Who has never wanted to discover Barcelona? Indeed, the Catalan capital has always been one of the most favorite places for tourists in need of good vibes.
Whether it’s for its beaches and beautiful sceneries, its culinary scene or its undeniable artistic atmosphere, Barcelona has something to offer to everyone.
In the rest of this special guide to Barcelona, we’ll take a closer look at what makes this city one of the most unique in the region.
> Why you should visit Barcelona
> When should you go to Barcelona?
> Find your cheap plane ticket to Barcelona!
> Where to sleep in Barcelona?
> How to get around Barcelona?
> What are the main activities?
> Where to eat in Barcelona?
> Where to go out in Barcelona?
> Budget your trip to Barcelona?
> Practical information for your trip to Barcelona
> What else should you see in Catalonia?
Why you should visit Barcelona
Barcelona is a condensed version of everything you could wish for, just a few hours away from Paris, Prague or Amsterdam. Indeed, the Catalan city, one of the most important cities in Spain, is known worldwide for its beauty, its architecture… But not only.
Barcelona and more generally Catalonia have their own history, their own cultural richness… To the point of having their own dialect, Catalan. To discover the region is to go to Spain, but above all, to plunge into the heart of a unique heritage in the world.
Of course, food lovers or beaches and afternoons by the sea addicts will not be disappointed. However, to reduce the city to this simple description would be a very bad tribute. In the rest of this city guide, you’ll hopefully get to know the city a bit better.
When should you go to Barcelona ?
There is no doubt that the best months to visit Barcelona are May and June. The temperatures are very pleasant and the sun starts to set a bit later.
Of course, the summer period (July-August) is recommended, but the city is invaded by hordes of tourists. Not the best time to come if you want to enjoy your stay with your friends and family without being disturbed.
However, for a simple weekend or 2-3 days in the countryside, Barcelona will welcome you all year round. Indeed, the average temperature is 21 degrees. Of course, you will have less opportunities in the middle of winter, but the best restaurants of the city as well as its best bars remain open, whatever happens!
How to find the cheapest plane ticket ?
Nothing can be easier than fiding a plane ticket to Barcelona, whether you fly from the US, India or from Europe (Amsterdam, Prague or even Tallinn). Indeed, many tools allow you to compare fares in order to get the best possible price.
Of course, we recommend that you do this in advance. If you are flying from New York or London, buying your ticket a month or a month and a half in advance allows you to pay much less. For example, you can find a round trip ticket for about 200 – 250 dollars.
For the most motivated people, we have two other solutions, the train and the bus (only if you leave from Europe, of course). However, the trips are very long (several dozen hours) and very uncomfortable.
Find a place to stay in Barcelona
As a city of several million inhabitants, Barcelona has a fairly large supply of accommodation in the many districts of the city. Whether it’s hotel rooms, AirBnb or youth hostels, the Catalan capital is certainly not outdone…
The best hotels in the city
Every year, nearly 7 million tourists take their tickets to Barcelona. So it’s only natural that the city offers a range of hotels and resorts that can meet everyone’s needs.
In Barcelona you will find hotels ranging from 1 to 5*, with a wide range of services, which differ according to the standard of the establishment. Naturally, the price per night also changes depending on the rating of the hotel, its location, etc…
Among the many establishments in the city, you can try your luck at Nobu or W Barcelona. Of course, these are far from being the only ones. Don’t hesitate to read our article on the best hotels in Barcelona, in order to make your own opinion on the matter.
Are you on a budget trip? Do you prefer to save money on accommodation and want to meet other travelers? Then hostels are for you. Don’t worry, there are plenty of hostels in Barcelona and all of them (or almost all) are well maintained.
Clean establishments, with mixed or separate rooms and dormitories, sometimes with breakfast included, for a cheaper stay. Among the most popular hostels in Barcelona are YEAH Barcelona, Casa Garcia and Rodamón Hostel.
Get an AirBnb Accomodation
Finally, if you are a couple or a group and you want a place of your own, the last option is to rent an AppartHotel or an AirBnb. Beware, for the second option, the offers are quickly taken by storm by travelers who, like you, want to have a real comfort.
We therefore recommend that you keep up to date with the latest rentals, study the situation of each one, the prices and the locations… To be sure not to make a mistake.
It would be a shame to rent a beautiful apartment that, in the end, is located in an area that is relatively far from the center and from the must-see activities of Barcelona, those that interest you the most!
How to get around Barcelona ?
Getting around Barcelona could not be easier. You don’t necessarily have to stay in the center. The city has its own metro system, which runs from 5am to midnight from Sunday to Thursday, from 5am to 2am on Friday, and 24 hours a day on Saturdays and the eves of public holidays. 12 lines, for a total of 183 stations. There are also 6 streetcar lines and a bus network!
On the spot, you can take a 24h ticket that will cost you from 10.5eu (only valid for zone 1 of Barcelona) to 28.15eu (for zone 6). More interesting than the tickets is the Hola BCN! card. It allows you to use all the city’s transport services for a period of 2, 3, 4 or 5 days. It costs 16.4 eu for 48 hours (23.8 for 3 days, 31eu for 4 days and 38.2eu for 5 days).
What are the must-sees and must-does ?
Visiting Barcelona means taking the time to visit some of the city’s most emblematic buildings and places. In the rest of this guide to Barcelona, we’ll take a look at 5 of the must-do activities in the Catalan capital.
This is perhaps what characterizes Barcelona the best. Indeed, the Sagrada Familia is the starting point of your adventure in Spain. One of Antoni Gaudí‘s most complex works, it is still not finished.
In fact, this one isn’t completed until about ¾…140 years after Gaudí started his work. It is one of the top attractions for tourists.
One of the largest churches in the world, combining many architectural styles, from Catalan modernism to art nouveau and Gothic.
Once inside, be sure to look up and admire the ceiling of the nave. One of the most beautiful places in the city, right in the center!
Casa Battlo and Casa Mila
Another one of Antoni Gaudí’s postcard-worthy creations is Casa Battlo. You don’t need to have visited Barcelona to recognize the roof of the building, whose tiles are the scales of a large dragon. Like all of his works, the interior and exterior of Casa Batlló have that sinuous quality, with few straight lines, and a dazzling attention to detail.
What about Casa Mila? Also known as La Pedrera, because the building’s facade looks a bit like the front of a quarry, Casa Milà was completed in 1912 and is another of Gaudí’s iconic buildings. It is one of the many Catalan modernist works classified by UNESCO and the fourth and last building by Gaudí on Passeig de Gràcia.
This is the home of FC Barcelona. This is where thousands of people come to support the Blaugrana club almost every weekend. Whether you are a soccer fan or not, a visit to the club’s stadium is almost compulsory.
It is the very heart of the Catalan capital. A place that has seen some of the greatest achievements… As well as some of the most beautiful disappointments. The best thing to do is to go and see a match. You won’t be disappointed!
The beaches of Barcelona
Barcelona is also known for its beautiful beaches. If Sant Sebastià is probably the most touristy, you should not have too much trouble finding a place to rest and enjoy the Mediterranean Sea.
For those of you who prefer to walk along the seafront, the walk from Barceloneta (from the center) to Diagonal Mar should take you a good hour. A very pleasant time, especially in May-June, when the beautiful days really start to show.
Many people go to this part of Gràcia to enjoy the beautiful views of Barcelona from the main terrace of the park. One of the most popular places for tourists… and rightly so.
You will have seen these serpentine benches and their mosaics on many images, especially on social networks. But the park is much more than that. There are beautiful fountains, sculptures, colonnades, etc. … A park signed Gaudí and has become one of the main attractions of the city in the center of the city.
What are the best restaurants in Barcelona ?
Barcelona is not only art and sea, it is also a great culture, a great culinary wealth. It is difficult to list all the typical recipes, but be sure to try Pan con tomate (bread and tomato), Suquet de peix (fish stew) or Fricando (fricandeau) and Escudella i carn d’olla (stew and meatball). You can also enjoy delicious tapas in town.
Among the best restaurants in Barcelona, we invite you to try Besta, Alkimia, Dos Palillos or Solomillo. However, this list is by no means exhaustive and you will find many other establishments, restaurants, tapas bars and cafes in the many alleys of Barcelona. In short, you will have plenty to enjoy.
Where can you go out in Barcelona ?
Whether it’s for a drink or a dance, Barcelona has a lot to offer. Pub Fiction, Bobby’s Free or Bitter Cocktail Bar… Don’t hesitate to discover our article on the best bars in Barcelona in order to get a clear idea of what’s going on.
You want to dance? Here again, we’ve got you covered. Our article on the best nightclubs in Barcelona will give you the opportunity to select the club that makes you want to dance.
Budget your trip to Barcelona
Accommodation will probably be your biggest expense during your stay in Barcelona. Although there are many budget hotels and hostels, prices can be quite high, especially in high season. A good rule of thumb is to budget around 50-60 euros per night for accommodation. If you want something a little more luxurious, you can expect to pay 80-100 euros or more. Keep in mind that prices are highest during the summer months and during major holidays, such as Christmas and New Year.
Eating out is also relatively expensive in Barcelona. A basic meal including a starter, main course and a drink will cost around 15-20 euros. If you want something more upscale, you can expect to spend 30 euros or more per person. It’s worth noting that many restaurants offer lunch discounts, so if you’re trying to save money, consider eating during the day rather than at night.
Finally, in addition to public transportation, if you’re looking to do some sightseeing in Barcelona, there are plenty of opportunities to do so for less or even free. Many museums offer free admission on certain days of the week, and there are also many free guided tours. With a little planning, it’s easy to enjoy all that Barcelona has to offer without breaking the bank!
Practical information for your trip to Barcelona
But what to do in case of an emergency? Don’t panic. We’ve thought of everything. Find out everything you need to know about the main numbers and the French representations in Barcelona, in case something happens to you.
Is Barcelona a dangerous city?
Barcelona is not known to be more dangerous than any other city. Of course, you are encouraged to pay special attention to your belongings on public transport and at night.
By being careful, you should avoid any problems. Finally, it is best to buy your tickets on secure websites or directly at the ticket office.
What languages are spoken in Barcelona?
In Barcelona, the two main languages are Spanish and Catalan. As the city is very touristy and international, English is well understood. If you are fluent in English, you will have no trouble communicating and enjoying your stay.
What should you do in case of an emergency?
In case of a problem, here are the numbers to call in Barcelona:
- 061: for an emergency (SAMU)
- 112: for an absolute and vital emergency
- 088: for a road accident
- 091: to call the National Gendarmerie
- 092 : to call the municipal police
- 080 : to call the fire department
Consulates and national representations :
- For american residents or visitors, the consulate is located at Passeig de la Reina Elisenda de Montcada, 23, 08034 Barcelona.
- For canadian residents or visitors, the consulate is located at Pl. de Catalunya, 9, 1º, 2ª, 08002 Barcelona.
- For british residents or visitors, the consulate is located at Avinguda Diagonal, 477, 13ª, 08036 Barcelona.
- For indian residents or visitors, the consulate is located at Carrer del Dr. Fleming, 21, 1, 08017 Barcelona.
What else can you visit during your time in Catalonia ?
The region of Catalonia is simply sumptuous. In addition to Barcelona, you can visit Girona, discover the city of Sitges, the Montseny natural park or take a walk through the pretty fishing villages of the Empordà.
Cadaqués, one of the jewels of the Costa Brava, is also open to you. In other words, this will be the perfect opportunity for you to discover one of the most famous parts of Spain, in name, but not necessarily the most visited.
Questions you might ask yourself
What language is spoken in Barcelona ?
In Barcelona, Spanish and Catalan are the two main languages spoken. However, English is spoken very well. Some people even speak French, although this is quite rare.
What’s the difference between Spain and Catalonia ?
Spain is a sovereign state while Catalonia is its autonomous community. The capital of the community of Catalonia is Barcelona.
What currency is used in Barcelona
The euro is used in Spain, in Catalonia and therefore in Barcelona. Thus, no exchange rate is required and no additional costs are incurred.