I'm traveling to Barcelona in June - I have 8 days on the ground plus 2 travel days, so was considering spending 4 full days in Barcelona, 3 days & 2 nights outside Barcelona, 1 day to travel back, sleep over & catch flight home. I enjoy culture & nature side by side, love hiking, not really a lay-on-the-beach person so looking for place with a mix of things to do. I've read info & seen photos of Figueres & Cadaques which are very appealing except not sure how easy it'll be to get to Cadaques. Also Sitges looks pretty but maybe more crowded & touristy beach with less to do, but easy to get to. What would you do with that amount of time & given varied interests? Out of those 2 options , or other ideas? Thank you!
I haven't been to Cadaques, Sitges, or Figueres, so I can't comment on these (in their different ways, they all look appealing). Rick Steves Spain or Snapshot Barcelona should have details of how to get to each of them. But I want to put in a plug for Girona. The guidebook I used at the time said it was "A world class city patiently waiting for the world to notice" and they were 100% right. It's got Arab baths, an old Jewish quarter (a major center of the Kabbalah), Gothic cathedral - and very few visitors. It's an easy day trip from Barcelona by either train or bus, and looked like a pleasant place to spend the night as well. Also, if you book far enough in advance, you can get an affordable train ticket on the AVE to Madrid. As it's only about 3 hours away from Barcelona, doing an overnight in Madrid is very reasonable.
Montserrat is a good day trip from Barcelona for those who like to hike. The area is famous for its fascinating religious buildings, but the hillside is covered with hiking trails. If you catch the first commuter train out of the city you can take a quick tour through the sites and still spend a full day hiking all over the area. The views of Barcelona and the mountains are great. This TripAdvisor link has some good information on where to get maps. http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g187501-i3437-k4196579-Montserrat_hiking_trails-Montserrat_Catalonia.html