Barcelona, the vibrant capital of Catalonia is famous for its awe-inspiring architecture. With a population of 1.6 million, it is Spain’s second most populous municipality, after Madrid. Barcelona is an incredibly varied, dynamic city with numerous personalities and cosmopolitan vibe.
Antoni Gaudí left his mark on the city, with his surreal architecture. The No. 1 attraction, the icon of Barcelona and the most unusual cathedral in the world is Gaudi’s masterpiece: Sagrada Familia (Church of the Sacred Family). Describing Sagrada Família, art critic Rainer Zerbst said, “It is probably impossible to find a church building anything like it in the entire history of art”. Beat the long queue by booking the tickets online.
Another major work of Gaudi is the Park Güell. Inspired by organic forms and mythology, the architect unleashed all his genius to create a park that looks like a place from a strange and enchanting dream.
Don’t skip the Picasso Museum, Barcelona’s most famous museum. You will see a unique collection of 4000 works with early sketches and canvases, which shows Picasso’s development from student to the world´s best loved artist.
The Old Town is the beating heart of Barcelona. Delve into the maze of narrow streets of the Gothic Quarter, where the original centre of Roman and Medieval Barcelona used to be. Taking a walk in the city centre, you will have the opportunity to enjoy many colorful modernist buildings, such as Casa Batllo and Passeig de Gracia. Popular with tourists and locals alike is the Las Ramblas, a tree-lines pedestrian mall in the center of Barcelona, where the street performers live up the atmosphere until sunset.
There is also plenty of trendy shops, cafes and restaurants worth visiting. You’ll find an amazing gastronomic culture ranging from reasonably priced daily set menus to internationally renowned Michelin-starred restaurants, or a glass of vermouth and a snack on a terrace with views of the Mediterranean. Catalan cuisine is a mouthwatering blend of heritage, produce, tradition and creativity. You should definitely try such popular dishes as escudella i carn d’olla, a type of pot au feu, and a chargrilled vegetable salad known as escalivada, to name just two from the rich Catalan tradition.
A perfect place to relax after a long walk is Parc del Laberint d’Horta, a secluded place with a labyrinth and a small waterfall.
For football fans, Camp Nou is a must-see. Home to the Football Club Barcelona since 1957, the 99,354-seat stadium is the largest in Europe and one of the most prestigious in the world.
Like the city itself, Barcelona’s nightlife is pulsating, varied and sophisticated, ranging from sassy late dinners and cheerful Latin nights out to flamboyant mega parties, making for everyone’s after-dark paradise. The streets of El Gotic, Born, and Raval are bursting with a mix of nightspots to suit all budgets and music tastes out there.
The most beautiful way to end your Barcelona trip is a visit to the Magic Fountain at Plaza España. It is free to visit and it offers a spectacular display of colour, light, motion, music and water acrobatics resulting in complete magic!