The city of Barcelona is one of the hottest tourist attractions in the world. Out of all the things to do in Spain, visiting Barcelona is the most rewarding. With its zany atmosphere, modernist architecture speckled with ancient ruins, deliciously spicy food and of course, those breathtaking beaches, the Spanish city has become one of the country’s leading cultural and trade centres. Spain tourism has bloomed because of this single city that has become more of a brand. Out of all the cities to visit in Spain, many choose Barcelona right away, not just because it’s already on their Spain packages, but also because nowhere else will you find modernist architecture, old Roman ruins, and boutique shops on the same street. There are a lot of things to do in Barcelona. It is like the old and new decided to meet in a single city.
Barcelona is a complex city which offers many places to see and activities to do. But there is no reason to get intimidated. We have gathered a list of 20 best things to do in Barcelona to help guide you through this beautifully textured and rich destination. Read on.
1. Visit La Boqueria
Image Source: delicious.com (La-Boqueria)
Let’s just get the delicious food out of the way and be done with it. It is best to come to other places in Barcelona on a full stomach, isn’t it? So here we are! The La Boqueria – the most famous food haven in all of Spain. You can get anything from the richest cheese to the best of seafood from this place. One of the most diverse markets in the world, the La Boqueria also offers fresh fruits and vegetables.
2. Explore The City On Foot
Walk And Explore
One of the best things to do in Barcelona, and also the most satisfying, is to skip metro and bus rides and explore the city on foot. Why not? The magic of Barcelona lies in the streets and what better way to take in the architecture, the atmosphere and indulge in some gastronomic delights while exploring the city’s hidden corners? Visit Horta, explore the Sant Andreu district, relax at the Parc de la Ciutadella or simply marvel at the Montjuïc castle.
3. Go On An Architectural Spree
Barcelona is full of marvellous buildings designed during the pinnacle of Modernisme ideology by the famous architect Antoni Gaudi. Hop on a bike and tick off these beautifully designed buildings one by one. Right from religious monuments like the Sagrada Familia to major tourist attractions like the Park Guell and La Pedrera, the famous dough-like building considered a major feat of architecture because it features no straight lines.
4. Get A Musical Experience
Gran Teatre del Liceu
Some of the best things to do in Barcelona and best places to visit includes the gigantic and ornately decorated concert halls that host some excellent classical music performances. Not just classical though, concert halls like the L’Auditori and the Gran Teatre del Liceu also host jazz concerts and world music performances that should be experienced in all their orchestrated glory at least once in a lifetime. Tickets are not always expensive, so grab at the opportunity and revel in the glorious music.
5. Follow The Picasso Trail
Pablo Picasso, the famous Spanish artist, spent his formative years in Barcelona. The city offers many landmarks that were significant in Picasso’s early life and eventually shaped him to be the artist that we know of today. Visit the Els 4 Gats, a restaurant where Picasso and his contemporaries dined and discussed art; look at the place where Picasso’s house once stood; and finally top it all off with a visit to Museu Picasso, the museum dedicated to the artist which features his paintings and artwork.
6. Gorge On Traditional Barcelona Food
Authentic Spanish Food
One of the best things to do in Barcelona is to gorge on the awesome food that the city is famous for. Try out some delicious tapas, the typical Spanish appetizer found in every corner of Barcelona. Visit a tapa bar where you can wash these down with some cold beer. Better yet, try out Pintxos which are small, bite-sized treats served with bread. Euskal Etxea is the restaurant if you want to have some delicious Pintxos.
If you fancy a mountain trek that pays off well when you get to the top, then give the Montjuic Mountain a go. After you give those leg muscles some work to do, you’ll be rewarded with some breathtaking views and a green landscape. But that’s not all. The Montjuic Mountain is also famous for its buildings that were used in the 1992 Olympics especially the Palau Sant Jordi and the Olympic Stadium.
8. Take In The Cultural Scene
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya
Barcelona is full of some excellent museums, and you’d be missing out on a lot if you decide to skip them, especially if you’re a museum person. Head over to the Fundacio Joan Miro, a museum that holds hundreds of paintings, sculptures and other artworks by Joan Miro, the famous Spanish artist. Another excellent museum is the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, which hold artifacts dating back to the Roman Empire.
9. Visit El Raval
The neighbourhood of El Raval is one of the most happening places in all of Barcelona. It is a place filled with bars and pubs, design shops, excellent food joints, and most importantly, it houses the Museum of Contemporary Art as well as the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona. El Raval is also known for its rich cultural scene because of the regular exhibitions held at the museums.
10. Enjoy The Delicious Seafood
Did we already mention food? But no mention is complete without the soul of Barcelonian cuisine, seafood. Clams, squids, shrimp and an assortment of fish, you name it, and it’s on your table in Barcelona. The city is full of restaurants that serve mouthwatering seafood like the Rias De Galicia, Cachitos, Cal Prep and Can Sole.
11. Follow The Church Trail
Santa Maria del Mar Cathedral
Some of the best architecture and design is always reserved for religious and spiritual buildings. And the same is true in Barcelona. If you love visiting churches, then you’re in for a treat, because Barcelona has some truly magnificent churches that are a fantastic display of Roman as well as Gothic architecture. Chief among them is the Sant Pau del Camp and the Santa Maria del Mar. But the best among them is probably the Cathedral, a majestic building honoring the patron saint Santa Eulalia.
12. Savour The Sweets
Try Your Hands On Sweets In Barcelona
Besides its excellent cuisine, Barcelona is also quite famous for the delicious sweet shops and confectioneries spread over the city. Boxes of luxury chocolates, cooked candy, sweet bonbons, you can have it all in Barcelona. Munching on these sweet delights is one of the best things to do in Barcelona. Simply head over to Escriba, Papabubble, Bubo, and many more sweet shops to give your sweet tooth some exercise.
13. It’s beach time!
Take a Dip In The Mediterranean
After all the travelling and walking and sightseeing, the best part? The beaches of Barcelona. The beaches in the city can be relaxing resting places for you to simply lie down in the sand and drink up some chilled cocktails. Pick out your spot in the sand, lay down a towel and lie on your back, giving your skin that beautiful golden hue. To wash the sand off, take a dip in the Mediterranean sea.
14. Fashion Shopping, Among the best things to do in Barcelona
Go On A Shopping Spree
With the right places and the right prices, the shopaholic in you can have excellent shopping for bags, shoes, and clothes in Barcelona. Well known Spanish brands like Zara and Mango offer some great choices for you to update your wardrobe with. True fashionistas can, of course, look out for more customized options like Zazo & Brull. Cuervo Cobbleblack Bird can also be checked out for its amazing collection of accessories.
15. Celebrate A Local Festival – One Of The Recommended Things To Do In Barcelona
Enjoy A Local Festival
Want to participate in the week-long Festes de la Merce in Barcelona? Then visit the city in September when the famous festival begins in the Spanish city. The festival is a grand celebration of Catalan culture. Civilians and tourists party all week on the streets and the beaches. You can witness great performances, exhibitions, seafront airshows, dazzling fireworks and many such activities. It is truly an atmosphere of grandeur, music, and lights.
16. Outdoor Bars And Cafes
Image Source: La Barcelona Oculta (Bar Kasparo)
One of the most relaxing places in Barcelona can be a bar terrace where you can enjoy delicious cocktails or a cold beer and take in the views. Tapa bars like Bar Colombo offer an open terrace overlooking the port where you can munch on tapas and gulp down beers. Many other bars and cafes like Bar Kasparo and Bar Calders offer excellent open spots to sit back and enjoy an evening.
17. Visit Las Ramblas
Las Ramblas is a boulevard situated in the heart of Barcelona, and it is absolutely a must-visit place in the city. Simply strong along the street and absorb the atmosphere. There are many street performances here that you can enjoy at random. Go to the top of the Columbus Monument at the end of your stroll and enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view of the city.
18. Taste Local Champagne And Vermouth
Image Source: todobarcelona (Vermouth)
Barcelona is famous for two alcoholic drinks, the bubbly, champagne-like cava, and delicious vermouth. You can try some excellent local cava at La Vinya del Senyor, a restaurant that serves a variety of canvas. The vermouth, you can try out at weekends at bars like Morro Fi, one of Barcelona’s hottest vermouth bars. Enjoy the typical drink usually served with olives or a slice of orange. You don’t get them like this anywhere else.
19. Visit Barri Gotic
Barri Gotic is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Barcelona, for two things. One is the excellent Gothic architecture on display; the medieval buildings, the narrow streets and the overall gothic atmosphere. The other is shopping. In the lanes here you’ll find many shops selling handcrafted souvenirs, mementoes, and leather goods. Apart from that, Barri Gotti also houses some great bars and restaurants.
The day is up and then the night begins. And that’s when the fun starts. The parties in Barcelona nightclubs are something to die for. There are DJs, there are drinks, and there is the music of different genres. Rock, Hip-hop, India music, there is a pub for every type of music in Barcelona. Sala Apolo and Razzmatazz are the most famous clubs, featuring themed dances for every day of the week. Other pubs include the Indie music rocking Sidecar as well as the rock club Magic.
That’s a lot of things to do in Barcelona. Even if your trip is a short one, make sure you visit some of these places to actually make the most of your vacation. A visit to Barcelona can be such an enjoyable affair. So make sure your Spain tour packages include a significant Barcelona stay. Because when you’re in Spain, you can’t really afford to miss a place like Barcelona.
20 Best Things To Do in Barcelona - The City Of Gaudi - Thomas Cook
Barcelona is like the old and new decided to meet in a single city.Here's a list of 20 things to do in Barcelona to guide you through.
A tough cookie on the outside, but a big mushy marshmallow on the inside. Nupur loves to live life on the edge and is always up for new adventures. According to her, travelling is not a hobby but a way of life, which everyone should adopt. She is more of a mountain bum than a beach person. Not a coffee sharer and a big-time dog lover.