10 Top Things To Do in Barcelona- MUST DO!
If you are thinking of heading to this wonderful city…
With an endless amount of activities, it’s almost impossible to choose what to do in Barcelona, but look no further (and get rid of that headache from thinking!) as we have narrowed down the top 10 things to do in Barcelona. These are the definite MUST DO, because how can you say you’ve been to Barcelona if you haven’t done/seen the following?
1. La Sagrada Familia
Whichever way you chose to get to the Sagrada Familia, when you first arrive you will feel the incredible rush of emotions as you arrive to the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Nothing can prepare you for the experience of seeing the Sagrada Familia for the first time.
Nothing can prepare you for the experience of seeing the Sagrada Familia for the first time.
Created by the genius Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí, this unique church still remains unfinished, yet it’s beauty is shown through elaborate designs and empowering height.
This is the top thing you must do if you are visiting Barcelona, as it is its crowning symbol, one that represents this city more than anything else.
Make sure to also head inside, because photos and descriptions simply give this wonderful monument no justice. Tickets start from 15 EUR for a basic tour of the inside of the church, however we highly recommend visiting the top of the church to get an incredible view of the city (this ticket is 29 EUR).
In order to go inside the church (which we seriously recommend) you must buy tickets in ADVANCE. You can buy it a day before, but to avoid sold out slots, make sure to buy at least a few days before.
Make sure to buy in advance!
Site to buy tickets:
2. Parc Güell
You know all those flashy and funky looking images people usually post during their trip to Barcelona? The ones where it seems they have just stepped into a Willy Wonka factory? That site is called Parc Güell.
If you’re looking to make a worthy Instagram picture, then this is the place to go. Here you can admire the stunning architectural forms and colours created by no other than modernist artist and architect Antoni Gaudí.
The park hosts a wonderful collection of history, art, design and nature. It’s also a great area to admire the view of the rest of the city! It’s definitely a must in your to do list for Barcelona.
Again, this is usually sold out especially during the day, therefore you have to make sure to buy ahead.
Make sure to buy in advance!
How to get there:
-City Tour Bus
-Taxi (From Eixample it can cost 10 euros)
Site to buy tickets:
3. Plaça Espanya/ Palau Nacional
This one is sure to maybe take up most of the day, so prepare ahead! Montjuïc/Plaça Espanya hosts a a beautiful view upon arrival, in which you can see the old colosseum called Las Arenas that once held bullfighting (which is now turned into a modern mall as Barcelona was one of the first cities to ban bullfighting). It is also possible to go up the colosseum and admire the view from above.
This one is sure to take up most of the day…
You can also check out the monument fountain in the middle of the square which was designed by the architect Josep Maria Jujol, one of Gaudí‘s main associates, whilst Miquel Blay designed the statues and it is a monumental allegory that pays tribute to water.
The monumental allegory pays tribute to water…
Further ahead, you can walk up towards the Avinguda de la Reina Maria Cristina, which you will find Catalonia’s best museums such as the museum you see at the top of Montjuïc; the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC) which was designed by Josep Amargós. The steps will take you up towards that museum, plus don’t forget to walk around as there is some hidden gems along the way (Such as the small fountains on the side!)
Before we head to our next post which is what follows after the square (the Olympic Stadium of Montjuic!), there is also a little hidden garden at the back of the Art museum which we definitely recommend going in. When you find it, you will find an array of different species of trees and plants. Furthermore, there is a little house which houses a number of vegetables and plants, all growing around the house. It’s really quite pretty!
There is also a little hidden garden…
Also, on the western side of Montjuïc is Poble Espanyol, the “Spanish Village”, which consists of different buildings built in different styles of Spanish architecture. This little village is a great place to take the kids as well as it is the perfect location for some classic architecture photography. Not to mention that at night, here you will find some fun nightclubs and some big events are held here such as Barcelona’s epic New Years party in Poble Espanyol (not to be missed).
Eventually you will find yourself at the Olympic Park, which holds the Olympic Stadium of Barcelona. This stadium has 65,00 seats and saw the opening and closing ceremonies as well as hosted athletic events.
Last but not least, head up to the top of hill to see the Montjuïc castle. This castle, which is an old military fortress, dates back to 1640 and now serves as a municipal facility in Barcelona. You’ll also get a fantastic view from up here!
And the best part? It’s all completely free, and you’ll lose those calories along the way!
4. Arc de Triomf/ Parc de la Ciutadella
The great thing about Parc the Ciutadella is the beautiful scenery it provides. To the west side of the park, you will find a number of buildings that perhaps could do with a little more care, but are still beautiful to admire nonetheless.
First we have the large castle which is hard to miss, the Castell dels Tres Dragons (Castle of the three dragons) which has the Zoological Museum inside. Next to the Castle, you can see the winter garden called “L’Hivernacle” which is a pavilion made of cast iron and glass.
On the north-east side of the park you can find the large Cascada which was designed by Josep Fontsére with a small contribution by Antoni Gaudí who was rather unknown at the time.
Facing the Cascada, you can see a small lake, in which you are welcome to rent a rowboat and relax in the sun for an hour or two. After having done this, make sure to head towards the Castle, in which you will be able to see out of the Parc, the magnificent and famous Arc de Triomf.
The Arc was built by architect Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas which was purposely built as the main access gate for the 1888 Barcelona World Fair. It’s definitely a great place for those holiday shots!
Again all of this is completely free, and a great way to spend a beautiful, sunny day outdoors!
So you wish to go to the top of Tibidabo? The charming hill in Barcelona which holds a lovely church (which looks like a castle from far) at the top. However, staring at the top of the mountain you do wonder how in the world you are going to get up there. Well, it’s actually fairly easy.
The journey up starts with a short FGC tra in ride from the centre of Barcelona, which eventually will take you to Avinguda Tibidabo then the Tramvia Blau which will take you half way up the mountain. At this point you will need to take the funicular up the mountain.
Once you get there, you will be able to admire the stunning church at the top, the Temple de Sagrat Cor which was built in 1806 in a Neo-Gothic style. You can also enjoy a day with the kids and head to the enchanting theme park in Tibidabo, just be aware that the theme park is mainly for kids.
Make sure to bring food also, as there aren’t many options at the top, and Tibidabo makes for some really good picnics, and incredible views of Barcelona.
Make sure to bring food!
Entrance Fees to Tibidabo Amusement Park
Children below 120cm in height: €10.30
Children below 90 cm: free
Tickets can be bought here: https://www.tibidabo.cat/
6. Bunkers Del Carmen
To get to the Bunkers, take the metro to El Carmel then walk 1.2 km uphill…
Or take bus number 86!
This incredible best-kept secret in Barcelona was built during the Spanish Civil War in 1937. The bunkers themselves were a key part of an anti-craft battery in order to defend against attacks from fascists and housed a number of guns.
Nowadays however, we can avoid that and instead buy a beer or wine and head up there to enjoy a jaw-dropping view of Barcelona. Up there, you can see the entire view of the city as well as the Mediterranean sea.
If you wish to get more into culture and history, then we strongly recommend heading up to Montserrat. The beautiful mountain of Montserrat not only has incredible views but the famous Monastery of Montserrat which holds the equally famous “Black Madonna”, a very strong religious symbol in religion and the patron of Catalonia.
The “Black Madonna”, a very strong religious symbol…
In honor of the 12th century figure, choir boys (50!) from the boarding school sing songs daily from Mondays to Fridays at 12 in the afternoon.
Not only this, but you’ll be able to see the Montserrat Monastery Museum, which has major works by famous artists such as Dalí, Giordano and El Greco as well as other exhibits.
It’s definitely worth coming to, either walking up the mountainside path (more like a hike, so if you love a sense of adventure and hiking, this is definitely the challenge for you!), car, train or funicular.
If you love a sense of adventure and hiking, this is definitely the challenge for you
8. El Born/ Picasso Museum
Nowadays, El Born is considered as one of the trendiest and fashionable places in Barcelona. With small, pathways of buildings that flash a hint of light from the sky, these heavenly streets do capture your attention as soon as you wonder around them.
At night time, El Born contains a numerous amounts of bars that serve some mean mojitos and a good time.
The Museum is free every Thursdays!
However, in the day time, El Born is rich in culture and lovely shops. In Calle Montcada for example, there is the famous Picasso Museum (Tip: The museum is free every Thursdays! But you still have to book a spot before-hand on the website!). The street also has the Textile Museum which has a café with a terrace.
Not only this, nearby you can also find the famous Palau de la Musica Catalana, which is beautiful structurally and a great experience if you want to sit down and enjoy some incredible shows, such as a Flamenco show. If you wish to book tickets, don’t forget we also do Flamenco and Sailing as a package, so this could be a great way to spend the day too!
If you wish to book tickets, don’t forget we also do Flamenco and Sailing as a package, so this could be a great way to spend the day too!
Just choose “Flamenco” as an extra when checking out from your booking.
9. Las Ramblas
To begin the famous Ramblas walk, you can begin in Plaza Catalunya head towards the sea this way. The long walk, which stretches out 1.2 km and makes for a great day exploring the city and eyeing all the shops and museums in the street.
Along the street you will also find La Boquería which is a famous food market in Barcelona. Here you will see a range of food options, but we definitely recommend trying some tapas for lunch!
Try some tapas in La Boquería…
At the end of Ramblas you will eventually get to the sea, where you will see Maremagnum, a large shopping center which floats above the sea as well as the Barcelona Aquarium.
10. Barceloneta/ Sailing Experience Barcelona
Barceloneta beach in Barcelona holds a vast amount of activities and tours to choose from. Walking along the coast, its fun to admire people walking along the beach, tanning and even going for a swim! Spend the day relaxing by the beach here and make sure to check out the restaurants along the coast as there are many to choose from!
However sometimes the best holiday is the one where you remove yourself from the crowds and relax in a calm and peaceful situation. In Barcelona its hard to find a place truly away from the busy streets full of crowds of tourists.
In Barcelona its hard to find a place truly away from the busy streets full of crowds of tourists…
But on our luxury sailboats afloat the Mediterranean sea, you can really feel true serenity, as you breathe in fresh air and enjoy a wonderful sailing tour around the coast of Barcelona.
From morning, afternoon and sunset times, we sail every day and are always here in the exclusive Port Vell.
We sail every day…
This is a completely different way to see Barcelona, and it sure makes for some good photos.
Want to see ours? Check out our Instagram! @sailing_experience_barcelona
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