Many people ask themselves why to visit Barcelona, since Catalan city is not one of the most popular destinations in Spain, but also in Europe. It is not uncommon to spend a few days in Barcelona and come back home thinking that you’ve found your dream city.
But the first time visitors and those who are not decided to travel to Barcelona yet may wonder “what’s so great about Barcelona?”.
To be sure that I don’t offer a biased impression, I asked many travel bloggers to recommend me their favourite place in Barcelona. And starting from their answers I discovered that there are 7 main reasons why you should visit Barcelona. Read below these reasons and the travel bloggers’ recommendations.
- 1 The vibrant atmosphere of the city
- 2 The Interesting museums of Barcelona
- 3 Barcelona has delicious food
- 4 The beautiful architecture of Barcelona
- 5 Barcelona has great pieces of history and tradition
- 6 Nature in Barcelona
- 7 Amazing views of Barcelona
The vibrant atmosphere of the city
There are many things to do in Barcelona and this is one of the reasons why almost everybody loves the city. Whether you are a beach lover, a sports fan or just another wanderer, Barcelona has something for everyone. The best places to visit in Barcelona if you want to enjoy the vibrant city atmosphere are:
recommended by Dan – Urban Abroad
When visiting Barcelona and looking for things to do as a tourist, you simply can’t miss the opportunity to stroll along Las Ramblas. No matter whether you have just 1 or 3 days in Barcelona this is one of the most famous walking streets in the city that you can’t miss.
If you want the chance to connect with Barcelona’s bustling vibe this street runs right through the heart of the city. Think quaint kiosks, restaurants and bars, breakfast stops, food markets, coffee shops, and street performers along the way.
The street is around 1.2 kilometres long and is connected by three metro stops with the most popular being the Liceu Metro stop. Las Ramblas is divided into a series of smaller streets that run alongside the main strip. Stick to the main street and along the way, you’ll find a host of live performances, human statues, and street artists.
A stop at the La Boqueria Food Market is also popular with visitors who are looking for cultural attractions and want to try the local delicacies. One thing to be aware of along this street is pickpockets, since the area is very crowded unexpecting tourists can quickly become a target.
All in all, Las Ramblas is a must for any visitor looking for the top attractions to visit in Barcelona.
recommended by Jessie Moore – Pocket Wanderings
A great attraction of Barcelona is its proximity to a number of gorgeous beaches. Not many European cities offer a location that’s so close to the sea. There’s no better way to spend a sunny day in Barcelona than relaxing on a beach, enjoying tapas on the sand and watching the world go by.
One of the best beaches in Barcelona is the popular Barceloneta Beach. It’s a buzzing place with plenty of atmosphere and lively beachgoers. Pick a relaxing spot on over 400 metres of golden sand, sit back, and soak up your surroundings. For those who can’t sit still, take part in a game of Med-side volleyball, or enjoy a number of watersports.
If you want to stay close to the beach, try one of these hotels near Barceloneta beach:
- Barceloneta 54 3* – a 3-star hotel located in Barcelona’s beachfront area of Barceloneta, just 3 minutes walk from the beach – check prices and availability
- W Barcelona 5* – a sail-like structure next to Barceloneta Beach, offering breathtaking design and fantastic views over Barcelona – check prices and availability
Alternatively, indulge in some delicious seaside paella or tapas from one of the beach huts along the waterfront. All while sipping on sangria and working on that suntan. It’s the perfect way to unwind after a few days of exploring the city.
Bear in mind that it does get busy, especially in peak season. It’s all part of the fun, but you may want to arrive early to get a good spot. If spending the day lazing on the sand isn’t for you, Barceloneta Beach is still worth a visit. Go for an early morning walk along the sand for a more peaceful experience of this beach.
Looking for other special beaches in Spain? Read 8 beautiful beaches in Tenerife.
Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona
recommended by Adam – As Adam goes
Whether you’re a football enthusiast or just an average tourist, a visit to Camp Nou is an experience you need to have in Spain before you die.
Camp Nou is the home stadium of one of the world’s greatest teams, known as Barcelona. Camp Nou, which is located in the Catalan region, is the largest stadium in Europe.
By daytime, take the Camp Nou experience tour and discover the past history of the teams that played for the great FC Barcelona, and by night, you can see the current team play in the flesh against one of the other top teams in Spain. You can book your ticket here.*
To get the most out of your visit to Camp Nou, take the Players Experience VIP Tour. You’ll get an amazing insight into what it’s like to be a player before a match. Your tour guide will take you through the changing rooms where the players prepare for their game, the press zone, and a walk onto the very pitch where the beautiful game is played.
When visiting Camp Nou, the easiest way to get there is by taking the blue line hop-on-hop-off Turístic bus. The stadium has its own designated stop.
The Interesting museums of Barcelona
The first time I visited Barcelona I was surprised to see how many museums can a city have. I could find one for almost any theme. Buy a Barcelona city card * if you want to have free public transportation and entrance to 25+ museums in the city. Or you can book tours just for the museums you are interested in. And you can visit here some of the worldwide known museums:
Hospital de Sant Pau
recommended by Baia – Red Fedora Diary
Barcelona is a city of stunning architecture dotted across the city. And no matter you are visiting Spain in winter or summer, visiting these buildings should be on any traveller’s list.
Hospital de Sant Pau is one of the top attractions in Barcelona when it comes to elaborate and detailed design. Enlisted as a UNESCO World Heritage Sites together with Palau de la Música Catalana, both are the creation of Lluís Domènech I Montaner, a famous art nouveau architect.
The former Hospital de Sant Pau, located in the El Guinardo neighbourhood, was constructed between 1901-30 and functioned as a hospital until 2009. The design has its signature technique and is very similar to the Palau de la Música Catalana.
Although the hospital was built in the 20th century, its origin dates back to the beginning of the 15th century when six smaller establishments united into one.
In 2003, city authorities constructed a new hospital next to it; therefore, Sant Pau Hospital slowly stopped working as a clinic.
Today, it is a museum complex enclosing 26 buildings representing the hospital’s history. One can browse different rooms, admire the intricate design, and even see what patient rooms looked like.
It’s advised to pre-purchase the ticket before your visit. Three different tickets are available: a self-guided visit, a visit with an audio guide, and a guided visit. You can book your entrance ticket here.*
Picasso Museum in Barcelona
recommended by Theresa – Fueled By Wanderlust
A visit to the Picasso Museum is an essential part of any Barcelona itinerary. Located in the La Ribera neighbourhood, this museum illustrates Picasso’s relationship with Barcelona and his development as an artist.
From the age of fourteen, Picasso spent nine years living in Barcelona, where he apprenticed and honed his artistic style and abilities. During these developmental years, Picasso formed a deep relationship with Barcelona that would last a lifetime.
Over the course of Picasso’s life, he periodically donated his works to Barcelona, in the hopes of eventually having his own monographic museum. This wish came true in 1963, when the Picasso Museum opened to the public, primarily featuring works donated from the personal collection of Picasso’s close friend, Jaume Sabartés. Up until his death in 1973, Picasso himself continued to donate many of his works to further grow the museum’s collection.
Today, visitors to the Picasso Museum get a behind the scenes look into the mind of one of the most influential artists of all time. The various galleries follow a timeline through Picasso’s artistic eras, beginning in his youth when his style was more realistic. While progressing through the museum, you will witness Picasso’s transition to cubism, along with pieces from his Blue Period and Las Meninas collections.
It is best to purchase tickets for the Picasso Museum online before your visit to avoid waiting in long queues. This is especially necessary during summer or peak tourist season. The museum is open every week from Tuesday through Sunday. Skip the line and book a tour of the museum here.*
Palau de la Música Catalana
recommended by Mar Pages – Solo Female Travelers Tours
Palau de la Música Catalana is an architectural wonder and a beautiful expression of Catalan modernism.
It was built between 1905 and 1908 by the modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, for the Orfeó Català, a choral society of the time. This fascinating art nouveau building is the only concert hall in this style to be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most popular places for solo female travellers in Barcelona because of how fairy tale the main auditorium looks.
Its interior is a work of art, combining sculptures, mosaic, ironwork and a breathtaking ceiling made of stained glass, which naturally illuminates Palau in daylight hours (it’s the only European concert hall that has this!).
Palau de la Música Catalana is Barcelona’s most traditional venue for classical music and has a varied program including flamenco, jazz and pop. To attend a musical performance in this hall is an unforgettable experience.
Palau offers guided tours, which is the only way to see the jaw-dropping inside besides attending a show. You can book a self-guided tour, which includes a downloadable audio guide or a guided tour. The other option is to attend a concert from Palau’s exceptional program, which offers more than 150 events during the concert season. The tickets can be purchased online or in Palau’s ticket office. Buy your entrance ticket online here. *
Barcelona has delicious food
Spain, in general, is known for its delicious food, and Barcelona is no exception to that. The city has some traditional dishes that you can taste while walking around or you can go and visit famous places in Barcelona for their fresh food.
Mercado de la Boqueria
recommended by Barbora – Often out of office
This food heaven of Barcelona is one of the most well-known markets in the world. Mercado de la Boqueria is specifically known for its vast size, history and selection of sit-down food stalls that have been visited by TV stars and foodies such as Anthony Bourdain.
It’s an attraction in Barcelona that deserves a spot on any visitor’s itinerary. Here is a list of different types of activities to do in Barcelona, whilst on a fun weekend trip such as a bachelorette party.
The market space, which is located on bustling La Rambla, is over 13 thousand square meters. The inside of the market is filled with all types of vendors, selling fresh fruit, famous Spanish pickles, quality meats and cheeses, and Spanish wine.
However one of the main reason’s why this place is so popular with the locals is its dining scene. It’s the perfect place to sit and sip your wine whilst you enjoy freshly fried seafood, paella and plates of tapas.
In addition to the food that’s cooked and served here the market is boasting beautiful colourful displays of fresh food for sale that is sure to keep your eyes occupied and entertained.
For the best experience, make sure you always keep an eye out on your belongings whilst exploring the market, and try exploring during less busy times such as working days and early morning, early afternoon times of the day.
Carrer de Petritxol
recommended by Carley – Home to Havana
What could be better than eating your way through some of Barcelona’s most historic destinations? Make sure to add the Carrer de Petritxol to your itinerary if you’re looking for Barcelona’s best churros and chocolate, one of Spain’s most iconic treats.
Carrer de Petritxol is a small, winding street located in the heart of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter. Best known for being home to a group of some of the city’s oldest “granjas” – stores specializing in dairy products, including chocolate – Carrer de Petritxol is now a destination not to be missed.
Here you’ll find several shops specializing in chocolates of all kinds. With chocolate came churros, and now this street is well known for being one of the best places in the city to try these treats.
Two of the most historic shops in the city, Granja Pallaresa and Granja Dulcinea, are easily two of the best churros and chocolate destinations in the cities. If you’re looking for old-world charm, head to Granja Dulcinea and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time when entering this tiny shop.
Many Spaniards enjoy churros and hot chocolate for breakfast, so expect a line in the morning. To avoid the lines, come early, or plan for churros and chocolate as a way to catch a second wind for sightseeing in the afternoon.
There are also some interesting guided tours for food lovers in Barcelona:
The beautiful architecture of Barcelona
Even though the architecture of Barcelona is represented by the works of many architects, the city is mainly known to be the host of the most impressive works of art of the famous architect Antonio Gaudi.
Visiting just one of them (though I recommend you to include many more in your itinerary) will make you understand why Gaudi’s masterpieces are like a trademark of the city. Some of the best known Gaudi attractions in Barcelona are:
recommended by Christine Wheeler – Live love run travel
Park Guell is one of the top attractions in Barcelona. Covering a larger area than the main Monumental Zone, you can easily spend a full day walking around the park. Known for housing some of Gaudi’s best work, you’ll also find views of the city, plenty of greenery, and lots of photo spots.
If you are looking for things to do in Park Guell, make sure to schedule your visit to the Monumental Zone ahead of time. It used to only require tickets at certain times of the day, but now only locals can come in outside of open hours. You will want to plan ahead as you may have to wait hours for an open time if you try to walk up.
In the Monumental Zone, check out the view from the Greek Theater. Because it has some of the best views, it gets crowded. The Dragon Stairway is another popular spot for the sculpture of the dragon in the middle of the steps. Don’t touch it though – security is nearby and watching.
Outside of the area, make sure to take the walkout to Turo de Les Tres Creus viewpoint. You won’t have the crowds of the main area of Park Guell, but you will get to enjoy amazing views of the city.
Visiting Park Guell is a must when visiting Barcelona. Spend an hour or two visiting the main area of the Monumental Zone if you are in a hurry as everything is quite close together. If you have more time though, enjoy walking through the park and taking in all that the park has to offer. Buy your admission ticket to Park Guell online here.*
La Sagrada Familia
recommended by Claire – Why Visit Barcelona
La Sagrada Familia basilica is Antoni Gaudí’s unfinished masterpiece, a must-see for anyone coming to Barcelona. Construction is still ongoing since the first stone was laid in 1882, and the hope that work would be completed by 2026 (in time for the 100th anniversary of Gaudí’s death) has been delayed again.
The two completed façades are strikingly different as different architects and sculptors have worked on the cathedral over the years. The Nativity Façade is the oldest site of the Sagrada Familia, and tells the story of the birth of Christ, with intricate carvings and statues including Mary and Joseph on a donkey and the nativity scene. On the opposite side, the Passion Façade is dedicated to the death of Christ and is notably more minimalist and modern in style.
While it is beautiful from the outside, going inside La Sagrada Familia is an experience like no other, as you can see Gaudí’s skill in design and architecture everywhere. The columns in the cathedral are more like trees as they branch out at the ceiling creating a feeling of walking into a forest and not a church, and the light from the stained glass windows casts colourful patterns everywhere you look.
Be sure to buy your tickets online in advance here * to avoid long queues. Visiting early in the morning is likely to be quieter, and the light shines through the Nativity Façade windows which are coloured in blues and greens. As the sun moves around, in the afternoon the red, yellow and orange colours of the windows on the Passion Façade have their turn to shine.
recommended by Nicole – Wandering with a Dromomaniac
Purchased in 1903 by textile industrialist Josep Batlló, he gave complete creative freedom to Antoni Gaudí to renovate what is now Casa Batlló. Gaudí completely redesigned the original façade and made the interior not only beautiful but functional. Well ahead of its time.
Now, owned by the Bernat family this UNESCO world heritage site is an icon in Barcelona and an absolute must-see, having won the “World’s Best Landmark” in 2021. Located on the Passeig de Gràcia, surrounded by some of the best restaurants in Barcelona, Casa Batlló stands out with its skull balconies and multicoloured hues.
The house is open to visitors and you can take an audio-guided tour (buy your ticket with a self-guided tour here *).
The regular tours are open Monday-Thursday 9:30-6:30 and Friday-Sunday 9-8. Highlights include the Gaudí dome, an immersive experience into the mind of Gaudí himself, the noble floor with its stained glass and sweeping scallop shell ceiling, and the roof terrace, where even the smokestacks have been redesigned with care.
recommended by Karen – Outdoor Adventure Sampler
Catalan architect Anton Gaudi is known for his world-renown landmarks in Barcelona. Casa Mila, one of the houses he designed, is a popular attraction to visit.
Casa Mila, also known as La Pedrera (Quarry) due to its rough stone quarry-like exterior, is one of the most famous of Gaudi’s works. Originally built in the early 1900s as a private home for a prominent Barcelona family, it has now become a UNESCO World Heritage site. The landmark is an excellent example of Catalan modernism.
The unique hooded structures on the roof terrace resembling a garden of warriors are a must-see part of the building. In addition to seeing these forms that inspired Star Wars costumes, the views of the city from the rooftop are tremendous. You will have a 360-degree view of the city from the terrace and be able to see as far away as the Cathedral of Barcelona.
Casa Mila is located on Barcelona’s upscale Passeig de Gràcia. The twisted façade of La Pedrera is nearby another must-see Gaudi designed house, namely Casa Batllo. A walk through the Eixample district is the best way to see the impressive houses of Gaudi.
Fast track tickets bought online * (including audio-guide) are recommended as Casa Mila is one of the most popular attractions in Barcelona.
recommended by Or – My Path in the World
Considering how many famous Spanish landmarks were created by the notorious architect Antoni Gaudi, Casa Vicens is a bit of a hidden gem (though it’s definitely a must-visit attraction in Barcelona as it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site).
It may come as a surprise, but this is the first house ever designed by Gaudi, built at the end of the 19th century for the Vicens family, and the one that kickstarted his successful career. The architect’s main inspiration in each of his buildings was nature, and no one else could have created such a quirky yet harmonious mix of colours and shapes quite like Gaudi.
While one can certainly look at Casa Vicens on the outside alone, it’s recommended to step inside to explore and enjoy this house museum to the fullest. From its flower-painted tiles to architectural elements resembling birds, water, and even snakes, this building is full of surprises. It also hosts temporary art exhibitions, so there’s plenty to see and experience here.
To visit Casa Vicens, you can buy a skip-the-line entrance ticket here. *
Barcelona has great pieces of history and tradition
Even though Barcelona is known to be a modern city, don’t be surprised to discover it has a lot of history and tradition behind it. If you are a history fan, you can visit Barcelona’s attractions of different ages. From castles and old churches to new buildings and reproductions of traditional villages, you can find them all here. And some of the most popular are:
Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter
recommended by Veronika Primm – Travel geekery
Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter is the ancient heart of the city that no tourist can leave out. However, there’s more to it than meets the eye.
The Gothic Quarter, or Barri Gòtic as it’s known in Catalan, encompasses an ancient Roman settlement. It also bore witness to lively Medieval times. However, in the 1920s Barcelona took on the task of hosting the World Expo, and the Gothic Quarter underwent major modifications for that. Boulevards were enlarged, some buildings torn down or moved, and facades fully renovated.
This adds another layer to the sightseeing. You should come armed with the knowledge of what’s genuinely ancient and what only pretends to be. That way, you’ll enjoy walking through and uncovering little secrets.
Like the fake gargoyles on El Pont del Bisbe, a charming bridge connecting two buildings, which is a popular photo object. It’s one of the examples of features constructed in 1928.
Also, the facade of the Barcelona Cathedral was fully remade into a Gothic look. Antoni Gaudí, the famous architect and the person behind the famous Sagrada Familia and other gems, was strongly against it and hated the look.
It’s fun to just stroll around and let your feet carry you where they please. Just don’t forget to stop by the Pont del Bisbe, Barcelona Cathedral, Roman tombs, Roman columns of the Temple of Augustus hidden away in a residential courtyard, Vía Laietana, and Casa Padellàs housing Barcelona’s Museum of History.
Some of the tours you can book to enjoy the Gothic Quarter in Barcelona are:
Poble Espanyol on Montjuïc Hill
by Kenny Chow – Knycx journeying
Flamenco is traditional Spanish performance art and for first-time visitors to Spain, it’s a must-see. Flamenco was originated from Andalusia (Seville), today, flamenco performance shows could be seen across Spain. One of the performance sites in Barcelona is Tablao de Carmen, and it is actually one of the best venues to experience this traditional art.
The venue is situated within the Andalusian quarter of Poble Espanyol on Montjuïc Hill – a short 10-minute walk from PL. Espanya Subway Station. From the station to the site, visitors get to walk past the Magic Fountain of Montjuic and then appreciate the historic Poble Espanyol and one of the most beautiful green belts in the city.
Poble Espanyol is a heritage site – there is an architectural museum in the complex, workshops, boutiques and it’s a great photo-taking spot. Tablao de Carmen has two dinner shows at 6 pm and 8:30 pm. Get there 1 or 2 hours before the show to walk through the site, and then go to dinner and the performance.
Tablao de Carmen was once a venue where the great flamenco dancer, Carmen Amaya, performed on stage in front of King Alfonso XIII of Spain in the 19th century; So now the venue carried on her legacy and it’s a tribute to her. Their show features four dancers portraying different forms and emotions along with professional acoustic music and singing that the audience would completely lose track of time.
To visit Poble Espanyol, buy your online skip-the-line ticket here.*
recommended by Cath – Passports and Adventures
One of the top attractions to visit in Barcelona is the Montjuic Castle. Located on top of Montjuic hill overlooking the city and port, Montjuic Castle is an old military fortress that is worth visiting.
Originally dating from the 17th century, it saw many battles over the city and has also been used as a prison and torture centre as late as the 1940s. Cannons are still dotted around the fortress and there is a military museum inside which hosts both temporary and permanent exhibitions including one depicting the harrowing life experienced under the infamous dictator, General Franco.
As well as having incredible views across the city, Montjuic has a beautiful moat over which visitors cross to enter the castle. The moat itself is dry and hosts a pretty landscaped garden. There are also towers to visit if you join a guided tour.
Montjuic can be accessed on foot but instead of climbing the hill, not easy if you are visiting Barcelona with kids, why not take the cable car to the top of the hill instead, the Teleferic de Montjuic. It takes just a few minutes and while you ride in the car, you can enjoy your first views across the city that you’ll also see from the castle.
You can get a one-way or return ticket, depending on whether you want to walk back down. Book a round-trip by cable car here.*
Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar
recommended by David – The World Travel Guy
Even though Barcelona is mainly known for the famous Sagrada Família and the Catedral de Barcelona, it’s also home to some other nice churches, and one of these is the beautiful Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar.
This is a 14th-century Gothic-style catholic church that was built by the Kingdom of Aragon between 1329 and 1383. Over the years, the building has been damaged by fires, earthquakes, and wars, but steady restoration work has kept it looking as grand as ever.
It’s a bit challenging to take pictures of Santa Maria from the outside since it’s surrounded by buildings and narrow streets, so you’ll want a wide-angle lens for your phone or camera. The outside is nice, but the inside is truly amazing, with the typical Gothic high ceilings and majestic stained glass windows.
The Santa Maria church is located in the Ribera/El Born area of Barcelona, and you can get there by rail or taxi, or it’s possible to walk to it from some nearby hotels. Entry to the cathedral is free before 1:00 PM or after 5:00 PM, otherwise, you must pay an entrance fee. The whole cathedral can be toured in less than an hour, although some people will want to stay longer to admire it.
Nature in Barcelona
If you want to visit Barcelona with kids they won’t be thrilled to see only museums, modern buildings and great architecture. But that is not a problem! Barcelona has beautiful parks and its proximity to the sea made it perfect for building an aquarium, that the children love!
Searching for other destinations to visit with your family? Try Puglia, Italy with kids
Nature in Barcelona is very well represented and perfect for a family escape. Some of the places you can visit in Barcelona with kids are:
The aquarium in Barcelona
recommended by Alexander Travel your Memorie
Barcelona Aquarium is a popular attraction and nice to visit when you follow a 3-day itinerary of Barcelona. Opened in 1995, this Aquarium is Europe’s foremost Mediterranean marine aquarium and educational centre. With 65 tanks, 11,000 fish, 450 different fish species, and an 80-meter underwater tunnel, the Aquarium is a unique attraction that attracts thousands of visitors every day. Buy your entrance ticket online here * and skip the line.
The route in the Aquarium passes 21 tanks in which you will see different fish species from the Mediterranean sea. At the Oceanarium, the highlight of your visit, you’ll walk in an 80-meter underwater tunnel between different fish species such as dorados and sunfish, and even two species of sharks, the sand tiger shark, and the sandbar shark!
After this, you will enter the colourful tropical seas that show you the most characteristic fish species of these seas. In the thematic aquariums, you will learn more about seahorses, sea invertebrates, and tropical corals.
To see everything you need about 1.5 to 2 hours. The best time to visit the Aquarium is when the fish are being fed. Make sure to be at the aquarium around lunchtime (between noon and 2 pm) to see this.
The Aquarium is located in Port Vell, the old port of Barcelona, next to the shopping and entertainment centre Maremagnum.
The port can be reached by public transport via Metro stop L3 Drassanes or L4 Barceloneta. You can also get to the aquarium by bus via bus line 19 or 40.
Parc de la Ciutadella
recommended by Lisa – Waves and Cobblestones
The Parc de la Ciutadella is a lovely verdant 17-hectare public park on the edge of Barcelona’s Ciutat Vella (Old City). This park is named for the fortress that once stood on this site. Today’s visitors will instead find a landscaped plaza and the stately Catalan Parliament headquarters at the park’s centre.
Located on the southeast end of the park is the Barcelona Zoo, which features primates (including the popular tiny South American Titi monkeys), aviaries, and Komodo dragons. Visitors with the Barcelona Card receive a discount on many great things to do in Barcelona, including admission to the zoo.
Save time to wander through the park and enjoy this green space within the bustling city of Barcelona. Discover the sculptures and ponds scattered through the park’s gardens. Marvel at the fortress-like architecture of the Castell dels Tres Dragons, an imposing building originally built as a restaurant for the 1888 Universal Exposition.
One of the most beautiful areas of the park is the Cascada del Parc de la Ciutadella. This two-tiered fountain is decorated with classical statuary featuring mythical beasts, cherubs, and Venus rising from her shell. It is topped with a golden chariot complete with a team of gilded horses.
When done exploring the Parc de la Ciutadella, be sure to leave via the northwest corner. From this vantage point, visitors enjoy a spectacular view of the Arc de Triomf – definitely a must-see in Barcelona!
Amazing views of Barcelona
The Sea on one side and the mountains on the other offer an irresistible combination for any city. And Barcelona is one of those privileged cities. If you want to admire all the attractions from above, there are several viewpoints that can take your breath away:
Tibidabo Panoramic Area
recommended by Kylie Neuhaus – Between England and Iowa
A great attraction to visit in Barcelona is the Tibidabo amusement park. It’s the second oldest theme park in Europe. It also sits up high in the mountains above Barcelona, offering amazing views across the city.
The park is split into two sections: the main Tibidabo park with paid entry to all the attractions and then the Tibidabo Panoramic Area which is free. This section of the park has rides that date back 100 years!
A ticket is required to ride the attractions but they are very unique! Giradabo is a brightly coloured Ferris wheel perched on the edge of the mountain. Talaia is a 50m high lookout tower. Avio is a replica aeroplane of the first plane to fly between Barcelona and Madrid and there’s an old fashioned carousel.
Although the rides have a fee, the viewing platform and the impressive Sagart Cor Church (‘Expiatory Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus’) are free. Even without going on the rides, they are very photogenic against the backdrop of the city and the Serra de Collserola Natural Park.
A couple of shuttle bus services depart from various locations in Barcelona and the ‘Mount Tibidabo Funicular’ does the last stretch of the journey, up to the top of the mountain. The funicular railway has been in operation since 1901 and it has recently been renovated. It now has interactive tablets which share information about the flora and fauna that can be seen in the mountains.
Bunkers del Carmel
recommended by Vicki – Vicki viaja
Barcelona is truly one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and is full of incredible sights. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if you could admire all these sights at once? And that is indeed possible – from one of the most beautiful Barcelona viewpoints, the Bunkers del Carmel.
The bunkers are located on top of one of the hills surrounding the city. They offer an incredible panoramic view of the entire Barcelona city area, all the way to the sea. Once, the bunkers were built during the Spanish Civil War because from here, you had a perfect view of the sea and could spot approaching enemies from afar and thus prepare for the upcoming attack. And it is precisely this view that enchants both residents and visitors today.
Many young people come here every weekend to enjoy the fascinating view over the Catalan capital while having a small picnic. But even visitors come here regularly, although the bunkers are still one of the less-visited sights of the city. You can explore the Bunkers del Carmel best on a short walk from the town or take a bus to the foot of the hill.
For those interested in history, there is a small exhibition inside the bunkers where you can learn more about the history and use of this place.
Did these reasons convince you to start planning your trip to Barcelona? If yes, you can try some of these fantastic hotels:
- Exe Ramblas Boqueria 3* – a 3* star hotel located right on Barcelona’s famous Las Ramblas, next to La Boquería Market – check prices and availability
- Iberostar Selection Paseo de Gracia 4 Sup 4* – located right on Plaça Catalunya Square in Barcelona and offering a terrace with a pool – check prices and availability
- Le Meridien Barcelona 5* – a hotel with chic, boutique design throughout with bright colours – check prices and availability
I managed to identify only 7 reasons why you should visit Barcelona based on the attractions recommended by the travel bloggers. I am sure there are many more. You just have to give it a chance and you won’t regret it. Barcelona is worth visiting!
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