What Not to Miss in Barcelona
Barcelona, the vibrant and colourful capital of Spain’s Catalan region, is a gorgeous city on the coast and makes the perfect weekend break, or longer. With so much to do in this amazing city it’s hard to know where to start, but whatever you do, don’t miss the following sights…
La Rambla, the main street in Barcelona’s Barrio Gotico (Gothic Quarter), is one of Barcelona’s most iconic sights. The poet Federico Garcia Lorca called it ”the only street in the world which I wish would never end”, and while nowadays it’s a big tourism hot-spot, the tangled network of picturesque tree-lined streets filled with kiosks, boutique stores, cafes and street artists is still an unmissable part of Barcelona.
Whilst you’re in the area, make sure to sample some of the city’s best tapas – look for the crowded bars filled with locals, not tourists – and enjoy a refreshing mojito at one of the many trendy bars, like the rooftop terrace at Bar Jardi. For the best local foods, don’t miss the cluttered and crowded La Boqueria, a beautiful covered market selling everything from fresh meat and fish to spices and beautiful artisan chocolates.
Just like you can’t miss the Eiffel Tower when in Paris, you simply can’t visit Barcelona without stopping by Gaudi’s iconic unfinished cathedral! The Sagrada Familia is the most famous, and perhaps the most impressive, of all the works of Antoni Gaudi. The stunning cathedral, with its extravagant facades and cake-topper turrets, is breathtaking to view from the outside, but a tour of the incredible interior is also well worth a trip.
Looking for the best place to watch the sunset in Barcelona? Head up to the top of Montjuic, a small mountain overlooking Barcelona. Take the metro to Paral.lel, then hop into the surprisingly fast funicular rail-car, which will take you about half way up the mountain. From there, you can walk, or take a cable car to the top.
At the top of Montjuic you’ll find a lovely, leafy area that’s perfect for walks, as well as parks, a botanical garden and the Castell de Montjuïc, a sturdy old fort built in the 1600s with fabulous views across the city.
Even if you’re not a football lover, a tour of Nou Camp, Barcelona’s impressive football ground, is a great way to spend a couple of hours in the Catalan capital. The enormous stadium is breathtaking, and the museum is very interesting too, with tons of information about the club’s history and lots of trophies, kits and other artefacts on display.
Another Gaudi icon, and yet another great place to head for a beautiful Barcelona sunset, is the gorgeous Parc Guell. At the top of a hill behind the city, it provides a fantastic view across a dusky pink Barcelona to the ocean in the distance.
Even without the stunning views, the park is a lovely place to explore, with Gaudi’s classic mosaic tiling covering the curving, snake-like walls, and bizarre Disney-esque buildings dotted throughout the peaceful, leafy park.
About the author
Emily Luxton is the award winning travel blogger behind emilyluxton.co.uk and backpacksouthamerica.co.uk. A lover of travel and experiencing new cultures, she is out to explore as much of the world as possible, and has just completed a five month trip through South America.