21 Best things to do in Barcelona – Complete Travel Guide

by Ranjit

Barcelona is the 5th most visited city by international tourists in Europe after London, Paris, Istanbul, and Rome and the 20th in the world.

The city is well-known for its Barça football team (with the largest football stadium in Europe), beautiful weather and not to forget, the fashion industry.

And Fun Fact, did you know? Eiffel Tower was meant to be constructed in Barcelona. Gustave Eiffel’s whole architectural plan of the Eiffel Tower was the purpose for Barcelona. However, things didn’t go as planned.

Nevertheless, Barcelona is yet a beautiful and lively city to be experienced once in a lifetime.

Info :

How many days do you need to explore Barcelona: I recommend a stay of 4 days, 3 nights.

Language spoken : Catalan & Spanish

Do locals speak English: A few. English is widely spoken in the tourist industry and by many young people.

Currency used : Euros ( € )

Let’s see the top best things to do and places to explore in Barcelona.

1. La Sagrada Familia

The Basílica de la Sagrada Família, commonly known as “Sagrada Familia” (which means Holy Family) was designed by Antoni Gaudi. It is famous for its lush architectural design. The beauty of this gigantic cathedral is inexplicable, But only to be felt by one.

Price : It costs 20 euros to visit for an adult and free for kids under 11 years. I suggest buying the tickets online to avoid the rush.

La Sagrada Familia: Source
Interior of La Sagrada Familia : Source

2. Park Güell

The Park Güell is the most tourist spot in Barcelona. This is a public park and composed of gardens and architectural elements (monuments and buildings). UNESCO declared Park Güell as a Wolrd Heritage site in 1984.

Entry into the park is of no charge, which takes around 90-120 minutes to explore. However, the monumental zone, which is 5% of the park needs a ticket to enter.

Price : It costs €7,50 (euros) on a regular price and you can buy the tickets both online and at the counters directly.

Monumental Zone of Park Güell

3. Casa Batlló

Casa Batlló (which literally means House of Batlló) was designed by Antoni Gaudí. No wonder, People consider it to be one of his masterpieces. It has its current name because Batlló Family bought this house. It’s been refurbished several times after the original construction.

Casa Batlló is famous for its exquisitely attractive design on both the interior and the exterior. There is a charge for the entrance to get inside of the building, but the marvelous beauty of Casa Batlló can be seen from the outside on the streets.

Casa Batlló from outside
Casa Batlló at dusk

4. Plaça de Catalunya

Plaça de Catalunya, also know as “Plaza de Catalunya is a square in the center of Barcelona. It is the most popular and favorite meeting point for both locals and tourists.

The square occupies 50,000 square meters of area, and is well-known for its fountains and statues. A huge flock of pigeons gathering attracts the tourists, which makes this place splendidly peaceful.

View over Plaça de Catalunya, Barcelona

5. Mercado de La Boqueria

La Boqueria is barcelona’s the most famous fresh-food market. Besides being a market for locals, La Boqueria has become one of the greatest touristic place among travelers in Barcelona.

It is popular for its diverse selection of both fresh and cooked food items. If you are foodie, make sure you save at least an hour of your time dedicated to experience the culinary icon of Barcelona.

Entry of Mercado de La Boqueria

6. Cathedral of Barcelona

Barcelona Cathedral also known as “The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia” is a Gothic cathedral and major landmarks in the city.

This cathedral is dedicated to Eulalia of Barcelona (co-patron saint of Barcelona), was a 13-year-old Roman-Christian Virgin who was martyred during the persecution of Christians in the reign of Emperor Diocletian.

Price: The entry into the cathedral is of no-charge from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm and 5:45 pm to 7:30 pm on weekdays with slight time changes during other days. You can also buy a ticket with a regular price of 7 euros to visit anytime.

Note : If you are entering during the free hours, To access the roof and choir you’ll need to pay 3 euros per person.

Facade of Barcelona Cathedral
Cathedral of Barcelona Interior

7. Casa Milà

Casa Milà is popularly known as “La Pedrera”, which means the quarry. It is one of the other designs by the architect Antoni Gaudí. In fact, the last private residence to be designed by him.

Casa Milà is famous for its unconventional modern rough-hewn appearance, which looks as if made of bones and skulls. It was declared to be a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984.

Price: The starting price is €24 (euros) for an entry. The other plans include special tours, dinner, and beverages. You can check more from the official website.

Design of Casa Milà on the Outside.
Low angle view from the inside of Casa Milà.
On rooftop of Casa Milà.

8. Magic Fountain of Montjuic

The Magic Fountain of Montjuic is located in the neighborhood of Montjuic in Barcelona, below the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya which is the Palau Nacional of Barcelona.

It is famous for the illuminations formed by the water fountain, which sprays 700 gallons of water per second.  The highest water spout is 170 feet (51 meters).

Note : It is a public show that doesn’t charge anything, but you need to be mindful of the schedule.

Magic fountain of Montjuic, Barcelona : Source

9. Picasso Museum, Barcelona

Picasso Museum in Barcelona has the most extensive collections of artworks by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. With more than 4000 artworks by Picasso, this museum is full of inspiration for art-lovers.

Price : The tickets costs 12 euros in general and 7 euros on reduced price.

Also, It has free admission every Thursday afternoons from 6.00 pm to 9.30 pm,
The first Sunday of each month from 9 am to 8.30 pm.

Picasso Museum, Barcelona: Source
Artwork by Pablo Picasso

10. Camp Nou Stadium

Camp Nou Stadium is the home ground of the FC Barcelona team. It is the largest in Europe and the 3rd largest in the world. The combined capacity (both seated and standing) of the stadium is over 121,401.

Price: Not to talk about the day of match, You can take a tour around the stadium from a starting price of 26 euros.

Camp Nou Stadium

11. Palau de la Música Catalana

Palau de la Música Catalana, in English Palace of Catalan Music is a concert hall in Barcelona. It is the only concert hall in Europe that is completely illuminated by the natural light.

The arrangement of decoration and the selection of glass (and other elements) were planned in a way that uses sun to illuminate during the daytime.

The façade of Palau is impressively rich and lush. It is a homage to classical music that is designed using traditional Spanish and Arabic architecture.

Price :You can visit and explore the Palau de la Música Catalana without attending the show. It costs €20 (euros) for a guided tour that goes for 55 minutes.

Interior decorations of Palau de la Música Catalana: Source
Audience seating area for the concert performances
Facade of Palau de la Música Catalana

12. Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar

Santa Maria del Mar which literally means “Saint Mary of the Sea”, is a church built between 1329 and 1383. It is a stunning example of Catalan Gothic architecture.

The exterior is quite unusual and interesting in terms of its design. In contrast with the exterior, the interior gives an impression of light and spaciousness.

As per its name, It is indeed located by the sea, and is 1 kilometre away from its nearest beach,

Price : It costs €10 (euros) per an adult for a guided tour and for the rooftop visit, which is is quite pleasant.

Exterior Facade of Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar
Interior of Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar

13. Gothic Quarter (Carrer del Bisbe)

The Gothic Quarter is an attractive neighborhood in the old city of Barcelona. It is called Gothic as it was a Roman village. It still preserves the remains from the past. Because of the modernization, It is quite easy to spot the ancients building in the surroundings, which is full narrow streets filled with Catalan restaurants, Bars, and Pubs.

Carrer del Bisbe in Gothic Quarter is the most photographed site in Barcelona. So watch out Instagram-ers , when you stumble upon this location. 😉

Carrer del Bisbe : Source
A couple photographed in front of Carrer del Bisbe : Source

14. Arco de Triunfo de Barcelona

The Arc de Triomf or Arco de Triunfo in Barcelona is a triumphal arch. It was built as the main access gate for the world fair held in 1888.

Its reddish brickwork and Catalan architecture finishing stand exquisitely stunning. I advise you to visit this marvelous site at the golden hours for a breath-taking view.

Arco de Triunfo de Barcelona
The Arco de Triunfo de Barcelona over the street

15. Ciutadella Park

The Ciutadella Park (Citadel Park) includes a zoo, which was the home for the only known white gorilla (albino gorilla) named Snowflake that died in 2003. In the mid-19th century, this park was the only green space.

The park has boating lake, ornate museums, lush walking trails and the zoo as a home to 5,500 animals featuring over 400 species.

Price : The admission into the park is free for everyone. You can rent boats for €6 for two people for 30 minutes. And It costs €21.40 (euros) per person to enter into the Zoo.

16. Plaça d’Espanya

Plaça d’Espanya (Plaza de España) is Barcelona’s one of the biggest and the important squares. Barcelona’s Architecture is world-famous. And Plaça d’Espanya is the image of a witness for such architecture. As you explore the plaza, you will see the Venetian Towers, Plaza de Toros de las Arenas (the Bullring), and many more eye-feasting wonders.

Landscape of Plaça d’Espanya
Plaça d’Espanya at Dusk: Source

17. Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

The National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC) is located near Plaça d’Espanya. National Palace hosts the museum in its premises. Palace itself occupies an area of 32,000 square meters.

It is famous for having the largest collection of Romanesque paintings and sculptures in the world, along with Catalan art spanning the early Middle Ages to the early 20th century. If you really want to indulge, you will need a full day or even two to explore some finest art pieces.

Price : The entry fee is €12 (euros) valid for two days during a month from the purchasing date. And free entry for kinds under 16 years.

18. Mount Tibidabo (& Then Amusement Park)

Tibidabo is the tallest in the Serra de Collserola mountain range. It has the best view of the entire Barcelona and its coast. You can reach the top of the mountain by both road and Funicular. Funicular way to Tibidabo was the first of its kind in whole Spain.

Mount Tibidabo is so popular that a few consider the whole trip to Barcelona is pointless if one doesn’t go to the top of this mountain. Mount Tibidabo accommodates an Amusement Park, which is among the oldest in the world. In fact, Tibidabo Amusement Park is the oldest long-running in whole Spain’ and 3rd oldest in Europe.

Price: The Tibidabo Amusement Park charges €28.50 (euros) for a day pass. That includes all the rides, attractions, and shows within the Amusement Park, including those within the Panoramic Area. €10.30 for kids up to 120 cm in height. You can check more details from the official website.

Sagrat Cor Church on Top of Mount Tibidabo.
Tibidabo Amusement Park

19. Güell Palace

The Güell Palace is a mansion and one of many designs by Antoni Gaudi built between 1886 and 1888. It was a milestone of European architecture in its time for what it stands out in its innovative conception of space and light.

Staircase in Güell Palace : Source
Interior Design of Güell Palace : Source

20. Casa Vicens Gaudí

Casa Vicens was the first designed house by Antoni Gaudí, which is now a museum. It is considered to be one of the first buildings of Art Nouveau style.

Gaudí’s architectural style is famous and unique for using different substances such as iron, glass, ceramic tiles, and many other elements in his designs. As a result, that uniqueness can be seen in this building of Casa Vicens.

Price : You can find the plans and prices on the official website, if you wish to take a guided tour.

21. Barcelona Beaches

Oh yeah, make sure to save your trip to take a dip in the Mediterranean Sea, Sunbathe on the beautiful beaches of Barcelona, and take a break from your exhaustion.

Golden sandy beaches of Barcelona are just 4.2 km away from the city center and barely takes 10 minutes to reach. Barceloneta beach is considered to be the most famous among all. Nova Icaria beach is the longest beach with 400 km of sand across the coastal line. Hence, the most peaceful and perfect for a family to chill-out.

City Landscape of Barcelona by the beach
Barceloneta beach

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