to keep the missus happy ) about 45 mins by car to circuit from there access is good thur,fri,sat but come sunday expect to cue for an hour or so. 2009 Thought we use public transport but stayed in salou bad idea and hour on train to barcelona then about 30 mins to montmello, about a twenty min walk to circuit you can get a road train to the curcuit but we heard people had been waiting half an hour just to get on one. When leaving the train is a nightmare massive que’s and big pushing and over crowding.

    General Opinion :- Good race to watch gp2 is great lots of overtaking. Prices of food and merchendise are well over the top. Take as much food and drink as you can in a cool bag, they let you take it in as long as you have no glass. I think granstand tickets are far to over priced you get just as good views from general admission. Be early to grab a good place and take some big rugs/towels/mats to place on the ground to hold your spot. If watching at turns 7 and 8 expect the die hard alonso fans there, this is there main grandstand.Expect a nasty reaction to lewis hamilton every time he’s on the big screen , but i was there with my england flag with go lewis written on it and i got out alive (although the misses speaks spanish and i did get plenty of insults). Highlight when alonso retired 2008 half the alonso fans left before the race was over giving us much more room to enjoy the race.

    Main tip :- If driving there and going friday and saturday find some where to leave the car near the track and avoid the cue’s on sunday.Theres palces on the c-17 you can dump your hire car and have a ten min walk, and there’s an industrial estate near the circuit
    If coming off the ap-7 .

    1. I am going to the Barcelona race this year found the quoted line bellow very interesting.

      “Take as much food and drink as you can in a cool bag, they let you take it in as long as you have no glass.”

      That is a great tip. Are there any guideline for the size of the cool bag? Are cool bags allowed in the grandstands?

      1. I would like a confirmation you can bring beer in these cool bags.

        1. Hi.

          You can bring it, but with no glass or metal bottles: only plastic. In every supermarket in Spain you can buy 1.5 litter beers in plastic bottles.

          I brought them last year, with sandwitches and nothing happened.

  9. Phillip from Denmark
    6th February 2010, 11:59

    We had seats in stand G (near to the above jenson Buttons barmy army !)which was Good spot to watch from, lots of good banter with the locals and even better with the French party sat next to us,we even had them standing up booing with thumbs down when Alonso came around,well funny.
    We stayed in a mobile home down on the coast near Sitges just south of Barcelona,so we had a hire car. We parked at the circuit with no problems and only spent 30 mins in heavy traffic after the race.
    As someone has mentioned,go to the local supermarkets,make yourself a decent picnic and save a fortune on the prices they charge for food and drinks at the track.
    As for taking beer in, do as the locals,put it in plastic bottles and you can take it in with no problems.
    We would for sure go again but as we are trying to visit most of the European GPs,our next visit to the Spanish GP will have to wait.

  10. When :- spanish f1 gp 2006 and 2009

    Where :- Grandstand in level with T1 (F) (2006)
    and Granstand at Sabadell (B) (2009)

    Food is extortionate at Catalunya we took all of our own supplies in. We did see a 10 Euro pint of beer at one point, thats how bad it was!

    So Spanish GP is it a good one to go to?
    +Super weather
    +Good atmosphere
    +Good Views (There isn’t a bad view on the circuit)
    +Open ticket on friday (get yourself into the high grandstand on the pit-straight if you love photography, simply amazing)
    +Train journey from Barcelona. We watched the race then watched Barcelona play football at the Nou Camp on the same day!
    +Easyjet fly to Barca so its a good idea to fly midweek to midweek and soak up the city.

    The disadvantages:
    -Overpriced tickets
    -Overpriced food
    -Boring Boring races

    1. hi,

      planning on going for the 2012 race and i think that granstand f is the best one.

      you already being there, would you reccomend it? i want a stand where i will see the cars as long as possible and take great pics. which turns could you see from F?

      thanks, Kurt

  11. Going to be there all weekend and am staying in the campsite, any advice on

    – availability on tent spaces
    – security of carpark
    – if its possible to leave carpark to go visit nearby areas throughout weekend
    – times gates open on sunday
    – Best spot to see the action in GA on sunday

    1. Hi Silver surfer, did you get any info on the questions you asked as I would like to know these too, regards Jamie

  12. I am still confused about how to actually get to the track from Barcelona. It sounds like I need a subway ride and then a separate train ride to Montmelo, but where do you transfer and to what line? I admit to being an American, which of course means that I am totally helpless when it comes to public transport, so any help would be appreciated for my first ever European F1 race.

  13. Hi. I want to go to the race on Sunday, but the F1 website only shows the three day ticket package, at exorbitant prices. Does anyone know if the Sunday tickets are still available? Do you think I can get them at the circuit on race day?

  14. Hey Guys!!!

    I am going to Spain GP this year on general admission area!!

    I will be by myself and its my first time , if anyone is going to do same would be great to meet up and do it together :)

    my trip starts from Toulouse France!!

    Got a question can i buy general admission area tickets on spot? for now they go for 120 euros for weekend!!

    big thx to MarkD for great info

    1. Hi David, will you be camping in the camping area or do you have other accomodation?

      1. Hi Jamie , I dont have any accomodation for now thinking to stay over camping area! will see i am not sure yet ! whats your story same?

  15. Hi, I will be going to the spanish GP this may and will be getting there on public transport, I want to camp in the camping area, does anyone know for sure if you can camp for free if you have no car and just turn up on foot??

  16. where can i camp with a motor home?

  17. Nathan Bradley
    26th April 2010, 10:08

    Hi, I was there in 2009.
    Sat right on the start line.
    I’m disabled so got a three day grandstand ticket for the price of a general admission.
    Facilities for disabled good, apart from stupid lift system, there is an attendant who brings the lift for you, but they are downstairs, so I had to get somebody else to do it.
    I could see the whole of the main straight, first and last corner, and some of the back of the circuit, I think after about turn 10.
    Easy access for me, take a Sat Nav put in Carrer Mas Moreneta.
    Then I just showed my disabled badge and was allowed to park at front entrance.
    Thursday morning and afternoon is a pit-lane visit for 3-day ticket holders.
    Thursday evening at about 17.00, there is an autograph signing in the pit-lane, but this is not mentioned in the official programme, just in the circuit’s own small publication, so make sure you get everything you can.

    And Ian, I got a Kangaroo TV last year, I’m not sure if you can now.

    Sorry for long, rambling post!


  18. Urgent Help Required!

    Is it possible to attend the pit visit on the Thursday without a weekend ticket? Or perhaps the Friday session – pay at the gate?

    Is there ANY way to achieve this short of buying.a weekend pass then selling it?

  19. Help Help Help PLZ!!

    Today i as going to buy tickets but its sold out General admision area! What should i do? Will i be able to buy them on spot? If any one has any idea or experince on this kind of thing? Is there people who buys it cheep early and then sells them little expencive on race Day? I’ve been in Turkey and there was lots of people selling tickets 10-20$ more than it costs at race day !

    PLZ any help would be great



    Email :

  20. Sorry mate the only link I had but they days that the ticket has sold out, wish that you get a ticket.

    1. Sorry for the mistake it will be ‘says’ not ‘days’

  21. Anyone know if I must buy circuit parking in advance or can I buy it on the day?

  22. Does anyone know if it is OK to take folding camp chairs into the General Admission area?

  23. hey david
    i bought my general admissio tickets from the F1 official website but there’s one website that i came across today while i was reading reviews about the circuit and there are still some general admission tickets available..the good thing is that the price is the same so maybe you should go ahead and try :)

    1. Hello Siba

      Thx for link but its same over there sold out as well ! Any idea if i’ll be able to buy from locals over the race track?

  24. Went in 1991 – awesome view of the great Senna / Mansell duel as they drove towards us just inches apart………..priceless.
    Went again in 2008 and sat in Stand L for quali + race.
    Sat in various others on the Friday but L has to be the best on the circuit!!!!!!
    Going again next week — can’t wait to see them using DRS into the first corner!!!!!!

  25. Hi, can you bring food and drink Inc alcohol into the circut? sitting in stand J.

  26. We went this year (2011) and sat in Grandstand H. Walking the circuit, I think this was a great choice, there was a screen, and you could see all of the last corners section before they disappeared down the main straight.

    The circuit is a little difficult to get to. We took the advice offered here, and caught the Segales Bus. The service was good – from the city to the track, and not too far to walk from the drop off point up to the track.

    We only went for the Saturday and Sunday – so can only comment on those days – but it was fairly busy. It was also good experiencing the local boy getting into the lead on the first lap of the GP – the atmosphere was amazing.

    Walking around there seems like there’s some good General Admin positions, but I do enjoy a seat these days at GP’s.

    It seemed to be the done thing to take your own food and drink, make sure they’re plastic bottles. I nearly had a spray can of sunscreen confiscated – as they aren’t allowed either – so make sure you remember that during the bag searches.

    Facilities for a racing circuit seems good.

    If anyone has any questions please let me know and I’ll try and answer here for you.

  27. need as much help as I can, subscribed, and shall be back to ask question!!

  28. Had a great weekend there this year 2011, was only 2nd Grand prix in 10 years. Did Gen admin and parked in car park A, wnet into Gate 7 if I remember correctly, straight up into a small shopping and food area. Awesome view of the run up to the first corner, them the hairpin turn 4 behind and then 7,8,and 9 in front, (near to where Massa went off) Didn’t realise how steep the hill was in front of us. Absolutely great build up on the Saturday and the Sunday. The good weather helped, luckily found a patch of grass under some trees, but you do have to get there about 7.30am to get those sort of places.
    Flew from Bournemouth in Gerona, car hire and drove from Gerona to Calella. Hotel all inclusive for Fri – Mon. About 3/4 hour drive to circuit from Calella, easy journey, roads amazing. Straight in and straight out. Food is very meh though at the circuit. Make sure you take a picnic of some sort, the supermarkets had lots of nibbly bits and take lots of water especially if the weather is hot. Ladies loos, great not to have to que very long. I would recommend incorporating this into a holiday as it’s not much more expensive for a few extra days!! Will definately (hopefully) be going again in 2012.

  29. This discussion page is closed. If you want to discuss going to the Spanish Grand Prix please go to the new discussion forum here: Going to the Spanish Grand Prix

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