Why Travel to Barcelona?
Barcelona, with its surreal architecture, world-class museums, amazing gastronomy, and sunny beaches, is without a doubt one of the most impressive cities in Europe, if not the world. Situated right on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona offers a bit of everything. Thanks to its location, Barcelona has great year-round weather and provides easy access to the rest of Catalonia, Spain and Europe.
The City of Gaudi
No visit to Barcelona is complete without a visit to the Sagrada Familia, the towering cathedral of the famous architect Antoni Gaudi located in the Ensanche area of the city. Begun in 1882 and with its 2026 completion date rapidly approaching, the basilica is inarguably one of the largest and most impressive works of art in Spain if not all of Europe. From its main hall, with pillars built to evoke the feeling of being in a forest, to the spires from which you can see Barcelona from above, this otherworldly building does not disappoint.
Elsewhere in the city, at Parc Güell, you can see more iconic buildings and structures designed by this singular architect and get even more great views of the city. Other architectural gems like Casa Battlo and Casa Mila are scattered throughout the city giving it its ethereal quality.
Best Places to Visit & Things to Do in Barcelona
As impressive as the works of Gaudí are, Barcelona offers so much more. Some of our recommendations are as follows:
- The Old Town (Ciutat Vella): The old town, with its winding pedestrian streets, is one of the best places to get lost wandering the city. The Barri Gotic, the medieval heart of the city, is filled with shops and restaurants. The harbour/Old Port area is nearby, and Las Ramblas, the wide boulevard with its stands, shops, and trees, provides an easy walk to Plaça de Catalunya and El Raval, another scenic neighbourhood.
- Museums: Nestled throughout the city are several world-class museums. The Museu d´Art de Catalunya is spectacular, and fans of Picasso, Joan Miro and Antoni Tapies will find museums dedicated to them as well.
- The Bunker: One of Barcelona´s secrets, the Bunker offers impressive views of the city, as well as a small museum explaining its role in defending the city with anti-aircraft guns during the Spanish Civil War.
- Montjuïc: A prominent hill near the port, Montjuïc provides not only breathtaking views but also beautiful parks, gardens, museums and the Olympic Stadium. A cable car ride connects it to Barceloneta.
- Barceloneta: The coastal neighbourhood near the old town, Barceloneta has the San Sebastian Beach and the Barceloneta Beach for those wishing to take a dip in the Mediterranean, as well as the Catalonian History Museum. Next to Barceloneta, the Parc de la Ciutadella is a large park, which also houses the Catalonian parliament.
- Gracia: Close to the famous Parc Güell, this hip neighbourhood is filled with plazas and bars, one of the most well-known being Plaça de la Virreina. The street Carrer Verdi is lined with shops and worth a visit, and Casa Vincens, a distinctive Gaudí building, has a museum on the second floor.
- Camp Nou: The stadium of the Barcelona Football Club is one of the most visited attractions of the city, outdone only by the Sagrada Familia and Parc Güell. Whether you go to see a game or visit its museum, the stadium is a must for football fans.
- Gastronomy: Whether you prefer tapas or large meals, traditional Catalan food or innovative Michelin-starred restaurants, Barcelona has something for you. La Boqueria (officially known as the Mercat de San Josep), conveniently located next to La Rambla, is the largest food market in the city with hundreds of stalls of high-quality produce and snacks. The Mercat de Llibertat in the Gracia neighbourhood boasts an equally impressive quality. The best way to taste your way around a market would be with a local food guide. For those looking for something more international, the famous Barrio Chino gives variety. And of course, no visit to Barcelona would be complete without trying the famous local wines. Beer lovers need not fear either, as local craft breweries such as Garage Beer Co., Barna Brew, and Brew Pub Le Sec make and serve their own beers in the heart of the city. Both Estrella Damm and Moritz also have their own breweries and offer regular tours.
- Wine Country: The wine regions that are reachable on a wine tour day trip from Barcelona would be the DO Penedes and the DOQ Priorat appellations of origin. Both Penedès and the Priorat are best known for their award-winning wines, especially the world-renowned Cava, sparkling wines. Pairing these wines with the locally sourced “Slow Food” is a match made in heaven!
Our food experts have chosen the best tour operators offering tours with food, wine, and walking holidays in Barcelona. You can check our full list of things to do in Barcelona: top food tours to Barcelona and top boutique hotels in the sections of the travel to Barcelona destination guide.
Population: 1.660 million inhabitants (2023)