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The Best Things to Do in Barcelona
Barcelona is both the capital city and the second largest city in Spain. As you can imagine, there are literally thousands of things to do in Barcelona. Below you’ll find a short list of the best things to do in Barcelona. Of course, this is just a small sampling of the many experiences that you can find in this fascinating city.
No visit to Barcelona is complete without a visit to the Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família. Although the construction of this beautiful church was never actually completed, it’s still listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it’s definitely something that can’t be missed during a trip to Barcelona.
Beware that lines at the La Sagrada Familia can be extremely long during the summer and early fall months. The most informative and efficient way to see the La Sagrada Familia is to take this full or half day tour with an expert guide. With this tour, you’ll not only receive personalized attention and answers to all your questions about the La Sagrada Familia but you’ll also get VIP access which will allow you to skip the lines and dive straight into all the action that this architectural masterpiece has to offer.
This tour also includes:
- VIP access (skip the lines) to La Sagrada Familia
- Panoramic views of the city from Montjüic hill
- Walking tour of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter
If you’re not interested in a half or full day tour of La Sagrada but want early access (1.5 hours before the crowds amass), be sure to check out this very affordable early access pass.
Guell Park (Parc Guell)
Yet another creation of Antoni Gaudi, this beautiful park is known to be one of the world’s most unusual with acres and acres of mosaic designs and other ‘outside of the box’ structures. You could easily spend half a day here wandering around the park taking in the mushroom shaped chimneys, the mock marketplace, the Closed Chapel, a snake like bench and the various walking trails that link everything together.
Plan ahead for your visit by taking a look at this map of the Guell park.
Spanish Grand Prix
Love fast cars? Love large crowds with ample opportunities to socialize with like minded travelers and locals? Then the Spanish Grand Prix is a must do if you’re in the Barcelona area during mid-May. Check the schedule here. The event itself is actually 30 minutes outside of Barcelona with several different transfer services available making it an easy and fun day out.
Barcelona City Sightseeing Tour
What better way to experience all that Barcelona has to offer than taking a hop-on hop-off City Sightseeing Tour. This is one of the best ways to get a sneak preview of all the sights (up to 44 different hot spots and attractions) in the city that way you can pick and choose which sights you want to explore more in depth in the coming days.
Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria
Those of you who are unlikely to consider yourselves foodies might feel the need to change tunes after a trip to this bustling market complete with wines, produce, fruit, meat, fish and a few high quality restaurants and bars where you can enjoy a sit down meal. Adding to its aurora, this marketplace has been around since the 17th century and is open Monday through Saturday from morning to night.
Cobblestone streets, flowing vines cascading from windows, dark corners, hidden alleyways, these are the sights you’ll find in the gothic Quarter. Known as one of the oldest parts of the city, don’t be surprised if you feel like a vampire is lurking near. First built in the medieval era, this part of the city is found near Barcelona’s city center and offers a variety of cafes, restaurants, shops and street performers, making for a very enjoyable, if not slightly spooky stroll.
Hot Air Ballooning over Catalonia
Ever wonder what it would be like to float over the beautiful landscape of Catalonia at sunrise? Sounds incredible, right? Spot the Monserrat and the Pyrenee Mountains in the distance as you fly high in the sky (up to 3,000 ft / 900 m). This activity is best suited for couples, families and those looking for a memorable and alternative experience during their time in Barcelona.
Font Magica Fountain
Barcelona proves that not all water fountains are built the same. In fact, this ‘Magic Fountain’ plays host to a spectacular water light show that incorporates music that awes both locals and visitors alike. Built in 1929, this fountain has stood the test of time and is arguably one of the most famous attractions in the city’s bounds attracting a nearly 2.5 million visitors a year. The light show itself can be enjoyed during night hours starting at 9pm and runs throughout the entire year.
Easily described as a fun filled attraction for all types of travelers, the Tibidabo Hill is an old church that has been converted to house a small amusement park at the very top that’s reachable via a vintage Blue Tram. There’s also a skywalk that allows for some spectacular vies of Barcelona. Even better? The skywalk is completely free. The amusement park is open from March to September.
Do you have your own personal favorites when it comes to the best things to do in Barcelona? If so, leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts.