The five things you can’t miss in Barcelona

Barcelona is a city that offers many plans and where you can visit a large number of interesting places: culture, leisure, sports or activities for the whole family. In the five proposals below you’ll find the places that every visitor should see, whatever the duration of their trip.

Palau Sant Jordi

To get to know every corner of Barcelona, you can get around very easily by public transport. In order to use it, it’s highly recommended to buy the Hola Barcelona Travel Card. It offers unlimited trips and is available in four modalities, which adapt to the number of days you’re in Barcelona: two days (48 hours), three days (72 hours), four days (96 hours) or five consecutive days (120 hours) from the first validation. In addition, this ticket includes round-trip travel by TMB metro to the airport.

1. Montjuïc: view Barcelona in 360 degrees

If you want to see the city from a privileged spot, don’t hesitate to get on the Montjuïc Cable Car, which has been in operation for 50 years. In addition to enjoying the spectacular views, the cable car takes you to Montjuïc Castle, which was built as a fortress in 1640. It offers a panoramic view of Barcelona, its beaches and the port from the parade ground that is not to be missed. If you come in summer, there are several cultural activities that take place in the castle. For this reason, we recommend checking the programming before coming, which will allow you to better organise your trip to Barcelona.

Several important museums are located on the mountain of Montjuïc, such as the National Art Museum of Catalonia and the Joan Miró Foundation and the Poble Espanyol too.

The Poble Espanyol

2. Don’t lose the beat in Barcelona

The city has three great venues that you can’t miss if you like classical music: the Palau de la Música Catalana, the Gran Teatre del Liceu and the Auditori. Walking around the Ciutat Vella district, the nerve centre of the city, you’ll find the first two. The Palau de la Música is one of the emblematic buildings of Catalan modernism and the headquarters of the Orfeó Català, a choir founded in 1891 and which continues performing until today.

Not far from the Palau de la Música, on the Rambla, is the opera house: the Gran Teatre del Liceu, built in 1847. To see it from the inside, the best option is to buy tickets to one of the operas that are performed there.

Take the metro to visit the newest building of the three. It’s the Auditori, which opened in 1999 and has become a must-see for classical music lovers in Barcelona.

Palau de la Música Catalana

3. A day at the museums

Visiting all the museums in the city in a few days is virtually impossible, so we recommend that you plan your trip to Barcelona with care and choose those that interest you most. And visiting those museums that were left off your list gives you an excuse to come back to the city!

The Centre for Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona (MACBA) are ideal if you like modern art. The two museums are next to each other, so it’s a good plan to visit them one after the other. To learn more about the history of the city and of Catalonia in general, be sure to visit the Barcelona History Museum (MUHBA) and the Museum of the History of Catalonia. And if you prefer to delve deeper into the work of two great artists, Barcelona offers you the Picasso Museum and the Antoni Tàpias Foundation.

Another option is to discover those museums that are most unknown to the general public. For example, the Egyptian Museum (the oldest Egyptian museum in Spain), the Museum of Modernism and the Maritime Museum.

4. “À la ville de… Barcelona”

In 1986, Joan Antoni Samaranch spoke these words in Lausanne to designate Barcelona as the venue for the 1992 Olympic Games. Samaranch, the former president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), gives its name to the Olympic and Sports Museum, located in Montjuïc. On this mountain you can also visit the Lluís Companys Olympic Stadium and the Palau Sant Jordi.                               

Another place that you can’t miss if you’re passionate about sports is the Camp Nou, the Barcelona Football Club stadium, and the FC Barcelona Museum, where you can learn more about the team’s history and review its titles.

5. Steeped in modernism

We could not fail to mention one of the artistic trends that has made Barcelona famous. Obviously, we’re talking about Catalan modernism. Visit the Sant Pau Modernist enclosure, designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, two of Antoni Gaudí's most famous buildings: the Casa Batlló and La Pedrera, both on Passeig de Gràcia. And of course, enjoy the Basilica of the Sagrada Familia and Park Güell.

La Pedrera.