Barcelona is the cosmopolitan Catalan capital that makes an enchanting first impression, thanks in part to outlandish landmarks by legendary Modernist architect Antoni Gaudi. The flamboyant, fairy tale-like Sagrada Familia church is the city's most astonishing sight, but the multi-hued mosaics and surreal structures of Park Guell give it a run for its money.

Sizzling summers provide ideal conditions for lazy days on buzzing Barceloneta beach, and al fresco feasts of tasty tapas dishes like succulent grilled razor clams and rich Iberico ham. And Barcelona continues to heat up after the sun goes down, with bohemian bars and pulsing nightclubs to explore. Thanks to its combination of rich historical landmarks and sandy coastline, Barcelona offers plenty to see and do in every season.

What to see & do in Barcelona

Featured stories & fun stuff

Barcelona has an amazing range of things to do and see, from medieval lanes winding through the Gothic Quarter, to a rich Catalan culture and top-of-the-league football. Once a thriving maritime city, you can still explore the old city, including its 13th-century cathedral, museums housing Roman-era ruins, and neighbourhoods made up of 19th-century modernistic architecture. The city’s revamped waterfront is linked by palm-lined promenades running northeast from Port Vell to the...

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Where & what to eat in Barcelona

Where to shop & what to buy in Barcelona

Where to go & what to do at night in Barcelona

Nightlife in Barcelona offers everything from classic dance clubs with DJs spinning indie electronica hits to night-time tours, laid-back bars and even parties on boats. In this city, you can find just about every after-dinner late-night activity you can imagine. In Old Town, you can explore Las Ramblas and discover upscale restaurants, tapas bars, speakeasy-style cocktail bars and even Irish pubs. Hit up the Gothic Quarter for hip, stylish venues with...

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Useful information

A city full of World Heritage Sites, traditional tapas bars, and delectable Spanish cuisine, Barcelona attracts just about any type of traveller. Located on the Mediterranean coastline, the pristine beaches are packed with beachgoers come summertime, while the old city’s medieval lanes and art galleries are best explored during autumn.  As the capital of Catalonia, locals are fiercely proud of their unique identity, which can be seen in the local language,...

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Where to stay in Barcelona

More information about Barcelona

A Barcelona city break can mean relaxing on sandy beaches, strolling through medieval streets and bar-hopping from dusk ‘til dawn. Book a Barcelona hotel to see the best of the city by day and by night.

Get your bearings

Barcelona flows inland from the promenades and marinas of Port Vell and Port Olímpic on the coast. The lively tree-lined avenue of Las Ramblas runs for 1 km southeast through the old city centre, the Ciutat Vella. The Gothic Quarter, known as the Barri Gòtic, and the nightlife hubs of La Ribera and El Born meander east of Las Ramblas. The suburb of Eixample, with its sought-after Art Nouveau Modernista architecture, leads north to the spiky towers of Antoni Gaudí’s La Sagrada Família church. Overlooking Barcelona to the south, Montjuïc mountain is topped by a crop of museums and sporting facilities from the Summer Olympics, held here in 1992.

Centuries of history and culture

Barcelona has almost two millennia of history and culture to explore. Follow medieval lanes winding through the Gothic Quarter to the old city’s focal point, the 13th-century cathedral, and see Roman-era ruins at the City History Museum. Barcelona once thrived as a maritime power and the revamped waterfront is now linked by palm-lined promenades running northeast from Port Vell to the seaside restaurants of Barceloneta. Discover Barcelona’s role as a powerhouse of Catalan culture on a stroll through Eixample to admire 19th-century Modernista architecture, and see early masters at the Picasso Museum in La Ribera.

Tapas bars and more

Barcelona specialises in atmospheric wine bars in the medieval backstreets of the old city and alfresco paella restaurants by the beach in Barceloneta. Get the taste for tapas in the Gothic Quarter, and savour traditional Catalan dishes or the more experimental pairings of new Spanish cuisine in La Ribera. For multicultural fare from the subcontinent and Africa, head to El Raval on the western side of Las Ramblas. While you’re here pick up fresh produce in the bustling, colourful Boqueria Market.

Family fun

Families make a bee-line for the sandy beaches on Barcelona city breaks, stretching northeast from Barceloneta to Port Olímpic and beyond. Away from the coast, Eixample has an urban play beach in summer, complete with sand and lifeguards. See sharks swim overhead at the Aquarium at Port Vell, and get a taste of history at the city’s Chocolate Museum. Hire rollerblades to glide along the seaside promenade and landscaped walkways of Ciutadella Park, or book tickets to see FC Barcelona play at Camp Nou Stadium, west of the city.

Made for relaxing

Sit back and soak up Barcelona’s holiday atmosphere, whether from your towel at the beach or from a café table in a Gothic Quarter courtyard. For panoramic views of Barcelona, visit Gaudí’s eccentric Park Güell gardens in Gràcia, north of Eixample, or ride the cable car from the port to Montjuïc. Take a break from the action on a sightseeing cruise of the harbour, or wind down in an Arab-style hammam or with a luxurious massage at a Barcelona hotel.

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