Sightseeing & Tourist Activities in Barcelona: Attractions and What to Do; La Rambla to Gaudi´s Parc Guell
Barcelona welcomes millions of tourists every year, particularly in the summer months, from culture vultures to sun junkies, the city has something for every tourist.
The charming Catalan port city of Barcelona promises a city break rich in culture and history, Mediterranean sunshine and a thriving nightlife.
The first place to go in the Catalan capital is undoubtedly La Rambla. The most famous walkway in Spain, La Rambla buzzes with life, from the scores of restaurants and bars on either side, to the street performers, artists and human “statues”, from the various galleries to the renowned Liceu theatre. La Rambla is a memorable experience in itself. At its end at the harbour front, there is a tall monument of Christopher Columbus pointing out to sea. For 3€ one can take an elevator to the top of the tower and overlook the city.
The architecture of Barcelona offers its visitors an unparalleled plethora of visual delights. None more so than the famous creations of “God´s Architect”, Antoni Gaudí. The mastermind behind the world famous, unfinished Sagrada Familia in the heart of Barcelona city, Gaudí´s works are scattered throughout the city, and a holiday to the Barcelona would not be complete without taking in some of the genius´s breathtaking designs, including La Sagrada Familia, a Roman Catholic church that has been under construction since 1882 and is not projected to finish until 2026. It is Gaudí´s masterpiece and is quite simply breathtaking. A guided tour costs 11€.
Gaudi´s other famous creation, Parc Guell, “Gaudí´s garden”, was created before work on La Sagrada Familia began, for the aristocracy of Barcelona. It is home to designs of Gaudí´s particular Art Nouveau style and at its top, the “three crosses” offer an incredible view of the whole of Barcelona city. Entrance to the park is free.
Barcelona´s old town, situated in the gothic district contains the old Roman wall, scores of enchanting streets and alleys, but the area is undoubtedly dominated by the Cathedral of Barcelona. The cathedral dates back to 1298 and is a must see for visitors to the city. Admission is free.
Other notable buildings incude the daunting Basilica Santa Maria del mar, the contemporary Torré Agbar building and the Palau Nacional, home of Catalan art
Barcelona Food and Nightlife
Just a five minute walk from the cathedral is the Born district, a tourist hotspot, with good reason too. The area is filled with kitsch bars and boutiques, tapas restaurants and a great nightlife. It is also home to the Pablo Picasso museum, another must-see for the culture lovers. The Born offers some fantastic tapas restaurants, where one will see how to truly eat the Spanish way; find some space in the normally busy tapas bars, order a drink and some tapas dishes (which arrive immediately) and enjoy! There really is nothing else like it. Expect to find many types of seafood dishes, some wildly imaginative, and of course, Catalonia´s very own cuisine, such as the Catalan sausage, butifarra.
The city has clubs and bars aplenty. Toward the Port Olympic area by the beach, clubbers will find many clubs open until 5 or 6am, particularly in the Ciutadella district. And what would Barcelona be without its beach? It is easy to forget about it, as the city has so much else to offer, but come the summer, the beach is filled with tourists eager to catch some sun, and sees hundreds of bars and restaurants open their doors for the hot summer months.
And of course, the city is home to the League and European champions Futbol Club Barcelona. Camp Nou stadium is the largest of any stadia in Europe, and if you are able to go to a game, it really is a spellbinding spectacle. Cheapest tickets usually sell for between 20 and 35€.
Whatever type of tourist, there really is something for everybody in Barcelona, a truly remarkable city, where one is sure to have a fabulous holiday.