Top 10 places of interest in Barcelona that you should not miss
Whether it rains or shines, Barcelona has exciting activities to offer in all weathers. Discover the top sights of the Catalan capital. Our sightseeing tips for your itinerary along Barcelona's attractions.
1. Sagrada Familia
To Gaudi's most famous cathedral, the symbol of the city, the Sagrada Familiathere's no way around it. Even if the work on the building is still not finished, the Sagrada Familia is the most impressive building in Barcelona. The Sagrada Familia has been under construction since 1880. When work is completed on schedule in 2026, the architectural masterpiece will be 170 metres high. This is 15 meters higher than the Cologne Cathedral!
2. Park Guell
The Park Guell is Gaudi's homage to nature. It definitely belongs to Barcelona's most important sightseeings. From the park's landmark, the friendly dragon that guards the entrance to the market hall, to the famous bench made of colourful broken ceramics, to the fairytale park grounds, there are many things worth seeing in Park Güell. The best way to reach the park is by metro line L3. From the station "Lesseps" it is about 10 minutes walk. Travel tip: 95% of the park are accessible free of charge. For the Monumental Zone including the entrance area with the dragon and the famous bank costs entrance fee. I recommend to book a ticket in advance, as the entrance is limited to 400 visitors per half hour.
3. Camp Nou
The famous football stadium Camp Nou is brimming with superlatives. With seating for 99,300 fans, it accounts for almost 10 of Barcelona's tourist% turnover. According to the latest conversion plans, there should soon be as many as 105,000 seats. Camp Nou would then be the only stadium in Europe to crack the magic 100,000. For those who want to see the stadium as it is now, we recommend the Camp Nou Experience, a unique interactive stadium tour. But the real Camp Nou experience must of course include a real football match. Book your tickets for a home game of FC Barcelona well in advance!
4. The Cathedral of Barcelona
The most beautiful building in Barcelona that is not by Gaudi is the Gothic cathedral in the heart of the city. Completed in the 15th century, the cathedral still fascinates people with its morbid charm. Matching the rustic look, locals recommend again and again to visit the cathedral once outside the normal tourist times. The architectural gem is particularly worth seeing at night. A magical moment.
5. Barri Gothic
The Barri Gothic forms the centre of the old town. In the gothic quarter there is a lot to see. Especially on weekends, the cute boutiques along the streets of the district are bustling with activity. Take the time for a leisurely stroll through the winding alleys far away from noisy cars.
A day trip to the Catalan nature is a great undertaking if there is enough time. The itinerary takes you about 45km northwest of Barcelona. The mountain lies in the middle of a picturesque nature park. The convent Montserrat gives you one of the most beautiful views of the Catalan countryside as far as Barcelona. By car it goes along beautiful serpentines. By train you are about one hour away.
7. Museu d'Història de Barcelona (MUHBA)
At Museu d'Històrica de la Ciutat follow the traces of Barcelona's city history. More than 200 years of history come to life again before the eyes of the visitors. The main part of the museum is located right at the Plaça del Rei and the entrance is at Casa Padellàs. The entrance fee is 7,00€. When it rains in Barcelona, this is definitely an activity where you stay dry.
8. Plaça del Rei
The Plaça del Rei is one of the most beautiful places in Barcelona. In the gothic quarter, the square is enthroned among historic buildings. Entering the square through one of the two entrances is like taking a trip back in time to the Barcelona of the Middle Ages. The palace is especially worth seeing at dusk, when artists and street musicians settle here.
"The Quarry", will the Casa Milá in which one or the other guide mocks. The building is the last residence of the architect Antoni Gaudí, completed before he dedicated himself exclusively to the Sagrada Familia. One looks in vain for corners in this house, especially impressive are the woolly balconies in front of the lime-sandstone façade. In the attic of Casa Milá there is a museum. The building is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will find it directly at the Passeig de Gràcia.
10. Casa Batlló
The Casa Batlló, also on the Passeig de Gràcia, is the most beautiful example of Gaudí's idiosyncratic Art Nouveau. Visit the five-storey apartment building, which is one of the top attractions in Barcelona. Visit the originally restored rooms and enjoy the view of the city from the terrace.
Travel tips for Barcelona
The best tapas, fish & cocktails
Diversity is perhaps Barcelona's greatest strength. The city is deeply rooted in Catalan culture - and yet incredibly international. It is a metropolis and coastal town, sometimes loud and shrill, sometimes quiet. And that's exactly how culinary Barcelona is. What must one have eaten in Barcelona? Popular tapas classics are Patatas Bravas, Pimientos de Padrón, Tortilla españonla, Jamón ibéricqo and of course Aceitunas (Spanish olives). The best tapas in a unique atmosphere can be found in the Cervecería Catalana in the Eixample quarter. Maritime it becomes then at Can Mano, a fish tavern in direct proximity to the beach. The tastiest burger in town is available at the Bacoa Kiosko - and the nightcap should be drunk at Espit Chupitos. The bar has more than 500 schnapps and cocktails on offer - with crazy names like Monica Lewinsky.
The most beautiful beaches in Barcelona
The Barceloneta, the city beach of Barcelona, does not have the best reputation. Often the artificially created beach is teeming with tourists, vendors and pickpockets. Those who like it more natural and quiet should go to Playa de Bogatell in Barcelona. The beach impresses with finer sand, cleaner water and simply more peace to relax. Worth a day trip are the more distant beaches of the Costa Brava in Castelldefels or Sitges, a beautiful fishing village. The beaches are located about 30 minutes by car south of the capital of the Catalans.
Shopping in Barcelona
There is hardly a street in Barcelona where you cannot go shopping. Barcelona's flagship boulevard, Passeig de Grácia, which starts at Placa de Catalunya, offers the greatest choice. All well-known brands have settled here. The Maremagnum shopping centre right next to the port of Barcelona is a little quieter. If you want to take something unusual home with you, the Concept Store To Be Concept is recommended. Here you can find the best designer articles of the city. Chairs, lamps, sunglasses or wallets, everything made in barcelona!
A rather sad celebrity is Barcelona in terms of pickpocketing. About 800 pickpockets compete here every summer for the money and valuables of tourists. A few tips:
Take only the bare essentials! Credit card, driver's license and 100-euro bills should stay at home. If you need more, a money belt will help.
The favorite places of thieves are full shopping streets, the metro, restaurant terraces and the city beach. Never leave your mobile phone and wallet unattended here.
Thieves travel in groups. Do they stop conspicuously often to fool around with strangers or do they wear unusually sturdy shoes? Look out!
In case of theft, it helps to search the garbage cans nearby. Thieves get rid of everything that is of no value to them on the spot.
Change of perspective: the best view
A view over the city and its sights and monuments and a little fresh air around the tip of your nose is just the right thing after a shopping tour in the centre of Barcelona. Take the cable car up Montjuïc and enjoy the fantastic view of Barcelona's attractions and colourful squares. An insider tip off the beaten tourist track is also the Bunker del Carmel. An abandoned air defence installation from the Spanish Civil War, which provides a complete 360-degree panorama of Barcelona.
Sightseeing without queuing
No matter whether it is the Picasso Museum, the Sagrada Familia or the Fundació Joan Miro, the Montserrat Monastery or Casa Barrtó and Casa Milà. Barcelona is a popular destination for city breaks. In front of the sights, monuments and museums, you can therefore quickly get your legs in your stomach. Those who are only 3 or 4 days in Barcelona should better save the queuing. We recommend buying tickets with preferred entry online.