Barcelona   Travel Guide

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17 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona has some of the most unique and inspiring architecture in the world, so a small-group tour to get behind-the-scenes at the city's parks, museums and churches is a must-do. Kick off your stay with tours of Antoni Gaudí's whimsical

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La Sagrada Família (Church of the Sacred Family) La Sagrada Família (Church of the Sacred Family)

U.S. News Insider Tip: Wander 20 minutes north to reach Hospital de Sant Pau. This elaborate, UNESCO-listed former hospital was the brainchild of architect Lluis Domènech i Montaner and is a beautiful example of Catalan art nouveau architecture. – Laura French

From 1883 up until his death in 1926, Catalan art nouveau master Antoni Gaudí devoted himself to the construction of La Sagrada Família , a towering, Gothic-style-with-a-twist church. But even then, he was unable to finish it; Gaudí was known for saying "My client (God) is not in a hurry."

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Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarter) Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarter)

The Barri Gòtic, or Gothic Quarter, sits at the heart of the Ciutat Vella – the oldest part of Barcelona – and, considering its location next to the city center, is one of its liveliest neighborhoods. Here you'll find beautiful examples of Roman and Medieval-era architecture rubbing elbows with the many shops, restaurants, alfresco cafes, bars and clubs that line its narrow roads and picturesque plazas – and there are so many plazas to explore. Aside from Plaça de la Seu, which you'll no doubt end up in if you visit the Barcelona Cathedral , make sure you stop in the smaller Plaça Sant Felip Neri, which was bombed by Spanish dictator Francisco Franco during the Spanish Civil War (you can see scars from the attack on the church in the square). The palm tree-clad Plaça Reial is meanwhile much more energetic and usually buzzes until the wee hours of the morning. Another notable plaza is Plaça Sant Jaume, where the Catalan seat of government has been since the Middle Ages.

No matter where you end up in the Gothic Quarter, travelers say its Spanish splendor will leave you charmed long after you leave. Many enjoyed strolling its narrow alleys and admiring its atmospheric, back-in-time architecture, and several said it was the highlight of their stay. Some suggested taking part in a walking tour if you're interested in learning more about the history behind the neighborhood. 

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Casa Batlló Casa Batlló

U.S. News Insider Tip: From spring through fall, Casa Batlló hosts "Magic Nights" – a series of open-air concerts on the dragon roof terrace, with romantic views of the city. Tickets start at 59 euros (around $62) and include entry to Casa Batlló and a drink. – Laura French

The details highlighted in Casa Batlló show famous Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí at his best. Of all the Gaudí apartments in Barcelona, this is probably the most recognized (it's also a UNESCO World Heritage Site). Sitting down the street from Casa Milà, Casa Batlló is known for its vibrant colors, intricate tile work and skeletal terraces. The unconventional façade is inspired by the legend of St. George, the patron saint of Catalonia, who is said to have slayed a dragon to save the king’s daughter. The roof depicts the dragon's scaly back, while the skeletal balconies and boney windows are said to represent the dragon's previous victims (the legend goes that someone would be sacrificed every day so the dragon wouldn't take the whole town).

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Park Güell Park Güell

U.S. News Insider Tip: For more sweeping city views and fewer tourists, grab a five-minute taxi or walk 20 minutes uphill to reach Bunkers del Carmel – a viewpoint popular with locals, especially at sunset, when the lighting over the city is spectacular. – Laura French

Antoni Gaudí's Park Güell is as whimsical as parks can get. The park was originally supposed to be a housing community for the rich, commissioned by Eusebi Güell. Güell hired Gaudí but the project eventually folded due to the land's incompatible building conditions. Gaudí continued on, modeling the park after gardens he had seen in England (Güell means English in Catalan) and building around the natural elements of the land instead of tearing them down.

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Las Ramblas Las Ramblas free

U.S. News Insider Tip:  Keep your hands on your bags and keep an eye out for pickpockets on this notoriously busy thoroughfare. – Erin Evans, Managing Editor

This wide, tree-lined boulevard is one of the city's major tourist hubs – so much so that if you're visiting Barcelona, you're bound to end up here eventually. Las Ramblas is a pedestrian-friendly pathway situated right smack dab in the middle of the city, so expect it to be busy all hours of the day and night. During the day, you can peruse souvenir stands, watch buskers and street performers, pick up some local art from artists selling on the street, or sit down and enjoy a light snack at one of the many alfresco cafes found here. When the sun sets, head here to start your night out – many bars and clubs can be found in the surrounding area.

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Barceloneta Beach Barceloneta Beach free

U.S. News Insider Tip: While Barceloneta is a must-see with its lively bars and restaurants, it can get crowded, so if you're looking for a quieter alternative, wander 20 minutes up the coast to Playa de Bogatell (it attracts more locals and fewer tourists). – Laura French

In between all the cultural and artistic attractions Barcelona has up its sleeves, it's easy to forget that the city is situated right along the brilliantly blue waters of the Mediterranean. The city's swathes of sand are broken up into several different beaches – among them Barceloneta and the quieter Nova Icària. Both are separated by the Port Olímpic harbor, easily recognized by the two seafront skyscrapers and giant golden fish sculpture by artist Frank Gehry.

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Casa Milà (La Pedrera) Casa Milà (La Pedrera)

The nickname, La Pedrera (meaning "the Quarry"), is appropriate for Antoni Gaudí's stately, fortress-like Casa Milà. Bobbing around the corner of Passeig de Gràcia and Carrer de Provença , this eclectic Catalan-style art nouveau building rubs elbows with the more classic architecture usually found in its neighborhood, Eixample. It is known for its wavy stone façades and intricate carvings that can only be attributed to Gaudí's quirky style. Casa Milà was originally constructed as a home for the commissioners of the building (Pere Milà i Camps and his wife), who also requested the complex included apartments for rent. Casa Milà was not only Gaudí's last work on Passeig de Gracia ( Casa Batlló is just a few blocks south), but his last civil work as well. Since then, Casa Milà has been designated as a National Monument of Interest by the Spanish government and a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Today, La Pedrera is a cultural center managed by the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation. Come here to admire the architecture: there are few single straight walls or right-angled corners in the entire building. Also head to the roof to get a good look at Gaudí's whimsical chimneys (many designed to look like guardian warriors in armor), then work your way down through the exhibits to learn more about Casa Milà and Gaudí himself.

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Mercat de la Boqueria (Boqueria Market) Mercat de la Boqueria (Boqueria Market) free

Even if you're not keen on visiting the touristy Las Ramblas , it's worth making the trek to this tree-lined thoroughfare to reach the foodie heaven that is the Boqueria Market. This was Barcelona's oldest local market, having opened in 1840 – but its foodie history spans much earlier than that. The first food vendors were said to have been around as early as the 13th century, selling meat on the streets. The market you see today wasn't around back then; it took four years to construct, once Saint Joseph's convent left the area (hence the name of the market). 

Today, that tradition of hawking goodies lives on, and the covered marketplace treats visitors to the vibrant colors and enticing aromas of everything from fruit juices and wines to fresh fish, meats, produce and desserts. Make sure to grab Spanish specialties while you're there, including jamón ibérico, manchego cheese and salted cod (or bacalao ). Bars and restaurants can also be found in and around the market, so food options truly abound here. 

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Palau de la Musica Catalana (Palace of Catalan Music) Palau de la Musica Catalana (Palace of Catalan Music)

Barcelona's Palau de la Música Catalana is considered to be a masterpiece of Catalan art nouveau. Built by architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, the palace earned the title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its striking architectural features. Outside, make sure to snap a few photos of the intricate mosaic pillars and the busts nestled atop some of them, which depict famous musicians, such as Bach and Beethoven. The interior of the palace is even more of an eyeful, complete with mosaic pillars and intricate sculpture work of its own, as well as stained glass windows and beautiful motifs of flowers spread throughout. And you won't be able to miss the massive stained-glass central skylight – it protrudes from the ceiling, treating the concert auditorium to plenty of natural light. Aesthetics aside, the Palace of Catalan Music is a hub for classical and choral music and of course, Catalan musical arts. It also acts as a concert venue for local, national and international acts.

Travelers agree with the experts: the Palau de la Musica Catalana is an architectural marvel. Visitors thoroughly enjoyed admiring the many intricate details found throughout the music venue, saying even if you can't get tickets to a show, it's worth a visit just to see its magnificence in person. Some weren't crazy about the admission price, but many enjoyed the guided tour, and those who did attend a show said the experience was quite magical. 

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Museu Picasso (Picasso Museum) Museu Picasso (Picasso Museum)

U.S. News Insider Tip: You can visit for free on Thursday evenings (from 5 to 7 p.m.), all day on the first Sunday of the month and on special Open Door days; check here for details. – Laura French

When you feel like you've hit your Gaudí limit, head to the Picasso Museum ( Museu Picasso ) for a change of pace. While most people know Pablo Picasso for his distorted portraits, this museum displays his work on a timeline of sorts, allowing you to follow his progression from the more controlled works of his early years to the very whimsical paintings and sculptures from the end of his career. Make sure you dedicate plenty of time to Picasso: the museum itself holds around 5,000 pieces by him, including works from his famous Blue Period. The museum also explores the artist's lifelong relationship with Barcelona, explaining why he chose the city for his museum before he died. 

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Montjuïc Castle Montjuïc Castle

If you have even the slightest interest in history, make sure to add Montjuïc Castle to your Barcelona itinerary – the stone structure is teeming with history dating all the way back to the 11th century. The castle started out as a single watchtower that was occupied by a sailor looking out for enemy ships. During the Revolt of Catalonia during the mid-1600s, the government decided to add walls surrounding the watch tower when the threat of invasion from Spanish King Philip IV's fleet became imminent. Montjuïc Castle ended up defending the city from many attacks moving forward, including those carried out during the War of the Spanish Succession. It also served as a prison during the War of the Pyrenees and was occupied by Napoleon's troops in the early 1800s.

Montjuïc continued to serve as a prison under multiple political leaderships over the course of the 18th and 19th centuries, including during the Spanish Civil War. Francisco Franco, Spain's dictator from 1939 to 1975, took over Montjuïc and it became an internment camp for Republican soldiers (Franco was part of the Nationalist party that overthrew the democratic Republic of Spain at the time). It was here that the President of the Catalan Government, Lluís Companys, was executed at Franco's orders. 

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Catedral de Barcelona (Barcelona Cathedral) Catedral de Barcelona (Barcelona Cathedral)

Towering above the center of the Barri Gòtic district is Barcelona's principal cathedral. The Gothic cathedral's construction began in the late 13th century, though it wasn't completed until the mid-15th century. While you're here, take time to explore the numerous examples of artisanship that went into completing the cathedral – from its exterior details to the many gold furnishings within, including its elaborate baroque altarpieces, as well as the 140-plus statues of saints that call the cathedral home. While you're here, make sure to stroll over to the cloister, which features a verdant tropical garden. 

Recent travelers found the Catedral de Barcelona to be stunning both inside and out, commenting on the elaborate altarpieces, stained-glass windows and impressive statues. Many recommended a stroll through the cloisters to see its pond, home to several geese, and climbing to the roof of the cathedral to get an eyeful of the spire up close, as well as prime city views. Make sure to wear the proper attire; according to recent visitors, the dress code here is strict and knees and shoulders should be covered. Shawls are said to be for sale for those who need to cover up. 

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Gràcia Gràcia free

U.S. News Insider Tip: Come in late August for the free Festa Major de Gràcia (Gràcia Festival). During the weeklong celebration, streets come alive with colorful lanterns and other creations, competing to be the best decorated; expect live music, food, parades and Catalan correfoc fire displays. – Laura French

If you've already seen the bucket list sites and want to escape the crowds, amble north of the city to explore the charming, bohemian streets of Gràcia. Once its own separate town, this elegant, colorful neighborhood has kept its independent village feel, with cobbled streets, lively plazas and laid-back cafes aplenty. At its heart is Calle Verdi, lined with trendy boutiques, vintage stores, bookshops and restaurants, and Plaça de la Virreina, where locals gather on outdoor cafe terraces in the shadows of the Church of Saint Joan. While you're here, pay a visit to the UNESCO-listed Casa Vicens – Gaudí's first home in Barcelona, now a museum – and the Mercat de la Llibertat, a large food market where stalls overflow with fresh produce between brick-and-iron architecture.

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Parc de la Ciutadella Parc de la Ciutadella free

U.S. News Insider Tip: A five-minute walk from the park will take you to El Born – one of the city's trendiest neighborhoods, with tapas bars, indie boutiques and bistros lining cobbled lanes. Head to the Bormuth tapas bar for great food in a lively atmosphere. – Laura French

Built in the late 19th century on the grounds of a former citadel, Parc de la Ciutadella is one of Barcelona's most popular green spaces. At its heart you'll find an elaborate fountain, surrounded by sculptures and designed by architect Josep Fontserè i Mestre – who asked Gaudí, then still at university, to help out (visitors might recognize Gaudí's iconic style in the winged dragons guarding the fountain).

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Mount Tibidabo Mount Tibidabo free

The highest mountain in the Serra de Collserola range, pine-forested Mount Tibidabo peers over the city, crowned by its neo-Gothic basilica, the Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor (or Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus). Built in the early 20th century in the northwest of the city, this elaborate, Catalan art nouveau-style masterpiece can be seen from almost anywhere in Barcelona and is well worth a visit in itself – but it's the views over the city that really astound here. A lift and several steps take you up to the tower, where a viewing platform offers a full panorama of the skyline and sea below.

It's not just the church that lures visitors to the mountain, though; it's also home to Tibidabo Amusement Park, one of the oldest theme parks in the world and the oldest in Spain, with a carrousel, bumper cars, Ferris wheel and several other attractions drawing families. Hiking trails are on the doorstep too, with much of the area protected under the Parc Natural de Collserola – the largest green space in Barcelona and the city's green lung.

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Mercat de Sant Antoni Mercat de Sant Antoni free

There are ample reasons to visit the impressive Boqueria Market , but if you're after a less-touristy alternative, put Mercat de Sant Antoni on your list too. Located in the up-and-coming Sant Antoni neighborhood, the market originally opened in 1882 in an art nouveau, wrought-iron and glass building; neglected, it closed in 2009, but reopened nine years later following an 80 million euro refurbishment. Today, the market is home to a whole range of fresh products, from Spanish cured meats to fresh cheeses, fruit and vegetables, which sit beneath its striking, original octagonal domed ceiling. You'll also find stalls selling clothes, shoes, homeware and more. And on Sundays, the surrounding streets (which have been semi-pedestrianized under one of the city's traffic-free "superblocks") turn into one of Europe's largest outdoor book fairs.

Beyond the market, there's plenty to explore in the area, too; its opening helped revamp the neighborhood, turning it into something of a foodie paradise with tapas bars, bodegas and restaurants on almost every corner.

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Museo de la Ciencia CosmoCaixa Museo de la Ciencia CosmoCaixa

Whether you're coming with kids or just want to embrace your inner child, Barcelona's science museum is well worth a visit. Housed in a modernist glass-and-steel building, it's home to an array of interactive exhibits ranging from the "Flooded Forest" – an Amazonian-style glasshouse home to piranhas, crocodiles and exotic plant species – to "The Universe Gallery," which focuses on all things space, from the creation of the cosmos to evolution and the human brain. Families can get hands-on with different experiments, from creating sandstorms and tornadoes to learning how soundwaves are transmitted, and there are some impressive design features too – don't miss the Foucault pendulum, a heavy iron ball used to demonstrate the earth's rotation; and the spiral staircase, which winds around a towering Amazonian Acariquara tree.

Recent visitors were highly impressed by the CosmoCaixa and enjoyed the interactive exhibits, especially the Amazonian rainforest section. Several said it was the best science museum they'd been to, with state-of-the-art facilities and plenty to see, and many recommended spending a few hours here. Others were surprised at how reasonably priced it was. A few said there wasn't much for very young children, but for many it provided a welcome escape from the heat and an impressive alternative to the better-known Barcelona sites.

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20 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Barcelona

Written by Lisa Alexander Updated Dec 22, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Catalonia's vibrant capital, Barcelona is a stunning seaside city that flaunts her beauty and sunny lifestyle. Gorgeous scenery, breathtaking architecture, and superb cultural attractions make for an alluring destination. Of course, the balmy Mediterranean climate adds to the charm.

Barcelona has an atmospheric medieval quarter, the Barri Gòtic , with an almost magical old-world ambience, but it's even more famous for its Modernist architecture. Antoni Gaudí left a lasting mark on Barcelona with his avant-garde Surrealist buildings; several are UNESCO-listed.

After all the sightseeing, you'll want to simply relax and soak up the city's joyous vibe. Enjoy strolling down La Rambla, where the locals hang out; sunbathing at the sandy beaches near the harbor ; and lingering over leisurely meals on outdoor terraces.

One of the best ways to discover Barcelona is by wandering aimlessly and stumbling upon hidden side streets with small cafés or stopping to relax at peaceful town squares, where street musicians strum melodies on Spanish guitars. Delightful surprises abound at every turn.

Learn about the best places to visit and things to do with our list of the top attractions in Barcelona.

1. Basílica de la Sagrada Família

2. barri gòtic (gothic quarter), 3. casa milà (la pedrera), 4. la rambla: barcelona's social hub, 5. bogatell beach, 6. palau de la música catalana (palace of catalan music), 7. catedral de la santa cruz y santa eulalia, 8. parc güell: gaudí's surrealist park, 9. casa batlló, 10. museu picasso de barcelona, 11. la barceloneta, 12. plaça del rei, 13. camp nou, 14. magic fountain of montjuïc, 15. scenic views and art museums in montjuïc, 16. reial monestir de santa maria de pedralbes, 17. mercat de la boqueria, 18. fundació joan miró, 19. parc del laberint, 20. quadrat d'or, where to stay in barcelona for sightseeing, tips and tours: how to make the most of your visit to barcelona.

Basilica de la Sagrada Familia

The Basílica de la Sagrada Família stands in the northern part of the city, dominating its surroundings with its 18 spindly towers soaring high above all the other buildings. One of Europe's most unconventional churches, this amazing monument is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site .

The renowned Catalan architect of modern times, Antoni Gaudí was commissioned in 1883 to design this Basilica as a neo-Gothic church. But instead of following the plans, he created a signature example of his famous surrealistic Art Nouveau architecture. He had no firm ideas in mind, preferring to alter and add to the plans as work progressed.

Although Gaudí had originally forecast between 10 and fifteen years, the church was never completed during his lifetime. Since 1926, several other architects have continued work on the Basilica based on Gaudí's plans. In 2010, the main nave was completed, and the Basilica was consecrated by Pope Benedict XVI (although construction is still ongoing and expected to be completed by 2026).

Basilica de la Sagrada Familia

Visitors are first struck by the lavish exterior with its expressive Nativity facade depicting the birth of Jesus, and the evocative Passion facade that illustrates the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

Even though the Basilica is unfinished, tourists may visit the interior to admire the awe-inspiring sacred space and its dazzling artworks. The main nave of the sanctuary is an immense space of 90 meters long by 60 meters high. The ceiling sparkles with opulent decorative details, and colorful stained-glass windows allow ethereal light to flow in.

The apse features an unusual Crucifix rendered as a canopy with lanterns. The overall effect is jaw-dropping. Gaudí best captured the essence of his architectural masterpiece when he described it as "a work that is in the hands of God and the will of the people."

The Basilica of the Sacred Family is also known in Spanish by its official name: Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família .

Address: 401 Carrer de Mallorca, Barcelona

Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família - Floor plan map

For 2,000 years, the Gothic Quarter has been the spiritual and secular center of the city. Relics of ancient Roman buildings are still found here, but the Middle Ages are best represented by the historic monuments packed into this quarter.

Mainly built between the 13th and 15th centuries, the Catedral de la Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia is the heart of the Gothic Quarter. Surrounding the cathedral is a maze of cobblestone streets and alleyways.

Tourists will enjoy wandering the narrow pedestrian lanes, and stopping to discover the neighborhood's quaint boutiques and restaurants. By getting lost here, visitors become immersed in the magical ambience of a traffic-free medieval world.

Picturesque squares are enlivened by the sounds of people chatting and laughing or the strumming of Spanish classical guitar. Children often play a pickup game of soccer in the Gothic Quarter's hidden corners, and local residents socialize at the sidewalk terraces of cafés that are tucked away in courtyards.

Casa Mila (La Pedrera)

In the Eixample district off the elegant boulevard of Passeig de Gràcia, the UNESCO-listed Casa Milà is Antoni Gaudí's most famous secular building. Casa Milà is also affectionately known as "La Pedrera," which translates to "The Stone Quarry" because the building resembles an open quarry.

Built between 1906 and 1912, this flamboyant avant-garde dwelling looks more like a sculpture than a functional building. Every line of the natural stone facade is curved, with rounded windows and metal balcony railings twining around in plant-like shapes. Even the roof has an undulating form, complemented by the decorative chimneys.

The entrance to the building is on the Carrer de Provença, through a remarkable wrought-iron gate that leads to an inner courtyard. The building is supported by ribbed arches that were designed for load-bearing purposes, a feature that reveals Gaudí's genius as a structural engineer.

Visitors may walk around the rooftop terrace for an up-close look at the strangely shaped mosaic-adorned chimneys. The roof area also rewards visitors with sensational views across the city, with the outlook extending to the Basílica de la Sagrada Família in the distance.

Casa Milà houses the Fundació Catalunya cultural center that organizes events (such as lectures, dance performances, and art exhibitions) throughout the year. The monument is open to the public daily for self-guided visits, and audio guides are available. Guided tours are available on various themes, including a nighttime experience with a light show, music, and refreshments.

Well designed to welcome tourists, Casa Milà has boutiques and a stylish restaurant on the building's mezzanine, Cafè de la Pedrera , which offers gourmet Catalan cuisine for lunch and dinner. This restaurant also serves brunch and tapas.

Address: 261-265 Carrer de Provença, Barcelona

Official site:

Aerial view of La Rambla

The heart of Barcelona's social life is found on La Rambla, a wide tree-shaded avenue that divides the Old Town into two parts. La Rambla stretches from the Plaça de Catalunya, where the beautiful Romanesque 12th-century Convent of Santa Anna stands, all the way down to the port.

This street features expansive pedestrian sidewalks, lined with shops, restaurants, and outdoor cafés, making it one of the most popular hangouts in the city.

During the day, many locals are found here doing their everyday shopping at the Mercat de la Boqueria . At night, groups of friends and families take their evening paseo (stroll) on La Rambla to enjoy the fresh air and lively ambience. On some days, onlookers might be treated to live music, a mime show, or other impromptu street performances.

On its northeast side, La Rambla borders the Barri Gòtic , and halfway down the avenue is the Plaça Reial , a lovely palm-fringed square enclosed by historic houses. These elegant buildings have arcades filled with shops, cafés, and restaurants. At the center is the Fountain of the Three Graces and a pair of street lamps designed by Antoni Gaudí featuring winged dragons.

Another important monument on La Rambla (number 3-5) is the UNESCO-listed Palau Güell , an ostentatious mansion designed in 1886 by Antoni Gaudí. The owner, Eusebi Güell, was a great patron of the arts, and the building was constructed with a large domed hall intended for poetry readings and private concerts. Open to the public for visits, the building is adorned with sumptuous décor, valuable textiles, and handcrafted furniture created by Gaudí.

Bogatell Beach

Barcelona is home to 4.5 miles of beaches. And one of the best beaches in Spain is found within the city limits of Barcelona. Locals flock to Bogatell Beach to sunbathe, socialize, relax, play volleyball, or go windsurfing. Other things to do include kitesurfing and kayaking.

The 600-meter-long beach features a sandy shoreline and excellent amenities: restrooms, showers, parking, a beachfront promenade, snack bars, and ice cream shops. There are also multiple lifeguard towers to ensure beach safety.

Address: Sant Martí District, Barcelona

Palau de la Música Catalana

Built between 1905 and 1908 as a concert hall for the choral society Orfeó Català, the Palau de la Música Catalana was designed by the architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, in the Catalan Modernist style. The UNESCO-listed building exemplifies an ornate Art Nouveau decorative style. The facade is a profusion of intricate mosaics, sculptural elements, and exquisite ironwork.

The interior décor is just as colorful and fanciful within the Concert Auditorium . Adorned with Art Nouveau floral patterns and fruit motifs, this enchanting auditorium provides a marvelous setting for musical performances. The concert hall, which seats about 2,200 people, is the only auditorium in Europe illuminated during daylight hours entirely by natural light.

Eye-catching artworks cover every square inch of the Concert Auditorium's walls and ceiling. The walls on two sides consist primarily of stained-glass panes. The ceiling features an enormous skylight of stained glass designed by Antoni Rigalt whose centerpiece is an inverted dome in shades of gold surrounded by blue that suggests the sun and the sky. Elaborate sculptures of muses frame the concert stage.

A program of evening music performances (including pop music, Spanish guitar, flamenco, jazz, opera, and classical music) is held at the Palau de la Música Catalana throughout the year.

It is possible to see the interior of the Palau de la Música Catalana outside of concert performances by taking a guided tour.

The Palau de la Música Catalana has a gift shop and a café-restaurant, the Cafè Palau, which serves breakfast, lunch, and afternoon refreshments in a cozy indoor space or on a pleasant outdoor patio.

Address: 4-6 Calle Palau de la Música, Barcelona

Official site:

Catedral de la Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia (Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia)

At the center of the Gothic Quarter on the Monte Tabor is the Catedral de la Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia (Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia). This medieval cathedral is a masterpiece of Catalan Gothic architecture with an ornately sculpted facade.

The sanctuary contains magnificent works of art, including the Altarpiece of the Transfiguration by Bernat Martorell, as well as other medieval altarpieces and a remarkable gilded, jewel-encrusted monstrance. The cathedral also has an exquisite Gothic choir and keystones that date to the 14th and 15th centuries.

Surprising many visitors, the cathedral's cloister and garden shelter 13 live geese that symbolize the martyrdom of Saint Eulalia. The cloister's pond provides a habitat for the geese.

The Cathedral Museum displays a collection of medieval paintings. The painting of La Pieta by Bartolomé Bermejo is particularly noteworthy.

Mass is celebrated at the Catedral de la Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia several times daily. Services are held in Spanish or Catalan; there is at least one Spanish-language Mass every day.

Address: Plaça de la Seu, Barcelona

Parc Güell: Gaudí's Surrealist Park

Colorful, cheerful, and full of whimsy, this luxuriant 19-hectare hillside park is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Created between 1900 and 1914, the Park Güell includes 12 acres of landscaped gardens featuring Surrealist architectural elements created by Antoni Gaudí and eight acres of pristine woodlands (pine forest and olive groves).

Splendid fountains, viaducts, grottoes, a colonnaded hall, winding staircases, and semi-closed conversation seats are scattered throughout the garden space. These creative structures are decorated with vibrant mosaics made of ceramic fragments.

There are picnic areas and a spectacular terrace that offers panoramic views of the city and the sea. Gaudí himself loved this area of the city (the Gràcia district), and his home was located here.

Within the Park Güell is the Casa Museu Gaudí (Gaudí House Museum) where Gaudí lived for nearly two decades. The museum educates visitors about Gaudí's life and architectural work. The collection includes decorative objects and furniture, designed by Gaudí.

Entrance tickets are required to visit Parc Güell. Because this is one of the most popular tourist sites in Barcelona, it's recommended to arrive early (in the morning if possible) to avoid the crowds. Guided tours are available.

Address: Carrer d'Olot, Barcelona

Casa Batlló

Yet another amazing Gaudí creation, the UNESCO-listed Casa Batlló is one of the most characteristic Modernist buildings in Barcelona. The fantastical mansion was designed as a private residence for the textile manufacturer Josep Batlló i Casanovas. With its freely swinging shapes and ornamental facade, this dreamlike building looks like a castle from a surreal fairy tale.

Most of the design details depart completely from any architectural precedent. The window frame on the first floor is bordered by swinging shapes that suggest plants, others resemble entrances to caves. On the facade, decorative glazed ceramic tiles in green, blue, and ochre colors add to the flamboyance. The wave-shaped roof, like that of Casa Milà, has numerous richly adorned chimneys.

Gaudí also created the interior decorations, which can be seen in the Casa Museu Gaudí in the Parc Güell.

For those seeking a superb gourmet meal, the elegant Moments Restaurant , with two Michelin stars, is just a few steps away at 38-40 Passeig de Gràcia in the Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona . This upscale fine-dining restaurant serves modern gastronomic Catalan cuisine prepared from seasonal ingredients.

Address: 43 Passeig de Gràcia, Barcelona

Official site:

Picasso Museum, Barcelona

Inaugurated in 1963, the Picasso Museum occupies five medieval palaces in the Gothic Quarter on the Calle de Montcada, named after an important local family of the 12th century. The Calle de Montcada is listed as a Conjunto Monumental Histórico-Artístico (Historic-Artistic Monument), and the five palaces are remarkable Catalan Gothic landmarks dating to the 13th and 14th centuries. The architecture of each building features a central patio and a grand exterior staircase.

The collection of the museum focuses on works created by Pablo Picasso as a young artist. Containing over 4,000 works, the collection reveals the talents of the artist during his formative years. An exhaustive assortment covers paintings created from 1895 and up until Picasso's Blue Period (1901 - 1904).

Other highlights of the collection are several paintings created in 1917 including Arlequín , featuring a harlequin character (the model was a dancer from a Russian ballet company); El Paseo de Colón , illustrating the Hotel Ranzini at number 22 on the Colón passageway; and Blanquita Suárez , depicting a famous singer of the time. Also not to be missed is the series of paintings titled Las Meninas , which portray the Infanta Margarita María.

Address: 15-23 Calle de Montcada, Barcelona

Official site:

 La Barceloneta

Adjacent to the cruise port, the old fishing village of La Barceloneta (now a seaside neighborhood of Barcelona) borders the long, wide Sant Sebastià Beach , where locals go to sunbathe, surf, and socialize in the many seafood restaurants and tapas venues that overlook the sea.

Sant Sebastià Beach has a wide range of amenities: lifeguards, public restrooms, showers, recreational sports areas, lounge chair and sun umbrella rentals, ice-cream stands, and snack bars. A long promenade lined with palm trees connects the Sant Sebastià Beach area to marinas filled with yachts.

On summer and fall evenings this area comes alive as people flock to the beach, marina, and promenade around the Port Olympic complex (built for the 1992 Barcelona Summer Olympic Games) to watch the spectacular sunsets then head to one of the many cafes and restaurants for tapas and conversations that last late into the evening. You'll also notice many unique sculptures and Modernist buildings in this area.

The popular Barceloneta Beach is also found in La Barceloneta neighborhood. This beach has excellent facilities: lifeguards, public restrooms, changing rooms, showers, lounge chair and sun umbrella rentals, snack bars, ice-cream stands, areas for recreational sports (including beach volleyball and ping pong), and restaurants.

To admire views of La Barceloneta's coastline, marinas, and port area, take a ride on the Port Cable Car , which ascends from here to hilltop Montjuïc.

Plaça del Rei

The Plaça del Rei is a quiet square in the Gothic Quarter lined with imposing medieval buildings. The grand architecture speaks to the importance of the monuments: a palace of Catalan counts (the Palau Reial Major ), a 16th-century lieutenant's palace, and a 14th-century royal chapel.

One of the most impressive historic landmarks on the square is the 16th-century Casa Clariana Padellàs, which houses the Museu d'Història de la Cuitat de Barcelona (Barcelona History Museum). This fascinating museum traces the history of Barcelona over 2,000 years, beginning with the ancient Roman era, continuing through the Renaissance and Baroque periods and up until the Spanish Civil War.

The Plaça del Rei is also used as an outdoor venue for music concerts.

Camp Nou

Just as Catalan Modernist buildings are must-see attractions for architecture fans, Camp Nou is a must-see for football (soccer) fans. Camp Nou was one of the venues for the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona and today is home of the FC Barcelona team. The 99,354-seat stadium is the largest in Europe and second largest in the world.

Camp Nou offers guided tours , led by bilingual Official FC Barcelona Guides. The tours (in English and Spanish) cover highlights of the stadium such as the playing field, the team's changing room, players' tunnel, and the commentators' boxes.

Guided tours also include a visit to the Barça Museum. The Barça Museum presents trophies, photos, and multimedia exhibits, including videos of the FC Barcelona's winning goals.

The Barça Cafe at Camp Nou is a fun place to watch live and recorded games on big-screen televisions. The chefs work in an open kitchen, where guests can watch the action, preparing traditional Catalan dishes such as grilled meat and fish cooked on a wood-fired oven, as well as some of the FC Barcelona players' favorite tapas. The Barça Cafe is open daily from 10am until 7pm.

Address: 12 Calle d'Aristides Maillol, Barcelona

Magic Fountain of Montjuic

Topping the list of things to do in Barcelona at night is watching the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc, near the Plaça d'Espanya in the Montjuïc neighborhood. The large Art Deco fountain was designed by Carles Buigas for the 1929 International Exhibition, which took place in Montjuïc.

The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc delights all ages with its choreographed light and fountain shows that are set to music. The shows take place Thursday through Sunday during the summer and Friday and Saturday in the off-season. The evening shows last for a few hours, with music sessions every half hour.

Address: 1 Plaça de Carles Buïgas, Barcelona

Amusement Park and Scenic Views in Montjuïc

This hilltop neighborhood is on the site of an old Jewish cemetery, explaining its name, "Mont Juïc," which translates to "Mountain of the Jews." Standing 213 meters above the sea, the hillside is crowned by a fortress (the Castell de Montjuïc ) on its summit and slopes steeply down to the waterfront. Crowning this scenic area is the Parc de Montjuïc , a beautiful natural park with great views.

One of the top attractions of Montjuïc is the Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya (National Art Museum of Catalonia). Housed in the Palau Nacional , the museum has an exceptional collection of Catalan Art from the 10th to the 20th centuries, including sculpture, paintings, drawings, engravings, and photography. The museum also displays European Renaissance and Baroque Art, as well as a collection of modern art that includes avant-garde works created after World War Two.

The Poble Espanyol (Spanish Village) is another popular place to visit. This charming fabricated village was created for the 1929 World Exhibition.

Montjuïc was a venue for the 1992 Summer Olympics , and tourists can visit the stadium where Olympic competitions were held.

Reial Monestir de Santa Maria de Pedralbes

A wonderful example of Catalan Gothic architecture, the Reial Monestir de Santa Maria de Pedralbes is nestled on the gentle slopes of the Sant Pere Màrtir hillside in the outskirts of Barcelona. Queen Elisenda de Montcada founded the convent in 1327 for the Order of Saint Clare.

The monastery has two places of worship: a 14th-century Catalan Gothic church and a small chapel, Saint Michael's Chapel , decorated with magnificent murals. Dating to the early 14th century, the murals were created by Ferrer Bassa in the Italianate Trecento style (influenced by Italian masters such as Giotto). The murals still reveal their original glory, thanks to a careful restoration project.

A distinguishing feature of the monastery is its serene three-story cloister , which is the largest Gothic cloister in the world. The main buildings (chapter house, refectory, dormitory, etc.) of the monastery surround the cloister. At the center of the cloister is a tranquil garden designed to inspire spiritual contemplation and meditation.

The monastery displays an outstanding collection of medieval ecclesiastical art from the 14th century, as well as later religious art created through the 20th century.

The Reial Monestir de Santa Maria de Pedralbes is still managed by the Saint Clare nuns, but the monastery has been converted into a museum that is open to the public year-round (except Mondays) for an admission fee. Entrance is free on the first Sunday of every month. Visitors are expected to respect the quiet ambience of the religious community.

Address: 9 Baixada del Monestir, Barcelona

Mercat de la Boqueria

Colorful displays of fruits and vegetables, sandwiches, glistening candied fruits, savory and sweet pastries, chocolates, whimsical marzipan figures, fresh-mixed smoothies, Spanish almonds, burritos, breads, bins of olives, bright strings of peppers – la Boqueria is a riot of colors and aromas.

Since 1836, this traditional open-air market has been a centerpiece in the heart of the city on La Rambla. Locals frequent the market regularly, and shoppers come from all corners of Catalonia to this truly special gourmet food and produce market.

It feels as if half of Barcelona is here on a busy day as they shop for that night's dinner. Tourists gawk at the abundance of authentic specialty foods and then deliberate about what to choose for a to-go lunch or picnic provisions. Mercat de la Boqueria also has casual tapas bars, where tourists can sample local dishes and mingle with locals.

Address: 91 La Rambla, Barcelona

Miro Museum

Anyone who appreciates modern art will want to visit the Fundació Joan Miró within the Parc de Montjuïc . Opened in 1975, the Fundació Joan Miró was created by the artist himself as a center for contemporary art research.

Today, the Fundació is dedicated to the study of Miró's work, as well as the presentation of contemporary art. The museum hosts temporary exhibitions of 20th- and 21st-century artists. Visitors will enjoy the permanent collection of paintings, drawings, and sculptures by Joan Miró as well as the thematic exhibitions.

The architecture and design of the museum perfectly suits the avant-garde style of Miró's art. The sleek interior features bright, spacious galleries illuminated by skylights and large windows that look out onto an interior courtyard or gardens. A rooftop terrace affords sweeping views of the Barcelona cityscape.

The museum is open to the public for self-guided visits, as well as guided tours. The guided tours are available in Spanish, Catalan, French, and English.

The Fundació Joan Miró also features a gift shop, bookstore, and restaurant. Special art workshops and educational programs are held at the museum throughout the year.

Address: Parc de Montjuïc, Barcelona

Official site:

Labyrinth Park (Parc del Laberint)

Nestled behind the Collserola Ridge in the Horta-Guinardó district, this 55-acre park dates to 1792 and is the oldest landscaped green space in Barcelona . The park blends formal gardens with a romantic garden that includes a waterfall and woodland.

Taking a stroll through the Parc del Laberint leads to discoveries of small squares, vibrant flower beds, neoclassical sculptures of mythological characters, and a labyrinth. Another treasure found within the park is the Torre Soberana , a 14th-century manor house restored in the 19th century in Moorish style.

Address: 1 Passeig dels Castanyers, Barcelona

Quadrat d'Or

The Quadrat d'Or (Quadrant of Gold) is an area of the Eixample district renowned for its Modernist architecture . The quadrant is found between the Plaça de Catalunya , the Avinguda de la Diagonal , the Passeig de Sant Joan, and the Carrer de Muntaner . The main road through the Quadrat d'Or is the Passeig de Gràcia .

In this area, the exceptional avant-garde buildings were inspired by the work of Antoni Gaudí and constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Different architects made their mark on the neighborhood, and the result is a diversity of Modernist styles.

A veritable open-air museum, the Quadrat d'Or offers delightful surprises every step of the way. Visitors discover interesting details of ceramic art, stained-glass windows, wrought ironwork, decorative reliefs, mosaics, and statues.

Quadrat d'Or map - Tourist attractions

(1) Casa Victoriá de la Riva (2) Casa Modest Andreu (3) Cases Joaquim i Antoni Marfà (4) Casa Joaquim Cairó (5) Casa Conrad Roure (6) Cases Pascual i Cia (7/8) Casa Societat Torres Germans (9/10) Cases Manuel Felip (11) Casa Antonia Puget (12) Cases Francesc Borés (13) Cases Antoni Roger (14) Cases Tomás Roger (15) Casa Antónia Borés (16) Casa Francesc de Paula Vallet (17) Casa Jaume Sahis (18/19) Casa Rossend Capellades (20/21) Cases Josep J. Bertrand Carrer (22) Cases Antoni Miquel (23) Casa Jeroni Granell (24) Cases Joan Pons (25) Casa Jaume Larcegui (26) Cases Frederic Vallet Xiró (27) Casa Josep Filella (28) Casa Francesc Fargas (29) Cases Adolf Ruiz (30) Casa Lluis Pérez Samanillo (31) Casa Emilia Carles de (32) Casa Uorenç Camprubí (33) Casa Antoni Salvadó Carrer (34) Casa Calvet (35) Casa Bosch i Alsina (36) Casa Pia Batlló (37) Casa Heribert Pons (38) Casa Jaume Moysi (39) Casa Sebastià Pratjusà (40) Casa Climent Asols (41) Casa Rodolf Juncadella (42) Casa Miquel A. Fargas (43) Casa Dolors Calm (44) Casa Bonaventura Pollés (45) Casa Asunción Belloso de Gabriel (46/47) Casa Evarist Juncosa (48) Casa Francesc Farreras (49) Casa Josep i Ramón Queraltó (50) Casa Pilar i Josefa Albiñana de Regàs (51) Casa Ferran Cortés (52/53) Casa Manuel Verde (55) Cases Godó-Lallana (56) Casa Antónia Costa (57) Casa Lorenç Armengol (58) Casa Serra (59) Casa Antoni Piera (60) Casa Pau Marti (61) Casa Pilar Bassols (62) Palau Baró de Quadras (63) Casa Terrades (Casa de les Punxes) (64) Casa Miquel Sayrach (65) Casa Comalat (66) Casa Josep J. Bertrand (67) Casa Clapés (68) Casa Miquel Ibarz (69) Casa Rupert Garriga Nogués (70) Casa Marcelli Costa (71) Casa Josep Fabra (72) Casa Antoni Pàmies (73) Casa Doménech i Estapà (74) Casa Leandre Bou (75) Casa Anna Salvadó de Guitart

(76) Casa Adolf Ruiz (77) Casa Francesc Cairó (78) Casa Enric Llorens (79) Casa Enric i Voctória de la Riva (80) Casa Antoni Roger (81) Casa Enric Roger (82) Casa Ramon Vilà (83) Casa Jacinta Ruiz (84) Casa Esperança Isern (85) Casa Isabel Pomar (86) Casa Eduardo de Lamadrid (90) Cases Pons i Pasqual (91) Cases Antoni Rocamora (92) Casa Manuel Margarida (93) Casa Lleó Morera (94) Casa Ramon Mulleras (95) Casa Amatller (96) Casa Batlló (97) Cases Alexandre i Josefina (98) Casa Marfà (99) Casa Joan Coma (100) Casa Enric Batll6 (101) Casa Milà (La Pedrera) (102) Casa Josep Codina (103) Casa Ramon Casas (104) Casa Rupert Garriga (105) Casa Bonaventura Ferrer (106) Casa Lluís Ferrer-Vidal (107) Casa Fuster (108) Casa Jeroni Graneli (109) Casa Josep Portabella (110) Casa Camil Mulleras Garrós (111) Casa Ramon Oller (112) Cases Jeroni Granell (113) Casa Gustau Peyra (114) Casa Angel Batlló (115) Casa Marqués de Julià (116) Cases Amadeu Maristany (117) Palau Ramon de Montaner (119) Casa Thomas (120/121) Cases Dolors Xiró de Vallet (122) Casa Carme Carsi de Puig (124) Casa Josep Batlles (125) Casa Teresa Vallhonrat (126) Casa Rafael Barba (127) Cases Leandre Bou (128) Casa Dolors Xiró de Vallet (129) Casa Segarra (130) Casa Francesc Pastor (131) Casa Josep Ferrer-Vidal (132) Casa Francesc Lalanne (133) Cases Joaquim Cabot (134) Casa Pere Salisachs (135) Casa Agustí Anglora (136) Cases Castillo Villanueva (137) Casa Jaume Forn (139) Casa Esteve Recolons (140) Casa Baldomer Rovira (141) Casa Leonor Matas (142) Casa Alexandre Gioan (143) Casa Enric Laplana (144) Casa Eulàlia Artés de Mayolas (145) Casa Macaya (146) Casa Dolors Alesan de Gibert (147) Casa Marti Llorens (148) Casa Domènech i Estapà (149) Casa Pau Ubarri (150) Casa Manuel Llopis

Many of Barcelona's attractions concentrate in the atmospheric, winding streets of the Gothic Quarter and in the adjoining Eixample district , with others scattered more widely in various directions. Fortunately for tourists, there is a wide choice of hotels in all price ranges in the most convenient neighborhoods. Here are some of the highly rated hotels in Barcelona:

Luxury Hotels :

  • In the heart of the Gothic Quarter, the Mercer Hotel Barcelona occupies several historic buildings located around the ancient Roman wall. Original architectural elements include 12th-century frescoes and medieval arches. This five-star hotel has a fine-dining restaurant, a casual tapas bar, and a rooftop deck with a swimming pool and snack bar.
  • The four-star Casa Camper Hotel Barcelona is a short walk away from the Plaça de Catalunya, La Rambla, and the Mercat de la Boqueria. This modern boutique hotel boasts top-notch amenities: a trendy tapas-style and Japanese-inspired Michelin-starred restaurant, a rooftop deck with amazing city views, a gym, and game room. Accommodations include breakfast and complimentary snacks all day.
  • In a vintage building at the edge of the Gothic Quarter, the Hotel El Palace Barcelona offers sumptuous five-star accommodations with excellent amenities: parking, a fitness center, a rooftop swimming pool, Mayan-inspired spa, several gourmet restaurants, and a splendid historic hall where traditional afternoon tea is served.

Mid-Range Hotels:

  • Near La Rambla and at the edge of the Gothic Quarter, the three-star Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel has one of the best rooftop terraces in Barcelona, with sweeping views of the city. This chic, contemporary-style hotel also has a fitness center, a restaurant that specializes in Mediterranean cuisine, and a rooftop swimming pool.
  • The Hotel Europark is surrounded by shops and restaurants in the bustling Eixample district, between the Gothic Quarter and the Basílica de la Sagrada Família. This three-star boutique hotel has a fitness center, tapas bar, and a rooftop terrace with a swimming pool.
  • Conveniently located near many tourist attractions, the three-star Room Mate Pau is steps away from the Plaça de Catalunya and a short walk to the Gothic Quarter. The renowned interior designer Teresa Sapey spruced up this boutique hotel with eclectic modern decor. Amenities include a concierge, 24-hour front desk, breakfast buffet service, and courtyard patio.
  • A few blocks north of the Gothic Quarter in the Eixample district, the Hotel Constanza Barcelona provides sleek contemporary-style guest rooms with updated bathrooms. Many of the rooms have balconies. Solo travelers will appreciate the single rooms. The hotel's cozy modern restaurant serves tapas and Mediterranean cuisine.

Budget Hotels:

  • The Hotel Curious is found in the Raval neighborhood, just off La Rambla and near La Boqueria market, an area brimming with shops and restaurants. This affordable hotel has contemporary-style guest rooms with basic amenities. Accommodations include breakfast.
  • Although it's a 30-minute walk to the Gothic Quarter, the ibis Barcelona Centro is only a few steps away from the Basílica de la Sagrada Família and is surrounded by restaurants, cafés, and shops. The metro station is also nearby, with connections to all the city's attractions.

Take a Sightseeing Tour :

  • Visit the city's most iconic landmarks on the Best of Barcelona Tour , which provides commentary about the history and art. This guided excursion includes a walking tour of the Gothic Quarter and skip-the-line admission to the Basílica de la Sagrada Família.

Explore the Countryside :

  • Picturesque towns dot the countryside around Barcelona. An organized tour is an easy way to explore the area. The Small-Group Medieval Villages Day Trip takes you to the lovely towns of Besalú, Castellfollit de la Roca, and Rupit, where you can explore historic buildings, meander down the cobblestone lanes, and relax at a small outdoor café.

Admire Dalí Artworks :

  • For fans of Salvador Dalí, the Costa Brava is not to be missed. This sunny coastline is home to Dalí's birthplace and several museums dedicated to his art. The Salvador Dalí Museum, Port Lligat, and Cadaques Day Trip from Barcelona takes travelers to these fantastic Dalí museums while providing interesting commentary along the way.

Visit Beautiful Villages and Mountains :

  • Discover charming historic towns and admire refreshing alpine landscapes on the France, Andorra, Spain from Barcelona One-Day Tour from Barcelona . This full-day tour includes stops at the medieval village of Baga and the spa town of Ax-les-Thermes, plus a scenic drive through the Pyrenees Mountains of Andorra.

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Highlights of Spain: To learn about the best places to visit, see our article on the top tourist attractions in Spain . For more in-depth information about each city, read our guides about Madrid , Seville , Granada , Cordoba , and Toledo . To explore some of the regional highlights, turn to our articles on the top attractions of Andalusia and Catalonia .

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28 Best Things to Do in Barcelona

By Gemma Askham

La Rambla is one of the best things to do in barcelona spain

The soul-caressing Spanish climate might set Barcelona up as an outdoor city, but its indoor activities have kudos, too. Find world-renowned museums that showcase artistic legends and rising stars, markets rich in local produce, and panoramic viewing platforms to take in the iconic architecture. If it’s sun you want, it’s sun you shall get—but the beach is only one option. From a secret maze to a hilltop fairground, Barcelona’s to-do list is every bit as varied as it is pure fun; Antoni Gaudí’s color-pop architecture ensures that dull moments simply don’t exist here. Consider this your capsule edit of attractions: the definitive list of what to do in Barcelona for the time-smart traveler, from art, iconic parks, and performing arts spaces to so much more. Spanning big-hitters and under-the-radar gems, these are the best things to do in Barcelona—the Catalan-speaking city's most unmissable spots.  Vamos .

Read our complete Barcelona travel guide here .

This gallery has been updated with new information since its original publish date.

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"The World Begins With Every Kiss" Mural Arrow

This romantically named mural near the Catedral de Barcelona was only meant to be a temporary exhibition. It was unveiled in 2014 for the 300th anniversary of September 11, 1714, a day known as Catalonia Day, or La Diada, which commemorates Catalan surrender in the War of Spanish Succession. The day is a tribute to the Catalan lives lost, to regional identity, and to freedom. The mural is made up of 4,000 tiles with photos printed onto them arranged into mosaics by color and density so that, from afar, the 26-foot-tall mural shows two people kissing. This kiss—a symbol of affection, empathy, and liberty—felt so poignant that the local government never took it down.

Park Guell barcelona spain overhead

Park Güell Arrow

Park Güell is an almost make-believe landscape: home to Barcelona’s famous mosaic lizard—the image on a thousand postcards—plus spiral towers that look like fairground slides. The city’s grandest park began life as a collaboration between entrepreneur Eusebi Güell (hence the park’s name) and Antoni Gaudí. Know that you need to book in advance online, and arrive promptly for your allotted slot—there’s zero wiggle room with timing. An interesting add-on is Casa Museu Gaudí, the pink spired building inside the park. It’s not included in your entrance fee (so factor in an extra €5.50/$5.50 per person), but Gaudí actually lived there for 19 years—which makes it the home tour of all home tours.

Santa Maria del Mar barcelona spain

Santa Maria del Mar Arrow

Ask any local to pick their favorite church and we’d bet a glass of (sacramental) Catalan wine that Santa Maria del Mar would be it. (Sorry, La Sagrada Família !) If you’ve read Ildefonso Falcones’s thriller Cathedral of the Sea , you already know more about it than you think: the novel’s backdrop is the construction of this particular Gothic church, with the lead protagonist one of its stone workers. In real life, the church’s history is almost stranger than fiction: in 1428, it was shook by a major earthquake. Then, in July 1936, it was set on fire and burned for 11 days straight. Look inside, and you’ll still see the black scorch marks on the roof. The building has very tall columns, set 43 feet apart. Combine that airiness with vast stretches of stained glass and it almost feels like someone’s pulling you up into the sky.

Parc del Laberint d'Horta barcelona spain

Parc del Laberint d'Horta Arrow

Barcelona is famous for its buildings being works of art; this is one of the few examples of a garden stepping up to that level. On the wilderness spectrum, Barcelona’s oldest park is beauty-salon manicured: splendid temples, lily-glazed ponds, sculptures of mythological figures, and a cypress maze that’s clearly given the gardener’s pruning shears a workout. The labyrinth is definitely the standout feature, a maze made of elaborate swirls of thick foliage. It recreates the Greek myth of Theseus destroying the Minotaur (a part-human, part-bull monster) to fall in love with Ariadne. A similar fate awaits those who make it to the center—no bovine slaying required, but you will find love in the form of a statue of Cupid. If that all sounds a bit soppy, scoff later: the maze is harder than it looks.

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Tibidabo Arrow

While Tibidabo mountain is a fairground, it's also so much more. You’ll first notice it from the city center: high on a summit, the silhouette of a majestic temple makes you curious to go. Officially called the Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor (or Sacred Heart church, easier on the tongue), its roof is topped with an enormous bronze statue of Jesus that you can take an elevator to. Mind-blown (and a little breeze-blown), you suddenly see the charm of the amusement park next to it—like its retro-styled attractions, such as a Ferris wheel with color-pop seating pods, built for the views as much as the screams. Adults love the views; kids love the rides. Finish with a gin and tonic on the terrace of Mirablau Bar , near where the blue tram stops. The edge seats rule.

top place to visit in barcelona

Gran Teatre del Liceu Arrow

As you’d expect from an opera venue, it’s grand, beautiful, doused with art, and occupies a prime piece of zip code on La Rambla . Yet, as with many of life’s most interesting characters, not all is quite what it seems. The vestibule, as you walk in, dates back to the building’s original construction in 1847. However, the main performance space—with a striking domed ceiling, red-velvet chairs and ornate gold moldings that have echoes of the Palace of Versailles—was actually unveiled in the grand old year of… 1999. A fire having wiped out most of the building’s structure in 1994. But you would never know. The acoustics and sight lines are excellent, and a small screen in your footwell provides subtitles. There's legroom to keep even the long-limbed content.

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Mirador Torre Glòries Arrow

Even if you don’t know Torre Glòries by name, you’ll know it by sight. The gleaming, iridescent tower that pierces the cityscape like (some say) a gherkin, though architect Jean Nouvel had a geyser in mind. It’s possibly Barcelona’s most famous landmark that Gaudí had absolutely nothing to do with, and at 470-feet tall it’s definitely one of its tallest. Opened in 2005, and famous for housing Meta’s Barcelona outpost, it’s never offered much in the way of visitor interest beyond a snap. That changed in 2022, when the 30th floor became a panoramic public observation deck with unobstructed views across every angle of the city. Now, when we explain an example of an exhibit, you’ll think we’re joking—we are not joking; it’s a climbing frame, suspended in the air by 3.7 miles of tensioned cable, made of tiny platforms–many transparent–that you scramble up onto, with absolutely no safety protection. Some platforms have cushions to rest and savor the view. Others are so physically tricky to traverse that you’ll break into a sweat, slide on your butt, and have to logically plan a route out. The serious stuff: it’s hard! 

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Catedral de Barcelona Arrow

It might not have the quirkiness nor the hype of La Sagrada Família , but it holds court: a giant Gothic temple that looms large against the narrow lanes and matchbox shops. Its site originally housed a Roman temple some 2,000 years ago, when Barcelona was still called Bàrcino (you can track down parts of the old Roman walls and aqueduct nearby). Today, the cathedral’s official name, Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia, honors Eulalia, a local girl who refused to accept Roman emperor Diocletian’s demand to recant her Christian faith. It’s beautiful and atmospheric, as religious buildings so often are. Regardless of your personal level of piety, the architecture inside—plus the city view from the short elevator ride to the top—is quite something.

La Boqueria barcelona spain

La Boqueria Arrow

La Boqueria might be Barcelona’s oldest market—it started life in 1217 as a mere huddle of meat stalls on La Rambla —but tradition isn’t staid. More than 200 stands unite like a foodie’s choir: traders’ shouts, the clink of glasses, welcome greetings sung out ("holaaaa"). Though, for all the atmosphere, it’s the smell that gets you: warm, ocean-salty, freshly fried fish: the kind that lines your nostrils, excites your stomach, makes your physician tense, and has to be washed down with a glass of cava. Grab a fruit smoothie from the technicolored stalls as you walk in. Then do a lap: the deeper you venture, the better the value.

La Rambla is one of the best things to do in barcelona spain

La Rambla Arrow

Barcelona’s most famous street—a nearly one-mile pedestrianized boulevard from Plaça Cataluyna to Port Vell—is still the strolling route for the city's visitors, even if selfie-stick vendors can’t match the charm of the old-school florists, gelaterías, and candy stalls offering bites of crema catalana (a form of crème brûlée) along the way. To predict your next question: But is it La Rambla or Las Ramblas? Well, it’s really both. Originally, the area consisted of five mini-ramblas: Rambla de Canaletes, Estudis, Sant Josep, Caputxins, and Santa Mònica, but they're often lumped together and today, the street sign says La Rambla. Annoying as it is to keep your purse clenched from pickpockets for a mile, La Rambla has a charm that keeps the 78 million coming.

Fundació Joan Miró Barcelona Museum

Fundació Joan Miró Arrow

It takes a certain type of space to accommodate Miró—an artist whose works range from a white canvas with a single black line to bold, primary-colored, robot-like sculptures. So it makes sense that Miró worked with his friend, architect Josep Lluís Sert, to design the building himself. It’s modern and minimalist by Barcelona’s standards—it's certainly no La Sagrada Família . But the coolest part is knowing that you’re seeing Miró’s work laid out exactly as he intended. However you feel about Miró, the collection is lively and energetic and devoid of the stuffy pretense that art museums can attract.

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Els Encants Arrow

Els Encants is the flea market with the fabulous roof. That ceiling is over 80-feet high, built from undulating zinc and aluminum, and mirrored silver-gold to reflect a kaleidoscopic whirl of stalls below. This market of odds-and-sods has existed in Barcelona since around 1300; for years, as a nomad–goods laid out on ever-changing streets and squares around the city. That changed in 2013 when Els Encants’ sparkling new home opened in Poblenou. The design wizardry of architect b720 Fermín Vázquez (which is now modernizing the city’s iconic Camp Nou soccer stadium), it’s a visual stunner blessed with good-looking neighbors. On one side, the tin-foil-shiny Torre Glòries and Disseny Hub, the design museum. Turn 90 degrees, and there’s La Sagrada Familia saying hola in the background.

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Casa Batlló Arrow

It’s easy to see why Casa Batlló has been likened to Claude Monet’s Water Lilies : Covered in shards of stained glass, it sometimes appears blue, then green, then shimmering like the glassy layer of a lake. Textile industrialist Josep Batlló commissioned Gaudí to design this home after seeing what Gaudí had done with Park Güell . Influenced by nature, Casa Batlló has no straight lines (because they don’t exist in nature, said Gaudí), stone pillars that contort like animal bones, and a tall, ocean-blue stairwell that’s very Jules Verne. The result is both grand and intimate. See our Barcelona Gaudi guide, here .

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Palau de la Música Catalana Arrow

It might be the Palace of Catalan Music, but you come as much for your eyes as your ears. The auditorium is a kaleidoscope of roses, chandeliers, and stained glass. This is the work of Modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, a building some say is even prettier than Gaudí's La Sagrada Família . Built to house the Orfeó Català symphonic choir, today’s musical acts span from choral to pianists, jazz, flamenco, and operas such as La Traviata and Carmen . A key decision is whether to visit in daylight, for a tour, when the building is at its most spectacular, or at night, when the music happens.

Barceloneta barcelona spain

Barceloneta Arrow

Barceloneta is the high-school jock of beaches: loud, popular, and boisterous. Its version of a buff torso? A strip of sand that’s no less of a showoff; at one end, there’s the metallic, sail-like silhouette of the W Hotel , at the other, the blinding gold sculpture of a fish by architect Frank Gehry. When you’ve arrived at Barceloneta, you know it. If you’re looking for the whitest sand and the most azure waters, you won’t find them at Barceloneta. But it is convenient, chaotic, and a must-see carnival.

Barcelona Spain Montjuic

Montjuïc Arrow

There are many grand elements to Montjüic, a historic hill that’s a whole lot more than ‘just a hill’. For starters, the approach at ground level. From the roundabout at Plaça España (which doesn’t sound sexy, we know), it appears majestically from nowhere, a dramatic, architectural staircase leading up to the  Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (National Museum of Catalan Art). It looks like a palace; the water feature in front is even called the Magic Fountain. (Some evenings, there’s a water-light spectacular; check the schedule  here ). So far, we’ve described about 400 meters of Montjüic: the rest has more museums, the 1992 Olympic site, exotic gardens, and enough panoramic views to jam a smartphone camera roll.

Palo Alto Market barcelona spain market

Palo Market Fest Arrow

Take an abandoned factory in the most up-and-coming part of town, plant enough foliage to fund your local garden center for life, and use the term "concept space" a LOT. Sounds trendy, right? On the thermometer of cool, Palo Market Fest is an icy Old Fashioned cocktail. Yet its atmosphere has the warm glow of having knocked a few back: live music provides a head-bopping shopping backdrop, while pop-up beer bars and insanely good food trucks mean that everyone is simply in a great mood.

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La Sagrada Família Arrow

It’s practically illegal to go to Barcelona and not visit La Sagrada Família, Gaudí’s extraordinary temple dedicated to the Holy Family—also known as the world’s largest unfinished church. The illusive end date remains a mystery—local theorists speculate it will never be done in order to preserve its in-process cachet. Be sure to book a ticket ahead (dates are available three months out) so you can get inside and gawk at the vaults and rainbow stained glass. When you go, spring for the extra audio guide and a trip up to one of the two towers—the Nativity Façade is our favorite.

a view of the top of the Mercat de Sant Antoni public market in Barcelona Spain built on 1879

Mercat de Sant Antoni Arrow

Imagine La Boqueria –the heaving, calamari-scented food market on La Rambla—before it became famous. When the only voices were local, and daily specials were scribbled in felt-tip pen on scraps on paper. That’s Sant Antoni today. A food and clothes market that’s revered by locals and cemented in their daily routines. Telling an international audience about it feels like breaking a secret code, so come with respect for that authenticity and a willingness to practice your high-school Spanish–as well as an appetite. Oh yes, you’ll definitely want the latter. Aim for that sweet spot where you’ll salivate upon seeing trays of olives piled like sandcastles, but aren’t so ravenous that you’ll blow all your hunger on the first stall of cured meats you come to. Built in 1882, it recently closed from 2009 to 2018 for an €80 million refurb. Today, it’s restored, reopened and thriving–with the surrounding blocks becoming car-free to enhance the community-first experience. If you're on a budget: the stall Ous de Calaf takes pretty presentation next-level with loose eggs displayed in straw among ornaments of hens. Regional wines are also likely to be gluggably affordable.

Picasso Museum barcelona spain

Picasso Museum Arrow

A museum spread over five palaces—we’d expect nothing less for Picasso, who moved to Barcelona as a 14-year-old boy and made frequent trips back throughout his life. Downstairs, a courtyard and Gothic archways lead into white studios that illuminate his works. Upstairs, the rooms are lavish: epic painted ceilings that almost drip crystal chandeliers. Visitors flock here to see Picasso's work, but the special setting is why they come back again and again. If you’re expecting Picasso’s big-hitters, you might be disappointed—for a few minutes. Guernica resides in the Reina Sofía in Madrid , The Weeping Woman at London ’s Tate Modern . What Barcelona’s museum has, is everything around those postcard images. In chronological order, it shows every brushstroke (all 4,251 works’ worth) of how he moved from a classically trained painter (see Ciencia y Caridad in Room 3) to a Cubist pioneer, plus some things we never knew he did, like ceramics.

top place to visit in barcelona

Moco Museum Barcelona Arrow

Here’s the thing: you cannot be bored here. Even if you hit 10,000 steps by lunchtime, Moco’s fluorescent, lively, reaction-provoking collection is a guaranteed perk-you-up. Yes, even if you’ve been known to yawn at the word “museum”. Younger sister of the original Moco Museum in Amsterdam , the name–a snappy portmanteau of modern and contemporary–gives you an idea of the collection’s genre. In truth, the cliché of “expect the unexpected” runs true. There’s a room of Banksys. Talking-point pieces by Damien Hirst and Salvador Dalí sit alongside chuckle-inducing satirical wall quotes. Andy Warhol pops up; photography by David LaChapelle; a lot of KAWS–he of Smurf courtyard fame. And possibly some new-discovery names to add to your iPhone Notes, such as the beautifully macabre oil paintings of Chile’s Guillermo Lorca, which are part-fairytale, part-horror story. One hack: tickets for time slots before 11:00 am and after 6:00 pm are cheaper.

Hospital de la Sante Creu i Sant Pau barcelona spain

Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site Arrow

Built by legendary Modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner (of Palau de la Música Catalana fame) with all the features of Catalan Art Nouveau—extravagant domes, stained glass windows, epic pillars—it was designed to be a building that people enjoyed recuperating in. His vision was a garden city for nursing the sick instead of the clinical-looking spaces we still know today—buildings are oriented for maximum sun exposure, for example. When the hospital was moved further north in 2009, this site went through its own rehabilitation: into a museum and arts venue. It now hosts the runways for Barcelona Fashion Week.

Parc de la Ciutadella barcelona spain

Parc de la Ciutadella Arrow

Barcelona's vast city park houses a zoo, regional parliament, and plenty of sites and spots for lounging. Cascada Monumental, built with input from a young Gaudí, is a stunning golden waterfall that both wows and relaxes you. Ditto the serene boating lake beside it. Enter through the Arc de Triomf and the elaborate Modernist building to your right is Castell dels Tres Dragons , built by Lluís Domènech i Montaner. Currently closed for renovation, with no word on a reopening date, it was once the zoology museum. Another beautiful, yet no less mysterious, series of structures are the cast iron Umbracle (palm house) and Hivernacle (winter garden) in front. Go for an authentic slice of city-park life.

Barcelona Pavilion by Ludwig Mies Van de Rohe

The Barcelona Pavilion by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe Arrow

This Pavilion was designed by German architects Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich for the 1929 International Exposition—a global showcase of architectural styles. Exposition over, the pavilion was duly dismantled back to Germany. It was only in the decades after—cue: a face-palming moment of hindsight—that the architectural community realized just how pivotal Mies van der Rohe’s founding symbol of modernist architecture was. In 1980, Barcelona City Council enlisted a team of Catalan architects to turn salvaged photographs and drawings into a delicate, atmospheric reconstruction. Most people’s overarching takeaway from the Pavilion is that it’s smaller than they imagined, so use this as your battery recharge before tackling the other arty big-hitters on Montjuïc , such as Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya (MNAC) and Fundació Joan Miró .

Barcelona Spain Camp Nou

Camp Nou Arrow

The importance FC Barcelona soccer club has in the city can be felt in the noise of its home stadium, the Camp Nou. At 99,354, it’s the biggest in Europe—and there's an expansion plan in place to push it to 105,000. All seats are actually owned by season-ticket holders, who then release them to the public if they can’t go. Don’t worry: it means there’s usually a good chunk available, especially against lower league teams, and 72 to 48 hours before a match. Barcelona’s home matches in La Liga—the Spanish soccer league—usually run from mid-August to the end of May, and tours of the stadium and the FC Barcelona museum are still kicking off (from €26, or $30). Glimpse Messi’s trophies, the players’ tunnel, and the first team’s bench.

Casa Vicens Barcelona Spain

Casa Vicens Arrow

Built in the 1880s as a summerhouse for stockbroker Manel Vicens, Casa Vicens was the very first house Gaudí designed. Forget the Gaudí of La Sagrada Família fame, this is his Orientalist Period. Imagine a Moorish palace merged with a Rubik’s cube. It’s crazy. Anyone who’s a fan of tiles or maximalist design will geek out on the oriental palms, pink walls, flower-adorned tiles and flying birds. Add in a terracotta roof terrace, a couple of elaborate domes, and some Gaudí ironwork and you’re left wondering how it all harmonizes together. Because, weirdly, it does.

IDEAL Centre dArts Digitals Barcelona

IDEAL Centre d’Arts Digitals Arrow

If a digital arts center was going to pop up anywhere in Barcelona, you’d bet your tapas fund on the district of Poblenou—the Catalan capital’s East London-like ‘hood, where once crumbling factories spawn start-ups, art studios, and museums like the Museu Can Framis . From the outside, IDEAL’s boxy exterior shouts movie theatre. And it was—for 67 years. Then it became a movie set, then nothing at all, before a regeneration project in 2019 turned the lights back on. It’s now southern Europe’s first facility dedicated to producing and showcasing digital arts projects, such as holography and virtual reality. Instead of watching an image, you’re thrown right into the image—meaning popcorn-munching to fill the slow scenes is a thing of the past.


Nau Bostik Arrow

Barcelona has a lot of well-known museums, with a lot of well-known names, in a lot of well-known parts of town. Nau Bostik is absolutely none of those—which is exactly why we love it. Take the metro to La Sagrera, walk 10 minutes through a residential district that makes you wonder if you've gotten lost, and look for a bold-colored striped mural on the side of a factory. This work, by Argentine street artist Elian Chali, sums up the spirit of the Nau Bostik.

top place to visit in barcelona


Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

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The 30 best things to do in Barcelona

From modernista masterpieces to some truly gorgeous beaches, these are the very best things to do in brilliant Barcelona

Everyone should visit Barcelona at least once. Everyone. No excuses. The Catalan capital is a bustling city that lives up to its reputation, a thriving cultural centre with brilliant museums , magnificent restaurants and a club scene to go all night. 

Barcelona is brilliant, bombastic, and bloomin’ marvellous. And what are the best things to do while you’re here? We’re glad you asked, because we’ve done the hard yards and put together the ultimate Barna bucket list. You can’t go wrong with this place.  Here are its best things to do right now. 

RECOMMENDED: 🥘 The best restaurants in Barcelona 🍸 The best bars in Barcelona 📍 The best  attractions in Barcelona 🏨 The  best  hotels in Barcelona

Maria Jose Gomez is the Time Out Barcelona editor. This piece was written by the editorial team.  At Time Out, all of our  travel guides  are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our  editorial guidelines . 

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Best things to do in Barcelona

Buy a book at a beautiful bookshop

1.  Buy a book at a beautiful bookshop

What is it? A tour of the most beautiful bookstores in Barcelona.

Why go? In recent years, new bookstores have joined some of the long-standing ones we already had in the city. And the joy was twofold because, besides being places that championed books, most of them were also beautiful (just look at Ona Llibres , Librería Byron and Finestres ).

Don’t miss: The García Márquez Library in Poblenou was chosen as the best public library in the world in 2023. And it's no wonder: It’s spectacular.

Cool off with a unique ice cream

2.  Cool off with a unique ice cream

What is it? Barcelona might not be Florence, so we don’t eat ice cream all year round – but we do have all kinds of amazing ice cream parlors, some of them among the best in Europe.

Why go?  It’ll likely be hot when you visit. Need we say more? Besides, you can eat ice cream inside a spaceship at Lucciano’s , create an ice cream from memories at Mamá Heladera , or get a taste of Barcelona at Badiani . 

Have a moment of silence at Santa Anna

3.  Have a moment of silence at Santa Anna

What is it? A Romanesque church associated with the Order of the Holy Sepulchre which was declared a Cultural Heritage of National Interest.

Why go? If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of Plaça de Catalunya and the traffic of Carrer d'Aragó, you'll find tranquility in the cloister of Santa Anna and in that of La Concepción – recovered from the former temple of Santa Maria de les Jonqueres. Time stands still, and the silence invites you to disconnect.

Don't miss: Also visit the Chapel of the Pardons, which housed a sculptural ensemble of the Holy Burial, and visitors were granted the same pardons as those who went to the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.

Go for tapas at Bodega d'en Rafel

4.  Go for tapas at Bodega d'en Rafel

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What is it? A bar just a stone’s throw away from La Paloma with one of the best tortillas in Barcelona.

Why should you go? El Pollo has that typical melancholic vibe of the Raval bars, but when the dishes arrive, joy bursts forth: the ingredients are fresh, and the menu offers spectacular hearty dishes that could easily be found in a classic Bilbao restaurant. It’s not cheap, but the tapas option is suitable for almost any budget, with spectacular tortillas, top-notch croquettes, and some squid in onion sauce that’s simply divine. Rosalía recommended it, and since then, it’s always packed.

Don’t miss out: Right next door, the same owners have opened La Polla, serving up a great selection of cured meats, pickles, salads and tortillas.

Have a cocktail at Mariposa Negra

5.  Have a cocktail at Mariposa Negra

What is it?  A cocktail bar dedicated to storytelling

Why go? Mariposa Negra  is located in El Born, founded by Luca Corradini, who in 2015 was one of the head bartenders at the American Bar at the Savoy in London, England’s oldest cocktail bar. The bar takes inspiration from the novel ‘Marina’ by Carlos Ruiz Zafón, which is set in Barcelona during the 1970s.

Don’t miss: Corradini not only prepares spectacular cocktails but also distills his own liqueurs and designs – and manufactures! – the glasses you drink them from.

Do some reflecting at Cementiri de Montjuïc

6.  Do some reflecting at Cementiri de Montjuïc

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What is it? Designed by Leandro Albareda in 1880, this enormous necropolis sits at the side of the motorway, as a daily reminder to commuters of their own mortality.

Why go? he cemetery was originally divided into four sections: one for Catholics, one for Protestants, one for non-Christians and a fourth for aborted foetuses. It now stretches over the south-west corner of the mountain, with family tombs stacked five or six storeys high. Many, especially those belonging to the gypsy community, are a riot of colour and flowers. The Fossar de la Pedrera memorial park remembers the fallen of the International Brigades and the Catalan martyrs from the Civil War. There is also a Holocaust memorial and a mausoleum to the former president of the Generalitat, Lluís Companys. Don’t miss: The cemetery is much visited, particularly on All Saints' Day, when the roads are clogged with cars. Eventually, it will provide a new home for the city's collection of funeral carriages.

Discover urban art

7.  Discover urban art

What is it? A route through the places in Barcelona where urban art abounds.

Why go? Barcelona has a ton of great graffiti and mural spots. In Poblenou, you can follow this route: start at the corner of Marroc and Espronceda, continue along Perú and descend via Selva de Mar. On the island formed by Agricultura, Veneçuela, Josep Pla, and Pallars, you'll find plenty. In Poble-sec, the Jardins de les Tres Xemeneies are a meeting point for spray artists. And in Sant Andreu, Nau Bostik is a curated space for urban art.

Don’t miss: The Besòs River Park aims to become the largest urban art museum in Europe. The 18km river, between the Pont Vell de Santa Coloma and the Pont de Can Peixauet, is being painted with works by international and local artists thanks to the BesArt project.

Ride the port cable car

8.  Ride the port cable car

What is it? The cable car  that takes you from Montjuïc to Barceloneta (and vice versa). 

Why go? Test your fear of heights and hop on the Port Cable Car. The adventure begins with the ascent to the Tower of Sant Sebastià, the iron giant conceived by architect Carles Buïgas for the 1929 Universal Exposition. The most thrilling part is stepping into the red cabin – it holds up to 19 people – to cross the city at 70 meters high. After 10 minutes of swaying, weightlessness sensation and bird’s-eye views, you might want to kiss the ground at Miramar, but if you still have the urge to fly, you can return to Barceloneta in the opposite direction.

Don’t miss: It’s hard to avoid the queues, but the best times to go are around midday or early in the morning.

Find tranquility at the Umbracle

9.  Find tranquility at the Umbracle

What is it?   A building of iron architecture declared a Cultural Heritage of Local Interest.

Why go?   The project by Josep Fontseré was built at the end of the 19th century following the prevailing style; hence the cast iron pillars, iron beams, and exposed brick. Later, for the Universal Exposition, it was turned into a dance hall; nowadays, it resembles its original appearance: a shadowy and quiet space where plants of all kinds and origins grows. You’ll find hydrangeas, kentias, small ficus trees, Swiss cheese plants, Indian rubber trees, wax palms, winter jasmine and more. 

Don't miss:   A first-rate botanical spectacle that only opens on weekdays and in the morning, you can spend your time here discovering (and coveting) plants or sit down to read in peace in this simulation of a tropical jungle.

Marvel at Sant Felip Neri

10.  Marvel at Sant Felip Neri

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What is it? One of the most beautiful and historically significant squares in the city.

Why go?  After strolling through the narrow streets of the Gothic Quarter, you’ll find Sant Felip Neri on the site of the ancient medieval cemetery of Monjuïc del Bisbe. Within it you’ll find the church and school of the same name, Renaissance houses, and the former guild houses of coppersmiths and shoemakers, the latter being the headquarters of the Shoe Museum. If you look at the facade of the Sant Felip Neri church, you’ll see the remnants of shrapnel from a bomb launched by the Nationalist faction during the Civil War, which caused the deaths of 42 people, most of them children.

Don't miss: The Hotel Neri has a good restaurant (with a terrace on the square!). It’s romantic. 

More great things to do in Barcelona

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Home » Travel Guides » Spain » 15 Best Things to Do in Barcelona (Spain)

15 Best Things to Do in Barcelona (Spain)

Capital of Catalonia and Spain’s second city, Barcelona is utterly incomparable. It’s one of a few must-see cities with its own identity. This is partly down to a generation of early-20th-century artists and architects, like Antoni Gaudí, whose unforgettable buildings are like nothing you’ll see anywhere else.

There’s something to delight everyone in Barcelona. If you’re a food lover then the city has a total of 20 Michelin stars, and if you want culture you’ve got an inexhaustible choice of beautiful buildings and events. Add to this clean urban beaches, world-class nightlife and so much great shopping you won’t know where to begin.

Let’s explore the best things to do in Barcelona :

1. Las Ramblas

Las Ramblas

Never mind that a lot of locals shun this sequence of promenades that runs from Plaça de Catalunya down to the Columbus Monument at the waterfront.

If you’re a tourist it’s one of those things that you have to do.

In summer you’ll be under the shade of the tall plane trees and shuffling through the crowds that pass living statues, street performers, bird-sellers and flower stands.

Occasionally you’ll catch the whiff of waffles (gofres) being baked.

Once you get to the water you can keep going along the boards to visit the Maremagnum mall or Barcelona’s Aquarium.

2. Sagrada Família

Sagrada Família

This is where to begin your adventure through Barcelona and the dreamlike works of Antoni Gaudí.

His minor basilica is a project of incredible scale and ambition that is still only around three quarters complete more than a 140 years after Gaudí first became involved.

When its spires are finished it will be the tallest church building in the world, and hardly resembles any religious structure you’ll have seen in your life.

The Sagrada Família combines several architectural styles including Catalan Modernism, Art Nouveau and Spanish Late-Gothic, but Gaudí’s masterpiece defies these kinds of definitions when you look up open-mouthed at the ceiling of the nave.

Get a Skip-the-Line ticket for fast track entrance: Sagrada Familia Skip-the-Line

3. Casa Batlló

Casa Batlló

Another of Antoni Gaudí’s most postcard-friendly creations, this apartment block wasn’t created from scratch but was a remodel undertaken at the turn of the 20th century.

You won’t need to have visited Barcelona to recognise the building’s roof, the tiles of which are the scales of a great dragon.

Like all of his work the inside and outside of Casa Batlló has that sinuous quality, with few straight lines, and dazzling attention to detail.

Take the mushroom-shaped fireplace on the noble floor, which like a cosy grotto was designed for couples to warm up in winter.

Available tour : Casa Batlló Ticket and Video Guide

4. Casa Milà

Casa Milà

Also known as La Pedrera, as the front of the building looks a bit like the face of a quarry, Casa Milà was completed in 1912 and is another emblematic Gaudí building.

It’s one of several of Catalan modernist works to be UNESCO listed and was the fourth and final Gaudí building on Passeig de Gràcia.

Architects will appreciate the contemporary innovations here, including the self-supporting stone facade and underground car park.

It was designed for the industrialist Pere Milà i Camps to be his family home, with apartments for rent on the upper floors.

The coherence between the design of the building and Casa Milà’s furnishings is a real joy to see, and it’s all from a time when Gaudí was at the top of his game.

Available tour : Casa Milà Skip-The Line Audio Guide Tour

5. City Beaches

Barcelona Beach

Barcelona’s beachfront boardwalk stretches for miles. It will take a good hour to get from Barceloneta to Diagonal Mar on foot, but it’s a walk that really helps you understand the city.

The westernmost beaches like Sant Sebastià are busier and more touristy, but are backed by Barceloneta’s tight lattice of trendy shops and bars with terraces and outdoor seating.

As you move along the waterfront after the Olympic Port you’ll find a bit more room and more Barcelona locals.

Finally, just up from Platja de Llevant is the massive and new Diagonal Mar mall, revitalising a former industrial part of the city.

6. La Boqueria

La Boqueria

This is an iconic sight and educational experience in one. There’s been a Boqueria market in Barcelona since medieval times, though this exact spot has only witnessed trade for about 200 years.

That elegant and distinctive iron and glass roof you’ll see was put up in 1914.

Whether you want to do some food shopping or just take in the sights and sounds of a bustling urban market it’s a real eye-opener.

It’s a grid of permanent stalls selling fruits, vegetables, cold meats, cheese as well as olive products.

The whole market converges on an oval plan of fishmongers in the centre.

Cool off with a beer and a tapa at one of the market’s bars.

7. Camp Nou

Camp Nou

In the western Les Corts neighbourhood is the 99,000-seater stadium that has been the home ground of FC Barcelona since 1957.

It’s one of Europe’s football cathedrals and even if you have no affinity for the team you have to visit Camp Nou to appreciate the dizzying scale of the arena.

And if you are a fan you’ll be in heaven, touring the stadium and browsing the memorabilia of one of the world’s most prestigious teams at the museum.

The stadium tour is unavailable on or just before match days so keep an eye on the calendar.

Available tour : Camp Nou Experience: F.C. Barcelona Museum and Tour

8. Park Güell

Park Güell

Round off your Gaudí experience with a trip to this garden complex on Carmel Hill.

Many make the trip to this part of Gràcia for those gorgeous panoramas over Barcelona from the park’s main terrace.

You’ll have seen these serpentine benches and their mosaics on postcards and in movies.

Elsewhere there are colonnades, fountains and sculptures, all in the architect’s distinctive style.

If you still haven’t had enough Gaudí you can enter his House-Museum, where he lived from 1906 to 1926, with furniture and decorative items designed by him on display.

9. Barcelona City History Museum

Barcelona City History Museum

The History Museum preserves a few Roman sites across the Gothic Quarter, such as the temple of Augustus and the Funeral Way on Plaça de la Vila de Madrid. But Plaça del Rei is where you can see Barcelona’s ancient history in detailed layers.

You’ll take a lift down to where the remnants of a garum factory, laundries, dyeing shops and parts of ancient Barcino’s walls are all visible.

The site is large, covering 4,000 square metres, which you’ll explore via elevated walkways.

As you rise through the museum building you’ll step forward through time and enter the vaults of the Palau Reial Major, seat of the medieval Dukes of Barcelona.

10. Montjuïc


This city district was developed for the 1929 International Exhibition and features several high-profile museums including the National Museum of Catalan Art, the Museum of Archaeology and the Ethnology Museum.

Of those the art museum is particularly recommended, and the views of the city from its steps are stunning.

Below this, and also built for the exhibition was the Magic Fountain, which puts on light and music shows ever half-hour on the weekends. This is best seen at night of course.

At the very top of the hill is the 17th-century fortress, which saw action in the Catalan Revolt in the 1600s as well as during the Civil War in the late-1930s, after which it was a prison.

11. Fundació Joan Miró

Fundació Joan Miró

Just like Gaudí, Joan Miró was a quintessentially Catalonian artist, and a visit to his museum will give you a more vivid picture of Barcelona’s spirit and style.

The Fundació Joan Miró was set up by the artist in the 60s to encourage contemporary art in Barcelona, and Miró worked closely with the architect Josep Lluís Sert on the museum building’s design.

This means there’s a harmony between the venue and the work inside it that you won’t find very often.

Within there’s a large collection of the artist’s work, including sculptures, drawing and paintings.

There are also temporary exhibitions of 20th and 21st century art, and all sorts of collaborative and educational projects going on.


If you wonder what life is like in the small towns of Catalonia then a visit to Gràcia is a way to find out.

This area wasn’t even part of Barcelona until the 20th century, and thanks to its layout of tapered streets and little squares, feels like a different place.

It’s a young, stylish and cosmopolitan area with students and artists, so there’s a multitude of bars, cafes and independent shops to be found.

If you come to Gràcia during the Festa Major in August the area is transformed as the residents come together to decorate individual streets in imaginative ways to be the best in the neighbourhood.

13. Palau de la Música Catalana

Palau de la Música Catalana

This turn-of-the-century concert hall is yet another piece of Barcelona’s UNESCO-listed heritage.

It was built by Gaudí’s contemporary, Lluís Domènech i Montaner for the Orfeó Català, a Barcelona choral society.

This was at a time when investment and commissions by wealthy Catalan industrialists were helping a generation of artists and designers to create a new sense of Catalan identity.

The hall is a sublime venue for opera, symphonies and folk music, so have a look at the schedule when you plan your trip.

14. Plaça de Catalunya

Plaça de Catalunya

This is the best meeting point in the city. It’s right at the bottom of the posh Passeig de Gràcia and at the top of Las Ramblas.

If you’re waiting for friends in the evening for a meal or getting ready for a shopping expedition by day nowhere in the Ciutat Vella or Eixample will be more than a few minutes on foot from this grand square.

Barcelona’s flagship branch of El Corte Inglés is right here, and if you’re new to the city and want to get oriented you could go inside to pick up a map.

15. Eating in Barcelona


International food is superb in Barcelona, especially when it comes to Japaese-style noodle bars, which have become popular in the last 10 years.

Another trend is pintxos, Basque-style bar snacks in which delicious things like croquettes and fish are served on a piece of bread held together with a toothpick (pincho).

For a typically Catalan snack there’s  Pa amb tomàquet, rustic bread covered in a mix of tomato pulp and oil. This often serves as a base for sandwiches or bocatas.

For a main course here on the coast nothing beats arròs negre, rice simmered with cuttlefish or squid, followed by rich crema catalana for dessert. Have a look at the available food tours in Barcelona .

Tip : Have a look at the tours offered by Barcelona City Tellers , they even offer a free walking tour! A great way to start off your visit as you’ll learn more about the city and will get lots of tips on which things to do and avoid during your stay.

15 Best Things to Do in Barcelona (Spain):

  • Las Ramblas
  • Sagrada Família
  • Casa Batlló
  • City Beaches
  • La Boqueria
  • Barcelona City History Museum
  • Fundació Joan Miró
  • Palau de la Música Catalana
  • Plaça de Catalunya
  • Eating in Barcelona
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31 Best Things to Do in Barcelona — From Gaudí Landmarks to Cava Bars

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Local experts suggest how to explore the coastal city.

top place to visit in barcelona

Daniel Gioia/Travel + Leisure

Barcelona is a cosmopolitan city with a reputation for its modernist architecture, diverse neighborhoods, Catalan cuisine, and ample opportunities to set your gaze on the sparkling Mediterranean Sea. When I add up my many return trips and extended stays here, I've spent nearly two years exploring this heart-stealing city, and I have seen how travelers new to the destination are often overwhelmed by its abundance. From Gaudí's iconic Sagrada Familia to Roman ruins hiding in plain sight, you would need a lifetime to discover all of this city's secrets. And yet, we took on the challenge of determining the best things to do in Barcelona, from cava tastings to historic landmarks. With help from tourism professionals Hannah Pentimaki, ground operations manager of Walk and Devour Tours , and Jaime Estellés, the front of house manager at Grand Hotel Central , here's how we suggest getting to know this incredible city.

Related : The Best Time to Visit Spain for Great Weather and Famous Festivals

Marvel at the Sagrada Familia.

agaliza/Getty Images

This site is well worth queueing up for — or buy your ticket in advance to save time. A work-in-progress, Sagrada Familia has yet to see the completion of its tallest towers, but you can still go inside to experience the Gaudí masterpiece.

Order tapas.

GMVozd/Getty Images

“Barcelona is a foodie paradise,” says Hannah Pentimaki of Devour Tours. “Go to a tapas restaurant so you can try a bit of everything. Order patatas bravas, which are prepared differently in every bar with their own secret recipe. I also recommend you try pan con tomate, or bread with tomato and olive oil, and the bomba, a fried potato croquette with ground beef simmered in a savory sauce. For dessert, get the crema catalana.”

Take a seat at Park Güell.

Gatsi/Getty Images

Looking for those colorful mosaic benches and structures that look like gingerbread houses? That's Park Güell, and it's Pentimaki's top itinerary suggestion, right alongside having tapas. "If you only have one day in Barcelona, I recommend getting up early and starting with a visit to Park Güell. Book the first tickets of the day so you get there before it's too busy and too hot in the summertime."

Visit Casa Batlló at night.

Alexander Spatari/Getty Images

Located in the heart of Passeig de Gracia, Barcelona’s main shopping street, this home is a perfect example of Catalan modernism, which Gaudí was the master of. Designed for the Batlló family, the home is a work of art from the inside and out. The museum can get very crowded during the day, but if you book a Magic Night ticket , you’ll have more space to move about, and you can enjoy live music and a drink on the rooftop.

Go to the rooftop at Casa Milà.

JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images

Just a few blocks from Casa Batlló is Casa Milà , another Gaudí-designed home; this one is also known as La Pedrera, which means “the quarry” in Catalan. The house's undulating façade is a marvel when you see it from the street, but you will need to go inside and climb to the rooftop to get the full effect of Gaudí’s genius.

See Gaudí’s early work at Casa Vicens.

Jamie Ditaranto/Travel + Leisure

Pentimaki also recommends visiting Casa Vicens , one of the best-kept Gaudí secrets in town. “Casa Vicens is a very underrated attraction," says Pentimaki. "This was the first house architect Antoni Gaudí designed, and it jump-started his career. Unlike some of his other houses — like Casa Batlló or La Pedrera, which he designed years later — Casa Vicens remains a bit unknown to tourists.”

Go cava tasting.

Jerker Larsson/Getty Images

This distinct, sparkling wine hails from Spain, specifically the Catalan wine regions surrounding Barcelona. You’ll find it in most restaurants, but Jaime Estellés of Grand Central Hotel recommends guests go to specialists if they want to learn more, including “Agúita in Born District, La Teca de Vila Viniteca , La Vinya del Senyor , and Vinitus .” Pentimaki adds that La Vinya is well-loved among locals. “The bar itself is quite small," Pentimaki says, "but it has a gorgeous outdoor terrace with stunning views of the Gothic church Santa María del Mar.”

Spend time with Picasso.

Reserve your ticket to this museum well in advance if you want to pay your respects to the great Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. Set in a series of connected medieval palaces, the museum houses many of the artist’s early works, and exhibits share information about his life in Barcelona.

Walk down the Rambla.

Daniel Gioia/Travel + Leisure

The Rambla is Barcelona's pedestrian superhighway. It may be touristy, but it’s still worth walking at least once to orient yourself in the city. Start at Plaça de Catalunya and go all the way to the Columbus statue; from here, cross over to Rambla de Mar, a boardwalk that goes over the marina, where there is also an aquarium and a shopping mall.

Attend the opera at Gran Teatre del Liceu.

Mario Wurzburger/Getty Images

On a busy night on the Rambla, it's possible you'll pass the Gran Teatre del Liceu when a show is just letting out. Ideally, you'll go inside yourself. No matter the type of show you see, the elaborate decoration of the city’s oldest-running theater is worth enjoying in person.

Admire the Hospital de Sant Pau.

Vladislav Zolotov/Getty Images

You don’t need a doctor’s note to check out this modernist masterpiece, built by another one of the city’s prominent architects, Lluís Domènech i Montaner. The unique building completely reimagines what a hospital might look like, using beautiful design, artwork, and natural light to facilitate the healing process.

Tour the Palau de la Música Catalana.

1001nights/Getty Images

If you like the Hospital de Sant Pau, enjoy more of Montaner’s style at the Palau de Música Catalana. Concerts are held here throughout the year, but if you’re visiting in the spring you may be able to catch a special show during the Barcelona Obertura , a classical music festival held across the city’s many music venues.

Visit the MNAC.

Vladone/Getty Images

Head inside Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC) for the best art collection in Barcelona, or take a seat on the stairs and enjoy the views over Plaça d'Espanya. The collection includes pieces from modernists like Picasso and Renaissance painters like El Greco. Gaudí fans should make sure to visit the collection of the architect’s unique furniture pieces.

Ride the cable car to Montjuïc.

IUshakovsky/Getty Images

You will find some of the best city views at the top of Montjuïc, plus a historic fortress and venues from the 1992 Olympics that are still in use as entertainment spaces. Skip the climb and hop on the cable car at Parc de Montjuïc to go straight to the castle.

Graze on pintxos in Poble Sec.

If you’re walking down from Montjuïc, you will end up in this charismatic neighborhood. Head down to Blai Street, where you will find a seemingly endless row of pintxo (or small snack) bars and many locals enjoying after-work drinks and tapas al fresco.

Get lost in the Gothic Quarter.

Getting turned around is half the fun of wandering the winding narrow streets of this medieval district. You never know when you will come across a hidden gem of a wine bar or the remains of an ancient Roman temple. There is plenty of shopping to do and many squares as well; find a sunny place to sit down or to order a traditional vermouth drink.

Visit the Barcelona Cathedral.

This cathedral is at the heart of the Gothic Quarter, and its beautiful architecture dates back to the 13th century. After appreciating the inside of the cathedral, get a view of its fantastic exterior from the rooftop of the Hotel Colon , which is just across the way from the cathedral.

Explore El Born.

One of Barcelona's most picturesque neighborhoods, El Born offers history, nightlife, and excellent shopping. If you're here just briefly, climb up the tower at the Catedral de Mar, then stop at the famous Patisserie Hofmann for one of their show-stopping croissants. On the last weekend of the month, there's a pop-up market on Passeig de Born, where you'll find neighborhood shops and vendors selling their wares.

Pose with the Raval Cat.

There’s no denying the charm of this rotund feline who sits on the Rambla de Raval; the sculpture was created by Colombian artist Fernando Botero. In this neighborhood, you can also check out vintage shops and rambunctious skateboarders, who regularly tear up the concrete in front of the Museum of Contemporary Art Barcelona .

See Gaudí’s fountain at Ciutadella Park.

David Soanes Photography/Getty Images

The scene in Ciutadella is always lively, but the park’s centerpiece is this impressive fountain, also by Gaudí. The Cascada Monumental was one of the architect’s early projects, designed while he was still in university.

Rent a paddleboard in Barceloneta.

There’s plenty of activity on the sand at Barcelona’s busiest beach, but you’ll get better views if you’re on the water. Rent a paddleboard at one of the nearby neighborhood shops; hit the water at the right time, and you can watch the sunset behind the city.

Dance all night.

Barcelona’s nightlife is legendary, and people really do stay out until the sun comes up. Classic spots that keep themselves hip include Apolo and Razzmatazz . In Poble Espanyol, a recreation of a typical Spanish village, you’ll also find the music pumping well into the night on the outdoor dance floor of La Terrazza .

Visit many different markets, not just La Boqueria.

La Boqueria is the most famous market in Barcelona, but you can visit other neighborhood markets for smaller crowds and a more authentic shopping experience. Try the Santa Caterina Market in El Born or the Sant Antoni Market.

Have drinks at an incredible cocktail bar.

Barcelona has been making waves in the international cocktail scene for years, consistently ranking on the list of The World’s 50 Best Bars , which is curated by leading industry experts. Paradiso in El Born took the number one spot in the world in 2022, and you’ll probably find a line to match that reputation when you get there. If you don’t want to wait, check out other El Born neighborhood spots with their own specialty cocktail reputations, including Dr Stravinsky and Monk .

Take in the views from Tibidabo.

lamiel/Getty Images

The Temple of the Sacred Heart sits at the top of this hill, and the views of the city skyline and the Mediterranean make it a worthwhile trek; you can hike or take the cable car up. You'll also find a theme park on the hilltop. Tibidabo is, of course, yet another great place to watch the sunset.

Get a history lesson on the Spanish Civil War.

In addition to the many great walking tours and food tours available in Barcelona, Spanish Civil War Tours offers history lovers an education in the Spanish Civil War; many significant events happened here in Barcelona. Visit the company website to sign up for a tour with a local historian.

Find the human towers.

 Lola Bou/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

It’s not often that visitors get to experience casteller performances, and when you do, it’s a nail-biting sight you will remember forever. Team members work together to create gravity-defying human structures in this traditional art form. Check the online schedule to see if you might catch them in the act while you’re in town.

Make the pilgrimage to Montserrat.


The unique geology of this mountain gives it its name, which means “Serrated Mountain,” and the monastery at the top should be on your Barcelona itinerary. Guided tours are available, and note that it’s extremely easy to reach this site by train from Plaza Espanya.

Feast on calçots.

imv/Getty Images

If you visit Barcelona between January and March, you'll have the opportunity to enjoy a traditional Catalan barbecue. Many restaurants offer these spring onions and tangy romesco sauce on the menu this time of year, but be forewarned: they can be so messy to eat that they're often served with gloves and a bib.

Take a day trip to Costa Brava.

IoanaCatalinaE/Getty Images

You will find the best beaches and the prettiest waters north of the city on the iconic Costa Brava. The easiest day trip is to Tossa de Mar, where you can rent a kayak and explore the nearby caves and coves that define this beautiful stretch of coast.

Related: Best Beaches in Spain

Watch a thrilling race.


The Formula 1 Aramco Gran Premio de España, better known as the Spanish Gran Prix , will remain in Barcelona only until 2026, when it moves to Madrid. It’s worth noting that the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, built as part of the 1992 Barcelona Olympics development program, sits 15 miles north of the city center. Held in late June, the race is often a nail-biter, thanks to the amount of year-round testing done there — meaning the drivers and mechanics are deeply familiar with it. A bit of history: The track enjoyed an incredible debut, with Nigel Mansell and Ayrton Senna near wheel-to-wheel racing down the straightaway (before Mansell took the victorious lead).

Mercedes-Benz Formula 1 Guide

Related articles.


Visit Barcelona: Top 25 Things To Do and Must-See Attractions

Things to do in barcelona: the 25 best places to visit and highlights.

You’re planning to visit Barcelona during your next trip to Spain?

Great idea!

In order to help you plan your stay, I have written this guide of the best things to do in Barcelona , with all the must-see attractions and points of interest.

From Parc Guell to La Sagrada Familia , you will discover all the best places to visit in the city as well as hidden gems , known only by locals.

And at the end of this article, you will also find itineraries to visit Barcelona in 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 days (or even a week!) as well as my suggestions of the best accommodations depending on your budget.

So, what are the best places to visit in Barcelona? Where to stay?

Let’s find out!

1. La Sagrada Familia

2. las ramblas of barcelona, 3. mercado de la boqueria, 4. plaza catalunya, 5. passeig de gracia: shopping in barcelona, 6. casa batlló, 7. casa milà or “la pedrera”, 8. park güell – where to walk in barcelona, 9. güell palace, 10. visit the national art museum of catalonia (mnac), 11. plaça d’espanya and the magic fountain of montjuic, 12. the olympic installations from the 1992 olympic games, 13. montjuic hill, 14. visit camp nou stadium, 15. the basilica of santa maria del mar, 16. barcelona port / barcelona cruises, 17. going to the beach in barcelona, 18. ciutadella park, 19. barcelona’s cathedral of the holy cross, 20. the palau de la música catalana, 21. the recinte modernista de sant pau, 22. the best viewpoints and lookouts in barcelona, 23. horta’s labyrinth park, 24. attending la mercè, 25. exploring barcelona’s gastronomy, the 6 best things to do around barcelona, best things to do in barcelona when it rains, visiting barcelona with kids, how many days to visit barcelona, 1 day in barcelona, 2 days in barcelona, 3 days in barcelona, 4 days in barcelona, 5 days in barcelona, where to stay in barcelona, where to eat in barcelona, my tips for a trip to barcelona, barcelona tourist map, how to get to barcelona, how to get around barcelona, what are the best places to visit in barcelona, when is the best time to visit barcelona, what to do in barcelona at night, you’re traveling in spain these articles will help you, visit barcelona: all must-see attractions.

You simply can’t visit Barcelona without planning a visit to La Sagrada Familia.

La Sagrada Familia is the most famous work of Catalan architect Gaudí , who shaped Barcelona’s architectural landscape until his death in 1926. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site , it’s Spain’s most visited monument and the emblematic symbol of Barcelona.

You’ll immediately understand why upon arriving at the Basilica: the building is impressive , with its details and Catholic references . Its unique architectural style, mixing Gothic and Art Nouveau , will take your breath away!

Under construction for 136 years , La Sagrada Familia is still unfinished and is not expected to be completed until 2027. In the meantime, the entry fees are used to fund the completion of the work. You can boast about having contributed to the construction of this masterpiece!

Practically speaking, La Sagrada Familia is open every day from 9 AM, and until 6 PM, 7 PM, or 8 PM depending on the season.

Of course, you can visit the interior as well as the museum displaying original plans and drawings that trace the evolution of the Basilica.

I highly recommend you book your ticket online before your visit to La Sagrada Familia. At any time of the day, the queue is often endless , and it would be a shame to waste hours waiting in line!

You need to book your skip-the-line ticket for La Sagrada Familia by clicking on the button below:

And if you prefer a guided tour of La Sagrada Familia with an official guide, simply click here to book it!

To visit Barcelona and La Sagrada Familia , you should get the Barcelona Pass.

Here’s what’s included:

  • Skip-the-line entry to La Sagrada Familia
  • Entry to Park Güell
  • Access to the Hop-On Hop-Off bus for 24 hours
  • Barcelona audioguide to download
  • 10% discount on other entrance tickets to buy online like Casa Batlló.

You need to book your Barcelona City Pass by clicking on the button below:

Sagrada Familia

La Rambla (or Las Ramblas) is another place you don’t wanna miss during your visit to Barcelona.

It’s the pedestrian boulevard that connects the port of Barcelona to Plaza Catalunya (Plaça de Catalunya).

What to see along Las Ramblas of Barcelona:

  • La Font de Canaletes: a gathering place for Barcelona residents during major events and football victories!
  • Joan Miro’s mosaic, created directly on the pavement
  • The Gran Teatre del Liceu, the oldest in the city
  • Plaza Reial and its numerous bars
  • Palau de la Virreina, which hosts temporary exhibitions.

Along nearly 2 km , you will also find numerous street artists, musicians, shops , and plenty of cafés and restaurants. Also, don’t miss the living statues : men and women dressed as creatures that are truly impressive.

You’ll find them towards the lower part of Las Ramblas , closer to the port.

Did you know?

las ramblas

During your stay in Barcelona, you should really go to the Mercado de La Boqueria.

The market, the oldest in the city, is the main tourist attraction on Las Ramblas . Look for an Art Nouveau portal and a crowd of tourists pouring in: that’s the spot!

This place is perfect for finding all kinds of Catalan products : tapas, Iberian ham, turron, fresh fruit… A true feast for the eyes and the palate. The stalls are beautifully presented, and the atmosphere is warm. You’ll want to try everything!

If you’re interested in Spanish cuisine , I recommend a super fun activity to do in Barcelona.

You can visit La Boqueria with a chef who will choose the best ingredients and then prepare for you a variety of hot and cold tapas as well as a paella . You’ll be able to watch the whole process and, of course, taste everything at the end accompanied by a small glass of sangria!

Book your visit to Mercado de La Boqueria and cooking class right here.

It will be hard to avoid the crowds on Las Ramblas, but if you don’t want to be with all the tourists, go there early in the morning , between 8 AM and 10 AM. You’ll be more at ease to admire the old buildings along the promenade.

mercado de la boqueria

To continue your tour of Barcelona, I suggest you then head to Plaza Catalunya (Plaça de Catalunya), located at the end of Las Ramblas.

It’s the heart of the city , at the crossroads of Las Ramblas, Rambla de Catalunya, and Passeig de Gracia.

There, you’ll find several statues , including the statue of Frederic Marès, a few cafés, and an El Corte Inglés . You should have a drink on the roof of the department store , the view is really nice!

Plaza Catalunya is also the starting point of many metro lines and the Barcelona equivalent of the suburban rail, the Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya (FGC).

So, this is the perfect starting point if you want to visit Barcelona using public transportation.

plaza catalunya barcelona

Continuing from Las Ramblas , past Plaza Catalunya, you will find Passeig de Gracia .

It’s one of the most famous avenues in Barcelona and one of the many places to see.

Originally, Passeig de Gracia was the avenue where wealthy Barcelona families lived . Hence, you will find magnificent villas , including some designed by Gaudí ( Casa Batlló and Casa Milà ), and Puig y Cadafalch , another renowned architect in Barcelona ( Casa Amatller ).

Passeig de Gracia is also the perfect place for shopping among the countless luxury stores that line the promenade (or just window shopping if your budget doesn’t allow), with brands like Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent, Cartier, Hermès, Gucci…

The street lamps of Passeig de Gracia are also signed by Gaudí. It seems that Barcelona’s favorite architect truly left his mark everywhere.

passeig de gracia

To continue this guide of the best places to visit in Barcelona, let’s head to Casa Batlló.

It’s one of the two villas designed by Gaudí on Passeig de Gracia. Known as La Casa del Ossos (the House of Bones) by the locals, it’s listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

I strongly recommend visiting it as it is even more impressive inside than outside!

I suggest, again, that you book your ticket online in advance to avoid the potentially endless queue, even before 11 AM.

A 3D audiovisual guide makes the visit interactive and even more enjoyable:

Plan about 1 hour for the visit.

If you want to experience Casa Batlló differently , I recommend you get the “Magical Nights” ticket .

It includes an animated nighttime tour with live music on the rooftop terrace (at 8 PM), as well as 2 complimentary drinks .

casa battlo

The other Gaudí villa located on Passeig de Gracia is Casa Milà , nicknamed “La Pedrera” (which means “the stone quarry” in Catalan, a nickname given for its unique architecture).

Also on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites , the building is recognizable from afar with its wavy white façade . Spanning 5 floors and 4,500 m², you can discover all of Gaudí’s architectural genius and immerse yourself in his world.

The view of Barcelona from the rooftop terrace is also breathtaking.

To book your skip-the-line ticket for Casa Mila, click here:

Should you wish to visit Casa Mila in a unique way , I suggest you book a night tour tickets (click here) with a show.

Starting from 9 PM, audiovisual projections take place in different parts of the building and on the roof. Plus, a glass of champagne is included.

If you wish to visit the three remarkable houses designed by Gaudí while saving money, you should get the Gaudí Houses Pass.

It includes:

  • Skip-the-line access to Casa Milà + audio guide
  • Entry to Casa Batlló + audio guide
  • Skip-the-line ticket for Palau Güell + audio guide

You need to book the pass to visit Gaudí’s houses by clicking this green button:

casa mila

Let’s continue with Gaudí’s works: Park Güell is another must-see tourist attraction in Barcelona.

Built between 1900 and 1914 by order of Eusebi Güell, a friend and patron of Gaudí, the park was originally intended to be a garden city housing about 60 homes. In the end, only 4 houses were built due to budgetary constraints.

However, Park Güell remains a treasure trove of Modernist architecture and Art Nouveau , showcasing the blend of modernism and nature that characterized Gaudí’s work.

It’s divided into two areas: the “Monumental” zone, which has an entrance fee (this is where the famous curvy benches, the salamander, and the columns are found) and a free area.

You should plan to spend several hours exploring this park.

You can also climb up to the viewpoint (Mirador de Virolai), and even though the climb is a bit tough, it’s worth it. The panoramic view of Barcelona’s landmarks is stunning.

Tickets to visit the park must be reserved well in advance as availability is really limited:

Don’t forget, if you have purchased the Barcelona City Pass , entry to Park Güell is already included!


Güell Palace is yet another commission by Güell for Gaudí , located in the Raval neighborhood, in the historical center of Barcelona. It actually served as the Güell family’s residence .

Do not be deceived by the rather modest facade of the villa: the interior is truly luxurious .

The must-see elements of Palau Güell include the wrought iron gate, the entrance hall , and also the mansion’s bedrooms.

The full price ticket is 12€ but you can visit the palace for free on the first Sunday of every month.

You need to buy your ticket by clicking here.

If you have purchased the Gaudi Pass , entrance to Güell Palace is included!

You’re going to Barcelona?

You probably know it: the hardest part of planning your trip is to find an hotel offering a good value for money!

And that’s even worse in the large European cities 😅.

The closer you get to your travel dates, the harder it will be to get a good deal. Tens of thousands of people will be visiting Barcelona on the same dates as you , so you can be sure that the best deals are booked extremely quickly!

Hopefully, there is a pretty simple solution to this problem: do like me and book your hotel as early as possible!

So, my best advice is to take 5 minutes (now) to have a look at the list of travelers’ favorite hotels in Barcelona.

And if you see a good offer, book it!

Most hotels offer free cancellation, so it’s quick, easy, and you will avoid the the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.

To check the current best deals for your hotel in Barcelona, simply click on the green button below 😎:

Once you’ve booked your hotel, it will be time to continue reading this guide and find out more about the best things to do in Barcelona!

Güell Palace Barcelona

What are the best things to do in Barcelona if you love art and culture?

Go visit the MNAC!

The National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC) is famous for having the largest Romanesque art collection in the world. Besides its rich collections spanning all mediums and eras, it’s housed in a majestic palace specially built for the 1929 World Fair.

It’s also one of the largest museums in Spain.

You need to buy your MNAC entrance tickets by clicking here:

It’s possible to visit the MNAC for free , including both permanent and temporary exhibitions, on Saturdays after 3 PM and all first Sundays of the month.

If you plan to visit other museums in Barcelona besides the MNAC, you should buy the Barcelona Museum Pass. It will grant you access to the city’s 6 main museums (skip-the-line tickets):

  • National Art Museum of Catalonia
  • Barcelona Picasso Museum
  • Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Fundació Joan Miró
  • Contemporary Culture Center of Barcelona
  • Fundació Antoni Tàpies.

You need to buy it by clicking on the button below:

MNAC Barcelona

Let’s continue this guide of Barcelona’s must-see attractions and head to Plaça d’Espanya.

Located opposite the MNAC, designed by architect Puig i Cadafalch , it was also built for the 1929 World Fair.

It’s recognizable by the former bullring , which is now a shopping center . I definitely recommend heading to the top floor , on the roof terrace: it offers a magnificent view of the square and Montjuic hill.

Don’t miss the Magic Fountain of Montjuic , located between the MNAC and Plaça Espanya.

Every evening, from Wednesday to Sunday , the fountain lights up to music . It’s an unmissable spectacle that both locals and tourists flock to see it: you should thus arrive early to get a good spot!

Spain Square Barcelona

You may already know that Barcelona hosted the 1992 Olympic Games . A lot of sites were built for the occasion, especially in the Olympic port and on Montjuic hill.

Here are the main Olympic facilities to see:

  • Montjuic Olympic Park , which includes the Olympic Stadium, Palau Sant Jordi, the Calatrava Tower, the Barcelona Sports Palace, and the Pavilion of Industrial Spain.
  • Parc del Mar , home to the Olympic Port of Barcelona and the Mar Bella Pavilion.

For a hassle-free (and fun!) way to explore the Olympic sites , you should opt for a 1.5 hours guided Segway tour.

Reserve your spot by clicking here!

Montjuic Olympic Park Barcelona

Aside from the Olympic Park, Montjuic Hill still has many surprises in store. It’s a very peaceful area in Barcelona, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Here are the best places to visit in Montjuic:

  • Montjuic Castle , which played a controversial role in the city’s history, notably as a vantage point for bombings during the War of Spanish Succession (18th and 19th centuries). It offers a breathtaking view of Barcelona’s coastline
  • Barcelona Botanical Garden , where you can admire plant species from Australia, California, the Mediterranean, and more
  • Miramar Gardens with their magnificent panorama over the entire city
  • The Greek Theatre Gardens
  • Mossèn Costa i Llobera Gardens , with a Californian theme.

To get to Montjuic , you can take the bus or go on foot, but I highly recommend taking the Montjuic cable car from Barceloneta. The view from the cable car is absolutely worth it!

Round-trip tickets are available right here.

Montjuic Hill

What’s the best place to visit in Barcelona if you’re a sports enthusiast, especially a football fan?

The Camp Nou Stadium, without any hesitation!

The “Camp Nou Experience” combined tour allows you to visit the home of FC Barcelona, which is not only the largest stadium in Spain but also in Europe, as well as the FC Barcelona Museum. You will be completely immersed into the world of Spanish football.

You need to book this experience directly here:

To get there, your best option is to take the subway: line L3 to Palau Reial or Les Corts stations; and line 5 to Badal or Collblanc stations.

Camp Nou Stadium

The Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar , located in the historical Born district, is a must-visit for fans of Gothic architecture and religious history.

You’ll surely be impressed by the immensity of the Basilica from the inside. You should ideally visit at night when it’s illuminated – it’s even more beautiful!

You can find opening hours and access information on the official website.

Not many people know, but you can climb right to the top of the basilica. From the Terraces of Santa Maria del Mar , you’ll get an unbeatable view of the Born district and the surrounding areas. However, this privilege comes at a cost (8€).

Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar Barcelona

Port Vell is also worth a visit in Barcelona.

Theren you can find a shopping center ( Mare Magnum ), which might interest you if you’re fond of shopping. To get there, feel free to walk across the pedestrian bridge from La Rambla to the shopping center.

Here are some other attractions you can find at Port Vell:

  • Christopher Columbus statue : you can climb to the top for a nice view of La Rambla and the port
  • The IMAX cinema
  • Barcelona Aquarium: This is a great activity for families visiting Barcelona. Tickets available here .

Port Vell is also where you can embark on Golondrinas cruises .

These boats take you to see Barcelona from the water, offering a different perspective of the city. It’s a great way to relax and enjoy. You need to book your tickets by clicking here.

And if you prefer a more festive cruise,   you should opt for a catamaran ride.

The outing lasts 3 hours and includes a barbecue lunch (with drinks). A DJ is on board to set the mood, and there’s even a planned swimming stop.

Book by clicking the green button below:

You can also combine a cruise in the port with a helicopter flight over the city and a guided tour of the Gothic Quarter.

This 4-hour excursion for the three activities is around 135 euros, which is really a great deal considering the price of helicopter flights!

Book using the green button below:

Barcelona port

Where to go to the beach in Barcelona?

Barcelona is also famous for its beaches, and if you’re visiting Barcelona during the summer, it’s the best way to cool off.

There are 10 beaches in Barcelona, spread along the Passeig Maritim.

The beaches closest to the center ( Barceloneta, Sant Miquel, and Sant Sebastià ) are the busiest. For a quieter experience, head to Nova Icària Beach.

Nova Icaria Beach Barcelona

Let’s continue this guide with Ciutadella Park , another famous park in Barcelona, built for the 1888 Universal Exposition.

It’s a favorite spot for locals when the weather is nice, and you can even enjoy a boat ride on its lake.

In the park, you will find several tourist attractions such as:

  • The Arc de Triomf
  • The Museum of Modern Art
  • The seat of the Parliament of Catalonia.

If you’re visiting Barcelona with your children, you can also take them to Barcelona Zoo. Tickets on sale here!

And to save money when you’re visiting Barcelona with your family, I recommend 2 packages that include entry to the zoo (click the links to book):

  • Barcelona Family Pass : includes zoo entry + one-hour harbor cruise + fast-track entry to the Wax Museum
  • The Zoo and Aquarium Pack : includes zoo entry + aquarium ticket + a ride on Barcelona’s port cable car.

Another great way to explore the park and its surroundings is to opt for a 2-hour electric scooter tour.

The tour also includes a visit to the Olympic Port and the beaches.

The same tour is also available on a Segway:

Ciutadella Park Barcelona

The Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Barcelona is definitely the first landmark you’ll notice while wandering through the Gothic Quarter.

This impressive cathedral is one of Barcelona’s most majestic religious sights . Built in Gothic style, it is rich in detail and sculpture , both on the exterior and interior.

Admission costs 7€ and gives you access to the cathedral, the cloister, the terraces, the choir, the museum, and the chapel.

To explore other monuments in the Gothic Quarter , you can choose a guided walking tour.

For 2 hours, a professional guide will show you every corner of the neighborhood.

To book, click here:

Barcelona's Cathedral of the Holy Cross

This Art Nouveau concert hall is surely one of the most beautiful in the world.

This UNESCO World Heritage site was built in the early 20th century by Domènech i Montaner, who was a mentor to Gaudí and Puig i Cadafalch.

To visit the Palau de la Música Catalana , a guided tour is mandatory. Lasting 50 minutes, a guide will show you the intermission hall and balcony , the auditorium , and the upper balconies.

The tour is very interesting and full of fascinating anecdotes. It costs 20€ per person and various languages are available depending on the schedule.

Book your palace tour directly here.

Palau de la Música Catalana

The Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau is another modernist masterpiece by architect Domènech i Montaner whom I just mentioned.

It was once a public hospital , designed as a garden city, and functioned throughout the 20th century.

You can visit several buildings on the premises, some of which host exhibitions, like the Sant Rafael Pavilion which shows what the hospital looked like in its early days.

You need to get your tickets here.

Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau

What are the best places to go in Barcelona for a breathtaking view?

The best viewpoint in Barcelona is undoubtedly the Bunkers del Carmel , or Turó de la Rovira.

This site once hosted anti-aircraft bunkers that played a major role in the defense of the city during the Spanish Civil War. Today, not much remains except for a magnificent 360° view of the entire city of Barcelona.

Here’s a summary of the best spots to see Barcelona from above (most of which I have already mentioned)

  • Montjuic hill (the castle or the Miramar)
  • The Columbus Column
  • The rooftop of La Pedrera
  • Torre Glòries (tickets available here!) from its 33rd floor, you get a spectacular view of Barcelona!
  • The rooftop of the Las Arenas shopping center on Plaça Espanya
  • The rooftop of the Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar
  • Mount Tibidabo
  • Torre de Collserola

Bunkers del Carmel

Horta’s Labyrinth Park is Barcelona’s oldest park , with a quiet and secretive atmosphere, ideal for a romantic stroll.

Once you’ve explored the labyrinth thoroughly, you can relax in the neoclassical park or even have a picnic.

Admission is 2€, but it’s free on Wednesdays and Sundays.

It’s a pleasant place to visit after seeing Barcelona’s more popular attractions.

Horta's Labyrinth Park

La Mercè is THE celebration in Barcelona you can’t miss . This religious festival , also known as “festa major d’estiu” in Catalan, takes place over a week around September 24th.

You’ll experience a full display of Catalan culture: castells and falcons, parades of Catalan giants, correfocs (fire runs), sardine barbecues, concerts, exhibitions, and more.

But the best way to understand what La Mercè is all about is to experience it for yourself!

La Mercè

What would a trip to Barcelona be without trying Catalan gastronomy?

Tapas, paella, arroz negre (black rice) and fideua (a type of paella made with short noodles), calçots (a kind of onion), crema catalana, turron, and coca de San Joan …

You will certainly have plenty to enjoy during your holiday!

Tapas Barcelona

If you’re spending several days in Barcelona, don’t hesitate to leave the city and explore its surrounding areas.

Barcelona has the advantage of being located in a region rich in architectural treasures and diverse landscapes. Catalonia will delight lovers of urban art, ancient history, beaches, and mountains alike.

Here are the best places to visit around Barcelona:

  • Montserrat Mountain: you should visit Montserrat Abbey and enjoy one (or more!) hikes. There are organized day trips from Barcelona , which is super convenient if you don’t have a car. You need to book your trip here!
  • Colonia Güell: An industrial estate designed by Gaudí for the textile workers of Güell, featuring his unconventional church (the Crypt). To visit it, you should take the train from Barcelona. All-inclusive tickets with train journey, Colonia Güell and Crypt visit only cost 15€.
  • Sitges: for strolling along the seafront and enjoying the beach in summer. It’s the ideal place to relax near Barcelona. Book your guided tour here!
  • Tossa de Mar: on the Costa Brava, a unique village with a very charming medieval town center. It’s definitely one of the best places to visit near Barcelona. To book your day trip, you simply need to click here.
  • Girona and Figueres, the 2 most important cities in Northern Catalonia. In Girona, you will visit many medieval monuments and in Figueres, you will discover the world of the famous Salvador Dali! Book your visit here!
  • PortAventura Amusement Park: simply the best amusement in Spain and in Southern Europe. As an ultra-touristic attraction near Barcelona, you really need to purchase your skip-the-line tickets in advance . You can also reserve a  day trip to PortAventura with transport included from Barcelona (very convenient if you don’t have a car).

Montserrat Abbey

Even though Barcelona is a Mediterranean city renowned for its pleasant climate, it does rain in Barcelona sometimes!

So you’re not caught off-guard, I’ve prepared a list of the best activities to do when it rains in Barcelona:

  • Visit museums: in my opinion, Barcelona’s must-see museums are the MNAC, the Picasso Museum, and the Miró Foundation on Montjuic. All of them are included in the Barcelona Museum Pass . But you could also take the opportunity to visit more unusual museums, like the Museum of Eroticism or the Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum, dedicated to cannabis.
  • Drink a “chocolate a la taza”: this thick hot chocolate, often accompanied by churros, is a tradition in Barcelona. You can enjoy them in the numerous granjas, such as Granja Viader or Granja Pallaresa. One of my favorite spots is La Nena, in the Gracia neighborhood, an authentic café that’s quite popular with locals.
  • Watch a Flamenco show: Flamenco is Andalusian, but it’s still very popular in Barcelona. Show evenings are especially organized at Los Tarantos, one of the oldest tablaos in Barcelona. You can book this activity here.
  • Shopping: Barcelona has many shopping centers: Las Arenas, Glories (near Torre Agbar), L’illa Diagonal…

chocolate churros

What are the best things do in Barcelona with your family?

To plan your trip to Barcelona with family, I have prepared a list of the best activities to do with children:

  • Visit CosmoCaixa Science Museum, in Sarria district. Free for kids, it offers plenty of fun learning activities.
  • A trip to the Tibidabo Amusement Park: located on Mount Tibidabo, this amusement park is one of the oldest in the world and offers stunning views over the city.
  • The Blue Tram of Sarria: a century-old tramway connecting Avinguda Tibidabo with the funicular station. Note that it only runs on weekdays.
  • Barcelona Aquarium: You’ll see fish and aquatic creatures from all over the world.
  • The Magic Fountain of Montjuic: I mentioned it earlier on, and I can assure you that your children will love this show.
  • Poble Espanyol: This “Spanish Village” offers a pretty amazing reconstruction of typical villages from Spain’s regions, from Andalusia to Castile. It’s great because it hosts many events and workshops for kids. It’s the perfect visit for a family stay in Barcelona.

If you’ve decided to visit Barcelona with your family , you can also take them to Barcelona Zoo. Tickets available here!

And to save money on your Barcelona trip with kids, I recommend 2 packs that include a visit to the zoo (click the links to book):

  • The Barcelona Family Pass including: zoo entrance + one-hour harbor cruise + skip-the-line entry for the wax museum
  • The Zoo and Aquarium Pack with: zoo entrance + aquarium ticket + a trip on the Barcelona Port cable car.

poble espanyol

The length of your stay in Barcelona depends a lot on what you want to see and what kind of traveler you are.

It’s perfectly possible to visit Barcelona in a weekend or to spend a week there without getting bored.

To help you plan your stay, I’ve prepared itineraries to visit Barcelona in 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 days or even a week.

There are 2 discount cards (City Passes) for Barcelona, which will help you save time and money.

1) The best one in my opinion is the Barcelona City Pass . It includes:

  • The excellent visit to the Sagrada Familia
  • A skip-the-line ticket for Park Güell
  • The ticket for the hop-on hop-off bus for 1 or 2 days – Perfect to easily move from a point of interest to another and discover all the best places to visit in the city!

2) If you’re staying more than 3 days in Barcelona, you might also consider the Barcelona Card . Valid for 3, 4, or 5 days, it grants you free public transport and discounts or free entry to city attractions and museums. A city and metro map are also included.

If you’ve only got one day to visit Barcelona , you should focus your sightseeing around the heart of the city: the area that stretches from Ciutat Vella (the historic quarter) to Passeig de Gracia.

Here are the must-see attractions:

  • Start your tour with the Cathedral of the Holy Cross and the Gothic Quarter, and take the opportunity to enjoy some tapas in the historic center of Barcelona
  • Then, stroll down La Rambla
  • Do some shopping at La Boqueria Market
  • Taste tapas either at La Boqueria Market or in the upper Gothic Quarter
  • Walk up along Passeig de Gracia , including a visit to Casa Batlló
  • End your visit at the Sagrada Familia, so you can take your time to explore
  • Enjoy a flamenco show in the evening

To optimize your time, you should book your tickets in advance online . You’ll find reservation links at each point in the article.

And if you don’t want to walk, you can also opt for a hop-on hop-off bus tour of the city. It’s the best way to make the most of Barcelona in one day.

You need to buy your Hop-on Hop-off bus ticket here.

If you’re staying 2 days in Barcelona, you should follow the previous day’s itinerary, replacing the visit to the Sagrada Familia with a visit to Casa Milà.

Here are some ideas for your second day in Barcelona:

  • Start your day with a visit to Park Güell
  • Check out the Bunkers del Carmel, just a short distance away
  • Pass by the Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau
  • Visit the Sagrada Familia (on the first day you would have visited Casa Mila)
  • End your day in the Born district

All the details to organize your weekend in Barcelona are in this article: 2-Day Itinerary in Barcelona.

Barcelona at night

If you’re planning to spend 3 days in Barcelona , you should do the itinerary mentioned above for the 2 first days and add a day on Montjuic hill.

Here’s how to organize your day:

  • Head to Plaça Espanya and enjoy the view from the top of the shopping center
  • If you have children, visit Poble Espanyol
  • Visit the MNAC
  • Have a picnic in one of the many parks on Montjuic (I especially like the Greek Theatre garden)
  • Take a tour of the Olympic installations
  • Finish your visit at Montjuic Castle
  • Return to Plaça Espanya to eat some tapas and watch the Magic Fountain show

For 3 days in Barcelona, I’ve also prepared a detailed guide with all my tips to make the most of your stay in Barcelona.

Here it is: 3 Days in Barcelona , the ultimate guide!

If you have 4 days in Barcelona , I recommend following the 3-day itinerary and adding a day around the beach and Port Vell:

  • Take a tour of Port Vell: if it’s raining, go shopping and visit the aquarium, and if it’s sunny, take a Golondrinas boat tour
  • Walk along Passeig Maritim to admire Barcelona’s beaches. In summer, you can even spend the afternoon at the beach.
  • Visit the Olympic Port
  • Return to the old town and rest in Parc de la Ciutadella
  • Visit Santa Maria del Mar Basilica and climb to the top to enjoy the view over the city.

All these details and the day-by-day program can be found in my other article: 4 Days in Barcelona: the perfect itinerary.

For 5 days in Barcelona , I recommend adding to the previous itinerary an excursion to visit Barcelona’s surroundings

Here are the best day trips from Barcelona:

  • A visit to the Costa Brava from Barcelona: explore Lloret del Mar and Tossa del Mar + boat trip, bus transport, and guide included for only 55€ per person
  • From Barcelona: Costa Brava, Kayak and Snorkeling: maximum of 12 people, transfer to the Costa Brava, kayak navigation and snorkeling (equipment provided) + lunch starting from 65€.
  • Hot air balloon ride departing from Barcelona: hotel pickup + one-hour hot air balloon flight and picnic included
  • Tickets for Montserrat from Barcelona + Museum: round trip – full-day tour with train ride, monastery and museum visit with audio guide included
  • In winter, you can go skiing at one of the stations near Barcelona (La Molina, for instance, is very renowned)
  • With children or with friends, go to PortAventura and don’t forget to book your skip-the-line tickets here.

To learn more about the best things to do in Barcelona in 5 days , you should read my detailed itinerary right here: 5 Days in Barcelona.

And if you’re planning to stay longer, for example, a week in Barcelona, no worries, there are still plenty of things to see, including the Camp Nou Stadium, Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau, the Palace of Catalan Music , and many museums.

You can also simply take your time and soak up the ambiance of the Catalan capital!

I detail the entire program in my dedicated article right here: A Week in Barcelona: the ultimate itinerary.

Port Aventura

As you know, finding a good hotel deal in Barcelona isn’t that easy!

That’s why I have selected for you the 5 best hotels in Barcelona , depending on your budget.

If you already know your travel dates and find a hotel that suits you, you should really book now, as the best deals don’t last long!

  • Hostel One Ramblas: This hostel is located in the center of Barcelona. Dormitory beds start from €33 with dinner included. Strong points: the atmosphere, the price. A great choice if you’re visiting Barcelona on a budget.
  • Hotel Grums Barcelona: Located next to Montjuic hill and 600m from Las Ramblas. Elegant and bright rooms starting from €134. Strong points: the spa with jacuzzi and sauna, room design, great location. It’s one of my favorite hotels in Barcelona for its excellent value for money!
  • Ohla Barcelona: Perfectly located luxury hotel in Barcelona, between the Cathedral and the Plaza Catalunya, and 200 meters from the metro. This 5-star hotel offers contemporary and comfortable double rooms starting at €325 per night, breakfast included. Strong points: the beauty of the establishment both outside and inside, the rooftop pool with breathtaking views, the 3 gourmet restaurants. This is definitely the perfect choice for a romantic stay in the heart of Barcelona.
  • W Barcelona: The iconic Barcelona hotel is located in the Barceloneta district. Luxurious and well-equipped double rooms starting at €363. Strong points: the views, the two swimming pools, the facilities, the restaurants. Undoubtedly the most famous hotel in Barcelona!
  • Hotel Arts Barcelona: 5-star hotel located in the Olympic Port district, 250 meters from the beach and 300 meters from Ciutadella Park. Design and ultra-spacious double rooms starting from €670 per night, breakfast included. Strong points: the 2-Michelin-star restaurant, the outdoor pool with panoramic views, the design, and the contemporary art collection. This is my recommendation for a luxury stay in Barcelona!

To get a complete list of the best accommodations in Barcelona , sorted by area and budget, you should read my dedicated guide: Where to Stay in Barcelona?

Gothic Quarter Hotel Ohla Barcelona

  • For tapas: Taller de Tapas . This restaurant is part of a chain (with 6 locations in Barcelona, mainly in the old city), offering very affordable prices and a good sample of Catalan cuisine such as pan con tomate, paella, seafood tapas, croquetas, crema catalana, and more.
  • For a good burger: Bacoa is also a chain, and it’s truly an institution in Barcelona. The burgers are artisanal, made with fresh products, and hearty.
  • For a taste of chocolate a la taza: Granja La Pallaresa is one of the most famous and the best place to enjoy churros con chocolate. Moreover, the setting is really cool (in the Gothic Quarter, near the Cathedral of the Holy Cross).

Here are my tips to ensure you have the best time in Barcelona:

  • Barcelona is known for its pickpockets . To avoid any unpleasant surprises, be very careful with your belongings in the busiest areas, especially Las Ramblas, the Gothic Quarter, the metro, and the beaches. If possible, try not to look like a tourist (with a city map in hand, camera around your neck).
  • Embrace the Spanish schedule. In Barcelona, as in all of Spain, people live life late into the night. You’ll notice that shops and museums rarely open before 10 AM. Meal times are similar: Spaniards have breakfast at 11 AM, lunch between 2 PM and 4 PM, and dinner between 9 PM and 10 PM. Be careful not to fall into tourist traps: restaurants that open before 1 PM or 7 PM are usually targeting tourists.
  • Don’t just stay in the tourist areas , like the beaches and the old town. The Gracia and Poblesec districts, for example, are authentic and you should really take a stroll there to discover Catalan life.

To help you get a better sense of the city, I have created a tourist map of Barcelona listing all the places I mentioned in this top 25 things to do in Barcelona.

You can display the map legend by clicking on the button in the top left with a little arrow.

It’s really easy to get to Barcelona.

From the US, you have direct flights to Barcelona from major cities ( New York , Los Angeles ..)

From Europe, you can find cheap flights with Ryanair, or Vueling, the Barcelona-based low-cost airline.

It’s also possible to get to Barcelona by train. For example, the journey takes on average 8h20 to go from Paris to Barcelona. SNCF (the french train operator) offers 5-6 trips per day.

And you, what do you plan to visit during your stay in Barcelona?

If you need any help to plan your trip, don’t hesitate to ask me your questions in the comments section below!

FAQ – I Answer Your Questions About Barcelona

  • The Hola Barcelona card (to be purchased by clicking here!) , Barcelona’s public transport card offers unlimited access to buses, metros, and trams for 2 to 5 days. Includes the metro line from Barcelona airport to the city center!
  • A ticket for the Hop-On Hop-Off bus from Barcelona Bus Turistic + audio guide
  • A ticket for the City Tour Barcelona bus + audio guide
  • A ticket for the Aerobus shuttle that runs between the airport and the center of Barcelona
  • La Sagrada Familia
  • Casa Batlló
  • Las Ramblas where the Boqueria Market is located.

In summer , you can enjoy the beaches , and in winter , the city’s rich architecture (and churros con chocolate).

To me, the best time to visit Barcelona is in September : the weather is still nice but not as hot as in mid-summer, the tourists have thinned out, and above all, it’s the time for La Mercè!

In September, you can still enjoy the beaches of Barcelona and the Costa Brava.

Here’s my list of things to do:

  • Explore Barcelona’s monuments by night . Casa Batlló and La Pedrera offer night tours with audiovisual projections and complimentary glass of wine.
  • Attend a flamenco show (tickets can be booked here!) at one of the best tablaos in Barcelona: los Tarantos.
  • A dusk catamaran cruise accompanied by a jazz concert
  • Watch the Magic Fountain of Montjuic – Every evening from Wednesday to Sunday.
  • Climb up to the Bunkers del Carmel to admire the view of the illuminated city
  • Embark on a tapas bar crawl in Barcelona
  • Go for a drink on a rooftop bar in Barcelona or join a guided bar tour with free shots!

Discover all my articles about Spain : All my articles to help you plan your trip to Spain are listed there.

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Best places to visit in Barcelona

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

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The Planet D: Adventure Travel Blog

28 of the Best Places to Visit in Barcelona

Written By: The Planet D

Updated On: February 5, 2023

Barcelona is loved by many and thought of as the best city in Spain to visit. It’s no wonder, there are so many amazing places to visit in Barcelona that will take your breath away. We’ve been to Barcelona many times and realized that we never really shared our list of the best things to do in Barcelona, so we decided it’s about time!

While  Paris  may have the reputation of the “city of love”, many travelers will be pleasantly surprised by the romantic charms of Barcelona. The difference between Barcelona and Paris is that you don’t feel the need to run around and see every famous site. Walking around and enjoying the city’s energy is one of the best things to do in Barcelona.

Table of Contents

Best Places to Visit in Barcelona

Top Places to Visit in Barcelona

This post was originally written by Illia and Nastia from who shared their favorite romantic attractions in Barcelona. It has been rewritten by ThePlanetD with updated information and tours.

Looking for where to stay in Barcelona?

  • Hotel Mercer : Located in medieval Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarter) in the heart of Barcelona and the historic district near La Rambla. / TripAdvisor
  • Majestic Hotel and Spa – Deluxe 5-star traditional hotel in, Eixample Neighborhood steps away from Gaudi monuments and La Rambla. / TripAdvisor
  • Hotel Bagues – Located in El Reva,l La Rambla neighborhood, close to shopping areas, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA), the Gran Teatre del Liceu opera house, the Cathedral and more. / TripAdvisor
  • Read our Complete Guide of Where to Stay in Barcelona

Number 1 Money Saving Tip in Barcelona

Get your Go Barcelona Pass to save 40% on attractions and entrance fees. 2,3 and 5 day passes start at $99. There are so many perks including skip the line fast track entrances, and guided tours, on 30 popular Barcelona Attractions. Buy Now and Activate anytime in the next 24 months!

1. Sagrada Família

Sagrada Familia in Barcelona spain

You cannot mention Barcelona without including Gaudí’s famous unfinished masterpiece, the Sagrada Família. It is usually one of the first places to visit in Barcelona on anyone’s list! La Sagrada Família stands proud above the entire Barcelona skyline. He began construction on the massive cathedral in 1882. It is scheduled for completion in 2026 to commemorate 100 years since Gaudí died.

Antoni Gaudí was an architect who led the Art Nouveau style of the Catalan region of Spain. Gaudí’s works are so prevalent in Barcelona, you will explore many places where his architecture is on display. Seven of his designs have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the city. You can read more about it at the complete works of Gaudí here.

  • Get your  Skip The Line Tickets for Sagrada Familia in advance. Free/no-hassle cancellations up to 24 hours in advance.
  • Book a   walking tour of Barcelona   to discover Gaudí

If you and your loved one are planning a  romantic European holiday , then you should know that there are many romantic places to see in Barcelona for  couples . But solo travelers will fall in love with Barcelona as well!

2. Park Güell

Parc Guell in Barcelona

Our second choice for places to visit in Barcelona is a continuation of Gaudi architecture with a visit to Park Güell. This is a famous park that was also designed by the architect Antoni Gaudí . It’s one of Barcelona’s top attractions and a great place for couples to hide away from the touristic crowds, listen to street musicians, and kiss in the artificial caves. The place not to miss is a terrace with a spectacular view of the city.

  • The best way to explore Park Güell is to take a walking tour to learn about the life of Gaudi and of all the houses and architecture on display in the park.
  • Reserve now and pay later! – Book your skip the line tour of Park Güell with the guaranteed entrance. While exploring Park Güell be sure to go into the Gaudi House Museum to see how the architect lived his life.

3. Do a night tour of La Pedrera (Casa Milà)

Casa Mila in Barcelona Spain

Officially known as Casa Milà but called La Pedrera by the locals, this unique apartment block is another Gaudi design and a must-see for anyone visiting Barcelona.

To spice up the romance, we decided to see it at night and had no regrets. The soft lighting at night made the experience much more intimate and the building was truly spectacular. To cap off our romantic evening we finished up with a glass of Pinot Noir on the roof terrace. You can book tours of La Predera ahead of time

4. Casa Batlló

Casa Batllo in Barcelona

Casa Batlló is located along Passeig de Gràcia and this street is worth walking just for the row of houses that make it famous. This is a major thoroughfare of Barcelona and we stayed in the Majestic Hotel and Spa located on this street. There are several shops and restaurants, but it is Casa Batlló that is the star attraction. Another work by Gaudi, this townhouse was designed for the Battló family in the 19th century. If you look closely at the balconies, they look like skeletons. Get your entry ticket to Casa Battlo with an audio guide included.

5. Passeig de Gràcia

Speaking of Passeig de Gràcia , this is a major street in Barcelona that should not be missed. Not only does it contain many of Gaudi’s great works, it is the premier shopping street in Barcelona. The wide pedestrian sidewalk makes it easy to window shop where you’ll find the likes of Gucci, Prada, Dior and Dolce and Gabana. We stayed at Majestic Hotel and Spa on this street and it was amazing to walk out our door and be so close to everything.

6. Palau de La Música Catalana

Palau de La Musica Catalana in Barcelona Spain

A tour of the Palau de la Música Catalana is a wonderful experience for its ornate interior. It looks like something that Gaudi would design, but he didn’t. It was in fact designed by architect, Lluís Domènech i Montaner. Built between 1905 and 1908 it has that classic Catalan modernism feel.

Tours can be booked to see the interior of the Palau de la Música Catalana including the concert hall and its ornate glass ceiling, the stained glass windows, and colorful design. It is definitely worth going inside as it is very impressive and this was one of our favourite places to visit in Barcelona indeed.

7. Barcelona Opera House – The Gran Teatre del Liceu

Barcelona Opera House

Sticking with our music theme, a visit to the Barcelona Opera House is another interesting place to visit in Barcelona. It is one of the most popular opera houses in all of Europe. It opened in 1847 and has seen some of the greatest performers in history grace its stage. Domingo, Pavarotti, you name it, they’ve played here.

Tours will take you to see the stage and seating area of 2300 patrons, but you will also get to see rehearsal halls and other important rooms.

8. Santa Maria del Mar

Santa Maria del Mar in Barcelona

Dave and I tend to explore our religious side when visiting cities in Europe, and Barcelona is no different. It is the Gothic Churches that interest us, and Santa Maria del Mar checks all the boxes. Dating back to the 14th century, construction began in 1329 and it was completed in 1350. It is dark and stark on the outside like the usual gothic cathedrals, but inside it is light and open feeling like a lighter basilica. Something of note to see is the tomb of the  Martyr Saint Santa Eulalia . And it is worth spending a couple of euros to go up to the rooftop for a view of the city.

9. Parc de la Ciutadella (Ciutadella Park) – Arc de Triomf

Did you know there is an Arc de Triomf in Barcelona? Well, not exactly the same as Paris, but Barcelona does have its own arch. Barcelona’s Arc de Triomf was built by architect Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas for the 1888 World’s Fair. It is located at the northern end of Passeig de Lluís Companys a promenade in Ciutat Vella (Old City) The giant arch marks the entranceway to the beautiful Parc de la Ciutadella. Here you’ll find the Parliament of Catalunya and a lovely lake with a fountain modeled after the Trevi Fountain. Barcelona’s city park, Parc de la Ciutadella houses a zoo, a small lake, and a fountain partially designed by Antoni Gaudí.

10. Cascada Fountain

Casacada Fountain in Barcelona

The Cascada Fountain is a beautiful fountain that is the centerpiece of Ciutadella Park. While working for designer Josep Fontserè Gaudi designed the water tanks and hydraulics. If it looks familiar, you are correct. This fountain was modeled after the Trevi Fountain in Rome .

One of the most romantic activities we did was to rent a rowboat at the lake in Ciutadella park. It cost us only twelve euros for a full hour (a bargain!) and it was a marvelous way to crown what was already a memorable vacation. Moving up and down the lake was a great way to reflect on the charm of Barcelona and get a close view of the beautiful scenery of the park.

11. Gothic Quarter Ciutat Vella

ciutat vella  in Barcelona

The Ciutat Vella – the old city of Barcelona is a place you will definitely find yourself experiencing a feeling of a bygone era. Built on top of old Roman ruins, the streets of Barcelona are a maze of small alleyways and walkways. Each turn takes you to yet another old church or remains of a Roman Wall. It is worth it just to wander away for an hour or two and stop at a café to have a draught beer at the bar before heading off for a late lunch.

Get lost in the streets, stop in a tapas bar for a glass of sangria or cava (Spanish sparkling wine), and wander the streets admiring the architecture and daily life.

12. La Rambla

Las Ramblas in Barcelona

Even though it is touristy, a trip to Barcelona wouldn’t be complete without strolling along La Rambla. La Rambla is one of the top attractions in Barcelona and with good reason. Also known as Las Ramblas or just Ramblas, La Rambla is Barcelona’s bustling main tourist street.  It is a gorgeous piece of roadway that has a wide pedestrian walkway right down the middle. 

Street performers line the edges posing with tourists for a few coins. The famous human statues are a lot of fun to watch. Vendors sell chickens, guinea pigs, flowers, and vegetables. It is a lively place filled with swarms of people.  It is also the main walkway down to the water and towards many of the cities tourist sites.

This pedestrian boulevard runs for 1.2 km beginning at Plaça de Catalunya and ending at Port Vell. If this is your first time to Barcelona, La Rambla is a good place to start to get your bearings and a feel for the Barcelona tourism scene. Plus, it’s a great place to find a fix price meal, a cheap pitcher of Sangria, and free people watching.

13. Palau Guell

Palau Guell in Barcelona Spain

The 1st Count of Güell,” Eusebi Güell kept Gaudi very busy commissioning many of his famous buildings in Barcelona. This was one of his first commissions, beginning construction in 1886. It was the private residence of the Guell family and like many places in Barcelona, you must go inside to appreciate its true splendor. The Parabolic Dome is the showstopper.

Get your Barcelona City Pass offering access to all the top attraction s in Barcelona for one low price. Choose from 2, 3 or 5-day pass to visit as many attractions as you like.

14. Mercato Boqueria

La Bouqueria in Barcelona

Be sure to pop into La Boqueria to grab some snacks for a picnic. We filled up with meats and cheese, bread, and olives to take with us to the beach for a picnic lunch. Barcelona is known for its food culture and it doesn’t take long to walk around the city to realize how much the Barcelonians value this.

We hit the Boqueria market one morning and were amazed by the huge variety of fruit, vegetables, meats, and countless Spanish delicacies. If you are staying at a holiday apartment like an Airbnb or have access to a kitchen, then you must hit the market.

Going to the market and cooking in our apartment afterward gave us a sense that we were a couple living the romantic dream in a European city rather than just visiting for a short summer.

15. Barcelona Cathedral

Barcelona Cathedral at sunset

I nearly forgot about this beautiful cathedral that we visited on our first trip to Barcelona. Until I was looking through photos. The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia (aka Gothic Cathedral of Barcelona) may not be as famous as Sagrada Familia but it is much older. It dates back to the 13th century! Its steeple peeks out from the city skyline beckoning you to visit.

Book your Hop on Hop Off bus tour for your visit to Barcelona. It’s a great way to get acquainted with the city, plus tickets can be purchased in advance or last minute with easy and free cancellation within 24 hours of tour.

16. Plaza de España (Plaça d’Espanya)

Plaza de Espana in Barcelona

This gorgeous plaza which sits in will make you want to confess your love to the world. We walked through there in the evening by chance and it was hard not to be blown away by its beauty. The gorgeous Ciutadella fortress and the beautiful Venetian Towers create the atmosphere of a fairy tale.

The long walking street with hundreds of shops starts here as well, making it a perfect place to buy a souvenir to remember about your romantic getaway. Read: Catalunya, Spain in Photos

17. Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

 Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

Even though we aren’t the biggest museum fans, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya is a sight to see in its own right. Inside you’ll see Catalan art dating back to the 10th century and you’ll browse, everything from Gothic and Romanesque to Modern and Baroque art. And it is here you’ll find some paintings by El Greco. But it truly is the outside that is beautiful as it looks like a grand palace more than a museum.

18. Magic Fountain of Montjuïc

Magic Fountain of Montjuïc in Barcelona

The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc was built in 1929 for the Universal Expo. It’s a beautiful fountain to see, but it is the colorful light show that attracts visitors at night. The show performs 3 to 5 days of the week from 8-9 pm or 9-10 pm depending on the time of the year. It is definitely one of the not to miss attractions in Barcelona.

The light show at Montjuic Fountain is marvelous. Read about all the things to do in Barcelona at night . Check out the  timetables  and note that it is closed from Jan 7 – Feb 28 for annual maintenance.

19. Poble Espanyol

Poble Espanyol is a replica of a Spanish Village that was built for the 1929 World’s Fair. During the day it is a spot to walk through replicas of Spanish buildings, craft workshops and museums honoring Dali to Picasso. When the sun goes down, it is alive with, Flamenco dancing, tapa bars, and night clubs. To really explore it, book skip the line tickets in advance.

20. Port Vell – Barcelona Harbour

Barcelona Harbor at night

The old port of Barcelona is a sight to see. We had never witnessed so many huge yachts and rows of boats lining the harbour. Who owns these multimillion-dollar floating homes? There were so many in port and we marveled at their extravagance and how someone could possibly afford one of these.   And what do we do to get one?

The waterfront is a perfect place to enjoy the afternoon. Port Vell is an enormous entertainment complex complete with Aquarium, Imax, shopping, restaurants, and a giant marina filled with yachts and sailboats.

A popular Barcelona attraction is The Port Vell Arial Tramway. Opened in 1931, it takes you from Montjuïc to Torre Sant Sebastià.  If you want to see it from above, this is a fun option for a bird’s eye view of the city.

21. Hit the beach

Barcelona Beach at sunset

One of the things that make Barcelona stand out among the large European cities is the beaches. We were blown away by the pristine Mediterranean waters of Barcelona’s beaches. As a bonus, the coastline is located right in the city center so it’s a great place to take your shoes off and walk after lunch or dinner.

Playa Barceloneta is the city’s most famous beach but there are many beaches you can visit in the city. We took a sailing trip from the harbor to see Barcelona from the sea and it was amazing.

22. Columbus Monument

Colombus Monument in Barcelona

While walking from Las Ramblas to Port Vell, we stumbled upon the Columbus monument. At 60 meters high (197 feet) it is an impressive monument.

Like a fountain, it was constructed for the Universal Exposition of Barcelona in 1881. It is there to commemorate his first voyage to the Americas and to remind that he reported to Queen Isabella I and Kin Ferdinand V here in Barcelona immediately upon his return.

23. Plaça de Catalunya

Placa de Catalunya in Barcelona

Another important square in Barcelona is Plaça de Catalunya. It is the major transportation hub of the city. Close to the university, you’ll see students enjoying the outdoors. If you are like us, we enjoy visiting Hard Rock Cafés and we couldn’t resist popping in for a beer to check out Barcelona’s version of the famous restaurant.

24. Afternoon Dessert at Plaça Sant Felip Neri

This chilled-out square has a violent history as it was bombed during the Spanish Civil War but today it is one of the most romantic hideaways in the city.

We ordered an amazing gelato and dessert at one of the nearby cafes and walked over to the plaza hand in hand to enjoy a nice and much-needed quiet escape from the city. If you are lucky enough as we were you might even catch some Spanish guitar being played by one of the lingering locals. Read: Gelato vs Ice Cream: a Tasty Showdown from Bologna

Fun Barcelona City Tours

25. seat 600 driving tour.

SEAT 500 Tour in Barcelona

Pretty much one of the coolest tours we’ve ever done was the Seat 600 Classic car tour through the city. These were the popular car from the ’60s and we all followed in a line on this self-drive tour through Barcelona.

Be prepared to drive a stick. If you aren’t comfortable, have someone else drive, the skinny steering wheels, sensitive clutch, and strange shifter made for quite the adventure as we drove around the city tasting tapas. We ended high on a hill overlooking the city and eating an outdoor feast under the stars.

26. Sidecar Tour

Views from the Sidecar Tour in Barcelona

We were picked up at the Barcelona waterfront by a pair of motorbikes with a couple of sidecars attached. We put on our helmets, hooked up our microphones and proceeded to enjoy a tour of the city.

We whizzed all through the streets seeing such famous sites as the Columbus monument, Old Port, Palau de la Música Catalana, Sagrada Familia Temple, Casa Milán Casa Battló, Plaza España, El Raval district and Las Ramblas promenade just to name a few!

We got to see the city from all different sides and enjoyed catching a glimpse of Barcelona’s nightlife. If you get the chance to try a sidecar tour in Barcelona, we highly recommend you do it. For more information on the side car, city tour visit  Ride The Brightside

27. Food and Market Tours

Barcelona Market Tour

When visiting Spain, a lot of your most memorable experiences will be about food. One of our favourite things to do in Barcelona was to join a local chef to visit the city’s two main markets, Mercat Boqueria and Mercat de Santa Caterina. The two oldest markets in the city. Food tours are the best way to learn about the local cuisine and it makes visiting the restaurants of Barcelona more fun because you now know what to order!

Check out these Barcelona Food Tours. Explore Barcelona through your stomach with these tasty tours. Free cancellation up to 24 hours notice plus last-minute bookings.

  • Santa Caterina and Boqueria Market Tours with Local Chef – Take a tour through one of the most famous markets in the world plus small local grocery shops. Tastes Spanish delicacies like olive oil, vinegar, olives, Iberian ham, tomatoes, Manchego cheese, pork sausage, and more.
  • Paella Cooking Class & Mercato Boqueria – Go shopping for ingredients to make your own Spanish Paella. Sample Catalan hot and cold tapas and learn about Basque Pintxos. Don’t forget the sangria!
  • Go off the usual Gaudi Route and instead take a Tapas Tasting tour with a visit to the Picasso Museum – Tour Ciutat Vella with tapas tasting at three different venues.

Day Tour from Barcelona

28. montserrat.

Day Trip from Barcelona Montserrat

A highlight of any trip to Barcelona is to take a day trip to the Benedictine Monk mountain retreat of Montserrat. It takes an hour to get there by train, or you can rent a car as we did. We actually had a car for most of our visits to Barcelona to give us the freedom to explore Catalunya with ease.

A funicular will take you to the top of the mountain for spectacular views and mountain hikes. And of course, listen to the Montserrat Choir boys perform. They perform daily at 1 pm.

Book Montserrat tours from Barcelona. Free cancellation and last-minute bookings. Monsterrat Cable Care and Easy Hike – Transportation from Barcelona to Montserrat where you’ll take the cable car up the world-famous Monastery. See the Black Madonna and take an easy hike with your guide.

Where to Eat in Barcelona

Where to eat in Barcelona

There are many places to eat in Barcelona and you can easily just walk the streets to find a packed restaurant, but one we wanted to mention was Bar Velodromo. Bar Velodromo where we checked the menu with 3D glasses and enjoyed great meat and cheeses

Barcelona Tourist Attractions Map

places to visit in barcelona map

  • A Local’s Guide to What to do in Barcelona at Night
  • The 16 Most Romantic Cities on Earth
  • Gaudi in Barcelona – 13 Must-See Architectural Wonders

Author Bio: Illia and Nastia are passionate about each other, traveling around the world and sharing their experiences at , a blog where you can find plenty of budget travel tips as well as practical information about numerous destinations. They have visited 40+ countries across 5 continents, and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. Visit their website to learn more about traveling as a couple! Follow them Facebook / Twitter  / Pinterest / Instagram

Going to Spain? Read more about these Spanish Cities

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About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine , the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

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17 thoughts on “28 of the Best Places to Visit in Barcelona”

Interesting article. Also romantic places; Casa Batllo (sometimes they have theatrical visits), the magic fountain and make from Park Guell a walk to the Bunkers del Carmel, for an amazing view over Barcelona. In the evening visit the area of Gracia.

First off I want to say great blog! I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you do not mind. I was interested to know how you center yourself and clear your head before writing. I have had a difficult time clearing my mind in getting my ideas out there. I do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or hints? Thank you!

Good write-up. I definitely appreciate this website. Keep writing!

Thanks so much for providing individuals with a very memorable chance to read articles and blog posts from this web site. It is often very nice and also jam-packed with a great time for me personally and my office co-workers to search the blog a minimum of three times every week to study the new things you have.

And indeed, I’m just actually astounded with the sensational ideas served by you. Certain two areas in this post are truly the most beneficial I’ve had.

You are veritable inspiration for couples looking for romantic getaways. Barcelona is the must visit place in a life time. Gaudi’s architectural styles are wonderful, I have seen interiors of the Sagrada Familia in many videos and they seem like a surreal. Thanks for sharing the most wonderful post.

Yes to Barceloneta beach! And there was that one restaurant with outdoor seating right by the shore that had the best paella. Brings back memories. Perfect list 🙂

Great blog, Barcelona is one of my favourites as a perfect & dream honeymoon destination too, so romantic and pretty 🙂

Great post on a place that’s still on the bucketlist! I’ve visited most of the South but need to venture up to Barcelona.

Totally agree with the authors 🙂 Barcelona is a great city to visit and it is very affordable even for a budget traveller. Haven’t see La Pedrera by night yet, but walking through the rooftop maze framed by the iconic chimneys also can be romantic, and sharing tiny tiny pintxos 😀

Its a Wonderful Travel Post to visit. Great Beautiful place. I will list this to my next travel. Amazing Post.

Great blog and amazing pics. Will try to go to Barcelona in my next trip. Thanx

Beautiful place. Great blog and I am going to add this into my bucket list.Barcelona is amazing and pictures are great.

What a beautiful market! Love the photos – Barcelona is a romantic city; with so much culture, interesting architecture and good food (not to mention cheap wine) its the perfect romantic destination!

Thank you for featuring us guys! Barcelona is definitely one of our favorite cities in Europe. We now reside in the US and are planning to live elsewhere in future. Barcelona is one of the top places we’d love to move to! ??

Great post! I love Barcelona such unique culture and architecture…. Loved this list though! A few different things that what you normally read – Although single I think they can still be appreciated haha

Hi, nice post on Barcelona. We’re off to Portugal later this year, and had considered including some of Spain in our tour. However, I’ve heard that Barcelona is getting very crowded to the point that the locals aren’t that thrilled about the number of tourists there. How did you feel when you were there? Get any strange vibes? Did you feel crowded or was it OK?

really enjoyed. They are really beautiful places. My dream

Full Suitcase Travel Blog

28 TOP Barcelona Sights & Tourist Attractions (+Map & Tips)

By Author Jurga

Posted on Last updated: June 1, 2024

28 TOP Barcelona Sights & Tourist Attractions (+Map & Tips)

Looking for the best things to do in Barcelona, Spain, and feeling overwhelmed? Deciding which of the most popular Barcelona attractions to see is indeed not easy, especially if you are visiting for the first time and your time in the city is limited…

So to help you figure out where to go and what to see in Barcelona, in this guide we share the VERY BEST sights and TOP tourist attractions in Barcelona that are worth your time the most . For each place, we also include our top tips for your visit. We also created a map of Barcelona attractions that should help you plan your sightseeing itinerary. Find out!

Located between the sea and the mountains, the beautiful city of Barcelona is rich in culture and history. Its architecture is stunning, a contrasting mixture of Catalan Gothic and Modernism. The atmosphere is fun and cosmopolitan, with a relaxed and friendly vibe during the day and a vibrant nightlife when the sun goes down.

With so many things to do and interesting places to explore in Barcelona, you may be feeling a little daunted when it comes to planning an itinerary. This guide to Barcelona’s top sights and attractions will give you a good idea of what to expect, and our experience-based tips will help you make the most of your time. At the bottom of this article, you can find a map indicating all the top sights in Barcelona.

Good to know: In addition to the must-sees featured in this guide, there are many more interesting things to do in Barcelona. While not a must on a short first visit, these experiences will make your visit to the city even more special than just ticking off the ‘must-see’ list . So in order to give you a more complete picture of how much Barcelona has to offer, we share some of the coolest local attractions and fun activities as well.

Best places to see and things to do in Barcelona Spain

Good to know: This list of the best sights and attractions in Barcelona is sorted starting with the must-sees first . So if you are really short on time, start with the top of this list and make your way down.

The top 10 sights on this list are not to be missed . If you have more time in the city, be sure to read all the suggestions and choose a few more places that interest you the most.

The top 15-20 are really nice to see and you should be able to cover most of these sights in about 3 days. The rest is well worth it too, and if you have 4-5 days in Barcelona, you should be able to see most of the places mentioned in this guide.

TIP: Be sure to also check our additional recommendations for fun activities and experiences that will make a nice addition to any sightseeing itinerary and will help you plan a much more memorable trip to Barcelona! You can find them at the end of this guide, right before the map of the main sights in Barcelona.

But first – the musts, best places to see and things to do in Barcelona. Take a look!

Top 3 Places Not to Miss in Barcelona:

  • Sagrada Familia (Be sure to upgrade to Tower access!) .
  • Park Güell .
  • Casa Batlló .

These are the main landmarks, best sights, and top tourist attractions in Barcelona:

1. La Sagrada Familia

One of Barcelona’s most famous buildings, the Basilica of La Sagrada Familia (Basilica of the Holy Family) is an architectural masterpiece that should be at the top of any Spain bucket list . If there is one landmark that you absolutely cannot miss in Barcelona, it’s Sagrada Familia.

Designed by the genius architect Antoni Gaudí, La Sagrada is truly breathtaking. No words or pictures do it justice – it’s a place you have to experience first-hand.

As impressive as it is, seeing the church from the outside isn’t enough – you really have to visit the inside too! Filled with rich detail, its interior is bathed in fairytale-like rainbow hues as the light filters through the colorful glass windows. The atmosphere is almost surreal and the view inside the naves – looking up at the tree-like columns surrounding the vaulted ceiling – defies description.

Good to know: Do not confuse La Sagrada Familia with the Cathedral of Barcelona . Whilst the most famous and most visited, Basilica La Sagrada Familia is not a Cathedral . The actual Barcelona Cathedral is also well worth a visit – you’ll find more information about it further below.

Interesting fact: Although the construction started at the end of the 19th century, La Sagrada Familia is still not completely finished. The building has been under construction for over 130 years! Whilst most of the interior is now complete, you’ll notice that work is still being done to the exterior. The aim is to finish it by 2026, to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s passing. It’s fun to spot the differences in architectural styles and colors as you walk around.

Basilica La Sagrada Familia is the most beautiful place to see in Barcelona

Good to know: Be sure to get skip-the-line tickets in advance to avoid wasting time queuing. Plan 1.5-2 hours for your visit, and – in high season – allow some extra waiting time (even with priority tickets, you’ll have to locate the dedicated entrance, pass the security check, etc).

Best time to visit: If you want to avoid the crowds, visit La Sagrada Familia first thing in the morning. However, mid-morning or mid to late afternoon is the best time light-wise. That’s when the sunlight strikes the windows directly, enhancing the colorful illumination within the church. We visited at around 2 PM and the light was mesmerizing!

TIP: Instead of just getting tickets and going on your own, we highly recommend booking a guided tour which will come with priority access tickets. There is so much symbolism, so many interesting details, and stories about La Sagrada that you would totally miss without a guide. Having a guide will enhance your visit to any of the Gaudi buildings, but especially at La Sagrada Familia!

PRO TIP: If available for your travel date, upgrade your ticket to include tower access. Some guided tours also give this option. It doesn’t matter which tower you choose – Passion Facade Tower or Nativity Facade Tower, the views are just as spectacular, and you get to see the incredible architectural details of the towers and the rooftops from close by. It’s one of the most unique experiences in Barcelona!

We visited La Sagrada Familia as part of this amazing day tour that includes all the main Gaudi landmarks in Barcelona. You can read all about this tour via the link below.

READ ALSO: Best Gaudi Tour in Barcelona

La Sagrada Familia is a must see in Barcelona

2. Gothic Quarter – Old Town of Barcelona

The Ciutat Vella – Barcelona’s Old Town – is made up of four main areas. The most popular and the most beautiful to see is the Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarter). No matter how long your trip is, this area is not to be missed in Barcelona!

Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter is a rather compact area located southeast of Pla ça de Catalunya and perched between the streets of La Rambla to the west and Via Laietana to the east.

It’s a fascinating part of the town, with a network of narrow medieval streets and stunning examples of the Gothic stone architecture that gave it its name.

It’s here that you’ll find many of the oldest churches of Barcelona, including the 13-15th-century Cathedral of Barcelona (more about it below). And be sure to explore the neighborhood’s many squares, including the most famous of them all, Plaça Reial (Royal Square).

TIP: The 19th-century  Plaça Reial is one of the must-sees in Barcelona! It’s a lively city square lined with tall palm trees, a fountain in the middle, and lamps designed by Gaudi. This is a popular meeting place with many restaurants and cafes – ideal to relax, have a drink, and do some people-watching. If you visit on a Sunday morning, you’ll find the coin- and stamp collectors’ market here as well.

Garden and inner courtyard of Barcelona Cathedral

But the history of the Gothic Quarter goes back much further, with parts dating back to Roman times. Inside the area’s City History Museum (MUHBA – more info further below), you can even visit a subterranean Roman town. Here you’ll see ancient houses, streets, and workplaces.

Good to know: The Gothic Quarter is packed with bars and restaurants and has a very lively nightlife. It’s also great for shopping, with plenty of little boutiques to explore.

TIP: There are many really nice tours that visit this part of town (often in combination with other popular sights in Barcelona). You can choose from walking tours , bike tours , or food tours – it’s a fun way to get to know the city a bit better.

Gothic Quarter in Barcelona Spain

3. Barcelona Cathedral

The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia – also known as Barcelona Cathedral – is the main attraction in the Old Town. It’s a traditional Gothic cathedral, totally different from La Sagrada Familia, but worth a visit just as much.

Dating back to the 13th to 15th centuries, Barcelona Cathedral is a beautiful building with a spectacular interior that simply must not be missed. Its facade is famous for its gargoyles, along with domestic and mythical animals.

But what many people don’t realize is that its elaborate exterior was actually a 19th-century addition! Its original features were much more simple and can still be seen along the Cathedral’s sides.

Be sure to take a walk in the picturesque garden , filled with tall palms and magnolias. Here you will find the Well of the Geese (Fuente de las Ocas). This is a large, raised pond filled with thirteen white geese. Some say they are there to safeguard the cathedral’s treasures – geese were traditionally kept by the Romans as security guards. Others say they are there to represent the age of Christian martyr Saint Eulàlia when she died.

Barcelona Cathedral

TIP: It’s also well worth taking the elevator to the Cathedral roof . Here you can get a good view of the Barcelona skyline.

Good to know: You’ll need a ticket to visit the Cathedral. It is now possible to book this ticket online and we highly recommend doing that! The ticket includes fast-track entry to the Cathedral, access to the rooftops, the Chapter Room, and more. For more info about opening times and tickets, see their website .

Also, you should wear appropriate clothing (knees and shoulders covered) for your visit here – shorts and revealing clothes are considered disrespectful.

Barcelona Cathedral interior

4. Park Güell

Park Güell is another of the most famous Gaudi attractions and one of the top fairytale places in Europe . It’s an absolute must-see in Barcelona!

This magical garden was commissioned by the Spanish entrepreneur Eusebi Güell. He wanted a stylish park for Barcelona’s aristocracy to enjoy and this magnificent open space was the result.

You can see beautiful tiling here, along with unique stone structures, detailed mosaics, and a wonderful dragon staircase with a fountain. There is even a small house in which Gaudi lived at one point. This is now a museum and contains interesting pieces of furniture that he designed.

Park Guell is one of the must sees in Barcelona

TIP: Be sure to book your tickets ahead of your visit, as they are usually sold out at least a few days in advance. Many of our readers told us that they weren’t able to visit the park because they didn’t think to book in advance, and our local guide confirmed that this is indeed often the case.

PRO TIP: If you didn’t get the tickets in time, try to see if you can still join one of the guided tours that visit the park . They usually prebook some extra tickets to accommodate last-minute bookings.

Good to know: Park Güell is located a bit outside of the city center. The closest metro station to the park is about 15 minutes away, so if you are very short on time you may prefer to take a taxi. Also, wear comfy footwear! Much of the walking is uphill and many of the paths are made from dirt. Sneakers are ideal.

Park Güell is one of top attractions in Barcelona

5. Plaça de Catalunya

Located in the very heart of Barcelona, Plaça de Catalunya is a large plaza, the central square of the city. It’s here that the Gothic Quarter, the neighborhoods of El Raval and l’Eixample, and the most prominent streets such as La Rambla and Passeig de Gràcia come together. It doesn’t get any more central!

Plaça de Catalunya is a popular meeting place in Barcelona – for locals and tourists alike. Many city tours start here, and – because there’s enough space for big buses to park – quite a lot of tours that go outside the city also start here.

This large city square is a hub of activity, with frequent fiestas and live musical performances. Its perimeter is lined with statues and there are fountains and green verges, giving you somewhere to sit for a while and soak it all up.

Surrounding the square are many great eateries (including the Hard Rock Cafe , for the fans). Shopping is good here too, with – among others – a large branch of El Corte Ingles, Spain’s biggest department store chain.

Plaça de Catalunya in Barcelona

Good to know: To appreciate the plaza without the crowds (and noise) visit on the weekend in the morning.

TIP: For an impressive, birds-eye view of the plaza and the city beyond, check out the self-service restaurant at the very top level of the El Corte Ingles shopping center. It’s one of the best – and free – viewpoints in Barcelona’s city center.

Catalunya Square is a must see in Barcelona

6. La Rambla

La Rambla (aka Las Ramblas) is probably Barcelona’s most famous street and no trip to the city would be complete without walking through it. Connecting Plaça de Catalunya to the waterfront area La Rambla crosses the heart of Barcelona’s old town, with many of Barcelona’s most famous sights just nearby.

This wide tree-lined avenue with a wide pedestrian area in the middle is packed with street musicians, souvenir vendors, and people enjoying drinks on the restaurants’ terraces.

It’s busy – crowded – at La Rambla every day. But visit early in the morning and you’ll find it much quieter. This will give you an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful architecture and other interesting sights here.

Check out the Font de Canaletes , a small drinking fountain where Barcelona football club fans come to celebrate the team’s victories. Drinking from this fountain is said to guarantee your return to the city (I haven’t tried though)…

Other spots worth visiting include Gran Teatre del Liceu and Palau Güell , an impressive mansion designed by Gaudi. Also the earlier mentioned Gothic Quarter with Plaça Reial – beautifully decorated with palm trees – and Plaça de Sant Josep Oriol square with Basilica de Santa Maria del Pi is just nearby.

Casa Bruno Cuadros – a building at the corner of La Rambla and Plaça Boqueria – with Chinese mosaics, umbrellas, and a huge dragon on the facade is also noteworthy.

La Rambla Barcelona

Good to know: Restaurants and cafes on La Rambla tend to be of quite poor quality. Your best dining option in the area is to head to the Boqueria market instead (see below) or check out the restaurants in the Gothic Quarter just nearby.

Also, La Rambla is so busy and so touristy that it’s one of the places where you really have to watch out for pickpockets!

Pastisseria Escribà on La Rambla in Barcelona

7. Casa Batlló

Designed by Gaudi, the iconic architecture of Casa Batlló in the city center attracts a million visitors every year. This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Barcelona.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the building was originally constructed in 1877, at which point it had a very unoriginal appearance. But when local businessman Josep Batlló y Casanovas bought it in 1903, he called in Gaudi to work his magic. It then evolved into the spectacular work of art we see today!

Its exterior and interior – like all of Gaudi’s work – is absolutely unique, from the extravagant facade all the way to the dragon roof. The entrance hall has an underwater feel, whilst the Noble Floor features massive oak doors with stained glass panes. The dining room at its center leads out to a beautiful and tranquil rear courtyard, beautifully paved and dotted with tile and glass-coated flower pots.

Strange as it may sound, make sure you check out the building’s elevator too. Installed in the center of the patio of lights, it still uses its beautiful and original wooden car.

The newest addition is the immersive Casa Batllo 10D Experience with two immersive rooms – the Gaudi Dome and the Gaudi Cube. The art literally comes to life as you approach! Just be sure to choose the right ticket option – depending on what you want to see and how much time you have inside. See more info below as well.

Casa Batllo in Barcelona Spain

Good to know: Casa Batllo is open daily to visitors and takes around an hour to explore. Be sure to get your tickets in advance and plan to visit first thing in the morning or late in the afternoon, when it is less crowded.

NEW! There’s now a special, early access available to Casa Batllo with this ‘Be the First’ ticket . If you don’t mind getting up earlier and want to see one of the most special Gaudi buildings in Barcelona without the crowds, check it out!

TIP: We visited here with this tour that also visits La Sagrada Familia, Park Güell, and allows you to see a few other Gaudi landmarks in about half a day. The guide took us inside Casa Batllo before the building opened to the general public. It was magical!

Casa Batllo is among top places to see in Barcelona

8. Casa Milà

Casa Milà , also known as La Pedrera (the stone quarry), is another famous Gaudi building and a very popular place to see in Barcelona. Like Casa Battlo, it is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is equally busy to visit!

Casa Mila is famous for its unusual rough-hewn, wavy appearance. Incredibly, it does not have a single straight line and looks almost organic rather than something manmade.

The most impressive is its rooftop and chimneys that you can see up close if you visit inside.

TIP: If you are looking for an even more special experience, you can visit here in the evening, after dark. The rooftop is lit up and you can experience a spectacular light show. For more info and tickets for the La Pedrera night experience, see here .

Barcelona attractions - Casa Mila

Good to know: Just like all the Gaudi sights, Casa Mila is an extremely popular attraction in Barcelona. So if you want to be sure to see the interior, you really should get skip-the-line tickets in advance !

Consider this: Casa Battlo and Casa Mila are both iconic landmarks, among the most visited Barcelona attractions. Even with fast-track access, trying to see both of them can eat up too much of your precious time in Barcelona.

So depending on your overall sightseeing itinerary, you might prefer to visit the inside of only one of these buildings and appreciate the other one from the outside.

Opinions differ on which is best – Casa Mila or Casa Battlo. The majority of visitors seem to agree that the interior of Casa Battlo really shouldn’t be missed, so if you can visit just one of the two, make it Casa Battlo, and then admire Casa Mila from the outside. They’re located very close to each other, just 5 minutes walk between the two.

Casa Mila on Passeig de Gracia in Barcelona

9. Passeig de Gràcia

One of the city’s most important avenues, Passeig de Gràcia is another place you really have to see in Barcelona. Along this famous street, you’ll find some of Barcelona’s most remarkable architecture, high-end boutiques, plus cafés, bars, and restaurants.

Some of the most impressive buildings in Barcelona can be found on Passeig de Gràcia. The earlier-mentioned Casa Battlo and Casa Mila are located here.

Plus, there are many other buildings by other prominent architects including the most famous mansions such as Casa Amatller (this one can also be visited inside ), Casa Lleó Morera , Casa Mulleras , and Casa Josefina Bonet .

TIP: Note the hexagonal tiles on the pavements ! Designed by Gaudi, they all follow the same pattern with natural elements such as starfish, ammonites, and algae. The design was originally meant for the floors of Casa Batllo but was later used for the service floors inside Casa Mila. Recently, the sidewalks of Passeig de Gracia have been paved with tiles produced using this Gaudi design.

Barcelona Passeig de Gràcia and Gaudi tiles

Many people come to Passeig de Gràcia just to shop. Indeed, it’s one of the best places for luxury shopping in Barcelona.

There are plenty of renowned international designer stores to choose from, including Prada, Chanel, and Gucci. Or you can head all the way into Gracia Village, where Passeig de Gràcia ends. Here you’ll find an interesting collection of independent boutiques, organic health-food eateries, and stores selling up-cycled furniture.

And if you want to take a break from sightseeing and shopping, you’ll find plenty of cafes, restaurants, and bars at which to stop and enjoy lunch or dinner.

Good to know: Gracia village has lots of outdoor squares lined with laid-back cafes and bars. And its nightlife is excellent, attracting a young and local crowd.

Casa Lleo Morera on Passeig de Gracia in Barcelona

10. Mercado de La Boqueria

Barcelona has 12 large covered 19th-century markets scattered all over the city.

The best-known and most popular indoor market is the Mercado de La Boqueria , housed in a stunning glass and steel building in the heart of La Rambla.

Boqueria Market is a real foodie’s paradise, with local meats, cheeses, and seafood along with a range of exotic and colorful fruits and vegetables. It’s a great place to go for lunch or a quick snack when sightseeing in Barcelona city center.

Mercado de La Boqueria in Barcelona

Good to know: The marker is open every day from morning through to the evening (except on Sundays)

Market stalls and bars selling food and drinks are dotted throughout the market. You may not always be able to sit down as you eat, but you can certainly enjoy the lively atmosphere and bustle!

TIP: Head to the stalls at the back of the market for the best prices – those at the front pay more rent, so they charge more too! And be sure to try one of the many different kinds of freshly squeezed fruit juice while you’re here. They are yummy!

Colorful fruit stand at Boqueria Market in Barcelona

11. Picasso Museum

Picasso Museum is one of the most visited museums in Barcelona. Containing the world’s largest collection of Picasso’s work, the museum is well worth a visit, but you should know that the majority of art you’ll see here dates from his early years. So it might not be exactly what you expect to see based on Picasso’s most famous works…

Although Picasso was born in Malaga, he spent his formative years in Barcelona. Subsequently, it was the place he most considered home. The Picasso Museum honors that connection and contains an extensive collection of his lesser-known works. There are more than 4,200 pieces to view, all chronologically arranged to show the evolution of his art.

You don’t need to be a Picasso fan to appreciate this museum – indeed, there are very few Cubist paintings at all. This museum mostly showcases how his art developed from a traditional style into the rather more unconventional works that made him famous.

It’s really interesting to see how Picasso evolved as an artist and how his style changed with time!

The museum is located in a magnificent medieval building in the old town – somewhat at odds with the style of its subject. However, this also means that the rooms are quite small and it can get very busy at times.

Picasso Museum is one of the best places to visit in Barcelona

Good to know: The museum is open daily except for Mondays. Count about 1-1.5 hours for a visit.

You can visit the museum on your own (free entrance is included with Barcelona Card and also with the Top-6 Museums Card ). But if you want to learn more about the artist and get a better understanding of his works, there’s also a very good guided tour of the museum .

TIP: Just like the majority of Barcelona museums, you can visit here free of charge at certain times. At the moment of writing, the entrance is free on the first Sunday of the month and from 4 PM on Thursdays.

Dwarf Dancer painting by Pablo Picasso in Barcelona

12. Sant Pau Recinte Modernista

Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site (also known as Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau or Sant Pau Recinte Modernista ) is a true architectural gem of Barcelona! However, this is one of those places that usually get overlooked in most Barcelona sightseeing itineraries which are mainly focused on the world-famous Gaudi buildings.

But if you have an hour to spare, I highly recommend visiting the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site! For us, it was one of the highlights of Barcelona that we really wouldn’t have wanted to miss.

Designed by architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, this is a big architectural complex that housed a hospital for more than eighty years. Restored in 2009, it is now a museum called the Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau.

Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site is just a 10-minute walk from La Sagrada Familia . But it has an entirely different feel to it, with few tourists and no street vendors. So close and yet a world apart!

The atmosphere here is magical and tranquil, with beautiful gardens surrounded by art-nouveau architecture. You can see many of the buildings of the former hospital and visit several of them.

Make sure you check out the interior of the Sant Rafael Pavilion. It has been restored to look exactly as it would have done in the 1920s, with antique radiators and hospital beds. And don’t miss the underground tunnels connecting the former hospital rooms with surgical facilities.

Sant Pau Recinte Modernista, Barcelona, Spain

Good to know: Sant Pau Recinte Modernista is open daily, except for some public holidays. Here, you can find more info and book tickets .

TIP: If you can, visit here in the late afternoon when the buildings turn bright orange, colored by the setting sun. It’s absolutely impressive! However, this will depend on the season when you visit – in the summer, the sun sets much later than in the fall when we visited.

Anyway, no matter the time of day or season, don’t miss this stunning landmark in Barcelona. It’s absolutely worth a short detour from La Sagrada Familia!

WINTER TIP: If you are visiting Barcelona during the holiday season (+-end November – mid-January), don’t miss Els Llums de Sant Pau Christmas Garden . The entire site is then lit up with millions of Christmas lights – it’s absolutely magical!

Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau - one of the best things to do in Barcelona

13. Palau de la Música Catalana

The Palau de la Música Catalana is one of the architectural gems of Barcelona! Just as the above-mentioned Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site, this beautiful concert hall was also designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner.

The exterior is very striking, with bright colors and detailed mosaics. Unfortunately, it is a little hard to appreciate because the streets surrounding it are so narrow. But step inside and you cannot help but be mesmerized by the lavish interior, with its ornate glass roof.

This music hall doesn’t appear in many Barcelona travel guides. And maybe that’s a good thing, as it allows you to enjoy the stunning beauty of this building in relative peace. But now that you know about it, be sure to visit!

We stumbled upon it by coincidence when researching something else and decided to check it out. It became one of our favorite places in Barcelona!

Palau de la Musica Catalana is one of the most beautiful places to see in Barcelona

Good to know: You can freely visit the entrance hall and cafe, both of which are stunning. Normally, you need to join a guided tour in order to see the main concert hall, but they now have an option for a self-guided tour as well.

Tours take around 45 minutes, so if you visit on your own, count at least half an hour.

Palau de la Música Catalana is a working concert hall, so you can also attend a concert here. The sightseeing visits during the day are usually available every day, year-round. However, during certain events, the music hall might not be open for visits. So if you want to see it inside, be sure to check in advance!

TIP: Whether you want to visit on your own or with their guide, be sure to book the tickets in advance . That way, you’ll also immediately see if some dates aren’t available. Also, while not very widely known, the place is popular enough to fill the available ticket slots, especially during the high season.

Colorful columns on the balcony of Palau de la Musica Catalana in Barcelona

14. Magic Fountain of Montjuïc

Located below the Palau Nacional Art Museum ( MNAC ) on the Montjuïc mountain, The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc (Font Màgica de Montjuïc) is one of Barcelona’s most popular attractions. And it’s FREE!

Every evening, this dancing fountain offers stunning displays of music, light, and water acrobatics. These music- and light shows are very popular with locals and tourists alike and attract big crowds.

Arrive here at least 15-30 minutes before the show in order to secure a good spot close to the fountains. In the high season, people usually start to arrive an hour in advance.

Practical information: The best way to get to Font Màgica de Montjuïc is by taking a metro to Plaça d’Espanya. If you have more time, plan half a day for a visit – take a cable car from the waterfront area, explore the Montjuïc mountain and Miro Museum (see below), and then see the fountains in the evening.

Magic Fountain of Montjuïc - one of the most popular Barcelona attractions

Magic Fountain show times vary per season:

  • March: Thursday to Saturday from 8 PM to 9 PM.
  • April, May, October : Thursday to Saturday from 9 PM to 10 PM.
  • June, July, August, September: Wednesday to Sunday from 9.30 PM to 10.30 PM.
  • November, December + the first week of January: Thursday to Saturday from 8 PM to 9 PM.
  • Rest of January and February: closed.
  • This is general info in ‘normal’ times, but be sure to double-check online for the up-to-date schedule before you go!

Good to know: If you are visiting the city in September, then you can see The ‘Piromusical’ here. This huge firework display with accompanying music and lasers is the closing event for La Mercè – Barcelona’s main festival.

TIP: Be sure to climb the staircase to Palau Nacional on Montjuïc – the views from the top are really nice . However, this is actually something that you’ll appreciate better during the day when it’s light or at sunset – a good reason to arrive earlier and explore the area. You can find more information about other attractions on Montjuïc further below.

Barcelona Magic Fountain light show

15. Montjuïc: Cable Car, Castle, Palau Nacional & City Views

Montjuïc (the Jewish Mountain) is the best-known hill in Barcelona. It houses several parks, botanical gardens, places, pavilions, and museums, many of which were built for the 1929 World Fair that was held in Barcelona.

Nowadays, it’s a popular place to visit in the city and some of the must-see sights mentioned in this guide are located in this area (such as the Magical Fountain, the Museum of National Art of Catalonia , Joan Miro Museum , or an open-air museum Poble Espanyol ).

But the majority of tourists come here for aerial views of the city from the Montjuïc cable car , the Montjuïc Castle, and other viewpoints nearby. Also the earlier-mentioned views from the staircase at Palau Nacional on Montjuïc are not to be missed.

Palau Nacional and fountains on Montjuic in Barcelona

Good to know: While you can walk to the top of the mountain from the city center, the easiest way to get here is by taking a cable car from the waterfront or by hop-on-hop-off bus .

TIP: A nice way to visit Montjuïc is by joining an e-bike tour . Or you can visit with a walking tour that includes a cable car ride .

With a local guide, you don’t have to wonder where exactly to go or what to see and do at Montjuïc (which is a big advantage because the area is really big and it’s quite overwhelming).

Barcelona Cable Car

16. Joan Miró Foundation

Located on Montjuïc Mountain, Joan Miró Foundation is one of the best contemporary art museums in Barcelona

There are artworks by Joan Miró throughout Barcelona, but this museum is dedicated purely to his art. Well worth a visit and fun for all ages!

Housing more than 10,000 paintings, drawings, sculptures, and other pieces, it is located in an innovative building designed by the Spanish architect, Rafael Moneo. There are beautiful gardens to explore and frequent exhibitions of the works of other artists.

Joan Miro Foundation - one of the best museums to visit in Barcelona

TIP: Be sure to visit the rooftop terrace of the museum. Along with a collection of Miró’s colorful sculptures, you can also enjoy some wonderful views across the city.

Good to know: For the opening dates and tickets, see here .

We just got the tickets on the spot and there was no need to book in advance. However, we visited in a rather quiet season.

Colorful sculpture at Joan Miro Foundation Barcelona Spain

17. Port Vell

No visit to Barcelona would be complete without a walk along its waterfront at Port Vell .

Port Vell is the Old Harbour of Barcelona, with a wide waterfront promenade leading down to the city’s famous beaches. It’s a bustling area with lots of cafes, restaurants, and also the History Museum of Catalonia .

Check out Rambla De Mar , a modern bridge/walkway that connects the city center to the modern bustling area with Barcelona Aquarium and Maremagnum shopping center.

It’s also nice to just take a stroll around the harbor and admire the yachts and boats moored there.

Barcelona Harbor Port Vell aerial view

18. La Barceloneta

Port Vell borders the historic neighborhood called La Barceloneta . This charming local area was an old fishing district .

La Barceloneta is lined with narrow one-way streets towered by high apartment buildings, with laundry hanging out the windows everywhere you look.

Despite its relatively central location in Barcelona, this neighborhood has a very traditional feel, with elderly gentlemen sitting in the streets outside their houses and women calling across to each other over balconies.

Plaça de la Barceloneta - the nicest town square of La Barceloneta neighborhood in Barcelona

Good to know: There are many good restaurants in this area offering fresh seafood options. It is a nice place to come for lunch or dinner.

The restaurants at the waterfront tend to be more touristy, but – despite having pictures on the menu and overly friendly waiters trying to convince you to choose their place – the food is generally very good.

TIP: For a more local feel a bit off the beaten path, check out the restaurants in the narrow side streets of La Barceloneta. There are many great choices and all types of cuisine, not just seafood.

Local street in La Barceloneta neighborhood in Barcelona

19. Barcelona Beaches & Waterfront

Barcelona Waterfront is a large coastal area stretching between Playa de Llevant Beach on the outskirts of the city center and the Cruise Ship Terminal in the city center. This commercial and recreational area was created in the early 1990s and has some of Barcelona’s best beaches and a beautiful wide pedestrian area where you can walk/bike/skate for miles .

Barcelona has miles of scenic coastline and some beaches are just a 15-minute walk from the city center. There is something very special about being able to spend half a day admiring Barcelona’s incredible architecture and visiting landmarks, and then relaxing in the sunshine on a beautiful beach in the afternoon!

Some beaches are bustling – crowded with tourists, hawkers, and street performers. Others are far more peaceful, perfect for unwinding with a good book and a cold drink.

Closer to the center, there is also a maritime station for ferries and you can watch cruise ships come in to dock. You’ll also find the Maritime Museum here, housed in a large medieval shipyard, plus L’Aquàrium , one of the largest aquariums in Europe.

Barceloneta Beach in Barcelona at sunset

TIP: Why not get a different perspective on the city by taking a trip in one of the Golondrinas (ferries) moored opposite the Columbus Monument and take in all the sights of the waterfront! Or book one of the amazing sailing cruises – it’s a great way to see the city from another perspective while at the same time relaxing from all the walking and sightseeing.

Good to know: If you’re looking for a party atmosphere and want to connect with like-minded visitors from all over the world, head to Barceloneta Beach. The nightlife in Barceloneta is very vibrant too! For the best family-friendly option, try Nova Icaria Beach. Whilst tranquil, it still has plenty of restaurants and bars, plus some excellent sports facilities.

You might want to avoid cocktails and drinks from vendors walking along the beaches. They are often unrefrigerated for long periods and tend to warm up!

Passeig Maritim de la Barceloneta - pedestrian waterfront area in Barcelona

20. Camp Nou – F.C. Barcelona Stadium

Update 2024: At the moment of the last update, Camp Nou Stadium is undergoing a complete renovation. It is still possible to visit the museum .

Camp Nou is the largest stadium in Europe and the home stadium of the world-famous F.C. Barcelona. This is a must-see for any football fanatics but is actually really interesting even if you are not a fan. Camp Nou is one of the most-visited tourist attractions in Barcelona!

We went here mainly because of our kids who live and breathe football, but – despite having zero expectations – I loved it too. After all, it’s not every day that you get to experience such a large stadium with behind-the-scenes access!

Tours include the pitch, the stands, and the players’ bench, along with the changing rooms and press area. Also included is a visit to the museum where you can see the many trophies on display and learn more about the club’s amazing history.

Camp Nou FC Barcelona stadium tour

Good to know: The stadium is located a bit outside the city center. You can get here by metro or by hop-on hop-off bus .

TIP: There are various ticket- and tour options for a visit here. The most popular – and the option we chose – is a self-guided stadium- and museum tour. Another option is a guided tour, but I’d only recommend it to those who want to learn even more about the team and its history.

If you’re looking for a more exclusive experience, you can also opt for the Players Experience Tour which includes everything the standard tour does, plus access to the actual FC Barcelona players’ locker rooms, an official FC Barcelona gift, and a few other perks.

Best things to do in Barcelona - visit Camp Nou football stadium

21. Casa Vicens

Casa Vicens is a modernist building dating from the end of the 19th century. It is considered to be Gaudi’s first major project

Unique in style, Casa Vicens looks nothing like the other Gaudi buildings in Barcelona! Its look is distinctly oriental, with dome-shaped finishes and Moorish arches. Its design was influenced by the art of India, Persia, and Japan along with Hispanic Islamic works.

Built in 1883-85 as a family summer house in the former village of Gràcia (now one of the city neighborhoods), the building was expanded by another architect in 1925. By that time, Gaudi was mainly focused on La Sagrada Familia, with little interest in other projects. But the original style was retained.

Casa Vicens has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and recently restored to its former glory.

As with all of Gaudi’s buildings, the interior of Casa Vicens does not disappoint either. You can easily spend 1 to 2 hours here admiring the bizarre but beautiful decorative elements of its rooms.

Casa Vicens gate - Gaudi Barcelona

TIP: Casa Vicens is hardly ever mentioned among the best places to see in Barcelona, and so many tourists don’t even know about it. This is mainly due to the fact that it was only opened to the public a few years ago is far less known than Gaudi’s other buildings.

This means that it is much quieter, making it a great place to visit in Barcelona if you prefer to avoid crowds .

Good to know: Casa Vicens is open daily. You can find more information and get the tickets here . Despite being somewhat of a hidden gem, it’s becoming better known as more and more people discover it. So get there before the rest of the world finds out!

Casa Vicens Gaudi building in Barcelona

22. Palau Güell

Güell Palace – not to be confused with Park Güell – is one of Gaudi’s early works and another popular landmark to see in Barcelona. This magnificent building is located in the Raval district – close to La Rambla shopping street in the heart of the city center. This is the only Gaudi building that is located in the old town .

This modernist mansion was commissioned by the industrial tycoon Eusebi Güell in the late 19th century. He wanted somewhere luxurious to live in an area that was very run down at the time. He certainly got his wish – every part of this incredible palace is decorative and opulent, from the forged iron gates at the front to the roof terrace adorned with mosaics and fourteen chimneys.

Good to know: Palau Güell is open daily except for Mondays. A free audio guide is included with your ticket. For more info and tickets, see here .

TIP: If you are visiting in the summer, check if there are any events planned here during your stay. Frequent concerts are held on the rooftop terrace of Palau Gëull and tickets include a tour around the palace.

Palau Güell in Barcelona

23. Barcelona History Museum (MUHBA)

MUHBA – Museum of History of Barcelona – is one the most interesting museums in the city. Here, you can see the archeological site with the actual remains of streets and buildings of Barcelona as it looked like about 2000 years ago.

Located inside the Palau Clarina Padellàs (the Gothic Palace) on Plaça del Rei just behind the Barcelona Cathedral, this fascinating museum is dedicated to researching and preserving Barcelona’s history. It contains more than 35,000 historical and cultural objects.

There are also several other sites managed by the museum around the city. Some contain excavated portions of the Roman city of Barcino, whilst others date back to medieval times.

Good to know: The museum is open daily except for Mondays. Audio guides are included with your ticket, which includes admission to all MUHBA sites in the city. You can find more info on their (rather confusing) website . Or simply walk over there and likely, you’ll be able to just get a ticket on the spot. Despite its central location, many people seem to just pass by here, so it’s usually not too busy.

TIP: Even if you are not interested in visiting the museum, be sure to come and see the impressive medieval architecture of Plaça del Rei .

Barcelona History Museum (MUHBA) and Placa del Rei square

24. Arco de Triunfo & Ciutadella Park

Built in 1888 as the gateway to the Universal Exhibition, the Arco de Triunfo is located at the Passeig Lluís Companys promenade.

It is one of Barcelona’s most iconic landmarks, with a classic shape and beautiful decorative finishes. At the top, you can see the coat of arms of the city, under which are the shields of the 49 Spanish provinces.

The Passeig Lluís Companys leads to Ciutadella Park , probably Barcelona’s most idyllic spot. It’s a lovely place for a picnic, with palm trees, a fountain designed by Gaudi, and a pretty rowing lake.

There are also numerous attractions on the grounds, including zoology and geology museums, honorary statues, and the Barcelona Zoo . The Parliament of Catalonia and a few other interesting landmarks are located here as well. It’s a really large park with lots to see!

TIP: Be sure to climb to the top of the Cascada del Parc de la Ciutadella fountain for nice views of the park. It’s especially nice late in the afternoon, around sunset.

Arco de Triunfo in Barcelona

25. Plaça d’Espanya & Views from Arenas de Barcelona

Plaça d’Espanya is a large square close to the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc. It’s somewhat of an eclectic mix of sculptures, monuments, and busy traffic with several major avenues coming together here. Just a few minutes walk to the south, you’ll find the earlier-mentioned Magic Fountain of Montjuïc.

On the northern side of Placa d’Espanya, you’ll find Las Arenas de Barcelona . This oval-shaped commercial shopping center was originally a bullfighting arena but was reconstructed in 2011.

There are countless shops here and its top floor is filled with restaurants that go all the way around the perimeter, and there are also cinemas (with all the movies in Spanish, however).

But the main reason to mention a shopping center in this Barcelona sightseeing guide is because of the awesome 360° city views from the large circular platform at the very top of Arenas de Barcelona. And also because it’s so close to the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc which you’ll likely want to visit anyway. And if you’re already in the area, it’s just a small effort to check out those views.

We visited here around sunset, before heading to the fountain for the evening show, and the views were really nice. Well worth a small detour.

TIP: There is a glass elevator to the rooftop, but there is a small charge to use it. Unless you specifically want to enjoy views on your way up, then you can also just take the stairs or the escalator, which are free!

Plaça d'Espanya view from Arenas de Barcelona

26. Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar

The beautiful Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar is a 14th-century Gothic Church. Together with La Sagrada Familia and Barcelona Cathedral, this is one of the nicest churches to see in the city.

It is located in the El Born neighborhood, a maze of medieval streets lined with trendy boutiques and cafes. Taking 55 years to build – partially paid for and constructed by the parishioners themselves – it is famous as being an example of pure Catalan Gothic architecture. This is rare, as most churches and cathedrals have a mixture of different styles.

TIP: You can see the best of the church in 20 minutes or so. But if you have more time then I recommend taking the guided tour, which includes a visit to the rooftop. The views of the skyline of the Old City are quite beautiful.

Good to know: The Basilica is open daily, in the morning and in the evening (usually closed between 1 and 5 PM).

Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar in Barcelona Spain

27. Santa Caterina Market

Mercat de Santa Caterina is a covered food market located close to the Picasso Museum. It is easily spotted because of its brightly colored roof. If you want to visit a few local markets in Barcelona, this is a good option.

Clean, well-organized, and modern, it tends to be far quieter than the famous Mercado de La Boqueria, so it’s easier to sample the wares at all the different stalls and try some local specialties. It also has better prices and it is easier to get a seat if you decide to stop for lunch at one of the restaurants or bars.

The site now occupied by the market was originally home to the convent of Santa Caterina, of the Dominican Order or Order of Preachers. Remains of the cloister are still visible in the basement and can be seen with a ticket to the Barcelona History Museum.

Good to know: Santa Caterina market is open daily except on Sundays, from 7.30 AM to 8 PM. However, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays it closes at 3.30 PM already.

Santa Caterina Market in Barcelona

28. Day trip to Montserrat Monastery

No list of the best things to do in Barcelona would be complete without mentioning the most popular day trip near the city – a visit to the Abbey of Montserrat .

The mountain range of Montserrat is located around 50km northwest of Barcelona. Its main attraction is the Benedictine Monastery Santa Maria de Montserrat, one of Catalonia’s most important religious sites.

You can’t actually go inside the monastery, but you can visit the grounds, the church, and see the statue of the Black Madonna, Catalonia’s patron saint. You can also hear daily performances from the world-famous Montserrat boys’ choir. In addition, there are some hiking trails and you can enjoy the incredible views of the surrounding landscape.

Good to know: There are many ways to visit Montserrat Monastery – on your own by train or by car, or with one of the many tours from the city . Here you can read our Montserrat tour review , and via the link below – find all the info you need for a visit.

LEARN MORE: How to Visit Montserrat from Barcelona

Montserrat is not to be missed when visiting Barcelona

Additional suggestions for what to see and do in Barcelona

We have now covered most of the main sights in Barcelona. However – as you can imagine – a city like Barcelona has so much more to offer than just the main landmarks and top sights mentioned above !

There are just too many attractions in Barcelona than we can mention in one guide (while still keeping it somewhat manageable for tourists just looking to cover the musts…).

So here is a list of some other great activities in Barcelona that are well worth considering too . From local experiences to the best places to visit with kids, fun things to do in Barcelona at night, and more.

TIP: Even if you just add one or two of these activities to your Barcelona sightseeing itinerary, it will make your visit to the city so much more special. Take a look!

Fun experiences and attractions in Barcelona:

  • Food tours – one of our favorite ways to explore any city!
  • Cooking classes .
  • Sailing and catamaran cruises – a relaxing way to see the city from another perspective.
  • Bike and e-bike tours .
  • Segway- or e-scooter city tours .
  • Street art tour by bike .
  • Flamenco shows – a must in Spain.
  • Hot-air balloon rides .
  • Helicopter tours .

Things to do in Barcelona with kids:

  • Barcelona Aquarium .
  • Barcelona Zoo .
  • Family walking tour at the Gothic Quarter (ideal for families with kids aged 4-12 yrs).
  • Museum of Illusions (just next to La Rambla and La Boqueria market).
  • PortAventura theme park – spend a day at Spain’s largest amusement park and one of the largest theme parks in Europe.
  • Caribe Aquatic tour – a water park at PortAventura.

Things to do in Barcelona at night:

  • Sunset cruises .
  • Flamenco shows .
  • Casa Mila (La Pedrera) night experience .
  • Ghost tours .
  • Magic fountain show .
  • Cocktails and tapas .
  • Nightclubs and pub crawls .

More museums to visit in Barcelona:

  • Poble Espanyol Site – open-air museum at Montjuïc.
  • Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA) – in the city center.
  • Egyptian Museum – close to Gaudi buildings in the center.
  • Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya – at Montjuïc.
  • Salvador Dali Museum at Figueres – day trip from Barcelona.
  • Olympic & Sports Museum – at Montjuïc.
  • History Museum of Catalonia – at the old harbor Port Vell.
  • The World of Banksy, Immersive Experience – in the center.
  • Big Fun Museum – in the center, right on La Rambla.
  • Wax Museum – in the center.

Where to Stay

If you are visiting for the first time and want to explore the main sights and tourist attractions, the very best area to stay for sightseeing in Barcelona is around Catalunya Square.

Here are some of the best-rated hotels in this area for all budgets:

€€€€€ Ohla Barcelona €€€€ Hotel Jazz €€€ El Avenida Palace €€ Mothern by Pillow € Hostal La Palmera

Map of Barcelona Attractions

To help you plan your time in the city, we created this map indicating the main landmarks, sights, and tourist attractions in Barcelona mentioned in this article . It should give you a better idea of where everything is located and help you plan your itinerary.

This map shows the main places to see in Barcelona as described in our list above. To make it somewhat easier to use and keep the focus on the best sights, we didn’t indicate any of the additional suggestions or places that are outside the city (like Montserrat Monastery).

You’ll also see that we use different colors depending on whether the places are must-see (purple), highly recommended (red), or nice-to-see (yellow). They’re ALL worth a visit, but if you are short on time, this might help you decide what to see first.

TIP: Take a look at our suggestions on how to spend one day in Barcelona and also on how to plan a 2-day Barcelona trip . It will give you a better idea of how to see the main sights in just a few days.

How to use this map:  Use your computer mouse (or fingers) to zoom in or out. Click on the icons to get more information about each place. Click the arrow on the top left corner for the index. Click the star next to the map’s title to add it to your Google Maps account. To view the saved map on your smartphone or PC, open Google Maps, click the menu and go to ‘Your Places’/’Maps’. If you want to print the map or see it in a bigger window, click on ‘View larger map’ in the top right corner.

So, this is our guide to the top sights and attractions in Barcelona. I hope that it helps you plan your trip and enjoy every moment of your visit to this world-class destination and its charming mix of avant-garde and traditional style!

TIP: For more practical information for your visit, be sure to check Barcelona travel tips via the link below.

In this article, you’ll find more information about getting around, where to stay, tipping and haggling etiquette, bizarre dining hours, and more. Take a look!

READ ALSO: Top Tips for Visiting Barcelona for the First Time

More travel inspiration for Spain:

  • Best Things to Do in Spain
  • 1 Day in Barcelona
  • 2-3 Days in Barcelona
  • Best Gaudi Tour in Barcelona
  • How to Visit Montserrat from Barcelona
  • Montserrat Tour
  • Toledo Day Trip (from Madrid)
  • 1 Day in Seville
  • 1 Day in Madrid
  • 2 Days in Seville
  • Best Flamenco Tour in Seville
  • Read also our tips for planning a trip to Europe .

Have a great trip!

If you found this post useful, don’t forget to bookmark it and share it with your friends. Are you on Pinterest? Pin these images!

What to see and do in Barcelona, Spain

More travel inspiration for European cities:

If you are visiting other European cities and are looking for in-depth information for your trip, take a look at some of our city guides:

  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Antwerp, Belgium
  • Barcelona, Spain
  • Bern, Switzerland
  • Bologna, Italy
  • Brasov, Romania
  • Brussels, Belgium
  • Bruges, Belgium
  • Bucharest, Romania
  • Colmar, France
  • Edinburgh, UK
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  • Venice, Italy
  • Verona, Italy
  • For more… check our destinations page.

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Must-see attractions in Barcelona

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La Sagrada Família


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Park Güell, Barcelona, Spain

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Mercat de la Boqueria

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La Rambla & Barri Gòtic

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Barça Stadium Tour & Museum

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Santa Maria Del Mar Basilica in Barcelona, Spain

Basílica de Santa Maria del Mar

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The exterior of the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art or Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona

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Museum of Frederic Mares in Barcelona. Sculpture collection - gothic, middle ages

Museu Frederic Marès

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Casa Vicens

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Entrance to Museu Marítim

Museu Marítim

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Reial Monestir de Santa Maria de Pedralbes

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Cosmo Caixa, a science museum located in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

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Mercat de Santa Caterina

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Parc de la Ciutadella

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The 17 best things to do in Barcelona

By Jennifer Ceaser

View of the city from Park Guell in Barcelona Spain

There is a dizzying array of things to do in Barcelona  – so many that it can be hard to narrow it down. After you’ve ticked the boxes on Antoni Gaudí’s Modernisme masterpieces – Sagrada Familia, Casa Batlló and La Pedrera – escape the crowds and explore some of the city’s lesser-known architectural treasures, including the world’s largest Art Nouveau site, Sant Pau Recinto Modernista. Not in a sightseeing mood? Then take advantage of Barcelona’s sunny Mediterranean climate: spend the day on an urban beach, enjoy long lunches in lovely restaurants , relax with a sundowner on a hotel terrace, and keep the party going at one of the city’s many cocktail bars and nightclubs. From must-see attractions to undiscovered local gems, these are our picks for Barcelona's best things to do.

Architecture by Antoni Gaudí

1. Discover Gaudí by night

Even with timed ticketing systems, Gaudí’s most famous residential buildings, Casa Batlló and Casa Milà (aka La Pedrera), are plagued by long queues and daytime crowds. So for a more intimate experience, book a night tour – which limits the number of visitors and includes perks like live music and a free glass of Cava. Casa Batlló’s Magic Nights take place from  March to November, including an interactive self-guided tour of the house and a rooftop concert; tickets start at around £45. La Pedrera’s Night Experience operates year-round and features small-group guided tours of the courtyard and magnificent arched attic (though not the apartment), culminating in a visit to the roof terrace, where a fantastical light show plays out across its swirling chimneys. Admission is £34 and, in June and July , you can enjoy a live rooftop jazz concert included in the price.

Addresses: Casa Batlló, Pg. de Gràcia 43, 08007 Barcelona; La Pedrera, Pg. de Gràcia 92, 08007 Barcelona Websites: ;

Sant Pau Recinto Modernist

2. Explore less-crowded Modernista gems

While Gaudí is the undisputed king of Catalan Modernisme, he wasn’t the only one working in this fanciful architectural style. A short stroll uphill from the Sagrada Familia is the world’s largest Art Nouveau site, Sant Pau Recinto Modernista, designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner in 1901. The former hospital complex spans nine city blocks and comprises dozens of red-brick buildings decked with flamboyant spires, colourful mosaic-tiled domed roofs, and ornate stained-glass windows – all surrounding beautifully landscaped courtyards. Close to Plaça d’Espanya is a marvellous example of industrial Modernisme architecture: the 1911 Casaramona factory designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch, now home to the CaixaForum Barcelona art gallery. Crenellated rooftops, towers, and Moorish elements recall Spain’s medieval castles, and visiting its undulating roof terrace is a must.

Addresses: Sant Pau Recinto Modernista, Carrer de Sant Antoni Maria Claret 167, 08025 Barcelona; CaixaForum Barcelona, Av. Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia 6-8, 08038 Barcelona Websites: ;

The Moco Museum

3. Check out modern and contemporary art

A colossal, six-metre-high, wood-sculpted parody of Mickey Mouse by pop-culture phenom KAWS dominates the courtyard entrance of the Moco Museum Barcelona, offering a taste of what’s to come in this dynamic new art space. Spread across two floors of a 16th-century palace in the Born district are works by modern and contemporary masters – Warhol, Murakami, David LaChapelle, Damian Hirst – and legendary street artists like Banksy and KAWS, plus cutting-edge digital installations by emerging talents. Over in the Raval neighbourhood, the striking Richard Meier-designed Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA) offers a great introduction to contemporary Catalan artists like Antoni Tàpies and Francesc Torres. Still, its collection also includes international heavyweights such as Alexander Calder, Donald Judd, and Basquiat. Don’t miss Keith Haring’s monumental 1989 mural  Todos juntos podemos parar el sida  (Together we can stop AIDS), just outside MACBA’s entrance.

Addresses: Moco Museum Barcelona, Carrer de Montcada 25, 08003 Barcelona; MACBA, Plaça dels Àngels 1, 08001 Barcelona Websites: ;

Parc del Laberint d' Horta

4. Get lost in Horta’s Labyrinth Park (Parc del Laberint d'Horta)

Escape the tourist hordes and get lost – literally – inside a life-size 18th-century labyrinth. Two-metre-high cypress hedges form the maze, which is dotted with sculptures and reliefs of characters from Greco-Roman romantic mythology. There are lots of twists, turns, and dead ends along the way until you reach its centre, where Eros, the god of Love, stands atop a pedestal. While the maze is the highlight, the 55-hectare park also features walking paths through a small forest, ponds, fountains, stone staircases, Roman-style temples, Italianate columns, and even a palace (not open to the public). It’s located at the foothills of the Collserola mountain range and is easily reached by Metro (L3).

Address: Passeig dels Castanyers 1, 08035, Barcelona Website:

A favourite local pastime is chilling with a cocktail and soaking in the views on the rooftop of onenbspBarcelona's best...

5. Chill out on a hotel terrace

A favourite local pastime is chilling with a cocktail and soaking in the views on the rooftop of one  Barcelona's best hotels . Check out Terraza de Vivi at the trendy  Kimpton Vividora  for the daily brunch (March to November) with bottomless mimosas and Bloody Marys, plus fantastic views of the surrounding medieval Gothic Quarter; weekends are particularly buzzy, with live DJs. Nearby, the petite  Wittmore Hotel  roof flies under the radar, with a wonderful low-key vibe and incredible 360-degree city, sea, and mountain views from the topmost deck. If you’re looking to party, head up to  The Hoxton , Poblenou’s Tope (open March to November), a sprawling rooftop taqueria and bar with pumping music and weekend DJ sets, plus knock-out views of the Sagrada Familia, especially at sunset. Or if it’s tranquillity you’re after, the  El Palace Hotel  roof terrace’s shady pergolas, burbling fountains, and lush greenery provide a welcome oasis from the busy Eixample streets.

Jamboree Jazz Club Barcelona

6. Dive into Barcelona’s nightlife

From live music to high-energy DJ sets, Barcelona has some legendary nightlife worth staying up late for. Inside a massive industrial warehouse in Poblenou, Razzmatazz is five clubs in one: along with a main concert hall for A-list indie bands, other spaces see DJs spinning everything from reggaetón to techno to pop every night of the week. Ocaña, on the famed Plaça Reial, hosts live musical acts playing soul, flamenco, jazz, rock, and more — both in the ground-level club and below, in the hip subterranean Apotheke. Fridays and Saturdays, head underground to the sultry, red-velvet-clad Cabaret beneath the Barcelona EDITION , where top-notch international DJs spin until the wee hours.

Addresses: Razzmatazz, Carrer dels Almogàvers 122, 08018 Barcelona; Ocaña, Pl. Reial 13-15, 08002 Barcelona; Cabaret, Avinguda de Francesc Cambó 14, 08003 Barcelona Websites: ; ;

Bogatell beach Barcelona

7. Relax on a Poblenou beach

Leave the mobbed  beaches  of Barceloneta to the tourists and venture east to the less-crowded golden strands of the Poblenou district. Its trio of beaches – Bogatell, Mar Bella, and Nova Mar Bella – attract mainly locals, and each has a distinct vibe. As Bogatell is the closest to the Metro, it’s the busiest and liveliest, boasting plenty of chiringuitos ( beach bars ) and amenities like beach volleyball courts and table tennis. Mar Bella is favoured by a younger crowd and also has a separate section for nude sunbathing and swimming that draws a large gay contingent. Nova Mar Bella is the farthest, widest, and most laid-back of the three, appealing to families and older people living in the nearby residential towers of Diagonal Mar; it’s also a top spot for kite-surfing, with beachside rentals available.


8. Be awed by the views from Mirador torre Glòries

Atop Jean Nouvel’s glassy, bullet-shaped skyscraper, the Mirador Torre Glòries nets you some of Barcelona’s best vistas. A lift whisks you 30 storeys up for 360-degree views of the city – from the mountains to the Mediterranean – letting you gaze through large windows upon Barcelona landmarks like the Sagrada Familia, the sail-shaped W Hotel, and the tri-towered Sant Andreu power plant. From here, daredevils can don a jumpsuit (provided) and climb up into the dome via artist Tomás Saraceno’s ‘Cloud Cities,’ an installation of interlinked pods and steel cables that reaches 130 metres.

Address: Avinguda Diagonal 211, 08018 Barcelona Website:

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9. Hike around Montjuïc

Barcelona is famous for its beaches, but it’s the surrounding mountains that offer a true refuge from the city’s hustle and heat. Closest to the centre is Montjuïc, home to several free-to-visit botanical gardens, including a marvellous one devoted to cacti, Jardines de Mossèn Costa i Llobera. Trails wind through forests, past cascading water features, lily-filled ponds, and even a replica of a Greek theatre. It’s worth the steep climb to one of its many miradors (viewpoints), which provide different views — of the city, the surrounding mountains, the harbour, and the sea; a favourite is the Mirador de Miramar, which includes them all. You can also break up your hike with a visit to one of the many major sites dotting the mountain, including Montjuïc Castle, the Joan Miró Foundation, and the Olympic Stadium.

Heritage shopfront at Casa Gispert

10. Hit the shops

Among the many sites to see in Barcelona, there are also plenty of shops to get lost in. Start the day off by checking out the legendary grocer’s shop,  Casa Gispert . Founded in 1851 and recently renovated, it's famous for the locally-sourced nuts roasted on-site in an ancient wood-fired oven. Then pick up a fresh bouquet from  Marea Verde , a picturesque flower shop decked in trencadís by master mosaicist Lluís Bru. There’s no harm in going furniture shopping, especially at  Bénédicte Bodard   Mesa Bonita for restored covetable tables, consoles and trivets and  Cubiñá , which is a destination in itself – almost 5,000 square feet of high-design fabulousness, stretching over two floors of a glorious 19th-century building by Catalan-Modernism architect Domènech i Montaner. Visit the Mediterranean concept store, Bon Vent , on Carrer de l’Argenteria to marvel at the rich selection of Spanish-made pottery, fabrics, glassware and natural cosmetics while Artisan jeweller  Joan Rovira  works in silver and bamboo from a bijou shop-studio that epitomises the craft ethos gaining ground in the Born district.

La Boqueria Market Barcelona

11. Feast at a famed food market

Barcelona counts some 39 food markets scattered across the city – each with its own character – but the largest and best known is La Boquería, an essential foodie pilgrimage since 1836. Located just off La Rambla, the market is home to over 200 vendors hawking everything from local produce and cheeses to freshly caught seafood – plus Spanish staples like olives, olive oil, and of course, its famous jamón. Tucked among the stalls are tapas bars serving market-fresh fare; try for one of the coveted stools at the venerable Pinotxo Bar for classic Catalan dishes like cap i pota, a rich lamb stew. 

Address: La Rambla, 91, 08001 Barcelona Websites: ;

Park Güell Barcelona

12. Wander through Gaudí’s enchanting Park Güell

This hillside park is well worth the steep climb to experience what is one of Gaudí’s most fanciful creations. Originally intended as an upscale housing development of 60 luxury villas surrounded by green space, the project, which broke ground in 1900, was ultimately abandoned, but not before the architect completed many of its fantastical features. Among them are the grand main staircase guarded by a multi-coloured mosaic lizard and Sala Hipòstila, whose 86 towering Doric columns call to mind a temple, though it was meant as an outdoor marketplace. Certainly the biggest draw is the vast central plaza, framed by a 100-metre-long, undulating mosaic-tiled bench, that offers fabulous views of the city and sea below.


Picasso Museum

13. See a treasure trove of Picasso

Picasso spent his formative teenage years in Barcelona and many of his early works were donated to the city’s Picasso Museum, which does a particularly good job of tracing the artistic development of this Spanish master. The 4,000-plus-strong permanent collection is housed in five interconnected medieval-era palaces: a spectacular setting that nearly outshines the artwork inside. Highlights include several examples of Picasso’s earliest sketches and paintings, done at the age of 15, numerous works from his Blue Period, and his remarkable 1957 series Las Meninas – 58 paintings inspired by Velázquez’s masterpiece.

Address: Carrer de Montcada, 15-23, 08003 Barcelona Website:

Paradiso Barcelona

14. Sip award-winning cocktails

When it comes to cocktail bars, Barcelona's bests even top drinking capitals like London and New York. But don’t take our word for it: In 2022, The World’s 50 Best Bars ranked three Barcelona watering holes in the top 10 – including the number-one bar, Paradiso. This dimly lit speakeasy in the Born district is cleverly concealed behind a pastrami shop, though the ever-present queue snaking around the block makes it easy to find. Prepare to be wowed by the wildly inventive ingredients (mushrooms! seaweed sorbet!) and theatrical presentations. Other award-winning bars to check out on your cocktail crawl include the elegant, understated Sips (#3) and the lively, divey Two Schmucks (#7).

Address: Paradiso, Carrer de Rera Palau, 4, 08003 Barcelona; Sips, Carrer de Muntaner, 108, 08036 Barcelona; Two Schmucks, Carrer de Joaquín Costa, 52, 08001 Barcelona Website: ; ;

Palau de la Música Catalana

15. Catch a concert at Palau de la Música Catalana

With its colourful mosaic tilework, flamboyant sculptures, and decorative stained glass, this concert venue, designed in 1905 by Lluis Domènech i Muntaner, is a visual feast. And that’s just the façade – inside, things get even more OTT. The main auditorium is a kaleidoscope of Art Nouveau elements: ornate, mosaic-covered columns and arches, sinuous ironwork, and flowers everywhere — from the carved roses decorating the ceiling to the floral motifs on the towering stained-glass windows. It’s all crowned by a magnificent inverted skylight whose multi-coloured glass glows as the sun goes down. And the hall’s intimate size (around 2,900 seats) and excellent acoustics add to the magic of seeing a concert here; expect mainly classical, opera, and choral, though there’s the occasional jazz performance.

Address: Carrer Palau de la Música, 4-6, 08003 Barcelona Website:

Gràcia neighbourhood  barcelona

16. Go plaza-hopping in Gràcia

Dozens of pedestrian plazas (plaças in Catalan) dot this charming, village-like district to the north of the city centre. Some are pocket-sized squares, with a few benches shaded by trees; others are large, lively gathering spots, lined with bustling terraces and filled with neighbourhood kids running and playing. Plaça de Virreina is one of the prettiest, with its tall trees, fountain, and stately stone church; if terraces on the plaza are full, there are a couple more next to the church. A short stroll away is Plaça de la Rovira i Trias, which has several cafes with outdoor tables; look for the seated bronze statue of 19th-century architect Antoni Rovira i Trias, who designed several of the city’s markets. For a rowdier scene, head to the bar-packed Plaça del Sol, where you can while away a hot summer evening drinking beneath the stars.

Sand beach in Sitges near Barcelona

17. Hop the train to Sitges

Just a 35-minute train ride from the city, Sitges is a great day trip option once the key things to do in Barcelona have been completed – it's also now one of Europe ’s most popular summer resort destinations . Narrow winding streets and whitewashed buildings ooze charm, smart boutiques and art galleries offer plenty of shopping options, and there are dining choices galore, from traditional tavernas to upscale restaurants to funky beachfront  chiringuitos . It’s all set against the backdrop of the Mediterranean with miles of wide, sandy beaches and a nearly 2-mile-long paved seafront promenade. Late evening, the nightlife scene hots up – with dozens of dance clubs and bars catering to an LGBTQ+ crowd. If you seek a calmer vibe and fewer crowds, plan to visit on a weekday or in the off-season.

How to get there: Trains to Sitges depart regularly from several stations in Barcelona (including Sants and Passeig de Gracia) on the Renfe Rodalies R2 line Website:

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25 Top Tourist Attractions in Barcelona

By Mike Kaplan · Last updated on May 4, 2024

Barcelona is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, attracting millions upon millions of visitors each year. So why is it so popular? Well, it has almost everything any holidaymaker would desire. Easy access, favorable weather conditions, attractive beaches and surrounding mountains, a buzzing nightlife, tasty local cuisine and it’s steeped in culture and history.

It’s also a sight-seeing wonderland, housing many recognizable monuments. Variety’s the word with Barcelona and the city has something for everyone; families, couples and singletons alike. There are the tourist attractions in Barcelona travelers shouldn’t miss if they ever decide to visit the Catalan capital:

Map of Barcelona

Barcelona Map

25. Monastery of Pedralbes

Monastery of Pedralbes

The quiet beauty of the Monastery of Pedralbes provides a safe harbor for travelers who want to escape the hustle and bustle of Barcelona. This gothic monastery was built in 129y by Queen Elsenda who sought forgiveness for her sins. It is considered an outstanding example of Catalan gothic architecture.

Arched outer corridors overlook swaying palm trees. Its original occupants were Poor Clares, nuns from mostly noble families; they were charged with protecting the city. Some nuns still live in the monastery, which today houses the city museum.

24. Palau Guell

Palau Guell

Barcelona is filled with significant buildings designed by noted architect Antoni Gaudi. A good place for visitors to begin their appreciation of his work is Palau Guell or Palace Guell. It’s one of his first major works, and sets the tone for his designs to follow.

Gaudi designed Palau Guell for an extremely wealthy resident. Because the tycoon entertained a lot, the house was designed around a central hall, with other rooms designed to fit the family’s needs. Gaudi’s use of space and lighting in the Palau Guell was innovative for its time.

23. Poble Espanyol

Poble Espanyol

Built in 1929, Poble Espanyol is a huge open-air museum four times the size of FC Barcelona’s football pitch. The complex is composed of various sections, each of whom represent a specific Spanish region.

There is also a flourishing handicraft market which is perfect for souvenir shopping. Here you can wander from Andalusia to the Balearic Islands in the space of a couple of hours, visiting surprisingly good copies of Spain’s characteristic structures. The village also hosts the Fondation Fran Daurel, where you can enjoy an interesting collection by artists like Picasso and Miró.

22. Fundacio Joan Miro

Fundacio Joan Miro

Joan Miro was one of Barcelona’s most famous artists, a master who created works known around the world. Usually foundations are set up after a person dies to honor their ideas, but Miro created his own legacy by setting up the Fundacio Joan Miro himself.

It was designed to be a place where younger artists could explore contemporary art, with Miro’s own works providing the nucleus for this study. The foundation opened in a modern building in 1975 and is a good place to see a great collection of Miro’s work in one place.

21. Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya

Sitting atop a hill, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya looks more like a massive castle than an art museum, a museum that holds a king’s ransom in treasures. It is here, however, that visitors will find the greatest Catalan art from the 10th century to the 20th century.

Here visitors will find impressive Romanesque murals that graced church apses, and Gothic art from the era when Catalonia was expanding across the Mediterranean. The gallery also contains paintings by the great Spanish artists El Greco and Velasquez.

20. Arc de Triomf

Arc de Triomf

The Arc de Triomf was constructed in 1888 to welcome international visitors to Barcelona’s Universal Exhibition, the world’s fair of its day. The massive decorative arch is located on the Passeig Lluís Companys, a promenade.

The classical style arch, now a famous Barcelona landmark, is noted for its sculptural decorations that are symbolic of Barcelona at that time. One frieze welcomes visitors to the exhibition, while reliefs extol agriculture, industry and commerce. The top of the arch features shields from Spain’s 49 provinces; they are topped by Barcelona’s coat of arms.

19. Sant Pau Recinte Modernista

Sant Pau Recinte Modernista

Travelers who are fond of art nouveau will definitely want to put Sant Pau Recinte Modernista on their Barcelona bucket. The former hospital, with a façade that resembles a church, is the top-ranked art nouveau site in Europe. Sant Pau Recinte Modernista was built in the first third of the 20th century as a hospital and healthcare research center.

It served this purpose for 100 years, and today houses a variety of international organizations. The complex, with underground tunnels connecting the building has a pavilion that is devoted to the history of medicine in Barcelona.

18. Placa de Catalunya

Placa de Catalunya

Every city has a big square where people congregate to celebrate, mourn or just see each other. NYC has Times Square, Beijing has Tiananmen Square and Barcelona has Placa de Catalunya. The city’s nerve center is a place to meet friends, sit on the grass or take a break from shopping at nearby stores.

Integral to the square are six sets of sculptures that represent the four capitals of Catalonia, labor and wisdom. The plaza opened in 1927 on land that once fronted the gates to a walled Barcelona.

17. Palau de la Musica Catalana

Palau de la Musica Catalana

People don’t go to the Palau de la Musica Catalana just to hear music, they go to see the concert hall’s over-the-top ornate interior. While the exterior is impressive, it just can’t compare to the main concert hall with its glass-top ceiling.

Built in the early 1900s, the Palau de la Musica Catalana is a tourist attraction in itself, with its stained glass windows and massive chandeliers. The inside of the old hall has been compared to the interior of a Faberge egg. A smaller hall is more modern and subdued, but still opulent.

16. Tibidabo


Travelers who collect panoramic views should go to the top of Tibidabo, at 512 meters (1,880 feet) high the highest mountain overlooking Barcelona. The easiest way to get there is via Spain’s first funicular. But there’s more than just stunning views on this mountain top.

There’s the Sagra Cor church that took 60 years to build and is topped with a sculpture of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Sharing space with this impressive church are an amusement park and a telecommunications tower. All three are visible from Barcelona below.

15. Parc de la Ciutadella

Parc de la Ciutadella

The Parc de la Ciutadella is a lot happier place today than when it was founded in 1714. After Philip V conquered Barcelona, he ordered a citadel – the largest in Europe – to be built by forced labor so he could maintain control over the Catalans.

Over the centuries it transformed into peaceful uses, becoming a major oasis of green in the city. Citadel Park was the site for the 1888 Universal Exhibition. Today it is home to a zoo, a small lake, the Museum of Natural Science, and Als Voluntaris Catalans, a sculpture honoring Catalans killed in World War I.

14. Barcelona Cathedral

Barcelona Cathedral

Add Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia, as it’s officially known, to the list of beautiful Gothic buildings in Barcelona. The church also known as Barcelona Cathedral or La Seu because it’s the seat of the archbishop.

The cathedral dates back to the 14th century and honors St. Eulalia, co-patron saint of Barcelona, who was killed by Romans by putting her in a knife-studded barrel and rolling her down the street. The entire church is ornate, with towers and spires reaching into the sky. It is a major tourist attraction and now boasts a gift shop that caters to visitors.

13. Museu Picasso

Museu Picasso

With over 4,000 works by the painter, the Museu Picasso houses one of the most extensive collections of artworks by the 20th-century Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.

In particular, the Museu Picasso reveals Picasso’s relationship with the city of Barcelona, a relationship that was shaped in his youth and adolescence, and continued until his death. The museum is housed in five adjoining medieval palaces in Barcelona’s La Ribera.

12. La Boqueria Market

La Boqueria Market

Foodies may think they’ve died and gone to heaven when they visit La Boqueria Market, a colorful market (and tourist attraction) in the old town. Located just off La Rambla, the market dates back to 1297 when meat was sold at the city gates. More than meat is sold there today.

There’s an array of foods, from farm-fresh produce, seafood, spices and candies being sold by more than 200 stalls. Buy the fixings’ for a picnic lunch or eat at one of the many restaurants before continuing sightseeing.

11. Santa Maria del Mar

Santa Maria del Mar

The beautiful Santa Maria del Mar (Saint Mary of the Sea) is an icon for Catalan Catholics. Construction of this massive church began in 1329 when Aragon King Alfonso IV laid the foundation cornerstone. It was finished in 1384, a prime example of Catalan Gothic architecture.

Though the outside seems severe, the inside more than compensates for this. Beautiful stained glass windows, high narrow columns and simplicity of design invoke feelings of spaciousness and serenity. Over the centuries, the cathedral has been damaged by earthquakes and fire, yet always regains its beauty.

10. Camp Nou

Camp Nou

One for the sports fans, yet still one of Barcelona’s most popular attractions. This stadium is home to formidable European football champions F.C. Barcelona.

With a capacity of 99,000 people, this breathtaking sporting arena is Europe’s largest. A tour of the ground is definitely worthwhile and you never know, you might be lucky enough to catch a game!

9. Montjuic


Montjuïc is a broad shallow hill with a relatively flat top to the southwest of the city center. The eastern side of the hill is almost a sheer cliff, giving it a commanding view over the city’s harbor immediately below. The top of the hill was the site of several fortifications, the latest of which remains today.

Another interesting sight is the Palau Nacional (National Palace), originally built as the central pavilion for the International Exhibition. The majestic building in neo-Baroque style is home to the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC). Montjuïc is also home to a number of sports facilities built for the 1992 Olympics.

8. Casa Mila

Casa Mila

Built between the years 1906 and 1910, Casa Milà (La Pedrera) was the last civil work designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi. The colorful building is considered one of the artist’s most eccentric and enticing architectural creations with not one straight edge on the exterior.

Tours of the interior and the incredible roof structures are available. It also hosts a large exposition of Gaudi works, covering Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlio, not only La Pedrera itself.

7. Gothic Quarter

Gothic Quarter

Old is good, especially when it’s the Gothic Quarter , located in the oldest part of Old Town Barcelona. Some say the quarter dates back 2,000 years, but what travelers will see today isn’t that old: a maze of narrow streets flanked by buildings from medieval times to the 19th century.

Travelers will see the Jewish Quarter, considered the Gothic Quarter’s prettiest section; walk the paths where a young Picasso went to school; eat at Can Culleretes, the oldest restaurant in Barcelona, dating to 1796, and shop at the colorful Boqueria market.

6. Barceloneta


Out of Barcelona’s seven different beaches, stretching over 4.5 km (2.8 miles) of coastline, Barceloneta probably tops them all. It is one of the most popular and is closest to the city center. Along the 1,100 meter (3,600 feet) sandy beach runs a walkway popular with joggers and cyclist.

Not surprisingly this place can get crowded, especially during the summer months when the beach bars open up and the beach quickly fills up with locals and tourist.

5. Font Magica

Font Magica

Font Màgica is a fountain located below the Palau Nacional on the Montjuïc hill and near the Plaça d’Espanya and Poble Espanyol de Barcelona. The fountain, like most of the surrounding developments, was constructed for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition.

On selected evenings, when the fountain is activated, it attracts hundreds of visitors who watch the spectacular display of light, water and music. At the same time, the Palau National is illuminated, providing a beautiful background.

4. Casa Batllo

Casa Batllo

It’s hard to find the words to describe Casa Batllo, perhaps because it looks like a carnival gone insane. One of architect Antoni Gaudi’s most famous buildings, Casa Batllo is a mish-mash of colors, building materials and what-have-you styles.

There’s a large onion-like dome that’s reminiscent of a mosque; a colorful wavy tiled roof line and lots of sculptures. Gaudi turned an nineteenth century building into Casa Batllo, sometimes called the “house of bones” because of the many jaws on one sculpture. It was a home without equal, but not one most people would feel comfortable living in.

3. Parc Guell

Parc Guell

With other major works in the city including La Casa Batlló and La Pedrera, this has to be one of Antoni Gaudí’s most celebrated and it is certainly one of the most emblematic of Barcelona.

The area was originally meant to be a residential property development with Gaudi doing much of the planning and landscape design. Only two houses were built and the land was later sold to the city of Barcelona and turned into a park. It is home to the famous Salamander sculpture, as well as other buildings and structures designed by the architect. With stunning views of the city, this is a magical experience.

2. La Rambla

La Rambla

This is probably the city’s most famous street and is a bustling hive of activity. It is often called Las Ramblas, because it is actually a series of several different streets that all have a distinct feel.

Located just off Plaza Catalunya and leading right down towards the port and beach, visitors will find street performers, lots of bars and restaurants and the fabulous Boquería Market, a true feast for the eyes.

1. Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia

La Sagrada Familia is the most popular attractions in Barcelona, attracting nearly 2.8 million visitors each year. It is a large and intricate basilica designed by Antoni Gaudi, a Catalan architect. Construction began in 1882 and continues to this day. The building is predicted to be completed within the next 30 years. It should be noted that this beautiful basilica has been funded completely by donations, as Gaudi had intended.

The design of La Sagrada Familia incorporates interpretations of many architectural styles, such as Arat Nouveau, Gothic and Catalan Modernism. Gaudi’s original plans called for a temple large enough to seat 13,000 people. Because he disliked straight lines, his towers were inspired by the peaks of Montserrat Mountain outside Barcelona, and had similar uneven lines.

Anyone interested in architecture will find this building fascinating to study. The plans include 18 spires, which represent Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, the four Evangelists and the Twelve Apostles. Work is still taking place on some of these spires, while others are open to the public.

The design also calls for three facades on the building. These include the Nativity Facade facing east, the Passion Facade facing west and the Glory Façade facing south. The Nativity Facade was completed in 1930. The Passion Façade and the Glory Façade are still under construction.

In his plans, Gaudi knew that his masterpiece would not be completed during his lifetime. He planned for it to be built in parts, thus assuring that each generation might be able to concentrate on one of the sections. This beautiful basilica is nearly finished, and when it is, Gaudi’s vision will finally be fulfilled.

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top place to visit in barcelona

Mezquita of Cordoba: The Mosque in the Cathedral

Reader interactions.

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January 29, 2016 at 12:15 am

I never knew there were so many beautiful attractions in Barcelona. Montjuic – the evening light and sound at the fountain, Sagrada Familia – architecture, La Rambla Street etc. – just marvelous. A visit to Montsarat is a must. The Crypt designed by Goudi and built with recycled material is a marvel indeed.

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December 28, 2015 at 1:47 am

Our holiday in Barcelona dedicated an entire day to the city center. Morning visit the Boqueria market and the Ramblas where we also ate. Then we were all afternoon store Paseo de Gracia and took advantage and had dinner there. We left the shop at the hotel and visited the quarry. I recommend going at night to this monument. It is amazing and well worth going.

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September 15, 2015 at 1:52 am

Casa Mila and Casa Batllo, in my opinion are the best. I love the architecture of Gaudi. His style is awesome. Also the place where are located are perfect. You must have to visit if you are there.

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September 8, 2015 at 4:25 am

My favorite place is Casa Mila, Casa Batlló and Sagrada Familia. Love it the architecture of Gaudi. But in my opinion, the place where are located Casa Mila and Batlló is better than Sagrada Familia. The avenue of Paseo de Gracia is amazing, full of art, best restaurants, hotels, stores. Perfect to shop and visit attractions 🙂

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July 27, 2015 at 2:10 am

Casa Batllo and Pedrera are an amazing buildings. I love Gaudi’s architecture. I think that every body that comes to visit Barcelona have to go there. Also the location of these two buildings is perfect, in the middle of Paseo de Gracia, one of the best streets.

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June 23, 2015 at 5:14 am

My favorite place in Barcelona is Paseo de Gracia street. It is amazing street with Gaudi’s buildings and luxury shops!!!!!

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May 3, 2015 at 10:53 am

I love Spain and Barcelona is one of my favorite places to visit. This page gives great information thank you.

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August 3, 2014 at 11:02 pm

My favourite is of course La Sagrada Familia. The sheer marvel of architecture.

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Home » Europe » Spain » Barcelona

36 BEST Places to Visit in Barcelona (2024)

Barcelona is the capital of the autonomous region of Catalonia and more than 1.6 million people live within the limits of this city. It’s a city known for its stunning architecture, creative spirit and of course the passion the locals have for FC Barcelona!

The endless historical buildings in the city will stun you with their beauty and detail, you’ll spend your whole time whilst visiting Barcelona completely awestruck! From La Sagrada Familia to Park Güell, Casa Mila and Casa Batlló Gaudi’s city will blow you away! Then there’s the Mercat de la Boqueria and the enchanting Gothic Quarter, there really are endless options!

There’s such a wide variety of things to do in the city. It’s got amazing food, fascinating history, incredible beaches and world class shopping if that’s your bag (pun intended!)

The biggest problem with this city? There’s so many incredible tourist attractions to see when you’re visiting Barcelona that is can be hard to sift through them all! So, we’ve gone through everything this incredible Spanish city has to offer so you can craft your own trip.

Need a place quick? Here’s the best neighbourhood in Barcelona:

These are the best places to visit in barcelona, faq on the best places to visit in barcelona.

We know you want to get going, there’s a lot to explore in this city, but before you join the thronging masses, we recommend you check out where to stay in Barcelona first. That way, you’ll know which neighbourhoods have the right flavour for you!

Places to Visit in Barcelona Pinterest Image

Barrio Gotico

Barrio Gotico is the heart and soul of Barcelona. The oldest neighbourhood in the city, it’s filled with charming narrow streets, picturesque boroughs, and quaint terraces and plazas.

  • Stand in awe of Barcelona Cathedral
  • Dine on delicious Mediterranean cuisine at Viana.
  • Browse the stalls off fruits, vegetables, fish, meat and sweets at Mercat de la Boqueria on Las Ramblas.

Looking for more accommodation? Why not check out the selection of epic hostels in Barcelona if you’re on a backpacker budget. If you’re on the lookout for something a bit more upmarket for your trip, why not have a look at the awesome Barcelona Airbnb options.

Now, onto the good stuff…

With sooo many things to do in Barcelona you could be forgiven for feeling a bit overwhelmed, especially if you’re only here for a few days. But there’s no need to worry, you just need to check out our extensive list to decide where you want to add to your personal Barcelona Itinerary .

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#1 – The MNAC


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  • The best place to experience Catalan art in Barcelona.
  • Includes one of the oldest and biggest collections of paintings on wood in Europe.
  • A must-see for art lovers!

Why it’s so awesome: If you’re in Barcelona, then you absolutely must see some Catalan art. This museum reopened in 2014 and boasts different media art from the 1950s to the modern day. So when you spend time there, you’ll be able to see examples of cinema, posters, architecture, and photography as well as the standard sculptures and paintings. If you only have a weekend in Barcelona then make sure to fit this one, it’s one of the top tourist attractions in the city.

What to do there: If you have the time, make sure you take the climb from Placa d’Espanya up to the museum as the views are panoramic and spectacular. Spend some time admiring the building as well, it’s a landmark in the city, and you’ll be able to take some great photos in front of it. Other than that, just explore the art within, particularly the Catalan pieces, the like of which you’ll rarely see outside of Barcelona.

#2 – The Encants Market – A great place in Barcelona if you love to shop!

The Encants Market

  • This is the place to go if you’re looking for a bargain!
  • Make sure you bring your wallet and take home some souvenirs.

Why it’s so awesome: This is one of the oldest markets for second-hand goods in Europe and it also offers some of the best opportunities for people-watching in this enchanting Spanish city. You’ll find everything at this place from souvenirs to sewing machines and bicycles, so make sure you take your time and explore everything that’s on offer.

What to do there: The vendors at this market are incredibly varied, so you’ll probably find clothes next to bicycles and toys next to jewellery. That’s half the fun too, so make sure you explore it all! Once you’re done with your shopping, there are plenty of great food options in the market so choose one and see what they have on offer.

#3 – La Sagrada Familia – A great place to see in Barcelona if you love architecture

La Sagrada Familia

  • La Sagrada Familia is a Gaudi masterpiece.
  • UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Make sure that you take lots of pictures of this architectural marvel.

Why it’s so awesome: Antoni Gaudi was the most famous architect in Barcelona’s history and many of the most beautiful buildings in the city were his magical creations. This incredible cathedral is a stunning representation of his style: it’s dreamy, fanciful and built on a scale that boggles the eyes and the mind. In fact, the structure still isn’t finished, and it’s been 140 years since construction began. When it is done, it will be the tallest cathedral in the world. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is unlike any old church you’ve been in before, even if you’re not religious, La Sagrada Familia is an absolute work of art. It’s a must-do when visiting Barcelona.

What to do there: You have to admire the mastery and the sheer genius of Gaudi. His works are sometimes controversial, but always striking and memorable. When you visit this site, you’ll see that it combines several popular architectural styles but in a way that’s pure Gaudi and purely incredible. What you also might see are incredibly long lines at the ticket counter.

Be smart and book your skip-the-line ticket for La Sagrada Familia in advance!

Insider tip: Go early in the day when the sun is in the perfect location to shine through the colourful windows.

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#4 – Park Güell

Park Guell

  • Park Güell is a gorgeous, fanciful natural paradise in the heart of the city.
  • Park Güell is the perfect way to escape the city and enjoy a calmer, more serene natural area.

Why it’s so awesome: This garden complex is located on Carmel Hill and it’s another must-see Gaudi creation. As with all of his work, everything in this park is beautiful and slightly unusual, such as serpentine benches and walls set with colourful mosaics. You’ll also enjoy fountains, sculptures and colonnades all in Gaudi’s distinct, fairy tale style.

What to do there: Take some time away from the busyness of the city and enjoy Gaudi’s unique take on nature. Wander around the Park Güell and then visit the Gaudí house museum, where he lived from 1906 to 1926. He designed all the furniture and decorations in the house, so it will give you an amazing insider’s view of this great man’s mind.

Since you don’t want to be one of the tourists waiting in line to get their tickets (which can be up to 1200 at a time, it’s one of the most well-known tourist attractions), you can sneak your way around that stress by booking ahead of time, skipping the line and getting a professionally guided tour through the park.

#5 – The Umbracle – A nice quiet place to see in Barcelona

The Umbracle

  • A display of iron architecture.
  • A striking and unusual display that would make a great background for photos.
  • A green natural space in the middle of the city.

Why it’s so awesome: It isn’t often that a collection of iron sculptures is protected by the Catalan Department of Culture, but this display definitely deserves special treatment. Built in the late 19th century by Josep Fontsere it resembles a large cage on the outside with brick columns. It was once used as a party space and something of that opulent past remains even though it now houses plants from all over the world. It’s worth a slight detour when visiting Barcelona.

What to do there: This is actually a botanical garden now and it’s the perfect place to take a breather from your explorations. It contains plant species from nearly two dozen countries, all of them protected by the arches of the metal architecture. This venue is only open on weekdays, so make sure you plan your visit. What’s great is that is one of the lesser-known tourist attractions.

Wondering how much you should set aside to afford Barcelona’s attractions? Our Barcelona Budget Guide will give you all the helpful tips and tricks so you don’t have to dig too deep into your pockets!

#6 – La Cova Fumada – A must-see for foodies!

  • Tapas, tapas, tapas!
  • Despite the plain building, this location has some of the best tapas in the city.

Why it’s so awesome: The tradition of tapas – small snacks that come with drinks – is extremely popular in Barcelona, and it’s also a fairly cheap way to try a range of tastes and dishes. La Cova Fumada is one of the best places in the city for this. The outside and the inside of the building are bland, but the tapas are absolutely first-rate.

What to do there: This venue is famous for the quality of its tapas, serving some of the most iconic Catalan dishes . Particularly popular are their grilled sardines, spicy potato, mincemeat bomba and seafood offerings. So, go in for a drink one afternoon and go to town on the offerings. Chances are that you’ll be there all afternoon working your way through the menu!

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#7 – Gran Teatre del Liceu

Gran Teatre del Liceu

  • Barcelona’s opera house.
  • One of the most historic buildings in the city.
  • You can see opera in this building, but the venue also plays host to ballet performances and concerts.

Why it’s so awesome: This building has stood through the ages despite disaster and economic crisis. It was first opened in 1847 but was remodelled in 1994 after a fire. For the people of Barcelona, this has long been the place where their culture and spirit have thrived, expressed through theatre and dance, and that feeling continues to the present day.

What to do there: You can obviously see some opera at this venue, but if you’re not a fan of that particular artform then keep an eye out for other performances. This building hosts dance and music performances too. The tickets are usually much lower than you would think, so make sure you snap them up fast before they run out!

#8 – An authentic Flamenco Show – A great afternoon/evening entertainment!

Flamenco Theatre Show in Barcelona City Hall

  • An amazing show, held in the evening
  • Affordable tickets that offer an amazing experience
  • Professional dancers that’ll leave you in complete amazement

Why it’s so awesome : Music, world-class dancers, a XIX century stage – it can’t get better than that when visiting Barcelona. Enjoy the show (which only lasts for an hour by the way) in the centre of the city before heading to dinner afterwards. It’s culture, it’s art, and it’s incredibly fascinating and entertaining. 

What to do there : Just sit and enjoy the show. You’ll fall in love with authentic Spanish music, great singers and professional dancers!

Keep in mind: There are only three shows in the evening, so be quick to book your tickets.

#9 – Carmel Bunkers

Turo de la Rovira

  • An amazing historical site left behind after the Spanish civil war.
  • Make sure you enjoy the view from the site – it’s one of the best in the city.

Why it’s so awesome: This site is an anti-aircraft battery that was built in 1937 when the city was bombed hundreds of times each day during the Spanish Civil War. This is a part of history that most people born outside of the area probably wouldn’t know about and it’s one of the lesser-known tourist attractions to visit.

The Spanish Civil War went on from 1936 to 1939 and it tends to get overshadowed by the events of the Second World War. But this slice of history reflects the spirit of the city and their determined resistance to the forces of Francisco Franco during the war.

What to do there: It’s quite a climb up to this site but it’s worth the trip. After the war, this area was occupied by houses that were later abandoned. The site would have been forgotten, but the neighbors petitioned to preserve the site as a historical monument. Once you’ve taken in the site, make sure you take some time to enjoy the views, which stretch all the way over Barcelona and out to the sea.

Insider Tip: This is a great place to watch the sunset over the city

#10 – Bostik Murals

Bostik Murals in barcelona

  • A great place for art lovers.
  • The perfect place to take in another side of Barcelona’s famous art scene.

Why it’s so awesome: This site is a museum of urban art. Ordinarily, that would be difficult as you can really tear murals from walls in the street. To overcome this issue, the owners of this venue have encouraged more than 20 artists to create original pieces on the exterior of the building. You’ll see some of the best muralists in the city in this location and gain a new appreciation for the creative spirit in Barcelona.

What to do there: The muralists who have taken part in this project are absolutely amazing and include BToy, Sixe Paredes, Manu Manu, Sheone, Fasim, Sebastien Waknine, and Sam3. The art here changes all the time, so make sure you check the website to see what’s on while you’re in the city. If you’re an artist yourself, the venue also offers its walls to outside artists who want to give murals a try.

#11 – The Montjuic Magic Fountain Show – Awesome place to visit in Barcelona with kids!

The Montjuic Magic Fountain Show

  • A spectacular water show, with more than 7 billion combinations of light, sound and music.
  • A great place to take the kids in the early evening.
  • The show includes Spanish music as well, so you’ll get the chance to enjoy local sounds.

Why it’s so awesome: This site is kinda for kids but any adult who loves music, light and water will enjoy it as well. The fountain was designed by Carles Buigas for the 1929 Exposition and it’s the only remaining attraction from that show. There are over 7 billion choreography combinations in the shows, with the water and light dancing to music from past times as well as more popular soundtracks.

What to do there: Make sure you arrive early so that you can stake out a good spot. The show tends to be popular amongst tourists, so if you’re late you’ll probably find yourself in the back where you can’t see much.

#12 – Las Ramblas

Las Ramblas

  • One of the first things you should do when you arrive in the city is explore this area!
  • The people watching in this area is incredible if that’s your jam!

Why it’s so awesome: This is the tourist heart of the city, which is why a lot of locals avoid it. But it’s also something that you should experience just once to fully understand Barcelona. This promenade stretches for miles and contains entertainers and food stalls before ending at the waterfront. It’s an amazing and engaging walk and once you reach the end you’ll be within walking distance of some of Barcelona’s best attractions including the Gothic Quarter.

What to do there: Ok, so Las Ramblas is one of those wild places that you’ll either love or hate. It’s a place you’ll have to visit once just to say you’ve been, but don’t waste too much of your precious time here. Instead, use it as a thoroughfare to explore the Gothic Quarter, Placa de Catalunya and the Columbus Monument.

Insider Tip: Be careful of pickpockets in this area and also avoid the restaurants are they’re a bit of a rip-off.

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#13 – Can Calopa – A beautiful outdoor place to visit in Barcelona

  • A great natural area to relax in the middle of the city.
  • If you enjoy learning about how to make wine, you’ll love this site.

Why it’s so awesome: If you want to enjoy Barcelona’s wine and olive oil in a natural area, then you don’t have to do it outside of the city. Can Calopa is a winery and bodega right in the centre of the city. It’s a 16th-century farmhouse surrounded by 3 hectares of vineyards right in the heart of the city. It’s managed by a corporation that uses the site to provide a home and work for young people with psychiatric disabilities.

What to do there: About 8,000 bottles of red wine a year are produced at this venue and you can be one of the first to taste the new bottles! The venue has wine and olive oil tasting and for a small fee, you can take a tour of the oil mill and wine cellar. You can also choose an option that includes a late breakfast with wine pairing. So, no matter how you enjoy your wine, you’ll find an option here that you’ll love.

#14 – Casa Batllo

Casa Batllo

  • Casa Batlló is another of Gaudi’s masterpieces.
  • A perfect place to take photos.

Why it’s so awesome: Gaudi’s creations are all over the city and some of them are pretty enough to be on postcards. In fact, a lot of them are on postcards, and Casa Batlló will help you understand exactly why. It’s an apartment block that Gaudi remodelled at the start of the 20th century and the roof tiles are modelled to look like dragon scales! Epic right!

What to do there: The attention to detail and the feel of Casa Batlló is amazing so make sure you take the time to notice all the details yourself. Inside and out, the building has a sinuous feeling very like a dragon, with few straight lines and an overall impression of something alive that is, perhaps, just sleeping. You can take a tour through the site if you’d like more context or just enjoy Casa Batlló on your own.

Short on time and want to see as much as possible? Check out our sample itinerary for Barcelona   before visiting!

#15 – Mercat de la Boqueria – A fascinating place to visit in Barcelona

La Boqueria

  • A great place for people watching.
  • Mercat de la Boqueria dates to medieval times and nothing much has changed!

Why it’s so awesome: The current site for this market has been in operation for more than 200 years, but there has been a Boqueria market in the city for much longer than that. This is a tradition that has lasted through all the changes in the modern world, and it’s one that’s well worth experiencing. At this market, you can buy all the freshest foods and take part in a ritual that has been a part of Barcelona for an incredibly long time.

What to do there: If you like to cook or just want an easy snack then you’ll find lots of fresh produce at Mercat de la Boqueria. Even if you aren’t interested in buying food you have to cook, there’s still a lot to do at this site. This is a site where you can see the locals in their natural environment, so it’s amazing for people watching. When you get tired of that, you can always have a beer and some tapas at one of the market’s bars. A great way to experience this market is with a local guide who will help you pick out ingredients to make authentic paella.

#16 – Barcelona City History Museum

Barcelona City History Museum in barcelona

  • A must-see for history buffs!
  • Barcelona is so stunning on its own that you sometimes forget it has a really long history, dating back to Roman times, and this place will remind you of that.

Why it’s so awesome: Barcelona has a long history, extending back to the Romans and the great emperor Augustus, and parts of this history have been preserved at this museum. There are also several Roman sites across the city, mostly in the gothic quarter, but this museum is the best way to see these ancient roots close up.

What to do there: This site is underground and will allow you to explore the remnants of a factory, shops and parts of the ancient wall. It’s a big site, covering 4,000 meters, so make sure you put aside a couple of hours to see everything. Keep moving up through the museum because it will take you through time to the vaults of the Palau Reial Major, which was the seat of Barcelona’s ancient Dukes.

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#17 – Fundacio Joan Miro

Fundacio Joan Miro in barcelona

  • A museum exploring Joan Miro, another of Barcelona’s iconic Catalonian artists.
  • His work was pivotal in creating Barcelona’s contemporary spirit and style.

Why it’s so awesome: Barcelona is a city of artists and creators and it’s been that way for a long time because of visionaries like Joan Miro. This museum was set up by the artist to encourage the growth of contemporary art in the city and he worked very closely with the architect during the building. As a result, the building is in unusual harmony with the works inside, in a way that will make your whole experience more relaxing than you could imagine.

What to do there: You’ll need to set aside part of an afternoon to explore this museum because it contains a large collection of work from sculptures and drawings to paintings. There are also temporary exhibitions of more contemporary art and the museum has a constant schedule of interactive and educational projects and displays. So, just see what’s on while you’re in the city and be part of the creation!


#18 – Gracia – An awesome place to visit in Barcelona for half a day!

  • A part of Barcelona that was only recently enveloped by the city and so feels like a completely different area.
  • There are lots of popular bars, cafes and independent shops in this area.

Why it’s so awesome: Barcelona is fascinating but it’s still a big city and sometimes the only way to understand somewhere is to visit a small town and see how the locals live. You can do this without even leaving Barcelona by visiting the area known as Gracia.

This area was once a town on its own but became part of the city in the 20th century. As a result, it still holds onto its small-town feel and charm and walking around its streets can make you feel as if you’ve been transported to a completely new place.

What to do there: This area has a lot of small streets and squares laid out in interesting patterns so make sure you spend some time wandering and exploring. Gracia is young and stylish, so enjoy the many cafes and bars in the area and visit the independent shops for souvenirs that are truly unique.

#19 – Casa Milà

Casa Mila

  • The Casa Milà is another Gaudi building in a very different style that looks like the a rockface!
  • You’ll get some great pictures in front of the Casa Milà!

Why it’s so awesome: Casa Mila was completed in 1912 and is another important Gaudi building. It looks like a quarry made from white stone, with holes blown out of it by prospecting miners. This site is UNESCO listed and it’s been renovated to include some contemporary features such as an underground carpark and self-supporting stone façade.

What to do there: The Casa Milà is a true marvel. Not only does it retain Gaudi’s fanciful features, it also seamlessly incorporates more contemporary features as well. This is part of the genius of the architect, his creations last because they can be adapted to the changing times. Gaudi was at the top of his game when he designed Casa Milà, so make sure you take some time and explore his creation.

#20 – Camp Nou – A Great Place To Experience Local Culture

Camp Nou

  • The Camp Nou is home of FC Barcelona .
  • If you get the chance, make sure you see a game because it’s a huge part of peoples lives here.
  • If it isn’t the football season, take a Camp Nou stadium tour so you can explore the museum and the sheer size of this stadium.

Why it’s so awesome: The Camp Nou seats 99,000 people and has been the home of FC Barcelona since 1957. In fact, this stadium is so large that it’s almost like a football cathedral and a good indication of just how seriously the locals take their football. They also have an amazing museum where you will find memorabilia of FC Barcelona’s prestigious history. In fact, if you’re a fan of the game you won’t want to miss out on visiting what is one of the world’s best football stadiums .

What to do there: If you’re there in the right season, make sure you see an FC Barcelona game. Football is an integral part of daily life in Barcelona and it’s exhilarating to be part of that energy at The Camp Nou. If it isn’t the football season then join a stadium tour just so you can have a close up look at the enormous Camp Nou stadium and marvel at the FC Barcelona trophy collection!

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#21 – Palau de la Musica Catalana

Palau de la Musica Catalana in barcelona

  • A concert hall that deserves an encore on its own.
  • One of the best places to experience opera, folk music and symphonies in the city.

Why it’s so awesome: Have you ever been to the opera back home? Chances are that the venue was beautiful but lacked the history and gravity this art form seems to demand. Not so at this musical venue. It looks like it could have stepped directly from the time of the Phantom of the Opera, with fanciful, elaborate decorations and deep reds and golds. It was built by Lluis Domenech, a contemporary of Gaudi, and it’s the perfect place to take in some great music while you’re in the city.

What to do there: They have a lot of different musical concerts in this venue, so find out what’s on while you’re in the city and grab a ticket. This is a beautiful venue that’s full of old-world charm, so make sure that you dress up and walk in feeling like you’ve entered a period drama!

#22 – Nova Icaria Beach – Great place to visit in Barcelona for couples!

Nova Icaria Beach

  • The best beach in the city for relaxing and taking in the sun.
  • This beach has more than 400km of sand, so there’s plenty of room for the whole family.

Why it’s so awesome: Barcelona has lots of great beaches and it can be difficult to choose between them, but Nova Icaria is definitely one of the best beaches in Barcelona . The endless stretch of white sand is one of the quietest beaches in the city and it’s perfect for families and for couples looking for a relaxing time.

What to do there: This is a great beach for relaxing but there’s also a lot to do if you’re more active. It has a game area and volleyball courts for kids or for anyone who wants to work up a sweat and easy access to restaurants and bars when you get tired of the sun and want to eat.

#23 – Barceloneta Beach

Barceloneta Beach

  • One of the most touristy beaches in the city and for good reason!
  • You’ll find some of the best seafood meals in the city in this area.

Why it’s so awesome: This beach is in a popular neighbourhood and is one of the busiest beaches in the city. But there are good reasons for this, as it has lots of entertainment options as well as some of the best seafood restaurants in the city. Whether you enjoy sunbaking, water sports or just want to look at the ocean and eat seafood, you’ll find everything you need and more at this beach.

What to do there: This beach has a wide range of seaside huts where you can eat delicious dishes while you stare out across the sand. Watersports are also popular in this area, with windsurfing and kitesurfing being the most popular options. Basically, no matter what you enjoy doing at the beach, you’ll find the equipment and the space to do it at Barceloneta Beach.

#24 – Santa Maria del Mar

Santa Maria del Mar

  • A soaring gothic temple with stained glass windows.
  • One of the most architecturally significant ancient buildings in the city.

Why it’s so awesome: This building was completed in 1383 and took 54 years to complete. Every stone used was hauled from the mountains around the city by ordinary citizens, which perhaps explained why its construction took so long! This is an incredibly elegant building that has survived through the ages to awe tourists in the present day.

What to do there: There’s a lot to see in this building so make sure you put aside some time. Most of the original structure is intact, though there is some fire damage sustained during the Spanish Civil War, so you’re literally looking at a slice of history when you spend time in this place.

Make sure you pay attention to the stained glass windows, which are perfectly positioned to take advantage of the angles of the natural light that enters the building.

#25 – Museu Picasso

Museu Picasso

  • This great artist actually chose this location for his museum!
  • Great for art lovers as you’ll get to see some of Picasso’s earliest works.

Why it’s so awesome: You might not expect to see a museum dedicated to Picasso’s work in Barcelona, after all, he was from Malaga. But Picasso apprenticed in Barcelona and did some of his earliest works in the city. The Picasso museum shows a lot of examples of this work all the way up to his Blue Period, so you’ll be able to get a deeper appreciation and understanding of his early genius.

What to do there: Picasso’s work is obviously the biggest draw at this museum, but the buildings themselves are worth some attention too. The five adjoining buildings of the Picasso museum were built in the 13th and 14th centuries and are fantastic examples of that period of history. So, make sure you spend some time exploring these blasts from the past as well.

#26 – Manzana de la Discordia

Manzana de la Discordia

  • A city block that illustrates the conflict between the greatest Modernist architects.
  • If you enjoy architecture, you absolutely must see this city block.

Why it’s so awesome: Barcelona has been the home of a lot of famous artists and architects and of course, they didn’t always get along. If you want to see this conflict up close, you can visit the Manzana de la Discordia.

Located in the Eixample District, the buildings in this block were created by the greatest Modernist architects in Barcelona at the time. Each of the architects was trying to show their supremacy over the others, and the end result is a stunning and slightly confusing combination of styles.

What to do there: To get to the Manzana de la Discordia you should go on foot. Walk up Passeig de la Gracia and take in the sites along the way before you arrive at this city block, then just explore. The buildings in this block are all innovative and very different and represent important advances in Modernist techniques. Unfortunately, their genius was eclipsed by Gaudi’s Casa Batllo, but that doesn’t mean they’re any less interesting or significant.

#27 – Passeig del Born – An unknown (but awesome!) place to see in Barcelona!

Passeig del Born in barcelona

  • If you don’t like the crowds of Las Ramblas, this is the perfect alternative!
  • It’s mostly for locals, so you won’t have to put up with the tourist crowds in this area.

Why it’s so awesome: This promenade has a long history. It was once a gathering place for locals during jousting competitions or celebrations and these days it’s a popular spot for drinks and foods in the evening and night. It has the same wide range of food and drink places as Las Ramblas, but for the locals, not the tourists.

So, if you want a much more authentic experience while you’re in the city, then spend one of your evenings in this relaxed setting.

What to do there: This area is the perfect place to bar hop along with the locals. Some of the city’s best bars and restaurants are in this tree-lined promenade and it’s the perfect place to take some friends and enjoy the tastes of Barcelona. So, do what the locals do. Start out with a cocktail at Cal Brut and then try some tapas at Disset 17 Gaus. After that, just see where the evening takes you! If you want to make this area your base for a while, why not stay in a hostel nearby in greater Born.

#28 – Ocata Beach – A nice non-touristy place to visit in Barcelona

Ocata Beach in barcelona

  • The perfect place to get away from the city.
  • If you’re looking for serenity and a beach away from the tourists, this is the best option.

Why it’s so awesome: This beach is located half an hour out of the city by train and is pristine and beautiful with golden white sand. It’s also enormous, so you’ll be able to stake out your own spot of sand and enjoy the peace without disruptions. You won’t find many tourists at this location as it doesn’t have the entertainment options of other beaches. Instead, this is a place to relax, soak up the sun, and enjoy some great seafood.

What to do there: You won’t have to complete for towel space at this beach. Instead, you’ll be spoiled for choice. Just enjoy the sun, the sand and the ocean alone or with some good friends. And when you’re sick of the sun, visit one of the chringuitos, the nearby eateries, for fresh seafood and cold drinks.

#29 – Barcelona Cathedral (Cathederal de la Seu)

Cathederal de la Seu in barcelona

  • Part of the beautiful Gothic Quarter and it’s super photogenic!
  • Barcelona Cathedral has all the gothic features you’ve ever dreamed about including gargoyles and flying buttresses.

Why it’s so awesome: There’s nothing like a gothic cathedral to get the imagination running wild! If you’ve been dreaming about the gargoyles and slightly creepy but intricate features of the Gothic period, then you’ll find them all at the Barcelona Cathedral. Created to honour Eulalia, the patron saint of the city, it even includes 13 live geese who wander around the site.

What to do there: Get your cameras ready and make sure you take pictures in front of the cathedral and then count the geese. There are always 13 geese in the cathedral, meant to symbolise each year of Eulalia’s life before her martyrdom. Also, do the rooftop tour while you’re there. The cathedral looks particularly stunning from up high and you’ll also great a great view of the Gothic Quarter from above.

#30 – Carrer de les Aigues – One of the most incredible free places to go to in Barcelona

Carrer de les Aigues

  • An ancient road that offers the absolute best views in the city.
  • A great way to work off all the tapas in stunning surroundings!

Why it’s so awesome: A lot of people will tell you that the best views in the city can be found in Park Guell. But the locals know that the views at the park can’t compare to those you’ll enjoy on this ancient road. It winds around the mountains and overlooks the Mediterranean, offering views of both land and sea. And as an added bonus, the old-style road has been modified so that it’s perfect for biking or walking, so make sure you pack some decent walking shoes for your Barca trip!

What to do there: This is a long road, around 20km, but it’s fairly flat and easy to walk or bike along. You can reach it via a short funicular ride, and you’ll get stunning views that are almost completely absent of tourists. This is a secret that only the locals know, so take advantage of it before the crowds set in!

#31 – Tibidabo


  • At 1,700 feet, you’ll get amazing views of the city from the top of this mountain.
  • Take pictures of the city against the backdrop of the dark blue Mediterranean.

Why it’s so awesome: Tibidabo is a 1,700 feet mountain that offers a lot for anyone who dares to reach the top. You can get up there by tram because you definitely won’t have the time to climb all the way and enjoy great views as well as a range of entertainment options.

What to do there: There are a lot of ways to enjoy this mountain. You can hike through the park, tour the Sagrat Cor Basilica, or spend some time at the theme park. This final option is determinedly retro but loved by kids of all ages and has a Ferris wheel and carousel as well as other older style rides and games.

#32 – Parc de la Ciutadella – A beautiful outdoor place to visit in Barcelona

Parc de la Ciutadella

  • Parc De La Ciutadella is a chance to get away from the rush of the city and rest in nature.
  • Make sure you check out the iconic fountain in the middle, designed by famed architect Josep Fontsere.

Why it’s awesome: When you’re in the middle of a busy city, sometimes a park can be a haven. This is even more important when you’re in Barcelona, which is a walking city. So if your legs are getting tired, make sure you rest them in the cool, lush surroundings of Parc De La Ciutadella. After a little rest and recharge, you’ll be ready to face the rush again!

What to do there: This is a park for relaxing on a bench and enjoying the feelings and sights that come when you have nature all around you. You can also go on a relaxing rowboat trip along the lake and make sure you check out the Neoclassical fountain in the centre, created by one of the most popular architects in Barcelona’s history.

#33 – Casa Pages

  • Eat tapas like the locals do!
  • Get away from the tourist traps for the best tapas you’ve ever eaten.
  • Make sure you try the locally made and bottle vermouth.

Why it’s so awesome: Tapas isn’t strictly Catalonian food, but they’re still an awesome way to eat because you get to try a range of tiny dishes and find the tastes that you really love. The best way to do this is by escaping the tourist trails and finding bars like the Casa Pages where the locals go to eat.

What to do there: Eating tapas is all about trying lots of small options and seeing what you enjoy the most. So, make sure you try the meatballs and patatas bravas and get a drink while you’re there as well. The locally bottled vermouth is usually the drink of choice for the locals, so who are you to go against tradition?

#34 – The Labyrinth Park of Horta – Quite the quirky place in Barcelona!

The Labyrinth Park of Horta in barcelona

  • A semi-secret park that will keep you busy for hours!
  • The oldest garden in the city.

Why it’s so awesome: This garden is mostly neglected by tourists, but it’s been delighting the locals for hundreds of years, making it the oldest garden in the city. It was created in 1791 as part of the huge estate owned by the wealthy Desvalls family and the terraces were inspired by Italian designs. There are several parts to this garden, created at different times in history, but the central labyrinth is the main draw.

What to do there: There are over 2,000 twists and turns in this labyrinth , so if you don’t have a good sense of direction you could get very happily lost there. In the centre is a statue of Eros, the Greek god of love, and you can also sit in one of the pavilions overlooking the maze and watch the action.

Each pavilion has its own statues of Greek gods, so if you’ve ever wanted a picture with an icon from the past then this is the place where you can get it!

#35 – Wander the Stunning Gothic Quarter

Gothic Quarter Barcelona

  • Take in some of the most historic and beautiful architecture in the city.
  • Be sure to visit the El Pont del Bisbe  (Bishop’s Bridge)
  • You can explore by yourself or take a walking tour to see some of the hidden gems

Why it’s so awesome: Barri Gòtic or the Gothic Quarter as you might imagine is jam-packed full of incredible architecture dating back to the Gothic period and beyond. In fact, this area is one of the oldest areas in the city and even has the remains of a Roman Fort lurking amongst the narrow alleyways and winding streets. This labyrinth-like area of the city is a joy to get lost in and you’ll soon find yourself in the heart of a beautiful cafe-lined plaça before diving back into the maze!

What to do there: The best thing to do around this area is to just wander and see where you end up, embrace the art of getting joyfully lost! There are a few highlights though to look out for, the Bishop’s Bridge, Plaça Reial, Plaça Sant Jaume, Plaça de Sant Felip Neri and Plaça del Pi to just name a few.

Insider Tip: It’s easy to get lost in not only the streets here but the history too! A walking tour with a local guide is. a great way to discover the hidden secrets of the area.

#36 – Montjuic Cemetery

Montjuic Cemetery

  • This cemetery has some of the most striking and unusual sculptures you’ll ever see!
  • A slightly creepy look at art and architecture in Barcelona.
  • This is one of the most serene and beautiful sites in the city, and overlooks the Mediterranean.

Why it’s so awesome: This cemetery opened in 1883 and is the biggest cemetery in Barcelona. Some of the most famous people in Barcelona’s history are buried there such as artist Joan Miro and Catalan leader Lluis Companys, but there are also more tragic and terrible displays. It might sound a bit strange to wander a cemetery, but the beautiful modernist graves and peaceful surroundings overlooking the ocean make it one of the best experiences in the city.

What to do there: For a more sombre look at the city’s history, make sure you check out the el Fossar de la Pedrera, otherwise known as the Grave of the Quarry. It’s located in the western wing of the cemetery and contains 4,000 victims of the Franco regime after Barcelona fell to fascist forces during the Spanish Civil War. There are also memorials to victims of the holocaust there, which makes this part of the cemetery a moving and sad place to visit.

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Find out what people want to know about the best places to visit in Barcelona

What is the most visited place in Barcelona?

The most visited place in Barcelona is the Sagrada Familia with over 4.7 million visitors in 2019.

Are 3 days enough to visit Barcelona?

Three days should be enough time to see the main attractions in Barcelona, but it is easily a place you could spend more time in if you wanted.

Is Barcelona an expensive place to visit?

Barcelona is quite an expensive place to visit but there are ways to keep costs down. Staying in hostels and cooking your own food will allow you to have a budget-friendly stay.

Is Barcelona a safe place to visit?

Barcelona is generally a safe place to visit but pick pockets are common. You should be careful around tourists attractions and keep an eye on your stuff.

Barcelona is a city known for its art and architecture and it’s probably one of the most beautiful and interesting cities in Europe. It’s a must when you’re backpacking in Spain !

It was the home of the famous architect Gaudi , who left his mark all over the city in the most spectacular fashion possible. That’s why, if you’re looking for interesting food, great architecture, and a cool and slightly unusual place to visit, Barcelona is the city for you. And now, you can use this easy guide to find everything in the city that you’re interested in seeing.

top place to visit in barcelona

Mathilde Magnier

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World Travel Toucan

30 Great Places to Visit in Barcelona – The Top Barcelona Attractions

shows an image of cable cars overlooking Barcelona - The best places to visit in Barcelona

Welcome to our guide on the best places to visit in Barcelona. This iconic Spanish city is a top European city break destination that can be visited all-year round. It offers endless historic attractions and sightseeing opportunities, but also a great food scene. It also has some of Spain’s best nightlife! Barcelona is a city that rises late and stays up late.

From its iconic football team to the beautiful beaches, life in the city is fast paced and any visit is a thrilling whirlwind from start to finish. To help you get started with your trip planning, we’ve assembled a list of the top 30 must-see attractions. You’ll need a full week to see them all, so choose wisely and note down the Barcelona attractions that stand out to you the most.

We’ve also included some helpful travel tips, accommodation recommendations and bonus day-trip ideas. Continue reading our guide for 30 great places to visit in Barcelona.

1. The Sagrada Familia

We’re starting off our list of the best places to visit in Barcelona with the city’s number one attraction. The Sagrada Familia is widely regarded as one of the world’s best man-made attractions and the most beautiful church on the planet. Construction started on the church in 1883 when architect Antonio Gaudi took the reins on the project. Being such a grand design, work is still being completed on the church to this day.

Sagrada Familia is beautiful to admire both inside and out. It boasts elaborate stone carvings, huge spires, and a design that’s unlike any other church you’ve seen before. Inside, the floors, ceilings and staircases are made from a soft white marble, featuring the same Gaudi design that intertwines natural form with modernism. The colours reflected from the stain glass windows set the scene for the most beautiful church interior you’ll ever witness.

Sagrada Familia is the number one attraction in Barcelona, and you must pre-book a time slot online to visit. If you only visit one place in the city, it must be the Sagrada Familia!

shows an image of the sagrada familia in Barcelona

2. Mount Tibidabo

Made world-famous by ‘Joey’ from the TV series ‘Friends’, Mount Tibidabo is a mountain range that towers behind the city of Barcelona. It’s one of the best city viewpoints you’ll find and is high up enough to see all corners of Barcelona, from the neighbourhoods to the beaches. The best way to get to the top of Mount Tibidabo is by funicular. The journey is fast and scenic, taking you to the top in a matter of minutes.

At the top of Mount Tibidabo, you’ll find some excellent viewpoints. There’s also a small amusement park, food stalls and a fairy-tale-like white church called the Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

Mount Tibidao at sunset

3. The Gothic Quarter

One of our favourite places to visit in Barcelona is the old town centre, also known as the Gothic Quarter (Barri Gòtic). This charming area is home to some of Barcelona’s oldest buildings, each with a medieval style. It has several Roman-era monuments and buildings, museums, and Middle Ages churches. One of the best things about the Gothic Quarter is simply wandering through its narrow, dimly lit streets. During the day they’re full of tourists on walking tours. On evenings, they’re dark, moody and full of hidden bars and restaurants.

We recommend spending a lot of time exploring the Gothic Quarter. It’s in the main tourist area and there’s a lot to see all in one place. MUHBA Temple d’August, Plaça de Sant Jaume and El Ponte de Bisbe are some of the must-sees.

shows an image of the gothic quarter

4. Barcelona Cathedral

Located in the Gothic Quarter, Barcelona Cathedral is a beautiful Gothic-style cathedral that dominates the skyline of the old town. Only second to the Sagrada Familia for most impressive churches in the city, it’s a must see when wandering the streets of ‘Barri Gòtic’. Admire the church from the outside before paying the entry fee and talking an audio tour of the grand interior. The church opened in 1448 and has a rich history.

shows an image of Barcelona cathedral

5. Ciutadella Park

Every major global city has a nice park to explore, and in Barcelona’s case, that’s Ciutadella Park. This neatly manicured park is a short walk from the old town tourist centre. It features a large man-made lake where you can hire a rowing boat, and several walking trails, gardens and relaxation areas. Life here is quiet, making it a nice place to visit on a sunny day. The rowing boat experience is something we highly recommend doing with your partner – it’s such a romantic setting!

Other things to see in Ciutadella Park include Barcelona Zoo, the Catalunya parliament building and the Monument of Sonia Rescalvo Zafra.

shows an image of cuitadella park


6. Arc de Triomf

Right next to Ciutadella Park, you’ll find Barcelona’s answer to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. Arc de Triomf is a memorial arch that was built by architect Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas for the 1888 Barcelona World Fair. It has bold terracotta colours, towering pillars and a tall archway that you can walk through. The Arc de Triomf area is a great place to hire a bike and explore. There are plenty of cycle paths near the park and a long promenade that leads to the monument.

shows an image of the Arc de Triomf in Barcelona - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

El Born is one of Barcelona’s coolest neighbourhoods. It’s located right next to the historic Gothic Quarter that we mentioned above and has its own rich medieval history. The old buildings and narrow streets are reminiscent of the past, but these days, it’s a very fashionable place to stay or visit. The quaint streets of El Born are full of trendy restaurants, cafes, bars and shops. It’s a great place to visit on an evening for a night out, but can also be enjoyed by those that want a quiet drink and chat over some tapas.

We recommend visiting El Born both during the day and on an evening for completely different experiences. It’s one of the best places to eat or drink and has some less touristic restaurants compared to the Gothic Quarter.

shows an image of a girl walking through a street in El Born neighbourhood

8. Barceloneta Beach

One thing we absolutely love about Barcelona is the fact it has a huge beach right alongside the city. Not many cities on earth have a beach like Barcelona’s! Barceloneta Beach and the nearby beaches are the relaxation place of choice for locals in the warmer months. They’re also hotspots for tourists that want a break from the sightseeing. Featuring white sands and plenty of facilities, bars and restaurants, Barceloneta is a great place to spend an afternoon.

Even if you don’t want to relax on the beach or go for a swim, you can go for a walk along the long promenade to Port Olimpic, Barcelona’s premier yacht marina. The entire Barceloneta area is always buzzing, no matter the time of day you visit.

shows an image of Barceloneta beach

9. Port Vell

Port Vell is one of the best places to visit in Barcelona to enjoy a drink or meal with a view. Being a key Mediterranean port, the city always has hundreds of boats and yachts docked up in its main marina, including luxury yachts of the rich and famous. Port Vell is where you can soak in the sea-breeze and feel like you’re not in a city, but in a nice seaside resort in the south of Spain.

We recommend going for a long walk around Port Vell at sunset. You can enjoy a drink in a harbourside bar or browse the shops at Maremagnum Shopping Mall. It’s one of the better shopping destinations in the city. Barcelona Aquarium is also located here, which is a great attraction for families.

shows an image of yachts lined up in Port Vell, Barcelona

10. Montjuic cable car and park

We’ve mentioned one area where you can get some amazing views, Mount Tibidabo. Montjuic is another great place to visit in Barcelona to capture panoramic views of the city. To get to Montjuic, you’ll need to take a funicular transport from the city centre, up the hill to the base of the mountain. You can then proceed to walk up through the hillside park until you reach a castle.

Alternatively, take a scenic cable car ride up the mountainside for spectacular views of the city and shoreline. This was one of our favourite activities in Barcelona and we highly recommend paying the small cable car fee rather than walking. In Montjuic Park itself, you’ll find a number of walking trails, viewpoints and relaxation areas. There’s also a Botanical Garden.

shows an image of cable cars in Barcelona - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

11. Montjuic Castle

At the top of the Montjuic hill ascent, you’ll find an old defence fortress known as Montjuic Castle. Built in 1640 during the Reapers’ War, the castle sits at 173 metres above sea level. You can admire the exterior of the fort as you walk along to the hilltop viewpoints. Alternatively, cross the castle entrance bridge, pay the small fee and explore the inside. The well-preserved fortress grounds have several watchtowers, rooms and parade grounds to explore. You can also walk along the fortified walls for some beautiful views of Barcelona.

Shows Montjuic castle in Barcelona

12. Montjuic Magic Fountain

Montjuic Magic Fountain is a Barcelona attraction that has captivated tourists and locals since 1929. Featuring a series of moving water streams, coloured lights, music and colours, the fountain comes alive on an evening. Water seemingly does acrobatics to the sound of the music! Montjuic Magic Fountain is a fun attraction to see before you head out to dinner, but please check opening hours before arrival. It temporarily closes throughout the year.

Shows the magic fountain show in Montjuic Barcelona

13. The National Art Museum of Catalunya

We were mesmerized when we first saw the National Art Museum of Catalunya. It’s without a doubt one of the most stunning buildings in Barcelona! The 19 th -century building houses a series of 11 th to 20 th -century Catalan art, including an impressive Romanesque collection. If you like art galleries, you can’t miss this place off your list! Even if you don’t want to peer inside the museum, we recommend stopping by to see the building’s grand exterior whilst in the Montjuic area.

Shows the national art museum of Catalyuna - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

14. Placa d’Espanya

Another place worth visiting in the Montjuic area is Placa d’Espanya. This iconic city square is a short walk from The National Art Museum of Catalunya and is just as magnificent. The plaza has a series of historic buildings, including a long-standing bull fighting area, marble pillars and two 47m tall Venetian Towers. There’s also a roundabout that houses a fountain monument at its centre.

shows an image of Placa d’Espanya in Barcelona

15. Poble Sec Neighborhood

Poble Sec is an up-and-coming Barcelona neighbourhood that’s quickly becoming one of the trendiest areas of the city. Day or night, it’s one of the best places to visit in Barcelona to experience authentic, affordable tapas in a small corner bar. There are some excellent restaurant options, whatever your taste. It also has a lively nightlife scene for evenings out into the later hours. We recommend visiting Poble Sec for lunch after exploring Montjuic. The funicular from Montjuic takes you right into the heart of Poble Sec neighbourhood.

shows an image of a tapas bar in Barcelona - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

16. L’Eixample neighbourhood

L’Eixample is one of Barcelona’s trendy and upmarket neighbourhoods. Located right next to the main shopping areas and exclusive fashion boutiques of the city, it’s a great place to base yourself during your visit. It’s also a great place to explore! Visit L’Eixample during the day to shop, dine and enjoy a drink in a café. On an evening, there’s a great selection of tapas restaurants and bars to check out.

shows a birds eye view of Eixample, Barcelona

17. Plaça de Catalunya and Passeig de Gràcia

Plaça de Catalunya is one of Barcelona’s main squares. It sits at the very top of the main tourist street, Las Ramblas, and connects to a series of excellent attractions, shops and restaurants. Locals use it as a gathering point and it’s a great place to start your sightseeing adventure. Take time to explore the shops, cafes and square itself. If you’d like to do a spot of shopping, the large high street stores and department stores at Plaça de Catalunya are the best in the city.

Alongside Plaça de Catalunya, you’ll find the high-end shopping street known as Passeig de Gràcia. This long street has an impressive line-up of buildings, including two of Gaudi’s premier pieces of work. It’s a bustling place to visit and there’s always something going on. As well as designer fashion stores and jewellery shops, you’ll find high streets stores such as Nike and Mango.

shows an image of people walking around Placa de Catalunya - Barcelona attractions

18. Barcelona Camp Nou Stadium

One of Barcelona’s biggest exports is football! Barcelona FC is known worldwide, and they’ve long been one of the top club teams challenging in the Champions League. Whether you’re a football fan or not, a tour of Barcelona’s home stadium Camp Nou is something we highly recommend. The stadium has a lot of history and there’s a lot to see.

Stop by for a guided tour of Camp Nou and an insight into the football club. You’ll get a tour of the changing rooms, trophy room, substitute and manager area, amongst others. You’ll also get to view a completely empty stadium, which is very cool to see.

shows an image of Barcelona camp nou football stadium

Some of Barcelona’s best attractions are all buildings designed by architect Antonio Gaudi. His works of art are scattered throughout the city, each instantly recognisable for his trademark style, but all having a different concept. Gaudi’s work is known for having an ‘organic’ look to it. There are seven main works of art by Gaudi in Barcelona, and many of them are must-see Barcelona attractions. We recommend checking out the following:

19. Parc Guell

Parc Guell is one of Gaudi’s largest projects. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage designated park that’s comprised of several buildings, monuments, sculptures and walking paths. Stepping into this unique park is like entering a completely different world. We thoroughly enjoyed walking around seeing the buildings, walking paths and viewpoints. Be sure to book tickets online before arriving and allocate a good couple of hours to see Parc Guell. It’s one of Gaudi’s most diverse works of art.

shows an image ofthe inside of Park Guell in Barcelona - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

20. Casa Batlló

Casa Batlló is a Gaudi-designed building on Barcelona’s main designer shopping street, Passeig de Gracia. The building instantly stands out with its modernist, organic design, which is much like Gaudi’s other projects. As one of the top-rated Gaudi attractions, Casa Batlló is one of the best places to visit in Barcelona to see a Gaudi-designed interior. Much of the building is open to explore, with its grand hallways, quirky rooms and magnificent ceiling designs on show. In addition to the Gaudi artwork, the museum hosts interactive exhibits throughout the year.

Casa Battlo Gaudi museum

21. Casa Vicens

Case Vicens is a Gaudi-designed building with a very different design to the others we’ve listed. Modernist in design, but with a series of colourful shapes and chequered squares, it has an almost fairy-tale like appearance. Casa Vicens is famous for being the first project that Antonio Gaudi was commissioned to work on. It paved the way for his many other projects and displays the early era of his design work. You can visit Casa Vicens for a small entrance fee.

shows an image of the architecture of Casa Vicens - Barcelona attractions

22. Casa Mila

Casa Mila, also known as La Pedrera, was Gaudi’s last commissioned architectural project. It shows the full extent of Gaudi’s imaginative design-style and is truly a masterpiece to explore. The building spans 5 floors, all of which you can walk around at your leisure. There’s also a rooftop terrace with unique turrets and nice views of the city centre. Casa Mila is well worth visiting if you have time. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Museum has lots of interactive exhibits and is a chance to see Gaudi’s last piece of civic design work.

Casa Mila - Antonio Gaudi

23. Palau Guell

The last Antonio Gaudi-designed budling on our list of Barcelona attractions is right in the heart of the city’s tourist area, just off Las Ramblas street. It’s a mansion that was built to house the elaborate parties of high society guests and it features a very different style to some of Gaudi’s other works of art. The exterior of the building is small and somewhat hidden, blending in with other buildings on the street. However, look closely and you’ll notice Gaudi’s organic design style. Inside, there are several rooms and grand hallways to explore.

shows a close up image of the architecture at Palau Guell

24. Parc del Laberint d’Horta

Parc del Laberint d’Horta is a hidden gem of a Barcelona attraction. It’s slightly off the tourist trail on the edge of the city centre and is well worth visiting on a sunny day. Easily reached by Metro, Parc del Laberint d’Horta is a historic garden on the grounds of an estate. It has existed as a royal garden since the late 1700’s and has been transformed many times since.

Today, it’s a neatly manicured series of walking trails, sculptures and scenic relaxation areas. There’s also the main attraction; a large hedge maze. It’s a great place to get lost or enjoy a picnic on a hot day. It’s also one of the best places to visit in Barcelona for couples. The setting is beautifully romantic!

Parc del Laberint d'Horta hedge maze - Barcelona attractions

25. Las Ramblas

Las Ramblas is the main tourist hub of the city. It’s a long street that leads from the seafront, all the way to Place Catalunya, the main shopping hub. No matter what time of the year you visit, the street is full of crowds of tourists. Gift stalls, shops, cafes, dessert parlours and live street performers make this one of the busiest areas in Barcelona.

There’s no doubt that Las Ramblas is extremely touristic. The restaurants here are all way overpriced and we don’t recommend any of them. However, the vibrant atmosphere and unique architecture on the street make it a must see at least once during your stay. Grab a fruit shake from the market, check out the live performers and soak in the atmosphere.

Shows tourists walking down Las Ramblas in Barcelona

26. Boqueria Market

Located on Las Ramblas, you’ll find the iconic Boqueria Market. This famous food market started in the 1200’s and has grown to become a major tourist attraction. It’s one of the best places to visit in Barcelona to soak in the lively atmosphere whilst sampling a variety of foods. Market vendors sell fresh produce to the locals, but you’ll also find interesting snacks, drinks and souvenirs to buy. A common activity is to order a fresh fruit shake and drink it as you walk around.

Another top thing to do in Boqueria Market is to grab a stool at one of the tapas bars inside the market. It’s an authentic way to experience Spanish Tapas for the first time and the prices aren’t too bad. We recommend eating at El Quim ( view on Google Maps ).

shows an image to the entrance of La Boqueria market

27. Santa Caterina Market

Another market to check out is Santa Caterina Market. Whilst Boqueria Market now caters mainly to tourists, Santa Caterina provides an authentic experience of a local Barcelona Market. Locals shop here for their fresh meat, vegetables and bakery supplies. It’s a smaller, less crowded market that’s worth a quick visit whilst exploring the El Born area of town. It’s a good place to buy cured meats, and you can also sample some tapas.

shows an image of palm trees in Barceloneta beach

28. Palace of Catalan Music

The Palace of Catalan Music is a modernist Catalan concert hall that opened in the early 1900’s. Like many of the old Catalonian buildings in the city, the interior of the concert hall is really something special. Floral and organic style is apparent throughout the main hall, with a dazzling ceiling of tiles and glass. The acoustics in the concert hall are also really special.

You don’t have to see a show to experience the beauty of Palace of Catalan Music. Simply book a tour. Tours run throughout the day, giving you a guided experience of everything the concert hall has to offer.

shows the inside of Palau de la Música Catalana - 30 great places to visit in Barcelona

29. Bogatell Beach

We’ve already listed Barceloneta Beach, the city’s most popular beach. However, it’s not the only beach in the area. If you want a quieter relaxation experience with less crowds and people selling you things, check out Bogatell Beach. Botagell is just along the coastline from Barceloneta Beach. It has soft white sand, it’s very clean and is a great place to swim. Go for a long walk or cycle ride on its promenade or lay down your towel and bathe under the hot Spanish sun.

Bogatell Beach - Shows a scenic view of the sand and sea

30. Visit one of Barcelona’s many museums

If you like exploring museums on a city break, you’re in for a treat. Barcelona is full of amazing museums, galleries and exhibits, each offering something unique. We recommend checking out the following:

Picasso Museum – A small museum dedicated to the art of Pablo Picasso. It contains more than 4000 works of art from all periods of the artist’s life.

History Museum of Barcelona – Located in the heart of the Gothic Quarter, the History Museum of Barcelona is a place where you can learn about the city’s rich history. It features stories, exhibits and artefacts from Barcelona’s early Roman beginnings, up to the modern day.

Banksy Museum – A small, quirky museum that’s dedicated to the elusive British artist, Banksy. It’s always hosting new exhibits and events.

CosmoCaixa – The ultimate science museum! Excellent for families and those than want an interactive learning experience, Cosmo Caixa is well worth visiting if you want an alternative to sightseeing.

Park Guell panoramic view

Where to stay in Barcelona

Looking for a great place to stay in Barcelona during your visit? Read our safe areas to stay in Barcelona guide for area and hotel recommendations.

Frequently asked questions

If you only have time to see a handful of attractions during your time in the city, we recommend the following. They’re each very different, providing you with a broad experience of Barcelona. – Sagrada Familia – Gothic Quarter – Boqueria Market – Monjuic Cable Car and Park – Barceloneta Beach

The top free things to do in Barcelona include: – Wandering around the old streets of the Gothic Quarter. – Going for a walk and relaxing in Ciutadella Park. – Admiring the view or going for a swim at Barceloneta Beach. – Taking the bus to the top of Mount Tibidabo and admiring the view. Barcelona has a lot of paid-for attractions, including museums, churches and galleries, but it has a lot of free outdoor attractions too.

Gaudi designed a total of 7 buildings in Barcelona and they’re all stunning works of art. In our opinion, the absolute must-sees are: – Parc Guell – Casa Batllo – Casa Vicens

Experience the beautiful towns and mountains outside of the city by taking a train or bus to the following destinations: Sitges – a small seaside town with a beach and some nice shops and restaurants. Girona – a charming Spanish city that’s rich in culture, has great food and boasts several sightseeing opportunities. Montserrat – The vast mountainous region just outside of Barcelona. Endless nature walks and spectacular viewpoints.

Thanks for reading our guide on the best places to visit in Barcelona. No matter the time of the year you visit, there’s always something going on in the city and there are endless options for things to do. Whether you’re on a fleeting visit or are spending a full 2-weeks here, there’s plenty to keep you entertained morning and evening. Do you have any questions about our guide? Maybe you have your own Barcelona attraction suggestion? Be sure to post a comment below.

Check out our other Barcelona travel guides:

Central and Safe areas to Stay in Barcelona

Our Barcelona 3-day Itinerary



An adventurer at heart that loves anything outdoors. Beaches, mountains and amazing scenery is everything I love about travel! I also enjoy home comforts and need a nice place to relax and re-charge after every trip.

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Things to do in Barcelona

60 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain

Home | Travel | Europe | Spain | Catalonia | Barcelona | 60 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain

There are a lot of things to do in Barcelona, Catalonia. Its art and architecture have enriched this beautiful city with worldwide fame, making it one of the main tourist destinations in Spain.

As all of my mother’s family is from Catalonia, I have been traveling to Barcelona for as long as I can remember and I can tell you that you should visit it at least once in your lifetime.

I suggest spending 3 days in Barcelona, but if you want to visit the surroundings, you’re better off with 4 or 5 days. There are many amazing  places to visit in Barcelona , one of the best cities to visit in Spain.

If this is your first time, this  free tour  is one of the  best things to do in Barcelona  as soon as you arrive. Also, to learn more about the architect that designed many of the main points of interest in the city, don’t miss this   free tour about the modernist works of Gaudí .

Keep in mind that not all of  Barcelona’s tourist attractions  are close to each other. The best way to get around is with   this unlimited transport card , which is valid for 2 to 5 days from activation. However, if you’re going to visit museums and other paid attractions,   this other card   includes unlimited transportation and free entrance to some sites.

Now, here are the 60 best things to do in Barcelona . At the end of this guide, I’ve included a tourist map to help you plan your itinerary.

1. La Sagrada Familia, a must-see in Barcelona, Catalonia

La Sagrada Familia  is one of the most important  places to visit in Barcelona . This Catholic cathedral was designed by Antoni Gaudí and is considered his most impressive work. Construction began in 1882 and the work is still not finished! Once you step inside, you’ll understand why.

The church is a prime example of Catalan Modernist architecture, and perhaps the most ambitious project in the country. Simply walking up to it, you have to crane your neck to see the impressive façade and all the intricate details. Be sure to take time to see all the religious elements interspersed with natural forms.

Sagrada Familia, things to do in Barcelona

The Sagrada Familia is a  UNESCO  World Heritage Site, so there’s no doubt that visiting it is one of the best things to do in Barcelona . Along with the Alhambra in Granada, the cathedral is one of the most-visited monuments in Spain. The interior is a true work of art, full of symmetrical ornamentation.

The most remarkable thing about it is its massive size and huge towers. Each tower is meant to represent a Biblical character: Jesus, the Virgin Mary, the apostles, and the four evangelists of the gospels.

I think it’s well worth spending the extra money to climb to the top of the towers. You’ll get the most stunning views of the city! The lines get long, so I suggest booking one of these options in advance:  skip-the-line-ticket only ,  ticket + guided tour , or  ticket + guided tour + towers .

2. Park Güell, the most beautiful park to visit in Barcelona

Park Güell  is one of those places not to miss in Barcelona . This public park is another dreamy creation by Gaudí, and it’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Entrance to the park is free, although you’ll need a ticket to visit the monument area. It’s worth it, as you’ll get to see the best modernist architecture in Barcelona. Plus, there’s a  skip-the-line ticket  available. Or, you  bundle Park Güell with a tour of La Sagrada Familia .

Park Güell, places to visit in Barcelona spain

As you go through the main entrance, you’ll see a whimsical little house overlooking the southern slope of Mount Carmel. The house functions as a bar, exhibit room, and souvenir shop. Also, right in front of it is one of the top tourist  attractions in Barcelona : Gaudí’s famous lizard sculpture. The colorful ceramic fragments were made with the traditional  trencadís  technique, which is reflected in many Barcelona souvenirs.

Take your time exploring the gardens and the  Plaza de la Naturaleza , where you’ll find the iconic snake-shaped bench and magnificent views. Be sure to also check out the incredible architecture of the  Hypostyle Hall, the Viaducts , and the  Laundry Room Portico . You can also visit the Gaudí House-Museum, where the famous architect lived for a few years.

I would plan a few hours at the park so you can take your time to see everything. There are picnic tables and plenty of benches, too. Don’t forget to visit the  Austrian Gardens , the  Vallcarca Forest , and the  Hill of Three Crosses .

3. Watch a match at Camp Nou,  popular things to do in Barcelona, Spain

I’m not passionate about soccer, but I know that watching the Barça team play at  Camp Nou  is a dream come true for many people. I think it’s one of those  activities in Barcelona  that anyone could enjoy.

Camp Nou stadium was inaugurated on September 24, 1957, and since then, has been where FC Barcelona plays their home games. The arena currently seats over 99,000 fans, making it one of the largest stadiums in Europe. It’s also open to self-guided tours throughout the week, so it’s a popular  tourist attraction in Barcelona .

Camp Nou, top things to do in Barcelona Catalonia

If you can’t catch a match, consider  this tour , which takes you behind the scenes to the more private areas of the stadium. A sports journalist will share history about the Barça team while showing you the press room, museum, and press box. The tour ends with a snack and drinks at the local bar.

I did this tour with my brother a couple of years ago and can say that it’s one of the  fun things to do in Barcelona  for families too.

4. La Pedrera-Casa Milà, a breathtaking place to go in Barcelona

La Pedrera , also known as  Casa Milà , is another important work by Antoni Gaudí, and it’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can find it by strolling along Paseo de Gràcia. Once you see it, you’ll have no doubts because it’s the most  beautiful place to visit on Barcelona ‘s streets.

It’s hard to imagine living in such an incredible building, but  Casa Milà  was built as a residence. The undulating structure was completed in 1912 for Pere Milà and Roser Segimon, an aristocratic couple.

From the sidewalk, you can see the home’s wrought-iron balconies, each with a slightly different style. You can admire Casa-Milà from the outside or pay to see the inside. Admission doesn’t cost too much, and I think it’s an  interesting thing to do in Barcelona .

La Pedrera, best things to do in Barcelona

From inside, you can see that the construction of the windows and patios was very intentional to improve the lighting and ventilation. If you go up to the roof, you’ll get awesome views of the city. I think it’s fun to look around and notice which chimneys and staircases stand out from the ordinary.

The main hall of the building serves as a public museum. It also houses the headquarters of the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation headquarters and some luxury apartments.

If you do want to go inside, I suggest booking a  skip-the-line ticket  since it can get crowded.

5. Casa Batlló, one of the best museums in Barcelona, Catalonia

Casa Batlló  is another famous work by Antoni Gaudí and one of my favorite  places to visit in Barcelona . What makes this building so special is that the façade represents the history of Sant Jordi, the patron saint of Catalonia. If you visit Casa Batlló on April 23rd (the day of his death and the Day of the Book), you’ll see red roses adorning the balconies.

Casa Batlló, sightseeing in Barcelona spain

The exterior façade of Casa Batlló is colorful and ornate, and the designs seem to resemble masks or skulls. The balconies are equally as impressive, especially the uppermost Princess Balcony. Along with the scaly roof, these architectural elements look like the body of a dragon. You could stand in front of this house for an hour and still find little details, which makes it a  popular place to visit in Barcelona.

Like Gaudí’s other works, Casa Batlló is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can view the exterior for free, but I recommend reserving a  ticket  to go inside. The tour includes a virtual reality “smart guide” that gives you an inside look at Gaudí’s design process.

6. Visit Plaza de Cataluña-La Rambla-Mirador de Colón, the best free thing to do in BCN

One of the most iconic  things to do in Barcelona  is to take a walk through the  Plaza de Cataluña  to  La Rambla  and the  Columbus Monument . These three attractions are part of any Barcelona itinerary and will give you a great introduction to the city.

The  Plaça de Catalunya is a huge square and connects the old town to the E nsanche , or expansion of the city. Shops, bars, restaurants, and a subway station surround the plaza, and it always has a lively atmosphere. If you visit during the holidays, you can experience the Christmas market. There are lots of activities too, making it one of the best  things to do in Barcelona with kids .

La Rambla, things to see in Barcelona

6. Plaza de Cataluña-La Rambla-Mirador de Colón, the best free thing to do in BCN

The plaza also connects to La Rambla, the central street in Barcelona. This energetic street leads to the port and is always filled with tourists and enticing stalls. La Rambla passes by popular  Barcelona attractions  like the  Liceu Theater  and the  Boquería market . While there are lots of things to see here, be sure to stay aware, as lots of pick-pocketers hang out around this area.

At the end of La Rambla, you’ll see the  Columbus Monument . It’s nearly 200 feet tall and you can climb to the overlook, where you’ll get spectacular views of the port. Nearby is a scenic waterfront walkway and Port Vell , the old city port. There are lots of restaurants around here, but I don’t recommend them because the prices are high, and the quality isn’t great.

7. Eat at La Boquería, an incredible thing to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

The  Boquería Market  is one of the most  famous places to visit in Barcelona , and it’s quite an experience for the senses.

This open-air market has the perfect location to entice tourists who are strolling La Rambla. It dates to 1840 when it was a popular local market for fresh produce. Today, it’s one of the main  Barcelona tourist attractions  with a global reputation.

La Boquería Market, things to do Barcelona Spain

La Boquería covers over half an acre, and you’ll find over 200 vendors here. The products range from local specialties to exotic foods and delicacies. If you can find a seat at one of the bar counters, settle in for some traditional tapas. The market is also a great place to sightsee, and it’s a nice free thing to do in Barcelona .

I think it’s interesting that this area used to be the site of the Convent of Sant Josep back in the 16th century. However, the convent caught fire, so the market was built in its place.

8. La Barceloneta, one of the best beaches in Barcelona, Spain

La Barceloneta  is one of the top  tourist sites in Barcelona . The neighborhood is a popular vacation spot for locals and visitors since it offers a convenient location to the beach and the city center.

Because of its proximity to the sea, the Barceloneta district was a fishermen’s neighborhood in the mid-18th century. While the area has been modernized, the old-fashioned essence of remains, mostly in the narrow streets, darkened facades, and squawking seabirds.

La Barceloneta, best places to go in Barcelona

Barceloneta Beach  is one of the more  popular places to visit in Barcelona , particularly among tourists. The beach can get so crowded that many locals prefer to travel to nearby towns instead. While Barceloneta is worth seeing, there are other great beaches in Barcelona, such as  Sitges, Calella , and  Castelldefels .

When you get hungry, you won’t be far from some great restaurants. One of my favorite pizzerias, NAP, is in Barceloneta. If the weather is nice, you can order a pizza to go and enjoy it on the beach.

There are also lots of  interesting things to do in this Barcelona  neighborhood. For example, here you’ll find the  Museum of History of Catalonia, the Clock Tower , and the  Maremagnum Shopping Center . You can also take the  cable car to the Miramar Viewpoint  on the lower level of  Montjuïc , an area I’ll talk about next.

If you’re staying overnight, the beach has one of the best hotels in Spain , the W Barcelona .

9. Montjuïc, an area with more things to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

Montjuïc  is one of those  places of interest in Barcelona  that offers something for everyone. This iconic hill is home to parks, museums, historical sites, and incredible views of the city.

The area has several  unique things to do in Barcelona  that you can’t find anywhere else. For example, the  Castle of Montjuïc  is an old military fortress from the 1640s, although it had to be rebuilt in 1751. It has a neoclassical style with bastions, parade grounds, a watchtower, moat, and terrace. It’s at the summit of the hill, over 565 feet above sea level, and you feel like you’re in another world.

Montjuïc, Barcelona places to visit

If it’s museums that you want, Montjuïc won’t disappoint. The area is home to MNAC , the  Archaeology Museum of Catalonia , the  Joan Miró Foundation , and the  Joan Antoni Samaranch Olympic and Sports Museum . The  Poble Espanyol,  an open-air museum that recreates traditional Spanish villages, is another highlight.

Another unforgettable thing to do here is to see the free  Magic Fountain  show in front of MNAC. Watching the colorful display of water, lights, and music is the  best thing to do in Barcelona at night .

Besides, getting to Montjuïc is half the fun. You can take the  cable car  and take in aerial views of the sea and mountains. It’s a more expensive option, but it’s worth it for the experience.

10. Tibidabo amusement park, the best thing to do in Barcelona with kids

Tibidabo amusement park  is the most popular  place to visit in Barcelona with kids . The park is on  Tibidabo Mountain , which is part of the Collserola Range. It’s the oldest active amusement park in Spain, and one of the oldest in Europe, and makes for a thrilling day trip.

The amusement park will delight kids, but there are also elements for adults to enjoy. If I had to choose an attraction, of course, I’d choose  Hotel Krüeger . It’s a haunted house full of creepy characters like Dracula, Freddy Krueger, and the girl from  The Exorcist . This is one of the  best attractions in Barcelona . It’s so good that you can only go in three times per day.

Tibidabo, things to do in Barcelona for families

Other activities at Tibidabo include historic rides like  Talaia , a rotating arm built in 1921 that soars over 1,800 feet in the air. There is also  Avió , the world’s first   flight simulator, which is a to-scale replica of a 1920s Iberian Airlines plane. There are modern thrill rides, too, such as the  Dididado  4D cinema attraction and  Virtual Express , a virtual reality roller coaster.

When you need a break, you can visit the park’s  Automata Museum , which contains over 40 automated machines and puppets from the 19th and 20th centuries. There are also several restaurants, picnic areas, and souvenir shops in the park.

Tibidabo is popular with locals and tourists, so it can get crowded. Sometimes it’s impossible to get same-day  tickets , so I recommend purchasing them in advance.

11. Barcelona Cathedral, a tranquil place to go in Barcelona, Catalonia

The  Barcelona Cathedral  is one of the most impressive Gothic temples in Catalonia, so it’s one of the top places for  sightseeing in Barcelona .

Also known as the Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia, this 14th-century church is a stunning example of Catalan gothic architecture. As you approach the structure, you’ll notice the exterior façade is covered in religious motifs and gargoyles. There are also relief sculptures of Christ and the apostles on the large door and Gothic arch.

Barcelona Cathedral, must see in Barcelona

If you’re an art aficionado, you may notice that some elements in the church are more Renaissance while others are modernist. For example, the impressive bell towers and stained-glass windows reflect these styles.

Of course, you don’t need to be well-versed in art history to appreciate the beauty of this cathedral. One of the most remarkable parts of the church is the  Crypt of Santa Eulalia . This tomb is the resting place of Saint Eulalia, a young girl who defended her Christian faith to her death. The 13 white geese in the cloister area represent the age at which Eulalia was martyred.

You should also check out the ornate choir stalls, the monstrance made of gold and silver, and the  Chapel of Santo Cristo de Lepanto , which was built in 1407.

12. MNAC, one of the most important museums in Barcelona, Spain

MNAC  or the  National Art Museum of Catalonia  is one of the most important  museums to visit in Barcelona . It’s conveniently located in Montjuïc Park, behind the Magic Fountain.

The museum has one of the most impressive collections in the country. Its exhibits cover masterful works from the 11th century to the present day, including works by El Greco, Rubens, and Goya, among others. Along with these famous paintings, you’ll also find drawings, engravings, sculptures, and foreign coins.

MNAC, best places to visit in Barcelona

It’s worth visiting MNAC more than once, as the permanent collection is massive. That said, the museum also holds temporary exhibits, so check the  website  to see what’s showing during your trip.

As you walk up to the museum, you’ll feel like you’re entering a magnificent castle. And well, you kind of are! MNAC is housed in the National Palace, a Spanish-Renaissance building that was designed for the 1929 International Exhibition.

If you love art, this is one of the  best places to go in Barcelona . You can explore thousands of works all in one location. Plus, if you go up to the museum terrace, you can look out over  Plaça d’Espanya  and the rest of the city.

13. The Gothic Quarter, an interesting place to visit in Barcelona

The  Gothic Quarter  is one of the most  interesting places to visit in Barcelona . As the oldest and, in my opinion, the most beautiful part of the city, you can’t say you’ve experienced Barcelona without seeing this neighborhood.

You might stumble upon the Gothic Quarter by accident, or you can make a left off La Rambla as you’re walking towards the Columbus Monument. Follow the narrow streets to encounter one of the most charming  Barcelona attractions .

Some of the small shops in this neighborhood are the original 19th and 20th-century buildings. You’ll also find a few tourist sites like the neoclassical  Plaza Real , the  Barcelona City History Museum , the  Picasso Museum , and the  Barcelona Cathedral  that I mentioned earlier.

The Gothic Quarter, places of interest in Barcelona

One of the most important areas is the  Plaça de Sant Jaume , where City Hall and the Government of Catalonia are located. Several cultural events occur here throughout the year, such as the  castells , or human towers.

The Gothic Quarter is also home to the remnants of Barcelona’s Jewish Quarter, known as  El Call . One of the oldest synagogues in Europe, the  Ancient Synagogue of Barcelona , can be found here.

You want to take your time exploring this distinct neighborhood. I know the labyrinthine streets can be confusing, so consider this  2-hour walking tour . Afterward, you might enjoy browsing the nearby  Portal de l’Àngel  shopping area.

14. Palace of Catalan Music, one of the most spectacular places to go in Barcelona

The  Palace of Catalan Music  is a modernist Catalan music hall and a  beautiful place in Barcelona . Designed by architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, the palace first opened in 1908. Today, it’s a  UNESCO  World Heritage Site and a prime example of the  Renaixen ç a , the Catalan Rebirth.

You can see national and international performers at the concert hall, although the stunning interior decorate might steal the show. The palace’s interior is filled with intricate floral motifs as well as traditional Spanish and Arabic elements.

Palace of Catalan Music, where to go in Barcelona

Perhaps the most impressive feature is the stage, which is surrounded by muses, busts of Anselm Clavé and Beethoven, and a depiction of Wagner’s Valkyries. The circular stained-glass skylight looks like a sun radiating throughout the concert hall.

A visit to the palace is an amazing  experience in Barcelona  and one that you shouldn’t miss. The cheapest seats cost $24-$35, but I recommend spending a bit more so you can really take in the show. If there isn’t a performance you’re interested in seeing, this 45-minute  guided tour  is a great way to explore the luxury of the palace.

15. Visit Plaça d’Espanya, the best free thing to do in Barcelona

Plaça d’Espanya  is one of the most  famous places to visit in Barcelona , as you might guess from its iconic Venetian towers. The square holds historical and cultural significance and is a must-see during your trip.

The plaza’s spectacular architecture was designed for the 1929 International Exhibition, and today, it creates a lovely backdrop for the  Magic Fountain  shows.

Plaza de España to visit in Barcelona

This is also where you’ll find  Las Arenas , a former bull-fighting ring that’s now a massive shopping center with some good restaurants. If you go up to the roof terrace, you can view the plaza and its surroundings. You can take the panoramic elevator, but they’ll charge you a fee. I don’t think it’s worth it, so I prefer taking the free elevator or escalator.

The  CaixaFórum  art gallery is also in the square. It’s a cool place to see contemporary art, photography, film, and architecture. If the  Fira de Barcelona  pavilions are open, check those out, too. Throughout the year, this area hosts interesting trade shows covering a variety of subjects like cars, manga, weddings, and more. Nearby is the open-air  Poble Espanyol  museum, which I’ll talk about later.

Getting to the plaza is simple since many bus routes stop here. Or you can take the L1, L3, or L8 subway train to the Espanya station.

16. Joan Miró Foundation, another great museum to visit in Barcelona, Catalonia

Nestled atop Montjuïc Hill is the  Joan Miró Foundation , which doubles as a museum and a contemporary art institution. Miró was an influential Catalan painter, and the collection spans more than 104,000 pieces of his work, so this is a top  museum in Barcelona .

On your way to the foundation, you’ll probably pass through Plaça d’Espanya, which is home to Miró’s  Dona i Ocell  sculpture. At the museum, not only will you find some of the artist’s best work, but the building itself was designed by him, too. He imagined each gallery space and room layout so they could reflect specific artworks, which I think is pretty cool.

Joan Miró Foundation, best things to see in Barcelona Spain

Along with his surreal paintings, drawings, and sculptures, the foundation also holds temporary exhibits of 20th and 21st-century artists. Here, you can find works by Rene Magritte, Alexander Calder, Mark Rothko, and lesser-known artists. The Espai 13 gallery is dedicated to young experimental artists.

The museum also offers family activities and workshops, so this could be a fun  place to visit in Barcelona with kids .

17. Ciutadella, a popular place to go in Barcelona, Catalonia

La Ciutadella  is a gorgeous historical garden, although it was once a military fortress. After the 1868 Revolution, the fortress had been demolished, leaving the city to decide what to do with the space. Since the 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition was approaching, the plan was to create one of the most  beautiful places in Barcelona .

Without a doubt, La Ciutadella Park is a prominent  site in Barcelona , both for its historical significance and its incredible design. It has a unique five-corner design with the main entrance being near the  Arc de Triomf . The entire area covers over 40 acres, making this the perfect place to hang out, practice sports, have a picnic or sightsee.

Ciutadella, Barcelona main attractions

Speaking of which, La Ciutadella is a prime spot for  sightseeing in Barcelona . I suggest checking out the  Cascada , a lovely waterfall that mimics the design of Rome’s Trevi Fountain. There is also the modernist  Castle of the Three Dragons , where you’ll find the  Museum of Natural Sciences of Barcelona .

Be sure to bring your camera because there are lots of cool monuments to see. One of the best is the mammoth sculpture, whose trunk you can climb onto. The General Prim monument and  Als Voluntaris Catalans  statue, which honors fallen Catalan volunteer soldiers, are also popular.

On a typical day, you’ll see couples and families enjoying the fresh air or a rowboat ride on the lake. Even though it’s in the city and close to several attractions, it’s a peaceful haven.

18. Arc de Triomf, an incredible monument to see in Barcelona, Catalonia

The  Arc de Triomf  is a  Barcelona attraction  you can’t miss. Built for the 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition, the arch is nearly 100 feet tall, although it’s smaller than the Paris arch that inspired it. You can find it near the Ciutadella entrance on the Lluis Companys promenade.

While most arches of triumph are meant to commemorate military victories, Barcelona’s Arc de Triomf is non-combative and instead, welcomes visitors. The inscription on the front-facing side even says  Barcelona rep les nacions , which translates to “Barcelona receives the nations”.

Arc de Triomf, things to see and do in Barcelona

The iconic landmark was a collaborative project among several Catalan architects, and all the elements represent various aspects of the city’s history. For example, there are relief sculptures to mark Barcelona’s agricultural industry and commerce, as well as shields of the 49 Spanish provinces. The carved stone bats are a nod to King Jaume I, who oversaw a period of prosperity over the city.

The Arc de Triomf is a unique  thing to see in Barcelona , plus it’s close to several good restaurants and tourist attractions. The surrounding area near the Lluis Companys promenade is a pleasant hangout spot for locals, so take your time to walk around and enjoy the friendly atmosphere.

19. Güell Palace, a breathtaking place to go in Barcelona

Another Gaudí masterpiece you should check out is  Güell Palace . This cultural landmark and UNESCO World Heritage Site, which you can find in the El Raval neighborhood, was completed in 1890.

Like all Gaudí’s works, Güell Palace stands out among the other homes on Nou de la Rambla Street. The modernist architecture is something you’ll recognize if you’ve already visited other Gaudí  tourist attractions in Barcelona .

Güell Palace, things to do in Barcelona Catalonia

If you pay attention to the house’s front entrance, you’ll notice two iron gates, which were designed to accommodate horse-drawn carriages. There are intricate organic forms forged into the iron, some of which resemble underwater plants.

Part of the mansion is a museum, and you can go inside for a reasonable fee. Your visit starts in the basement stable, through the central room, and up to the roof terrace, the most beautiful part. Here, you’ll find 20 chimneys and a central spire, all covered in decorative ceramics. Walking through the terrace feels like traversing a magical landscape of colorful mosaics and curvaceous forms.

If you plan on visiting other  places of interest in Barcelona , consider  this tour , which guides you through La Rambla, La Boquería, and Güell Palace.

20. Turó de la Rovira, a little-known area to visit in Barcelona, Catalonia

For an interesting yet  unusual thing to do in Barcelona , consider a trip to  Turó de la Rovira . This hill sits 860 feet above sea level, granting you awesome views of the city and sea.

The site dates to the 4th century, although it was most prominent during the Spanish Civil War in the late 1930s. The famous  Carmel bunkers  you’ll see here were used as an anti-aircraft battery during the war.

Turó de la Rovira, what to do in Spain Barcelona

In the 1950s, the area became a shantytown, housing thousands of poor families. This ushered in the urban phenomenon of  barraquismo  or informal housing.

Today, Turó de la Rovira is home to a  Barcelona History Museum archaeological site . You can explore the outdoor museum space and exhibitions to learn more about the Spanish Civil War and the post-war period in Catalonia. I’ll mention the Barcelona History Museum in-depth a bit later.

Turó may be off the beaten path, but it’s a great place to go if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city center. Besides, the area is perfect for stargazing, which is one of my favorite  things to do in Barcelona in the summer .

21. Church of Colònia Güell, a secret place to visit in Barcelona

If you loved Park Güell, then you’ll enjoy visiting the  Church of Colònia Güell . Also known as the Gaudí Crypt, it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a hidden gem in Barcelona.

The church is tucked away in a small forest, its man-made materials blending in seamlessly with the natural surroundings. If you visited La Sagrada Familia, you’ll find the Gaudí Crypt to be a similar structure.

Church of Colònia Güell, Barcelona sites

Gaudi built the church with colorful materials and textures, which reflects his focus on natural elements. While the architect started building the structure in 1898, he took a decade-long break only to leave the chapel unfinished in 1914. The crypt portion is the only part that’s complete, although local architects did some work on the church so that visitors can stand on the roof, which Gaudi meant to be the floor.

Fortunately, this magnificent building maintains the asymmetrical charm that the Catalan architect is known for. Plus, compared to Gaudi’s other works, the Church of Colònia Güell is the least touristy. Of course, it’s still a  beautiful place to visit in Barcelona , particularly for its stained-glass windows. You can get early entry to the church and crypt  here .

22. Shop at Agbar Tower & Encants Market, a great activity to do in Barcelona

The  Agbar Tower , now known as the Torre Glòries, is a prominent landmark on the Barcelona coastline. It’s also one of the  famous places to visit in Barcelona . Thanks to its distinct shape, the building has received several funny nicknames such as the cucumber, the bullet, or the dildo.

From afar the building looks a bit silly, but up close, it’s quite a sight. At nearly 475 feet tall, the 34-floor structure is made of shiny glass and aluminum. The inside mostly contains offices, although the architect’s penthouse is at the top. Rather, Torre Glòries is a cool  place to go in Barcelona at night , when its 4,500 LED lights create pretty color and pattern combinations.

Agbar Tower, Barcelona what to do

Plus,  Encants Market  is right next door. Similar to the Rastro de Madrid, Encants is a one-stop-shop for just about anything you might want. Here, you can browse through stalls selling furniture, clothing, toys, crafts, antiques, and more. There are also several food vendors offering delicious street food.

Arrive here in the afternoon and spend some time perusing the market as well as the  Glòries Shopping Center . Around dusk, you’ll be able to see the Tower lights go on. It’s a  unique thing to do in Barcelona  that I highly recommend.

23. Gràcia, a bohemian neighborhood you must visit in Barcelona, Catalonia

Gràcia  is a quintessential Barcelona neighborhood. It has a fun, bohemian vibe with lots of artistic and cultural characteristics. Without a doubt, it is one of the most  popular places to visit in Barcelona .

Some of my best memories are from my days in Gràcia, so it’s one of the neighborhoods I like the most. If you can, I suggest visiting during the  Fiesta Mayor de Gràcia  in mid-August. Gràcia residents compete for the best street decorations, and visitors come to see all the themed displays, many of them handmade. The event is an awesome  thing to do in Barcelona in the summer , and people line up around the block to see it!

Gracia, places to see in Barcelona

Besides that, Gràcia is a charming district with beautiful squares and architecture. Check out the  Plaza de la Virreina , where you’ll find the  Church of Sant Joan , the  Plaza del Diamante,  the peaceful  Plaza del Norte , or the  Plaza de la Vila de Gràcia , a modern area with bars and coffee shops.

To enjoy some sightseeing, visit the  Mercado de la Libertad , the  Vallcarca Viaduct , Gaudi’s  Casa Vicens , or the  Teatre més petit del món  (The Smallest Theater in the World). You can visit the one-room theater for an intimate performance, but space is limited, so  book ahead .

24. Picasso Museum, one of the top museums in Barcelona, Spain

The  Picasso Museum  is one of the best  museums to visit in Barcelona . Pablo Picasso covered a wide scope of artistic styles throughout his career, and this museum has thousands of his works, the most in the world. If you need something to do on a rainy day, or you just love art, check this place out.

What’s unique about this museum is that Picasso himself established it in 1963. After a friend suggested having the museum in Málaga, Picasso decided it would be in Barcelona, a city he had come to love.

Picasso Museum, must visit in Barcelona

This  Barcelona attraction  occupies several houses along  Montcada Street  as well as a building in nearby  Sabartés Square . These impressive structures are a good example of Catalan civic gothic architecture and seem perfect for containing Picasso’s work. Along with its permanent collection, the museum hosts temporary exhibits related to Picasso’s life and artistic style.

The museum is a popular tourist spot, so I suggest booking your ticket in advance. Better yet, this  walking tour  includes museum admission and a walk through Picasso’s old hangouts, such as  Els Quatre Gats  (The Four Cats). If you have time, visit this iconic cafe, which played a pivotal role in Barcelona’s age of  modernisme .

25. Gran Teatro del Liceu, another must-see in Barcelona, Catalonia

Along La Rambla, you’ll come across the  Gran Teatro del Liceo . It first opened in 1847 for the city’s upper class, so seeing a performance there is a  luxurious thing to do in Barcelona . You can find out who is performing at the theater on the  website .

Unlike other opera houses in Europe, private shareholders funded the construction of the Gran Teatro. This fact is reflected in the theater’s design and lack of a royal viewing box. Despite being emblematic of Barcelona’s elite, it became a beloved city icon.

Liceu, where to visit in Barcelona

Over the years, a fire and bombing destroyed parts of the theater, but it was rebuilt in the original style. Still, some locals believed that the theater was cursed since it was built on the former site of a convent!

Cursed or not, the Gran Teatro is a  must-see in Barcelona . I was lucky enough to be in town when  Les Misérables  was playing at the theater, and I was blown away by the quality of the acoustics and the Art Nouveau architecture. If you love theater, add this to your  Barcelona to-do list .

26. Plaza de San Felipe Neri, a historical place to go in Barcelona

The  Plaza de San Felipe Neri  is hidden among the narrow streets of the Gothic Quarter, and it deserves a section of its own. This historical  attraction in Barcelona  is equal parts beautiful and mysterious.

The square has a medieval Baroque style, which you’ll notice in the surrounding buildings, such as a school and church. There is a nearby playground and a lovely octagonal fountain, which many interpret as a symbol of life and hope.

Plaza de San Felipe Neri, what to visit in Barcelona

All this Renaissance beauty aside, there is a somber air about this place. You’ll probably notice the damaged walls of the church. While tour guides and locals sometimes say that the pockmarks are the result of an anarchist execution, that’s not true.

The damage occurred on January 30, 1938, during the Spanish Civil War. It was one of General Franco’s planes that dropped bombs on the church in the plaza. The bombings killed 42 people, many of whom were children.

Visiting this square is one of the more  unusual things to do in Barcelona , but it’s a historically significant area that I think is worth seeing.

27. Air-raid shelters, another unusual place to go in Barcelona, Catalonia

The Spanish Civil War was just 80 years ago and had a strong impact on the country and Catalonia in particular. One of the more  unique things to do in Barcelona  is to visit the  air-raid shelters  throughout the city. If you’re interested in diving into this part of Barcelona’s history, I’ll tell you where to find the most significant shelters.

One of the largest is  Refuge 307 de Poble Sec  at the foot of Montjuïc. The Barcelona City History Museum manages it now, but back in the late 1930s, the residents of this neighborhood dug a tunnel over 1,310 feet deep to build the shelter. Today, the refuge is open to public tours, so you can see how the 9,000 residents lived within the walls of these tunnels.

Air-raid shelters, areas to visit in Barcelona

Another shelter, the  Refugio de la Plaza del Diamante , is in the Gràcia neighborhood. It’s smaller, just 40 feet underground, and with a 200-person capacity, but it’s still impressive. I also suggest you visit the  Refugio de la Plaza de la Revolución , which housed 1,400 residents and is also in the Gràcia district. This shelter is lesser-known, and sometimes it’s closed off, but you won’t know until you get there.

Finally, be sure to visit the refuge used by Lluís Companys, president of the Generalitat de Catalunya at that time.  Les Heures  was his secret residence during the Spanish Civil War, and the University of Barcelona organizes tours of the shelter.

28. Go out for tapas, something you must do in Barcelona

Going out for tapas  is one of the  best things to do in Barcelona . Tapas are small dishes that you can enjoy alone or with friends, and I’m sure that the typical Catalan foods will leave you satisfied.

One of the simplest yet most delicious tapas is  pan tumaca . It’s nothing more than crusty bread with tomato, although some people add ham or cheese, too. Other popular dishes include patatas bravas, calamari a la romana, tortilla de patatas, and bombas.

Go out for tapas, must do things in Barcelona

Going out for tapas is common throughout Spain, but some dishes are synonymous with Catalonia. For example,  calçots with romesco sauce , which are a kind of scallions with a tomato and garlic sauce. If you want to taste this dish, I suggest going to El Disbarat in Gràcia. You’ll also find  caracoles  (snails) on the menu. These are very typical in Catalonia and were my grandmother’s signature dish!

If you have a sweet tooth, trying  crema Catalana  is  something you must do in Barcelona . This special egg yolk cream has a layer of caramelized sugar, so it’s crunchy on the outside and gooey inside.

You can try all these delicious dishes on  this food tour  which takes you through the Gothic Quarter, El Born, and Barceloneta for tapas.

29. Laberint d’Horta Park, the oldest park in Barcelona

Besides Ciutadella Park,  Laberint d’Horta Park  is one of my favorite parks in Barcelona. It’s the oldest park in the city and it’s quite romantic, so spending a few hours here is a great  thing to do in Barcelona for couples .

This beautiful garden is the perfect blend of nature and architecture. Spanning over 135 acres, the landscaped grounds reflect the neoclassical style, so you’ll see lots of symmetrical columns and buildings. As I said, it’s a romantic place full of lovely plants, including  agapanthus , which is known as the flower of love.

Laberint d’Horta, attractions to see in Barcelona

As the name suggests, the park also has a topiary labyrinth, and the maze is a  fun thing to do in Barcelona  for both kids and adults. I must admit that it took me a while to find my way out, but it’s an enjoyable experience. The maze is full of stone benches and beautiful sculptures, so you won’t mind getting lost.

The romantic fountains, the fun labyrinth, the soothing nature; it’s the perfect escape from the busy city. Plus, there is no admission cost on Sundays, so it’s one of the  best free things to do in Barcelona .

30. Santa María del Mar Church, a peaceful place to go in Barcelona, Spain

Santa María del Mar Church , also known as the Ribera Cathedral, is a beautiful example of Gothic architecture. In fact, it’s the only church in the pure Catalan Gothic style, so it’s a  must-see in Barcelona .

The church is the work of Berenguer de Montagut, who built it in the 14th century. If you’re a fan of medieval architecture, this cathedral will delight you. One of the first things you’ll notice is the three naves and the massive columns, which create a feeling of expansiveness. A few of the stained-glass windows have remained throughout the centuries, making this a  beautiful place in Barcelona .

Santa María del Mar Church, what to do in barcelone

The Santa Maria chapel includes a stained-glass window depicting the Ascension. Interestingly, part of the cathedral sits on former burial grounds, adding to the solemnity of the place.

If you go, be sure to check out the rose window. The original was destroyed in the 1428 earthquake, but the replacement is just as stunning. I also suggest going up to the roof, where you can enjoy incredible views of the city.

Avid readers may recognize the Santa Maria del Mar church from the famous novel  Cathedral of the Sea , by Idelfonso Falcones. If you understand Spanish, you can even take this book tour through the cathedral,  something interesting to do in Barcelona .

31. Visit Parc de la Creueta del Coll, a free thing to do in Barcelona, Spain

Another  cool thing to do in Barcelona ‘s Gràcia neighborhood is to visit  La Creueta del Coll Park . The “Park of the Corner of the Hill” was formerly an abandoned quarry, but now it’s a fun place to go, especially in the warmer months.

The best part of this park is its huge public swimming pool. There are lots of trees scattered throughout the park, too, so it’s a popular hangout when the weather gets hot. Not too many tourists know about this place, but visiting it is a great  thing to do in Barcelona in the summer .

Visit Parc de la Creueta del Coll, beautiful places to visit in Barcelona

Besides the pool, you can also enjoy ping pong tables, playgrounds, and picnic areas. There’s also lots of space to ride a bike, practice sports, or simply relax and people-watch. If you’re looking for something to do for free, this is one of the best  Barcelona areas to visit , and you won’t get crowded out by tourists.

A centerpiece of the park, besides the pool, is the  Praise of Water  sculpture  by Eduardo Chillida. This curious 50-ton artwork hovers above a placid pond and is supported by four steel cables. American sculptor Ellsworth Kelly also has a piece,  Escultura , at the park’s entrance.

32. See the castells , a unique activity to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

The  castells , or human towers, are an essential part of Catalan culture. This tradition dates to the end of the 1700s in the city of Valls. From there, it spread throughout Catalonia, and nowadays,  seeing a castells performance  is one of the most  popular things to do in Barcelona .

There are several  colles castelleres  (teams) in the city, and they usually perform on holidays and some weekends. The best time to see them is from April to November in various plazas around town. You can check  this website  to see if there’s a performance during your stay.

See Castells, fun things to do in Barcelona

32. See the castells, a unique activity to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

Of course, there is much more to these human towers than simply scrambling on top of each other. The castells have a hierarchical structure, starting with the  pinya  or base. The tiers get progressively smaller until you get to the crown of the castle, which is usually a child.

The towers can vary depending on the number of levels and the number of people in each tier. Even so, each performance is accompanied by music from a  gralla  (similar to a flute) and a timpani drum.

I’ll admit, the first time I saw a performance, I was terrified for the kids at the top of the tower. However, castells are an iconic part of Catalan culture, and they’ve even been declared Intangible Cultural Heritage by  UNESCO . Seeing the human towers is a  quirky thing to do in Barcelona , one that you’ll want to tell your friends about!

33. Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, a cool museum in Barcelona

The  Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona , also known as  MACBA , is a modern art museum in the El Raval neighborhood. If you’re looking for  things to do in Barcelona in winter , check out this place.

While there are lots of historical museums and  modernisme  artworks in the city, MACBA is the best  museum to visit in Barcelona  if you want to see contemporary art. Most of the pieces are minimalist or abstract, and the collection spans over 5,000 works.

Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, what can you do in Barcelona

Some of the prominent artists you’ll find here include Bruce Nauman, Cristina Iglesias, Antoni Muntadas, and Xavier Miserachs. One of the most interesting exhibits is the 1989 graphic poster  Do Women Have to be Naked to Get into the Met. Museum?  It’s a piece by the Guerilla Girls, an anonymous group of feminist artists devoted to gender equality.

MACBA also has a second building in the  Convent dels Àngels  complex, a gothic chapel just a few minutes away. I know contemporary art isn’t for everyone, and for some travelers, this museum isn’t essential. Still, it’s an  interesting place to go in Barcelona if it rains.

34. Carretera de les Aigües, the best hike to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

The  Carretera de les Aigües  or, Road of the Waters, is the perfect  place to visit outside of Barcelona ‘s city center. It gets its name from an old water pipeline running parallel to the route. The pipes aren’t there anymore, but the area is still one of the best sites to hike in Barcelona.

Carretera de les Aigües, must see things in Barcelona

The entire route is just over six miles, and it starts at  Sant Pere de Màrtir  to the west of the city center. From there, it travels northeast to  Rabassada Road  and runs through the  Collserola viewpoint where you can look out over the vast cityscape and enjoy the natural park. The walk itself is pretty easy since it is quite flat. Still, I suggest wearing comfortable shoes!

One of the great things about this city is its proximity to outdoor areas and natural spaces. The Carretera de les Aigües is popular with locals who need a break from city life so you might make some new friends. If you enjoy getting out in nature and away from the hustle and bustle, this hike will be a  relaxing thing to do in Barcelona.

35. Pedralbes Royal Palace gardens, another lovely place to go in Barcelona

The  Pedralbes Royal Palace gardens  are one of the most  beautiful places in Barcelona . The Palace was the home of the Spanish Royal Family when they would visit the city from 1919-1931.

Today, you can visit this lovely area, and it’s a  romantic thing to do in Barcelona  for couples. The lush gardens are protected by a wrought-iron gate, which adds a distinctive air to the place. It’s certainly a calmer and more regal section of the busy city.

Pedralbes Royal Palace gardens, places you must visit in Barcelona

The Royal Palace is surrounded by greenery, trees, and vegetation, bringing the entire landscape together. Today, the building houses the  Museum of Ceramics, Museum of Textiles , and the  Museum of Decorative Arts , which are interesting to walk through if you have the time.

Of course, the gardens alone are quite a sight to behold, and the sculptural elements here reflect the style of Antoni Gaudí. Speaking of the arts, if you visit in June, you may catch the  Jardins Pedralbes Festival , a popular music festival. It’s one of the top  things to do in Barcelona in the summer,  as you can see international and national artists like James Blunt, Juanes, and Raphael.

Besides that, the Royal Palace is close to  Cervantes Park , a public garden full of Mediterranean plants, rose bushes, and beautiful modern sculptures.

36. El Born, a neighborhood to visit in Barcelona at night

El Born , also called La Ribera, is the medieval quarter of Barcelona’s “old city”. Not only is it an aesthetically interesting place, but it’s a popular place for nightlife. If you’re wondering  where to go in Barcelona at night , hit this neighborhood first!

The evenings in El Born are lively, as locals gather in cafes and bars for food and fun. Taking it easy with a beer or mojito after a long day is one of the most  relaxing things to do in Barcelona . Fortunately, El Born has plenty of cool places where you can sit back and enjoy the atmosphere.

El Born, cool things to do in Barcelona

That said, this is one of the coolest  neighborhoods to visit in Barcelona  during the day, too. Here, you’ll find hip boutiques and shops, although they’re on the expensive side. If you want to do some sightseeing, El Born is home to sites like the  Plaça de Sant Pere  and the church of the same name.

Some of the attractions I mentioned earlier are also in this neighborhood, like  Santa Maria del Mar Cathedral, Picasso Museum , and the  Palace of Catalan Music . Another nice spot is the Santa Caterina Market, which is a great alternative to La Boquería.

37. Monastery of Pedralbes, another calm place to go in Barcelona

The  Monastery of Pedralbes , also known as the Monastery of Santa Maria de Pedralbes, is a must-see  attraction in Barcelona . King James II of Aragon founded this Gothic monastery back in 1326. Originally, it was a community of Poor Clares, a group of Catholic nuns. Today, a handful of nuns still live there, and the monastery is now a national monument.

You should visit this structure to see a prime example of Catalan Gothic architecture. While only a small portion of the original monastery remains, it still exudes the same solemn spirit.

Monastery of Pedralbes, things to visit in Barcelona

Be sure to walk through the cloister and visit the bedrooms and day cells where the nuns would rest at the end of the day. This part of the monastery is on display for the public, as is the  Chapel of St. Michael . Here, you can see frescos by the Catalan painter Ferrer Bassa, who worked for the 14th-century Count of Barcelona. In one of the cloister’s wings, you can find the alabaster tomb of King James II’s wife, Queen Elisenda.

This is certainly a unique  Barcelona attraction , especially if you’re into medieval history, so don’t miss it!

38. Poble Espanyol, one of the most popular places to go in Barcelona, Spain

I do not doubt that Montjuïc is one of the  Barcelona sites  you’ll visit, so be sure to check out  Poble Espanyol  while you’re there. Literally translated to “Spanish town”, Poble Espanyol is a life-size museum of traditional Spanish villages. It was built for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition, and it’s still well worth visiting today.

The whole project was meant to promote the architectural and cultural wealth of the country. Visitors can walk through the open-air museum, which has 117 buildings representing different regions of Spain.

Poble Espanyol, Barcelona best things to do

What makes Poble Espanyol such a popular  Barcelona tourist attraction  is its ability to transport you to other territories in Spain. In addition to exploring the distinct architecture of each place, there are often cultural events and cuisines to experience. The village hosts concerts, film festivals, flamenco shows, and much more.

The area is also home to the  Museum Fran Daurel,  a private collection of works by Picasso, Dalí, Miró, Chillida, Josep Guinovart, and other prominent artists. While you’re there, I also suggest visiting the  Sculpture Garden , which is full of contemporary works by several artists.

Poble Espanyol is a fun and affordable  thing to do in Barcelona for families , so I recommend booking skip-the-line tickets  here .

39. Visit Port Olímpic, something fun to do in Barcelona, Catalonia

I found it interesting that there wasn’t much of a harbor in Barcelona until the arrival of the Olympic Games in 1992. The city had to prepare to play host to one of the most iconic international sporting events. This led to the creation of the  Olympic Port , one of the most  popular places to visit in Barcelona .

The port was an urban redevelopment project that created one of the top recreational spots in the city. Here, you can rest on the beach, enjoy delicious Mediterranean food, or go to a nightclub. Two of the most famous  places to go in Barcelona at night  are the clubs,  Opium,  and  Shôko .

Visit Port Olímpic, best things in Barcelona

If you don’t like partying, the Olympic Port is a wonderful place to go in the daytime, too. Take a relaxing stroll along the promenade, eat some good food, or get in a refreshing bike ride or jog.

Also, be sure to snap a photo of  El Peix , the golden fish sculpture by Frank Gehry. This 183-foot-long steel fish glistens in the sun and forms the backdrop for the  Barcelona Casino  and the  Hotel Arts Barcelona .

To get a good view of the Olympic Port area, go to the Moll de Gregal , where you’ll also find some nice restaurants.

40. See Casa Vicens, one of Antoni Gaudí’s first works

As I mentioned earlier,  Casa Vicens  is another beautiful work by Gaudí, and it was one of his first. The mansion is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and another  must-visit in Barcelona .

Casa Vicens is an example of Gaudí’s signature style. The previous homes in Catalonia looked nothing like this mansion, which adopted a  modernisme  aesthetic.

Casa Vicens, must visit places in Barcelona

You’ll get a better idea of it when you see the house in person. This masterpiece has a front door made of cast iron, while ceramic tiles depicting marigolds adorn the facade. Gaudí was mindful of incorporating natural and local elements into his designs, which you can see in the painting, carpentry, and tiles. Bird, vine, and floral motifs repeat themselves throughout the home’s interior as well.

The mansion was a private residence until 2014 when it was purchased and restored. It opened as a public museum in 2017 and is one of the  best places to go in Barcelona  to experience Gaudí’s magic. If you want to go inside, you can purchase a skip-the-line ticket  here . Or you can simply admire the building’s exterior from Carrer de les Carolines in Gràcia.

41. La Roca Village, one of the best places to shop in Barcelona

If you love shopping,  La Roca Village  is one of the best  places to visit in Barcelona . It’s one of the largest outlet complexes in Spain, and the shops here offer discounts of up to 60%. If you’re traveling from out of Europe and you want to take advantage of some name brand items, look no further than La Roca.

You can browse through more than 140 big brand stores such as Polo Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors, Bvlgari, Gucci, Montblanc, and many more. To see a directory of all the stores, check out the La Roca Village  website .

La Roca Village, places to visit near Barcelona

Hitting the stores is a fun  activity in Barcelona  you can do on a rainy day. These outlets are open seven days a week, and the complex includes several restaurants so you can make a whole day of it.

This cute luxury village is about 40 minutes from downtown, but it’s a great  place to visit near Barcelona  if you have the time. You can get directions  here  or take this  shopping tour  from Barcelona.

42. Go out partying, another fun thing to do in Barcelona at night

Hitting the town and partying  is one of the  best things to do in Barcelona at night . For the night owls out there, this city has plenty of hotspots where you can dance the night away. If you want to go to some of the most popular clubs in Barcelona, I recommend  this card , which grants you complimentary access to several of them.

Along with the Barcelona Casino, the  Olympic Port  area is home to a few top party places, such as  Opium ,  Shôko ,  Carpe Diem , and  Danzatoria . That last one is frequented by a more adult audience.

Go out partying, things to do in Barcelona at night

The Eixample, in the city center, is where locals and tourists mingle. Here, you’ll find the Arena , Barcelona’s famed gay nightclub, as well as  Teatre Principal  and  Moog. City Hall Nightclub  is perfect for electronic and techno music lovers.

If you’re in the  Zona Alta , some nighttime  Barcelona areas to visit  include the luxurious  Bling Bling  nightclub and  the Sala Bikini , which hosts themed parties.

Finally, you can’t go wrong with  Razzmatazz  in  Poble Nou . At this quintessential club, you can dance the night away and hear some great bands.

If you want to experience the nightlife scene in Barcelona, you have more than enough options. Even if you only go once, it’ll be an unforgettable experience.

43. Hospital de Sant Pau, a lovely modernist building to visit in Barcelona, Spain

Part hospital, part museum, the  Hospital de Sant Pau  is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a beautiful modernist  attraction to see in Barcelona . It was a functioning hospital until the summer of 2009 when a new hospital opened next door. Now, the 20th-century building is a cultural center and museum.

The hospital was built by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, who also designed the Catalan Palace of Music. While you can visit the hospital on your own, I recommend this  guided tour , which takes you to different areas in the building.

Hospital de Sant Pau, Barcelona Spain things to do

The tour begins at the opposite end of the entrance, where you’ll see the different pavilions, including the  Sant Salvador Pavilion . This was the first area to function as a hospital, and it now includes a historical exhibition about the architect and his design process.

Next, you’ll go through the modernist tunnels to the  Hypostyle Room . This room reflects the Art Nouveau style with Domènech i Montaner’s Catalan twist. The room leads to the  Sant Pau Gardens , one of the most  popular places to visit in Barcelona .

The garden area was meant to be a place where patients could get fresh air, talk a leisurely walk, or simply sit and relax. That calming atmosphere is what attracts tourists and locals to this day.

44. Sant Jordi Festival, the best experience in Barcelona for couples

The  Festival of Sant Jordi , which takes place on April 23rd, is one of the best things to  experience in Barcelona .

This beloved Catalan celebration is a day of love and culture. Traditionally, men present their partners with a rose, while women give their significant others a book. More recently, Catalans have tweaked the tradition, so people give both a flower and a book.

Even if you’re just visiting, the Sant Jordi Festival is something  not to miss in Barcelona . Strolling along La Rambla and the surrounding areas, you’ll see book and flower stalls and lovers holding hands. The aroma of fresh-cut roses fills the air, and there is a joyous atmosphere.

Sant Jordi Festival, things to do in Barcelona for couples

The best part about this day is that you can see local theater performances and other cultural activities throughout the day. You may even run into an author holding a book signing. As you wander the streets, you may notice some city monuments or buildings decorated for the festivities. For example, the owners of Casa Batlló are known to adorn the balconies with fragrant red roses.

The origins of this day are a bit mixed up, but legend says that long ago, a dragon was terrorizing the people of Montblanc. To appease the dragon, the residents would hold a lottery to choose a human sacrifice.

One day, the princess was the unlucky victim, but Sant Jordi the knight came to the rescue and defeated the dragon, and a rose bush grew from the beast’s puddle of blood. Therefore, people give away roses. As for the books, that’s because the day coincides with The Day of the Book, which commemorates the deaths of Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare, and the Inca Garcilaso de la Vega.

45. Casa de les Punxes, another luxurious place to visit in Barcelona, Spain

Casa de les Punxes,  or  Casa Terradas , is another beautiful modernist building in Barcelona. Located in the Eixample area, it looks like a medieval castle in the city center.

Casa de les Punxes was the work of Josep Puig i Cadafalch, who was tasked with building a house for each of three royal sisters. The spectacular result was this construction of castles named after the  punxes , or spikes, that crown the towers.

Casa de les Punxes, places to go in Barcelona

If you’re walking around the Eixample, it’s impossible to miss this Barcelona attraction  because it’s so gorgeous. The pointed towers and the wrought-iron balconies with floral motifs are distinctly Catalan modernist. The ornate decoration on the home’s facade includes ceramic panels, stained-glass windows, and a colorful mural of Sant Jordi.

If you’re going to tour other modernist buildings in Barcelona, such as La Pedrera or Casa Battló, I recommend this  attraction pass . If you go into Casa de les Punxes, go up to the largest tower where you can get stunning views of the city.

46. Drink sangria at Bosc de las Fades, the best thing to do in Barcelona for date night

Bosc de les Fades  is a bar-cafe, but not just any bar-cafe. Translated to “Forest of the Fairies”, this is one of the most  beautiful places in Barcelona  to enjoy a sangria or warm beverage with your sweetie.

This magical cafe is part of the  Wax Museum of Barcelona , so it’s like two attractions in one. Visiting this woodland dream of trees, streams, and fairy lights is one of the best  things to do in Barcelona for couples . The menu includes fondue and crepes, making it a delicious date night venue.

Bosc de las Fades, crazy things to do in Barcelona

This enchanted forest cafe is also a fun place to go with friends. You can enjoy a variety of typical cafe foods, and the atmosphere is out of this world.

I’ve visited the Bosc de les Fades and loved it. It is the perfect place to have a drink, although it is always quite crowded, so you might have to wait for a table. Still, enjoying a drink here is one of the most  romantic things to do in Barcelona  that I highly recommend.

47. Escape Rooms, something fun to do in Barcelona for families

Escape rooms  have become a popular  activity in Barcelona , so if you’re traveling with family or friends, consider trying one out.

There are over 150 escape rooms in the city, many of them with specific themes. I’m sure you’ll find one that suits your interests! Plus, this attraction is a good backup plan if the weather is bad.

Since escape rooms are so popular here, the newest ones boast the latest technology to challenge participants. Trying to get out of these rooms is quite an experience, as you must solve tough puzzles and interact with interesting characters.

Escape Rooms, best things to do in Barcelona

While some rooms can accommodate couples, most of them are for groups of four or more. If you’re looking for  things to do in Barcelona for couples , I recommend this  horror-themed escape room .

For larger groups, I suggest  Escape Barcelona , which hosts all kinds of themed rooms like  Alien: The Origin  and  Tomb Hunter: The Legend of Akasha . I also like  Unreal Room Escape , where you can find attractions like  The Mine  and  Narcos .

No matter the theme, you can’t go wrong. These escape rooms are loads of fun, but they’re also super popular, so you should book in advance. Also, if you’re planning on a specific  neighborhood to visit in Barcelona , check  this website  to find an escape room in that area.

48. Take a trip to Montserrat, the best place to go near Barcelona

Montserrat  is one of the most popular  places to visit near Barcelona . This mountain range is just outside of the city, making it a great day trip for getting out into nature.

Its name comes from the jagged rock formations at the mountain’s peak, which you can see from a distance. The summit is over 4,050 feet above sea level, and Montserrat is one of the most significant mountains in Catalonia. Not only is it a beautiful  place to go near Barcelona , but it’s also the site of a Benedictine sanctuary and monastery.

Montserrat, what to visit near Barcelona

The sanctuary is dedicated to the  Virgin of Montserrat  and includes a statue of the  Madonna and Child . She is the patron saint of Catalonia and shares an altar with Sant Jordi, whom I mentioned earlier. The statue is one of the  Black Madonnas  of Europe, carved in the 12th century. For this reason, many make the pilgrimage to Montserrat to pay respects to the Virgin.

To get the most out of your time in Montserrat, I recommend  this day trip , which takes you up the mountain by train. You’ll tour the  Royal Basilica , see the Black Madonna, and enjoy a wine tasting hosted by the monks at the sanctuary. If you’re lucky, you’ll also hear the  Escolania  boys’ choir, one of the oldest children’s choirs in Europe.

Without a doubt, Montserrat is one of the most stunning  areas to visit in Barcelona .

49. Montseny Natural Park, one of the most popular hikes to do in Barcelona

Montseny Natural Park  is one of the best places for hiking in and around Barcelona. Nestled in the Catalan countryside, the area features diverse climates as well as a variety of flora and fauna. Along with hiking, mountain biking is another popular activity to do in the park.

Montseny is just over 30 miles from the city, so it’s a great  place to visit around Barcelona . As the oldest natural park in Catalonia, it is also a designated UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Montseny Natural Park, places to visit near Barcelona

Here, you’ll find gorgeous Mediterranean vegetation like holm oaks and pines, as well as Eurosiberian trees like beech and white fir. The alpine meadow area on Montseny has lots of boreal pines. There are also hundreds of species of wildlife, including the  Montseny Brook newt ,  Panoptes Blue Butterfly , and the  Little Egret , among others .

Beyond the natural park, life in the Montseny area is charming and slow-paced. That said, there are beautiful sites to see, including the  Roman ruins in La Garriga  as well as  Montsoriu Castle . So, if you’re wondering  where to go near Barcelona , be sure to check out Montseny!

My favorite part of the natural park is all the hiking trails, so take some time to explore this lovely park around Barcelona.

50. Visit CosmoCaixa, another thing to do in Barcelona with kids

The  CosmoCaixa  science museum is one of the coolest  places to visit in Barcelona with kids . Even if you’re traveling alone, I still recommend CosmoCaixa, as it’s one of my favorite museums in the city.

This interactive science museum has permanent exhibits and temporary displays covering a wide variety of subjects. Through touch-and-play kiosks, you can learn about the Amazon Rainforest, geological structures in Catalonia, Mediterranean flora and fauna, and the Big Bang.

CosmoCaixa, places to visit in Barcelona with kids

What I like about this museum is that it uses practical and local examples to teach you about complex topics like biology, chaos theory, and astronomy. It’s also affordable, making it a great  thing to do in Barcelona for families .

One of the coolest parts of CosmoCaixa is the  Bubble Planetarium , which has an advanced full-dome projection system, so you feel like you’re stargazing in space. It even has a stereo sound system to create a fully immersive experience. The planetarium regularly hosts special shows to take visitors on an educational and exciting adventure. If it’s this exciting for an adult, imagine what it’s like for a kid!

CosmoCaixa is open seven days a week and is one of the top  museums to visit in Barcelona . Consider it if you have a rainy day in the city or some extra time during your trip.

51. Collserola Natural Park, another beautiful place to hike in Barcelona, Catalonia

Collserola Natural Park , commonly called the city’s “green lung”, covers nearly 20,000 acres and is a  must-see place in Barcelona . If you go to  Tibidabo , you’ll find actually be in the highest part of this park. The area is perfect for hiking and getting away from the busyness of the city center.

The park is the largest green space in Barcelona, and you can find a variety of Mediterranean flora and fauna here, especially white pines and foxes. You might even see a wild boar in the more secluded areas.

Collserola Natural Park, things to do in Barcelona Spain

Collserola Natural Park is also rich in Catalan culture, particularly architecture. Here, you can stumble across the ancient Iberian town of  Ca n’Oliver , the medieval castle of  Castellciuró , and numerous old churches and hermitages.

Another cool  place to go near Barcelona  is the  Collserola Tower  on Mount Tibidabo. It’s over 960 feet tall and was built by Sir Norman Foster for the 1992 Summer Olympics. Its primary function is as a broadcasting antenna, but there is an observation deck about 500 feet up, granting you incredible views of the surrounding area.

With its hiking trails and scenic refuge from the traffic and noise, a visit to Collserola Natural Park is a  relaxing thing to do in Barcelona .

52. Visit Tamarita Gardens, a romantic thing to do in Barcelona

Tamarita Gardens  is one of the most gorgeous  places to visit in Barcelona . Covering nearly 5 acres, these public gardens once belonged to an aristocratic Belgian family that settled in Barcelona in the 1700s. The manicured lawns are still surrounded by a wrought-iron wall, and when you walk through the gate, you’ll be transported into a world of beauty and grace.

The gardens were designed by landscape artist Nicolau M. Rubió i Tudurí, who divided them into two distinct sections. The more natural and rugged garden features small pools, fountains, decorative vases, vines, a pavilion, and exotic and tropical species. The other section has a more classical look with French flowerbeds, rose bushes, a small square, and a nymphaeum (ancient Greek spring) with waterfalls.

Tamarita Gardens, relaxing things to do in Barcelona

Tamarita Gardens offers peace and quiet, and a visit here is a great  thing to do in Barcelona for couples . It’s located in the Sant Gervasi-Bonanova area, yet it feels like it’s miles away from the city. The natural beauty here is undeniable. You’ll see myrtle, privet, sweet bay, black locust, and jacaranda. Near the  Torrent del Frare stream , there are cypresses, acanthuses, and bamboo trees.

There are more exotic trees, too, including Australian silk oaks and purple-leaf European beechwoods. Keep an eye out for the 100-year-old English oak tree; it’s 75 feet tall! This garden is a little pocket of relaxation, so don’t miss it.

53. PortAventura World, another exciting place to visit around Barcelona

PortAventura World  is a fun  place to visit near Barcelona.  This popular amusement park, which is in Salou, Tarragona, is one of the largest in Spain.

The park is divided into several thematic areas: the Mediterranean, Polynesia, China, Mexico, and the Far West. Each section includes a variety of attractions relating to the particular theme, such as the Imperial Cobra kiddie coaster in China and the 328-foot Hurricane Condor free fall in Mexico.

PortAventura World, what to visit around Barcelona Catalonia

There is a good mix of kiddie and family rides as well as thrill rides. Some of the best attractions include the Dragon Khan rollercoaster; Furius Basco, which goes from 0 to 83 mph in just three seconds; and the record-breaking Shambhala coaster.

Also, PortAventura acquired two other parks:  Ferrari Land  (named after the luxury Italian sports car), and  Caribe Aquatic Park . There are also several resort hotels on the premises, although the amusement park is less than 1.5 hours from Barcelona, so you probably won’t need to book an overnight trip.

That said, if you want an advance ticket to PortAventura and Ferrari Land, you can book one  here . The reservation includes round-trip transportation by bus from Barcelona.

54. Botanical Garden of Barcelona, the most stunning lookout from Barcelona

The  Botanical Garden of Barcelona  is another  beautiful place to visit in Barcelona . Conveniently located in Montjuïc, the gardens cover nearly 35 acres and create one of the most important plant collections in the city.

The main purpose of the botanical garden is to conserve Mediterranean flora for study. This is why you’ll find all kinds of plants from various regions in the Mediterranean, including olive trees and chaparral shrubs.

Botanical Garden of Barcelona, things you must do in Barcelona

There are also non-native species here that can thrive in the garden environment. As you stroll through the grounds, you’ll see euphorbia and echium palms from the Canary Islands, acacias, and cedars from Africa, eucalyptus, and kangaroo paw from Australia, redwoods from California, and San Pedro cactus from Chile.

Thanks to its location on Montjuïc hill, visitors to the Botanic Gardens will get magnificent views of the city and coast. If you’re looking for some fresh air and quiet time, a stop at the gardens is a  good thing to do in Barcelona .

55. Sant Llorenç del Munt Natural Park, something you must see in Barcelona, Catalonia

Sant Llorenç del Munt Natural Park  is part of the Catalan pre-coastal mountain range. If you’re into hiking or rock climbing, this is one area in  Barcelona not to miss .

The natural park is a protected area and, as I said, it’s a great place for hikers and climbers. Thanks to its incredible rock formations and caves, you can enjoy a day of adventure across this rugged landscape.

There are over 300 chasms and caverns to explore, as well as some famous lookouts.  La Mola  is over 3,600 feet above sea level, and  Montcau  is only slightly shorter.

Sant Llorenç del Munt Natural Park, Barcelona things to see and do

The park spans two mountain ranges that are separated by the Les Arenes Stream and dotted with holm oaks, white pines, and other forested areas. It isn’t too far from the city center, but it is secluded and peaceful, making it one of the best  places to go near Barcelona  for some quiet time.

While you’re there, be sure to check out the  Sant Llorenç del Munt Monastery  atop La Mola. This Catalan landmark was rebuilt in the 19th century, but it reflects the original 11th-century building. Inside, there is a small exhibit about the sanctuary and mountain. Attached to the monastery is a farmhouse that serves as an information center.

56. Themed tours, one of the best activities in Barcelona

If you want to discover the capital of Catalonia in a totally original way, a  thematic tour  is the  best thing to do in Barcelona . Since this is such a popular city, there are plenty of guided tours through its distinct neighborhoods and areas. I’m sure you can find a tour that suits your specific tastes.

We’ve done this  mystery tour  through the Gothic Quarter, which recounts the creepy legends of this historic neighborhood. The guide did a great job of sharing interesting information while adding personality to the tour.

Themed tours, things to do in Barcelona

If you’re into spooky stuff, I also recommend this  Barcelona ghost tour  through Sant Pere, Santa Caterina, and La Ribera. As you walk past iconic landmarks in the city, you’ll hear stories of spirits and other terrors. It’s definitely a unique  thing to do in Barcelona at night .

For those who don’t like horror, there are lots of other fun thematic tours. The  medieval Barcelona tour  is a cool journey around the city center’s historic cathedrals and monuments. Another option I recommend is the  Forbidden Barcelona tour , where you’ll learn about the city’s brothels and secret erotic activities.

Finally, you can’t go wrong with the  Gaudí & Modernism tour . This is one of the best ways to learn about Catalan modernisme and one of Barcelona’s top artists, Antoni Gaudí. A good number of his works are in the city, so you’ll get to learn the story behind his iconic style.

57. Girona, a beautiful place to visit around Barcelona

If you’re going to have a longer stay in Barcelona, then I highly recommend taking a day trip to  Girona .

After visiting Girona, it became one of my favorite Catalan cities. I love its medieval architecture and the tranquil atmosphere. The city’s old quarter has several ancient, preserved buildings, and the old castles and fortifications are popular with tourists.

If you’re wondering  what to visit around Barcelona , look no further than Girona. The placid river and quaint houses will charm you in an instant. Also, if you visit in May, you’ll be able to catch the  Temps de Flors Festival , when all the streets, plazas, and monuments are adorned with flowers.

Girona, places to go near Barcelona Catalonia

That said, any time of year is a great time to visit this city. Girona has some amazing landmarks, including the  Stone Bridge,  the  San Martí Church  in the  Jewish Quarter,  and the  Girona Cathedral , a nearly 150-foot-tall church built in the 11th century.

Girona is such a magical  place to go near Barcelona , so consider spending one or two days here. If you’re short on time, consider a day trip or a guided day tour.  This one  includes Girona as well as Figueres and the Dali Museum, two other awesome places worth visiting. Or, take  this tour  of Girona and Sitges, a beach that I’ll talk about later.

58. Costa Brava, the best summertime spot near Barcelona

Costa Brava  is one of the top  places to visit near Barcelona  in the summer. The deep blue waters, the chill coastal atmosphere, the fresh seafood…there is so much to enjoy at Costa Brava.

If you’re already in Girona, you are not far at all from Costa Brava. However, the town is less than a 2-hour drive from Barcelona, and lots of guided tours offer day trips. This area is a  must-see near Barcelona , so if you have time, I encourage you to go.

A good option is this  half-day tour , which includes bus service to Lloret de Mar, a touristy hotspot in Costa Brava. After spending some time touring the village, you’ll board a boat to Tossa de Mar, a scenic medieval town.

Costa Brava, things to do in Barcelona in summer

Or you could do this  full-day tour , which takes you to the cliffside beach town of Blanes, where you can enjoy botanical gardens and delicious seafood. This tour also takes you to Tossa de Mar before heading back to Barcelona.

My absolute favorite is  this tour  because it takes you to some of the most gorgeous coastal areas in the region. You’ll see  Calella de Palafrugell,  a cute fishing village, then walk along the beautiful  Camino de Ronda  waterfront path. The tour continues with a visit to  Llafranc , a traditional seaside resort. You’ll then visit the medieval village of Pals, the port city of  L’Estartit , the Greek/Roman settlement of  Ampurias , and finish with a boat ride around the  Medes Islands .

59. Freixenet wineries, another fun thing to do in Barcelona

Less than an hour from the city center, you’ll find  Cavas Freixenet , a  top place to visit near Barcelona . This Catalan winery has been operating since 1861 and is the largest global producer of  cava , a Spanish sparkling wine.

The family business has been passed down from generation to generation, resulting in an award-winning recipe that has even been endorsed by celebrities like Shakira. The cava business really took off in the 1910s, and the iconic winery building was built in 1927 by the modernist architect Josep Ros i Ros.

Freixenet wineries, places to visit outside of Barcelona

If you love wine and want a relaxing getaway, consider  this tour  of the Freixenet vineyard. You’ll learn the history behind Freixenet cava, tour the facilities, and enjoy a glass of superb sparkling wine.

To make a whole day of it, book  this day trip  to Cavas Freixenet, Jean Leon Winery, and Torres Winery. At each vineyard, you’ll enjoy wine tastings and light refreshments. If you’re traveling with your partner, it’s a great  couples thing to do around Barcelona , too.

60. Sitges, one of the best beaches near Barcelona

Many locals consider  Sitges  to be one of the most beautiful  places to visit near Barcelona , ​​so I highly recommend adding this beach town to your itinerary.

Sitges is known for its pretty coastline and lively promenade. There is a laid-back, bohemian atmosphere here, and it makes for a pleasant blend of tradition and modernity. During your time here, you might browse some boutiques, enjoy live music at a cafe, or look at the vibrant street art. The town also hosts the  International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia,  also known as the Sitges Film Festival, every year.

Sitges, things to do outside of Barcelona

Besides, they say the best beaches in Barcelona are in Sitges! If you’re looking for things to do around Barcelona in the summer, check out this  full-day tour  of Sitges and neighboring  Tarragona , a city with a strong Roman heritage. Transportation is included, so you don’t even have to worry about getting there.

Another option is  this day trip  to Sitges and Girona, a charming town that I mentioned earlier. After enjoying the historic Old Quarter of Girona, you can spend the afternoon basking on the beaches of Sitges.

Now that you know  what to do in Barcelona , ​​here is a map of all the  tourist attractions in Barcelona  and the nearby areas I mentioned. You can use this map to better plan and organize your itinerary and make sure you see all the  best places in Barcelona .

I know you’ll love Barcelona as much as I do. If you have any questions about your trip to Barcelona, you can leave me a comment, and I’ll get back to you. Happy travels, or, as they say in Catalonia,  bon viatge !

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top place to visit in barcelona

top place to visit in barcelona

The 10 best beaches in Barcelona

Barcelona has an impressive seven kilometres of sandy beaches, all of them perfectly adequate for a morning’s splashing about, but for a less urban backdrop and more towel space there are dozens of easily accessible alternatives located just north and south of the city. Train lines hug the beaches in both directions, although you’ll need a car if you want to head north of Tossa de Mar to the wooded coves of the Costa Brava proper. 

For further Barcelona inspiration, see our in-depth guides to the city’s best hotels , restaurants , bars and nightlife , shopping ,  attractions , and  things to do for free . 

Find a beach by area

In barcelona, north of the city, south of the city, platja sant sebastià.

The southern tip of Barcelona’s chain of beaches has changed in character since the construction of the towering sail-shaped W Hotel inspired a raft of restaurant openings and dialed up the glam factor . It’s still a good place for families, however, with rock pools and a giant rope climbing frame.

How to get there: Take the V15 bus from Via Laietana or it’s a 15-minute walk from La Barceloneta metro. 

Insider tip: Pez Vela is a smart but breezy restaurant for paella and Mediterranean food. Book early for a table on the terrace, next to the beach.

Platja Mar Bella

Barcelona’s beaches are much of a muchness but in general you’ll have more sand to yourself the further north you walk. Mar Bella is where things begin to get quieter and there are fewer hawkers, masseuses and so on. The area backed by a large sand dune is generally used by nudists.

How to get there: Take the L4 metro to Poblenou and walk for 10 minutes or so, or take the H16 bus.

Insider tip: For those of a sporting bent, there is a skate park behind the beach, ping pong tables and a watersports centre (La Base Nàutica) at its southern end. 

Montgat Nord

You don’t have to travel far out of town for softer, cleaner sand and more limpid waters, and Montgat, or the next stop, Montgat Nord, have these in abundance. The water becomes deep quite quickly, so it’s not ideal for smaller children, but otherwise makes for a relaxed day out.

How to get there : Trains run every 15 minutes from Plaça de Catalunya and take just over 20 minutes.  

Insider tip : For no-nonsense tapas on a shaded terrace, try Banys Verge del Carme , which sits exactly halfway between the stations of Montgat and Montgat Nord.

Caldes d’Estrac

Also known as Caldetes, Caldes d’Estrac is a former spa town, famous for its fin-de-siecle modernista and classicist noucentista buildings. Many of these are along the seafront, overlooking the Passeig dels Anglesos promenade that skirts a long beach of golden sand. In the warmer months you’ll find several xiringuitos (beach bars). 

How to get there : Between two and four trains an hour run from Plaça de Catalunya (journey time is around 50 minutes).  

Insider tip : In summer months there is a zone of inflatable rafts and slides in the water; perfect for older kids.

Sant Pol de Mar

A picture-perfect fishing village where the train stops right on the beach, Sant Pol is an essential day trip from Barcelona. Walk south for beaches that get progressively quieter, and look out for the Civil War casement (fortified enclosure from which guns were fired) and colony of cormorants en route.

How to get there : Between two and four trains an hour run from Plaça de Catalunya (journey time is around an hour).  

Insider tip : If you’re there during the week, Restaurant Margot serves an excellent fixed-price three-course lunch menu for €17.

Tossa de Mar

Tossa is really two towns in one: the medieval walled village of winding stone streets on a promontory at the end of the beach, and the rowdy resort town behind. It’s a fun day out however you decide to spend it and, despite its popularity, Tossa still retains plenty of character. 

How to get there : Coaches from Estació del Nord run 16 times a day and the journey takes one hour 20 minutes. See for tickets.   

Insider tip : The coastal path south from Tossa makes for a lovely wander, with little coves for swimming and plenty of viewpoints.


Just south of Barcelona, Castelldefels beach is neither secret nor especially beautiful, but it is long and especially wide, with plenty of space for volleyball and other sports enthusiasts as well as sun worshippers. Hire loungers and parasols from any of the various xiringuitos (beach bars).

How to get there : Trains run every ten minutes or so from Passeig de Gràcia, and the journey takes just under half an hour. 

Insider tip : Castelldefels is the only place in the province of Barcelona where you can learn to kitesurf, with a specially designated zone. 

A picturesque crescent of a bay famous for its line of green and white 1920s wooden huts, which once housed fishermen’s tools and are now wildly sought-after by beachgoers. An outpost of Soho House dominates the northern end, but this is still a local family favourite, with warm shallow water. 

How to get there : There are two trains an hour from Passeig de Gràcia (journey time 37 minutes), and the train deposits you almost on the sand. 

Insider tip : There are few eating and drinking options in Garraf, but jump back on the train and you’ll reach the lively town of Sitges five minutes later. 

This whitewashed coastal idyll is a party town at night, but a reasonably chilled spot during the day, with various beaches. For a bit more space head to Aiguadolç, between forested hills and the marina of the same name, but prettiest is Balmins, home to an enthusiastic (and mostly naked) LGBT community. 

How to get there:  There are four trains an hour from Passeig de Gràcia (journey time around 40 minutes). The beaches are within 10 to 20 minutes’ walk from the station. 

Insider tip:  The GR92 coastal path includes a picturesque 8km stretch from Sitges to Vilanova, from where you can get the train back to Barcelona. 

Cala Fonda/Waikiki

Popularly known as Waikiki, this is perhaps Catalunya’s loveliest beach, and completely unspoiled thanks to the difficulty of getting there – even with a car it requires a 20-minute walk on an occasionally rocky path through the pine woods. Waikiki is predominantly a nudist beach and swimwear is not really encouraged. 

How to get there : Park cars next to La Mora campsite and follow the path. Alternatively take the train to Altafulla or Tarragona (just over an hour from Barcelona) and hike seven kilometres or so along a pretty coastal path.

Insider tip : Take plenty of water and food with you, and don’t expect beach bars, showers, lifeguards or bins. 

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The beach of Tossa de Mar is one of the best near Barcelona - Valery Bareta / Alamy Stock Photo

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Secret Guide: Hidden places to see in Montjuic

Montjuic is the mountain most linked to the history of the city and probably the most visited, but its slopes still hide many secrets that we reveal in this guide.

David León Himelfarb

Montjuïc is the great mountain of the city. In contrast to the majesty of Tibidabo and its church, which seem to control Barcelona from the upper area of the city, Montjuic is the mountain of the sea and the lower area, the mountain of the people , the first mountain that the people of Barcelona began to climb when the city began to grow.

The mountain is the history of the city. The first Iberian and Laietan remains of human presence in Barcelona have been found on its slopes.  Here was the cemetery where the Jews buried their dead in the Middle Ages so that they would not have to bury them inside the walls of Christian Barcelona, thus giving the mountain its name: Jewish Mount .. The workers of the city settled on the slopes of this mountain, building the Poblesec neighborhood and also the shantytowns the castle built on the highest point of Montjuic the city was bombed on too many occasions.

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The montjuic fountains were the first swimming pools in the city (and are, today, his most popular show ), its cemetery is, still, the cemetery of all Barcelona and his Olympic ring will be, forever, the center of the Games that introduced the city to the world .

Montjuic is, in short, a central part of the city’s history. Nevertheless, the great mountain remains a great unknown . Outside the MNAC, the castle or the Olympic Stadium, every time we go up there we discover new corners y curiosities that show us that there are still many secrets to be discovered among their gardens and its ramps.  We bring you this guide to tell you what to see in the mountain, and hoping that, later on, you will tell us some secrets that you have discovered yourself .

Montjuic lighthouse, the last secret route of the city

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We will not reveal how to get to the Montjuic lighthouse, because finding your way, secret as few, is part of the adventure of reaching it . Many of you will have seen it driving along the Ronda Litoral, or emitting luminous signals from the mountainside as you stroll along the Ronda Litoral barceloneta beach. but you had never imagined that you could reach it.

The lighthouse, built on the mountainside in 1906, is still active, but has few functions anymore after the construction of the harbor and the Zone, which leaves the torch far from the water. However, the views from this tower over the coast of Barcelona are spectacular, and the arrival to it, a real adventure of those that are no longer left in the city.

Amposta Winery high winery behind the mountain

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There are few better claims for a place than to be always full despite being off the beaten restaurant path. At Bodega Amposta you go, not come , and judging by its capacity, always full, there are many who go to the foot of Montjuic to taste what one of the great wineries of the city has to offer.

The proposal is simple and complex. The cuisine and the traditional product of a winery, but with innovative touches, with very well prepared stews that look more for nailed elaborations than technical innovations. A place to go to leave very happy. The “bodega menu” for 35 euros offers you a real feast with high level starters.

📍Carrer d’Amposta, 1, 08004 Barcelona

Joan Brossa Park, the park with giant free musical instruments

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The Joan Brossa Park is a tribute to the surrealist poet after whom the space is named. It is built on the area that once occupied montjuic amusement park and the older ones will remember, in fact, some of the buildings that still remain.

Now, the park is a Verde Zone with a peculiarity: its attractions and furniture are not benches or slides, but giant musical instruments . To play them, you have to walk or jump on them, squeeze them, or simply sing to be heard from a distance. In a sort of amusing challenge, the curious musical structures are waiting  still in the park for us to get their best notes.

Bar Marcelino, the cheapest beer with a view in the city

In Barcelona chiringuitos are usually more a synonym of bad and expensive food and drinks, rather than places to go for a relaxing drink. Fortunately, there are exceptions and Bar Marcelino is one of them. This kiosk, located in one of the parks of Montjuic, is a humble hut where drinks are served without more, but it has an attraction, spectacular views over the city. A place one would like to have more of in Barcelona.

Free climbing at La Foixarda

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Climbing is fashionable, not for nothing, europe’s largest climbing wall is in Barcelona . But there is a place in Montjuic where climbing is free and outdoors, an excellent climbing wall for those who want to get started in the sport that confronts man with the mountain.

This is the Zone of La Foixarda. There you will find, apart from rock walls to climb with rope, a long tunnel converted into a climbing wall , where you can practice your skills using only your hands and feet. A few meters away you will find the Climbat a climbing wall that you will be able to use once you are convinced that climbing is one of the greatest sports there is.

Teatre Grec, good theater excavated in the mountains

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Although we would have loved to say that it is a theater built by the ancient Greeks and has survived until now, the truth is that it was built in 1929 for the celebration of the Universal Exposition . However, this does not make it any less special. To reach it you must cross a romantic rose garden with geometric flowerbeds, pergolas and terraces.

The Teatre Grec is inspired by the Theater of Epidaurus, built in Greece in the fourth century BC, and since 1976 hosts the summer Grec Festival, which since then has become an essential event for lovers of theater, music and circus.

Petit Montjuïc catalan-Algerian cuisine

Just a few meters from the Grec Theater Gardens is this little hidden gem. Petit Montjuïc, with its modest terrace and its coquettish premises, is an obligatory stop for the neighbors of the zone and the strollers of the hour of the vermouth. Its gastronomic proposal is the fusion of Catalan and Algerian cuisine, and from there arise such wonderful dishes as its veal cous cous, its mandonguilles or its bravas. Barcelona in its pure state: tavern of all the life marinated with the influences of outside.

📍 Carrer de Sant Isidre, 2

Teatre dels Sentits, the unknown mountain theater

From Montjuic we know an ancient military building, the Castle and a famous theater, the Lliure, king of the city’s theatrical programming . But the mountain hides in its most hidden side, the one that looks towards the neighborhood of La Marina del Prat Vermell, another old military building, the Polvorín del Castillo, which houses an unknown theater with an evocative name, the Teatre dels Sentits .

The space is a research center on the senses in which all the works presented investigate the “tyranny of the visual” to explore other codes (tactile, olfactory, auditory, proprioceptive…) in their works. A unique and magical place on the most unknown side of the mountain whose scenery is worth approaching to explore with all senses open.

Palauet Albéniz, the hidden mountain palace

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The Palauet Albéniz has an imposing beauty ; one of those that do not go unnoticed when one is strolling through Montjuïc. However, it is a relatively hidden gem and few stop to contemplate it.

Surrounded by the gardens of Joan Maragall, it was built for the Universal Exposition of 1929 to accommodate the royal family during their stay. But what really interests us is its neoclassical architecture.

It is built with stone and brick, and slate roofs. Its main distinctive feature is that it does not follow the guidelines of Mediterráneo architecture , but that of the Madrid court . It has influences from the palace of La Granja and the monastery of El Escorial. However, the two lions sculpted on the ticket come from the Palau Reial de Pedralbes.

Bodega Pasaje 1986, downtown wineries on the outskirts of the city

  View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Bodega Pasaje 1986 (@bodegapasaje1986)

Bodega Pasaje 1986  is part of a trend in the restaurant industry: rethinking the areas where haute cuisine can be found. Far from the Eixample or Ciutat Vella, this restaurant, led by Xavi Alba, ex of Tickets, brings great cuisine to neighborhoods where it is not usually found, but maintains the prices that are usually found, achieving an unbeatable combination.

Some of the star dishes are pickled mackerel, stuffed squid and a unique Russian salad inspired by the one at Suculent restaurant. In addition, its terrace is another incentive to get away from the city center and come here to savor the slow life.

Parc del Mirador del Poblesec, the unknown walk through the mountains

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The Verde la Barcelona mountain holds many surprises and this walk, which takes us through its slopes is undoubtedly one of them. In a unique tour, the park offers us one of the less usual faces of the mountain: instead of walking us through its interior, it guides us through its exterior.

From Poblesec to Miramar, passing through corridors literally carved into the mountainside, the Mirador Park offers a privileged view and a privileged route , which shows us a little known side of the mountain and incredible views over the port of the city.

You may be interested in: Secret guide to Plaza Cataluña: What to do at Zone zero in Barcelona

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The best hidden gems to visit in summer tourist hot spots, from someone who's been to every European country

  • Lee Abbamonte is a banker turned travel blogger who has visited every country in Europe.  
  • He calls Spain, Italy, France, and Greece Europe's "Big Four" because of how popular they are.
  • If you're visiting one of the "Big Four," here are Abbamonte's off-the-beaten-path tips. 

Insider Today

Traveling to Europe this summer? If so, we'll take a wild guess that you're visiting either Spain, Italy, France, or Greece.

These countries, nearly all of which are in the southern or Mediterranean regions, are what travel blogger Lee Abbamonte dubs Europe's "Big Four" because of their popularity among American tourists .

Abbamonte, 45, knows a thing or two about travel. He's not only visited every state in the US but every country in the world, as well as the North and South Poles.

Across the pond, Abbamonte prefers exploring underrated European countries , but he gets why people gravitate to the "Big Four."

"If you don't like it, you're the problem," he said. "They're all good."

Still, he's a fan of venturing off the beaten path.

Here, Abbamonte shares a few alternatives to popular tourist hot spots that anyone visiting Spain, Italy, France, and Greece should check out.

In Spain, forget Barcelona or Madrid and explore the cliffside city of Ronda

"Everyone knows Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Ibiza, Majorca," Abbamonte said. But not many Americans are familiar with the historic city of Ronda, perched atop a deep rocky gorge covered in lush greenery in the Andalucia region.

"If you're in Marbella, or if you're in Sevilla or Gibraltar, you can go out there and check out this awesome little town," Abbamonte said.

He also can't speak highly enough of northern Spain. One highlight is the seaside town of A Coruña, which is close to the Camino de Santiago, a network of pilgrimage routes leading to a holy site in the city of Santiago de Compostela.

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"I've done a lot of road trips around the north of Spain," Abbamonte said. "It's just an awesome little slice of Europe that nobody ever goes to."

If you're planning to island-hop in Greece, Abbamonte has recommendations that aren't Mykonos or Santorini

Mykonos and Santorini are two of the most well-known islands in Greece. Naturally, they're also two of the most overcrowded.

People familiar with Greece, like Abbamonte, often advise against visiting Mykonos and Santorini in favor of smaller islands that are quieter but just as beautiful, such as Aegina, Poros, and Hydra.

Abbamonte said Hydra, in particular, is worth seeing.

"There are no cars, and it's just goats and donkeys and walking. It's a very cool place to go."

On the mainland, he'd also advise stopping by Meteora in Thessaly, known for its "otherworldly" monasteries built atop towering rock formations.

In Italy, there are places just as beautiful as Lake Como and Florence that are far less crowded

According to Abbamonte, "With Italy, you can just throw a dart at a map, and you're in the coolest place you've ever been to."

Even so, some of Abbamonte's favorite spots in Italy don't get the love he believes they deserve. In the region of Tuscany for example, he says people tend to prioritize Florence, Pisa, or Siena.

All three are definitely worth seeing at least once, Abbamonte said, but he'd also recommend exploring smaller villages nestled between Tuscany's rolling hills, such as San Gimignano, Montalcino, and Montepulciano — all known for their endless vineyards and wines.

"Those are actually really awesome little villages and well worth checking out," he said.

Up in the north, Abbamonte said he'd skip Lake Como for any of the other Italian lakes close to the Dolomite mountains.

"It's my favorite place to road trip, probably, in all of Europe," he said.

Vacation like a local in France and visit Biarritz instead of Paris or Nice

Abbamonte cited Paris and Nice as examples of some of France's best-known vacation spots.

However, he said they are mostly hot spots for tourists rather than French locals, who tend to vacation in places "completely overlooked" by outsiders.

One of his favorites is Biarritz, a seaside hub known for its surfing culture in the Basque region of France. It's north of San Sebastian, a coastal Spanish city popular with tourists that is about a half-hour drive from the French border.

"Everyone knows San Sebastian now. Not a lot of people know Biarritz except for French people," he said. "But that's why I like it because it has a real, local kind of old money, Grace Kelly feel."

Other spots in France that he recommends checking out are the medieval town of Saint Paul De Vence on the French Riviera , beloved by generations of artists and poets, and the riverside city of Avignon in the southeast, one of his "favorite towns in all of Europe."

Correction: June 4, 2024 — An earlier version of this story misstated the location of A Coruña. It's in northwestern Spain, not in Spain's Basque region. The story also misstated the location of Monte Carlo, which is in Monaco, not France.

Watch: Was Italy's $1 home scheme worth it?

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2024/25 Champions League: Who has qualified directly for the league phase?

Sunday, June 2, 2024

Article summary

See which 29 clubs have earned automatic places in next season's UEFA Champions League league stage.

Article top media content

Shakhtar Donetsk have earned a place in next season's league phase

Article body

The 2024/25 UEFA Champions League will be the first under the new 36-team league phase format .

Last updated at 19:00 CET on Sunday 2 June .

Which teams compete in the 36-team league phase?

Twenty-five teams qualify automatically by virtue of their domestic league placing, with the holders of the Champions League and UEFA Europa League also both guaranteed a spot. Rebalancing is required should either of those title winners also qualify automatically via their domestic league placing.

Full explainer : Champions League winner rebalancing Full explainer : Europa League winner rebalancing

Two further places will be filled by the European Performance Spots , while the final seven slots are determined via qualifying.

Domestic qualifiers

England (4) : Man City , Arsenal , Liverpool , Aston Villa Spain (4) : Real Madrid , Barcelona , Girona , Atlético de Madrid Germany (4) : Leverkusen , Stuttgart , Bayern , Leipzig Italy (4) : Inter , Milan , Juventus, Atalanta France (3) : Paris Saint-Germain , Monaco , Brest Netherlands (2) : PSV Eindhoven , Feyenoord Portugal (1) : Sporting CP Belgium (1) : Club Brugge Scotland (1) : Celtic Austria (1) : Sturm Graz European Performance Spots (2)* : Bologna (ITA) , Dortmund   (GER) Champions League winner rebalancing (1)** : Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR) Europa League winner rebalancing (1)*** : Benfica (POR)

Bolded teams are assured of a league phase place, subject to UEFA's final approval.

The list above is provisional, based purely on sporting performance and does not account for any potential disciplinary or licensing matters. All Russian teams are suspended from participation in UEFA competitions until further notice.

*The European Performance Spots go to the associations with the best collective performance by their clubs in the previous season's UEFA men's club competitions (i.e. the association club coefficient of the previous season, which is based on the total number of club coefficient points obtained by each club from an association divided by the number of participating clubs from that association). Italy's Bologna and Germany's Dortmund will claim these two extra spots. A full explainer can be found here .

**Should the Champions League winners (Real Madrid) have already qualified for the league phase, the club with the best individual club coefficient of all those who are eligible for the champions path of qualifying (the domestic champions of associations 11 to 55 ) enter the league phase directly instead of the original round they had qualified for. A full explainer can be found here .

***Should the Europa League winners (Atalanta) qualify directly for the league phase of the Champions League via their domestic league, then the club with the best individual coefficient of all the teams in Champions League qualifying (champions path and league path) go directly through to the league phase. However, no leapfrogging is permitted here, meaning a team from the league path can only move up to the league phase should the champions from their association have already qualified for the league phase as well. If this is not the case, the automatic league phase place goes to the club with the next best coefficient in a league where the champions have already qualified. A full explainer can be found here .

Selected for you

New Champions League format

New Champions League format

2024/25 Champions League details

2024/25 Champions League details

Money blog: Victorian island forts - complete with helipads and nightclubs - up for sale

Two Victorian island forts that were used to defend the Portsmouth dockyards during the Second World War have been listed for auction for £1m each. Read this and the rest of today's consumer news in the Money blog.

Friday 7 June 2024 20:55, UK

  • 100,000 reportedly due to remortgage onto higher rates before election - here's what you need to know
  • Victorian island forts - complete with nightclub - up for sale
  • Does Wetherspoons buy lose to out-of-date beer?
  • Rents fall in some big cities
  • How much a last-minute Taylor Swift ticket will set you back

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  • Ed Conway : Claim of £2k tax rise under Labour is over four years - same maths suggests Tories have raised taxes by £13k in last four years
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Ever wanted to own your own Victorian island fort?

Well now you can - with two being listed with a guide price of £1m.

Spitbank Fort in Hampshire and No Man's Land Fort off the Isle of Wight have been listed for auction and can be bought separately - or as a pair if you can't pick between the two.  

During the Second World War, the forts were used to defend the Portsmouth dockyards. 

No Man's Fort is substantially bigger and probably presents itself more as a business opportunity, but Spitbank offers nine large bedroom suites across three floors and could potentially work as a private home to the right buyer. 

No Man's Fort has its own traditional English pub, a nightclub, and a helipad, while Spitbank Fort naturally boasts a wine cave plus a swimming pool and spa complex.

"Throughout my career as an auctioneer I've seen several sea forts hit the market that have achieved impressive prices as buyers have sought to pursue these trophy assets," said Robin Howeson, head of Savills Auctions.

"Having been carefully restored by the current owners, No Man's and Spitbank Fort represent exceptional market value, each guided at £1m. 

"Both offer an opportunity like no other; a waterfront location, up to 99,000sq ft of space and a chance to champion the heritage and legacy of these iconic maritime structures."

The auction takes place on 18 June. 

The BBC's content arm is among the suitors vying to buy the television production company which owns the rights to The Gruffalo.

Sky News has learnt that BBC Studios is participating in a sale process for Magic Light Pictures, which has won three BAFTAs and secured a quartet of Oscar nominations.

The auction is being run by Gotham Street, a specialist media deals boutique.

A number of other bidders are also said to be involved in the process given the quality of Magic Light's content library, which includes a number of works by The Gruffalo's creators, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

The Gruffalo has become one of Britain's best-known children's characters, telling the story of an adventurous mouse that fends off a series of would-be predators by telling them about a supposedly imaginary creature called a gruffalo.

In the 2011 sequel, The Gruffalo's Child, the mouse then scares off a young gruffalo by using shadows to project a giant version of itself.

The two films have been distributed internationally by Magic Light, and along with the original Gruffalo books have sparked substantial merchandising revenues as well as a theme park attraction at Chessington World of Adventures.

The woman alleged to be the inspiration for the stalker in hit Netflix series Baby Reindeer is suing the streaming platform for $170m (£133m).

The show is said to be based on the real-life experiences of writer Richard Gadd, who plays himself as he copes with stalker Martha Scott.

Fiona Harvey, 58, claims she is the inspiration for Martha, who begins stalking Gadd after he serves her a free cup of tea in the pub where he works.

In the lawsuit, Ms Harvey has accused Netflix of spreading "brutal lies", including that she is a "twice convicted stalker who was sentenced to five years in prison".

"Defendants told these lies, and never stopped, because it was a better story than the truth, and better stories made money," it states.

"As a result of defendants' lies, malfeasance and utterly reckless misconduct, Harvey's life had been ruined."

Sky News's US partner network NBC News reports the lawsuit described the show's claim "this is a true story" as "the biggest lie in television history".

"Netflix destroyed a woman, claiming, among many allegations, that she was a convicted woman," Richard Roth, a lawyer for Ms Harvey, wrote in an email.

"It never contacted her. It never checked the facts. It never made any effort to understand the truth of its 'true story!'"

The lawsuit seeks actual damages and compensatory damages at $50m (£39m) each, punitive damages at $20m (£16m); as well as "all profits" from Baby Reindeer at $50m (£39m).

A Netflix spokesperson told Sky News: "We intend to defend this matter vigorously and to stand by Richard Gadd's right to tell his story."

Administrators to The Body Shop are aiming to clinch a sale of the stricken cosmetics retailer by the end of the month, even as its former owner veers away from making an offer for it.

Sky News' city editor Mark Kleinman has learnt that FRP Advisory, which was appointed to handle the chain's insolvency in January, has asked for indicative bids by next Tuesday.

British entrepreneur Mike Lynch has been cleared of all charges by a US jury in the high-profile fraud case related to the sale of his software company Autonomy to Hewlett-Packard (HP) in 2011.

Dr Lynch, who was extradited to the US to face trial just over a year ago, was acquitted alongside a former finance executive Stephen Chamberlain who had faced the same charges.

They were accused of conspiracy and attempted fraud over the £8.3bn sale to HP - a deal that has been the subject of costly legal action since.

Labour is promising to get more young people on the housing ladder as it announces its "freedom to buy" scheme on Friday.

The party is pledging to make the existing mortgage guarantee scheme - which sees the government act as a guarantor for people unable to save big deposits - into a permanent fixture if it wins the election on 4 July.

Meanwhile, the Tories are promising a tax cut for parents by raising the threshold for when families have to pay a levy on their child benefit.

The current system means if either parents or a parent's partner earns more than £60,000, they begin paying the high income child benefit tax charge, and lose the benefit altogether when a salary hits £80,000.

But if the Tories win the election on 4 July, they have promised to increase the threshold to £120,000 before any tax is paid, and to £160,000 before the benefit is withdrawn, as well as base it on a household income, rather than an individual.

If you missed out on the general sales but want to bag yourself a last-minute ticket to Taylor Swift's show in Edinburgh tonight , it could set you back a whopping £4,000. 

Not to fear, however, as it is currently possible to land yourself a ticket for as little as £271 - if you settle for a somewhat restricted view. 

We've checked resale giant Viagogo for the latest prices, accurate as of 10.30am. 

As is often the case with popular tours listed on resale sites, many of the tickets are sold individually - so if you're happy to go alone tonight, you're more likely to get a ticket. 

For context, a ticket at general sale cost somewhere between £80-£160 depending on where you sit/stand. 

As it stands, the cheapest seat with an unrestricted view of the stage is currently up for sale at £323.

Just one ticket is up for £271, but has a "restricted view". 

Bringing a crowd

If you're looking to take someone with you, the cheapest pair of tickets without any restricted view will cost you a combined £1,706.

However, if you're happy with a restricted or limited view, you can pay the cheaper price of £538 for the pair (£269 each). 

You can buy up to four tickets in the same area for £303 each (£1,212 together) for a restricted view, or £555 each (£2,220 together) for an unobstructed view of the stage. 

Getting closer to the action 

Standing tickets are much sought after given their proximity to the stage. 

As alluded to at the top of this post, one frankly optimistic reseller has listed four general admission tickets for a staggering £4,256 each (in the "floor" section shown in the map below). 

However, you can get even closer - with one ticket remaining in the separate section to the left of the stage at £651 and another to the right at £559. 

A word of caution

Ticket resale sites, including Viagogo, have previously been accused of "ripping off" consumers amid concerns customers could be turned away at venues because of restrictions on some resold tickets.

The company was told in 2019 that it was required to make a number of changes to the way it collects and presents information about tickets on its site.

It has since pledged to be compliant with UK watchdogs and now offers a "100% order guarantee [which] covers both buyers and sellers".

If you're happy paying over the odds for last-minute tickets, make sure you're buying through a site with such a guarantee and always beware of scams!

House prices in the UK dropped by 0.1% between April and May, data from mortgage lender Halifax shows.

Analysts had expected a drop of around 0.2%, while last week, rival lender Nationwide said its measure of house prices rose in May after falling in the previous two months.

In the 12 months to May, prices rose by 1.5%, Halifax said - faster than the median forecast in a Reuters news agency poll for an annual increase of 1.2%.

"Market activity remained resilient throughout the spring months, supported by strong nominal wage growth and some evidence of an improvement in confidence about the economic outlook," Halifax's head of mortgages, Amanda Bryden, said.

The stable picture for property prices over the last three months was likely to give more confidence to buyers and sellers, she added. 

Sir Keir Starmer will shortly promise to get more young people on the housing ladder as Labour announces its "freedom to buy" policy. 

We've now got some reaction from business leaders, who've been speaking to Newspage.

Justin Moy, managing director at EHF Mortgages, was not impressed. 

"Freedom to buy looks great on the first read, but then you realise it’s actually been in place since 2021 and many lenders don't use it anyway," he said. 

"Labour are effectively promoting something that already exists and isn't used," he added. 

Andrew Montlake, managing director at Coreco, disagreed, saying it marked a "promising" first offering from Labour. 

"This can allow lenders to take a longer-term approach in their offerings and ensure that competitive products are continually available for those with lower deposits. 

"Whilst it doesn't solve the long-term housing issues overnight, Labour have at least shown they understand them and have already shown they are willing to speak and engage with those on the front lines, which is more promising for the housing market as a whole should the next government be a red one."

However, many more had a negative outlook. 

Lewis Shaw, owner of Shaw Financial Services, was scathing in his assessment, saying: "This policy is about as useful as a chocolate teapot. 

"Prior to the pandemic, 95% loan-to-value mortgage lending was the norm. 

"It happened without any political interference or putting the taxpayer on the hook - has everyone forgotten that? 

"If Labour really wants to help young people buy a home, then do the things that we all know are needed: Tax the super-rich, reduce wealth inequality and build more houses. It's not rocket science."

Katy Eatenton, mortgage and protection specialist at Lifetime Wealth Management, said it was "yet another scheme with no real substance", which was echoed by Stephen Perkins, managing director at Yellow Brick Mortgages.

"This policy will not hugely impact the property market," he said. 

Shortly, we're expecting Sir Keir Starmer to promise to get more young people on the housing ladder as Labour announces its "freedom to buy".

He's set to speak in the coming hours. 

The party will pledge to make the existing mortgage guarantee scheme - which sees the government act as a guarantor for people unable to save big deposits - into a permanent fixture if it wins the election on 4 July.

Sir Keir will also commit to an overhaul of the planning system, including reintroducing housing targets, claiming his measures will see 1.5 million more homes built over the next five years.

Among the planning changes, the party will promise to tax foreign buyers "pricing out young people" from the housing market in order to pay for new planning officers, which it claims will help increase projects being signed off.

It will bring back house-build targets - scrapped by the Tories in 2022 - as well as fast-track permissions to build on brownfield sites, and reform compulsory purchase orders to "stop speculators frustrating housebuilding".

They will also promise to offer "first dibs" on new developments to local people looking for a home and reiterate their pledge to create "the next generation" of new towns.

Read more in our dedicated Politics Hub :

GAME are set to end their long-running rewards programme on 31 July and have urged customers to use their remaining credit whilst they still can.

Both the company's standard GAME Reward scheme and their Elite membership tier will cease to exist, while no further reward points will be earned from purchases made in store or online after July 15.

You can currently redeem 400 reward points for £1 off of a purchase. The end of GAME Elite will mean the end of its monthly offers and prize draws. Any outstanding paid Elite membership months will be eligible for a refund.

"We would strongly urge you to redeem your GAME reward points prior to the closure date on purchases in store or online to avoid disappointment," said GAME.

"After the closure date, GAME reward points will be reset to zero and the GAME reward account will be closed, you will no longer be able to access it and you will no longer be able to redeem your GAME reward points."

The end of GAME's reward programme is the latest move from the company to make changes to their business model.

The chain has already closed several of their own bespoke high street stores and instead taken up residence within Sports Direct and other Fraser Group outlets.

By Sarah Taaffe-Maguire , business reporter

We've now had the first interest rate cut in the UK, US and EU for years. 

Yesterday the European Central Bank (ECB) brought down the cost of borrowing in the countries using the euro - the first reduction since 2019.

Sterling stayed roughly where it has been against the euro for the last two weeks - one pound buys more euro than it has done for most of the last year, €1.1740. 

Oil prices have ticked up through the week but are still just below $80 a barrel for Brent crude, the benchmark price. 

That's cheaper than the vast majority of this year and good news for motorists.  

Signs of stabilisation can be seen in the housing market with the news that house prices fell just 0.1% in May, equivalent to a £170 drop in the average house, according to mortgage lender Halifax. 

But renting is still becoming more expensive, just at a slightly slower rate than before, according to property portal Zoopla.

The average rent costs £80 more a month compared with a year earlier.

Higher housing costs have also shown through in a market update from British homebuilder Bellway, which said it expects to sell houses at a higher price point than it previously thought.

The company is a constituent of the Financial Times Stock Exchange (FTSE) 250 index of 101st to 350th most valuable companies on the London Stock Exchange which is down 0.22% this morning. 

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  1. Top 15 Popular Attractions in Barcelona, Spain

    top place to visit in barcelona

  2. Top 15 Popular Attractions in Barcelona, Spain

    top place to visit in barcelona

  3. Top 15 Popular Attractions in Barcelona, Spain

    top place to visit in barcelona

  4. 22 Places To See When In Barcelona, Spain

    top place to visit in barcelona

  5. Top 10 places to visit in Barcelona

    top place to visit in barcelona

  6. 28 of the Best Places to Visit in Barcelona

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  1. Barcelona Spain this place is incredible!!!!!

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  3. Top 3 places to visit in Barcelona, 🇪🇸Spain #travel #spain #barcelona

  4. Barcelona Travel Guide: Top 10 Must See Spots In 2023

  5. 10 Best Places to visit in Barcelona, Spain

  6. TOP 5 Places to Visit in Barcelona 2024 #shorts #barcelona #spain


  1. 17 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain

    17 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain. Barcelona has some of the most unique and inspiring architecture in the world, so a small-group tour to get behind-the-scenes at the city's parks, museums ...

  2. The 51 best attractions and places to visit in Barcelona

    La Rambla. 4. La Rambla. This is undoubtedly the most famous street in Barcelona. Stretching from Port Vell to Plaça de Catalunya in the centre, La Rambla offers a bevvy of shops, flower stands ...

  3. 17 of the best things to do in Barcelona in 2024

    3. Wander through the Gothic Quarter. Barcelona's Gothic Quarter ( Barri Gòtic) is the oldest and most atmospheric part of the city. Characterized by small alleyways, hidden plazas and historic buildings, it lies to the east of La Rambla, the famous pedestrian street that runs through the center of the old town.

  4. 20 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Barcelona

    11. La Barceloneta. La Barceloneta. Adjacent to the cruise port, the old fishing village of La Barceloneta (now a seaside neighborhood of Barcelona) borders the long, wide Sant Sebastià Beach, where locals go to sunbathe, surf, and socialize in the many seafood restaurants and tapas venues that overlook the sea.

  5. THE 15 BEST Things to Do in Barcelona

    Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain: See Tripadvisor's 3,564,873 traveler reviews and photos of Barcelona tourist attractions. Find what to do today, this weekend, or in June. We have reviews of the best places to see in Barcelona. Visit top-rated & must-see attractions.

  6. 28 Best Things to Do in Barcelona

    La Boqueria. La Boqueria might be Barcelona's oldest market—it started life in 1217 as a mere huddle of meat stalls on La Rambla —but tradition isn't staid. More than 200 stands unite like ...

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    Don't miss: Also visit the Chapel of the Pardons, which housed a sculptural ensemble of the Holy Burial, and visitors were granted the same pardons as those who went to the Holy Sepulchre in ...

  8. THE 30 BEST Places to Visit in Barcelona (UPDATED 2024)

    Gothic Quarter (Barri Gotic) 40,488. Neighbourhoods. Stroll through the historic center of medieval Barcelona and visit some of the city's most important political buildings and gothic architecture. See ways to experience (255) 2023. 4. Palace of Catalan Music. 18,983.

  9. The 10 Best Things to Do in Barcelona

    Gothic Quarter (Barri Gotic) 40,485. Neighbourhoods. Stroll through the historic center of medieval Barcelona and visit some of the city's most important political buildings and gothic architecture. See ways to experience (254) 2023. 4. Palace of Catalan Music. 18,982.

  10. 15 Best Things to Do in Barcelona (Spain)

    Let's explore the best things to do in Barcelona: 1. Las Ramblas. Never mind that a lot of locals shun this sequence of promenades that runs from Plaça de Catalunya down to the Columbus Monument at the waterfront. If you're a tourist it's one of those things that you have to do.

  11. 31 Best Things to Do in Barcelona

    It's worth noting that the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, built as part of the 1992 Barcelona Olympics development program, sits 15 miles north of the city center.

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    Passeig de Gracia. 6. Casa Batlló. To continue this guide of the best places to visit in Barcelona, let's head to Casa Batlló. It's one of the two villas designed by Gaudí on Passeig de Gracia. Known as La Casa del Ossos (the House of Bones) by the locals, it's listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

  13. 28 of the Best Places to Visit in Barcelona

    Plus, it's a great place to find a fix price meal, a cheap pitcher of Sangria, and free people watching. 13. Palau Guell. The 1st Count of Güell," Eusebi Güell kept Gaudi very busy commissioning many of his famous buildings in Barcelona. This was one of his first commissions, beginning construction in 1886.

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    Casa Batlló. These are the main landmarks, best sights, and top tourist attractions in Barcelona: 1. La Sagrada Familia. One of Barcelona's most famous buildings, the Basilica of La Sagrada Familia (Basilica of the Holy Family) is an architectural masterpiece that should be at the top of any Spain bucket list.

  15. Must-see attractions Barcelona, Catalonia

    Basílica de Santa Maria del Pi. La Rambla & Barri Gòtic. Begun in 1320, on the site of a 10th-century Romanesque church, this striking 14th-century basilica is a classic of Catalan Gothic, with an imposing…. 1.

  16. 17 best things to do in Barcelona

    From must-see attractions to undiscovered local gems, these are our picks for Barcelona's best things to do. 1. Discover Gaudí by night. Even with timed ticketing systems, Gaudí's most famous residential buildings, Casa Batlló and Casa Milà (aka La Pedrera), are plagued by long queues and daytime crowds.

  17. 25 Top Tourist Attractions in Barcelona (+Map)

    Best Time to Visit Barcelona: Month-by-Month Guide. 12 Best Places to Visit in Galicia, Spain. 10 Best Beaches in the Canary Islands. 27 Top Tourist Attractions in Valencia, Spain. Reader Interactions. Comments. Abdul Gaffoor Dalvie says. January 29, 2016 at 12:15 am.

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    Barrio Gotico. Barrio Gotico is the heart and soul of Barcelona. The oldest neighbourhood in the city, it's filled with charming narrow streets, picturesque boroughs, and quaint terraces and plazas. Stand in awe of Barcelona Cathedral. Dine on delicious Mediterranean cuisine at Viana.

  19. 30 Great Places to Visit in Barcelona

    26. Boqueria Market. Located on Las Ramblas, you'll find the iconic Boqueria Market. This famous food market started in the 1200's and has grown to become a major tourist attraction. It's one of the best places to visit in Barcelona to soak in the lively atmosphere whilst sampling a variety of foods.

  20. 15+ BEST Places to Visit in Barcelona (Perfect for First-Timers!)

    1.1 Getting to and around in Barcelona. 1.2 What (and Where) To Eat in Barcelona. 1.3 Where to Stay in Barcelona. 2 15+ Best Places to Visit In Barcelona. 2.1 Sagrada Família. 2.2 La Boqueria Market. 2.3 Camp Nou. 2.4 Palau de la Música Catalana. 2.5 Las Ramblas.

  21. 60 Best Things to Do in Barcelona, Spain + Tourist MAP

    1. La Sagrada Familia, a must-see in Barcelona, Catalonia. La Sagrada Familia is one of the most important places to visit in Barcelona. This Catholic cathedral was designed by Antoni Gaudí and is considered his most impressive work. Construction began in 1882 and the work is still not finished!

  22. The 10 best beaches in Barcelona

    For further Barcelona inspiration, see our in-depth guides to the city's best hotels, restaurants, bars and nightlife, shopping, attractions, and things to do for free. Find a beach by area In ...

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    Montjuic is, in short, a central part of the city's history. Nevertheless, the great mountain remains a great unknown.Outside the MNAC, the castle or the Olympic Stadium, every time we go up there we discover new corners y curiosities that show us that there are still many secrets to be discovered among their gardens and its ramps. We bring you this guide to tell you what to see in the ...

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    The best hidden gems to visit in summer tourist hot spots, from someone who's been to every European country Maria Noyen 2024-06-04T13:56:39Z

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    The renowned "50 Best" list of the world's best restaurants was revealed in Las Vegas last night - with a new restaurant taking top spot. Disfrutar in Barcelona took the crown from Central in Lima ...