TRAVEL GUIDE: 8 BEST
THINGS TO DO IN BARCELONA
Barcelona, an enchanting seaside resort located in the Iberian Peninsula of Spain. This vibrant city is best known for its spectacular architecture, popular beaches and wild parties, but there's plenty more to explore in this famous Spanish town. Whether you want to explore its rich history, culture and art scene or hop between the city's sandy beaches, chic boutiques and seafront bars, Barcelona holidays are sure to tick all of your boxes.
We've got the low-down on where to stay and what to do in Barcelona with our detailed travel guide, but if you want a quick glimpse of the best bits of the city, this is great place to start...
BEST TIME TO VISIT
The most popular time to visit this seaside resort is during the shoulder months of April - June and September - October, when the weather is pleasant with dry sunny days and cool nights. The hottest time to visit Barcelona is between May - July and you may experience humid weather during the peak month of August. If you are travelling in August though, the streets of Gracia are decorated to celebrate Festa Major de Gracia.
BEST WAY TO NAVIGATE THE CITY
Barcelona is huge and navigating this buzzing city can be quite a challenge, particularly if you're keen to fit everything in during a weekend city break! One of the best ways to travel is to buy a T10 ticket, which allows you 10 journeys on public transport including the Metro, trams and the local trains. Who said exploring the city has to be boring? Cruise through the cobbled streets in a little yellow GoCar, fitted with GPS systems that take you on a personal tour around the city and tell you stories about the sights along the way - now that's what we call travelling in style!
BEST HISTORICAL SITES TO VISIT
A city steeped in history holds immense promise for those who want to learn more about the Romans and Visigoths. There are of course the architectural marvels of Antoni Gaudi – Sagrada Familia and Park Guell, both of which offer panoramic views of the city. If you're a theatre enthusiast, browse the private collection of Taller d’ Oleguer Junyent, one of the best-known theatre designers of yesteryears. Other attractions include the European Museum of Modern Art, which houses an enviable collection contemporary art and sculpture, or the underground sewers of Barcelona, for an intriguing journey underneath the frenzy of the city. Finally, go on walking tours and explore the character-packed streets in the Gothic Quarter or head to the less touristy area of El Born, for it's pretty Parc de la Ciutadella, statues and shopping stalls.
BEST BEACHES TO LOUNGE ON
A fantastic thing about Barcelona is that it offers the best of both worlds, a buzzing city break with blissful beaches to match. Bogatell and Barceloneta are the resort's most popular stretches, where you'll find both tourists and locals lounging on the sands. There is a variety of entertainment available on the beach and nearby, with watersports, exercise stations, seafront restaurants, shops and bars. If you're a couple looking for a more romantic escapade, a short train ride will take you to Ocata beach, located in the north of the city. It's the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, whether you laze on the spacious sands, cool down in one of the beachfront Chiringuitos or wander the nearby marina Port Masnou.
BEST PLACES TO EAT
Gourmands rejoice. Barcelona is a hub of incredible cafes, bars and restaurants, serving up everything from traditional tapas to fresh seafood and beautiul baked goods. To get a taste of the real flavours of Spain, scout out hidden street shops, local farmers’ markets and family-run tapas bars. Favourite foodie spots that won't dissappoint include La Boqueria Market, for its fresh local produce, Pinotxo, for lip-smacking tapas platters, and Suquet de l’Almirall, for some of the best seafood in town.
BEST THINGS TO BUY
From high-street fashion and vibrant market stalls to stylish boutiques and vintage pop-ups, Barcelona's shopping scene is a big deal. Passeig de Gracia is famed for being one of the best shopping streets in Spain and is located the heart of town, where affordable brand names including Zara, Mango and Massimo Dutti brush shoulders with high-end stores, Valentino and Prada. Beyond Passeig de Gracia you've got atmospheric Carrer de Verdi known for its quirky fashion and furniture stores, and, of course, the iconic tree-lined promenade of Las Ramblas with dozens of shops, restaurants and bars fringing the bustling 1.2km street.
BEST FREE THINGS TO DO
The best things in life are free, right? Marvel over Joan Miro’s public art, indulge in the free taster samples at Boqueria market, admire the talented street performers at Las Ramblas and watch the "Magic Fountain" at sunset. Barcelona is full of cultural and artistic flair that can be appreciated without spending a penny. On Sunday afternoons, most of the famous museums waive their entry fees, including the world-famous Picasso museum, making it a great time to visit. Equally, simply wander the atmospheric streets and soak up the sights, sounds and smells as you go.
BEST PLACES TO STAY
Whether you're looking for urban flair, chic boutique, artistic or simply comfortable, we've got a variety of great-value Barcelona hotels sure to suit your every need. Browse some of our favourites below and you'll be booking your next break in no time...