This Barcelona, Spain Travel Guide features the ultimate list of the best things to do and see in Barcelona. Within this mini-guide, you will find recommendations for the best restaurants, bars, cafes, shops, and activities in Barcelona.
Barcelona Free Walking Tour
Explore Barcelona with free walking tours offered by Free Walking Tours Barcelona. We experienced the free tour, and it was amazing! Our guide, a Barcelona native, possessed in-depth knowledge of the city’s history and unique insights. Taking a tour on the day of your arrival is always a great way to familiarize yourself with the city.
Basilica of Santa Maria del Mar
This beautiful Gothic basilica is one of the symbols of the Gothic Quarter. Its stained glass is exquisite, and you can also climb the tower on foot.
Prices seem to vary online; however, we paid 5 EUR to enter the church and 10 EUR to go up to the top. Admission is free after 6 pm.
A landmark of the city of Barcelona and Catalan modernism, it opened in 1897. This restaurant is a must-visit. Picasso used to frequent this place. We dined here for lunch, and it was an cozy experience. The service was wonderful, and the chef is an artist when it comes to taste and presentation.
Granja La Pallaresa
During our walking tour, we stopped to learn about this iconic chocolate shop established in 1947, located in the Gothic Quarter. This place gets very busy.
Fun Fact: Barcelona chocolate is made with water and chocolate, not with milk and chocolate.
El Pont del Bisbe
Legend has it that the skull in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter is not merely a sculpture but believed to be an actual human skull.
According to local tales, there’s a belief that removing the dagger from the skull could lead to the collapse of Barcelona’s buildings.
However, the most intriguing legend suggests that by walking backward under the bridge, facing the skull, and making a wish, you might just see it come true.
This place is truly one-of-a-kind. Gaudí drew inspiration from the sea and its creatures in its design. The tour is definitely worth it and should take approximately 1.5 to 2 hours. The view from the top is pretty amazing as well, and don’t miss the captivating light show at the end.
Recommended to buy tickets in advance.
This restaurant is truly lovely, offering both indoor and outdoor seating. It’s a perfect spot for a romantic date night, and I couldn’t help but notice numerous couples enjoying their time around us. I ordered the Seafood Paella, and it was nothing short of perfection! The Flan is an absolute must for dessert.
Catalan Flan has a taste reminiscent of Crème Brûlée
Our experience made this restaurant a favorite among our group, and we highly recommend it.
Basílica de la Sagrada Familia
The Basílica de la Sagrada Família is a church devoted to the Holy Family. It stands as one of Antoni Gaudí’s most famous works and is perhaps best known for remaining under construction since 1882. It is absolutely impressive.
Recommended to buy tickets in advance.
Go to the Top of Sagrada La Familia
Getting the ticket to visit the basilica and the Nativity Tower was absolutely worth it. The view of Barcelona from the top of the tower is truly breathtaking.
Please note that it’s not recommended for people with a fear of heights. While you can take an elevator to the top of the basilica, you’ll need to take the stairs down.
Plaça de Sant Jaume
This is the central square of the Gothic District, surrounded by charming cafes, sandwich shops, and restaurants. It’s also a popular gathering place for protests and is often referred to as the ‘Political Square.’
Visit The MocCo MUseum
This is an amazing museum with fascinating art pieces and a cool layout! I thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent here. The Moco gift shop is fantastic, offering lots of lovely items. Walking through the museum provides incredible insight into revolutionary art and diverse urban artists. It’s definitely worth a visit!
Infinity Diamond Room Selfie
While you are at the Mocco Museum, don’t forget to take a cool mirror selfie in the Infinity Diamond Room.
The Picasso Museum showcases an extensive collection of works by the legendary artist Pablo Picasso, providing a fascinating journey through his creative evolution. It’s a glimpse into the mind of a true genius.
Alkimia Jordi Vila
Alkimia, a Michelin-starred Barcelona restaurant, offers a whimsical atmosphere and pleasant service. The tasting menu featured some innovative dishes. Overall, it was a nice experience; the entrance into the restaurant felt like going into speakeasy.
This is a great place to go if you’re looking for tapas or just a drink. There is a champagne bar within what used to be a converted car park. It has character and a lively atmosphere.
Try to visit in December, as it looks extra pretty with all the lights and Christmas decorations!
Mercat de la Boqueria
Step into history at the city’s largest market, dating back to the 13th century. Explore over 300 vibrant stalls offering the freshest produce, from meats and vegetables to cold cuts, sweets, and seafood.
The most famous market in Barcelona!
Must-try items at La Boqueria.
Fresh Fruit Juice
Fresh Fruit Cup
Bar Clemen’s Boqueria
This bar is located in La Boqueria market on La Rambla in Barcelona. I want to go back just to have the scallops—made with fresh and local ingredients! It’s a true taste of Barcelona, and it’s very reasonably priced too.
The scallops are a must-try.
Arc de Triomf
The Arc de Triomf is impressive, but the real gem is the park attached to it. If you visit on a sunny day, you will find many of Barcelona’s citizens enjoying picnics. You can also discover musicians and performers entertaining the crowd. Highly recommended for a nice walk after lunch!
Cava : Catalan Champange
Cava, a sparkling wine, is extremely popular in Barcelona, where you can find it almost everywhere, from restaurants and bars to supermarkets and local markets. The region has a deep-rooted tradition of producing this sparkling wine, making it an integral part of Catalan culture
TRAVEL TIP: If you are a Best Western Rewards Member, they greet you with complimentary Cava. We stayed at the Alpha Best Western Barcelona the night before our flight and took the free shuttle to the airport the next day.
Explore the authentic 17th-century ruins of Barcelona at this archaeological site. Informative storyboards in Spanish, English, and Catalan provide historical context as you discover the hidden remnants beneath the market. It’s a great chance to immerse yourself in the area’s rich history.
The colorful mosaics and unique designs in Park Güell are the work of the famous Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi. The park, which was originally intended for the wealthy and officially opened in 1926, has become one of the city’s top attractions. It’s a prime example of Catalan modernism
We stumbled upon this while exploring the city. Casa Calvet was built by Antoni Gaudí for the textile manufacturer Pere Màrtir Calvet. In 1900, the Barcelona City Council awarded it the prize for the best building of the year.
Christmas Holiday In Barcelona Spain
The Christmas Market
The Christmas Market in Barcelona, also known as “Fira de Santa Llúcia“. This is probably Barcelona’s most well-known and classic Christmas market. It is specific to Christmas time, with a large percentage of the stalls selling Christmas trees, decorations and mistletoe.
The “Caganers” are a unique and somewhat humorous Catalan Christmas tradition in Barcelona and Catalonia, Spain. These figurines depict a person, often dressed in traditional Catalan attire, in the act of pooping, usually with their pants down and their posterior exposed.
These figurines are placed in nativity scenes, alongside the more traditional biblical characters like Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds.
More Places To Try In Barcelona Spain
- La Plata
- Cerveseria Catalana
- Bodega Biarritz
- 360 Terrace
- Quimet & Quimet
- El Xampanyet
- Forn Mistral
- La Colmena
- Yellow Bakery
- La Pastusseria
Vegetarian & Vegans
- Te Quiero Verde
- A Tu Bola
- Flax & Kale
- Bubita Sangria Bar
- Veggie Garden
- Serves great cocktails
- Has live music
- Has karaoke
- 3 levels
- Jazz, Funk, R&B,Soul, Dancehall.
- Has live music
- Nice outdoor seating
- Eleven BCN
- Sercotel Rossello
- The Roof
- Terrace Bar
- Terraza Verbena
If you have any recommendations that you think should be added to the list, please contact us here. Thank you, travelers unite!