Destinations / City Breaks / Barcelona
Barcelona is the heart and motor of the autonomous region of Catalonia in the northeast corner of Spain and is the second biggest city in the country. With almost four million people, Barcelona has one of the largest metropolitan atreas of any Mediterranean city.
With its extraordinary mix of architecture, cosmopolitan flair and joie de vivre, Barcelona is without doubt one of the top European city break destinations. from the impressive modernist architecture to the elegant boulevards of the Eixample and the narrow streets and plazas of the old city to the quirky museums and great nightlife, it is no surprise that the Catalan capital has captivated the hearts of so many visitors.
Gaudi's magnificent Sagrada Familia (a work in progress!), Parc Guell, the Olympic Stadium, the old Jewish Quarter and the marvellous market, "La Boqueria" off Las Ramblas are just a few of the wonderful sights to enjoy in this gorgeous city.
Please Note: A government tax may be payable on arrival in a city destination – it cannot be prepaid in advance. This is a nominal charge that is subject to change.
Did You Know...?
Barcelona's famous beachfront was actually created for the 1992 Olympics.
La Sagrada Familia has taken longer than the Egyptian Pyramids to build.
Barcelona is home to the largest football stadium in Europe.
Top Reasons to Visit Barcelona
- Stunning Architecture
- Inspiring Arts & Culture
- Local Hotspots & City Sights to Explore
Wandering through the city you’ll see many pieces of Gaudí’s impeccable art, or architecture clearly influenced by his unique style. Ranging from la Sagrada Familia, a one of a kind cathedral, to Casa Batlló and Casa Milà, all the way to Park Guell, Gaudí’s work is ubiquitous in Barcelona.
The Gothic quarter is one of the oldest and prettiest districts in Barcelona. Its home to the gothic Cathedral and the gothic Church, Santa Maria del Pi. Stroll around the cobblestone streets and you’ll find great little cafes and vintage shops to browse. Take a break at one of the many plazas in the area.
Perhaps the city’s most iconic street, La Rambla is a must-see for visitors in Barcelona. The promenade runs down from Placa de Catalunya to the Columbus Monument at the waterfront and is filled with shopping stands, street performers, living statues, and more.
Palau de la Música Catalana
This brilliant concert hall is a UNESCO-listed heritage site with a gorgeous interior. You can visit for a tour, or check their website to see if there are any great shows on during your holiday.
Inspiring Arts & Culture
Barcelona is full of so many fantastic museums that it can be overwhelming. Our top five include: the Picasso Museum, Poble Espanyol Village, the National Museum of Catalan Art, Barcelona’s Contemporary Art Museum, and the Chocolate Museum. Pick what sounds best to you and get lost in the spectacular exhibitions!
Montjuïc Castle, a 17th century fortress, sits atop formidable Montjuïc Hill. You can either walk up the hill (passing the magic fountain) or take the funicular from the Parallel Station (metro) up to the top of the hill. Enjoy stunning views of the harbour and the city.
Magic Fountain of Montjuïc
Set in between the National Art Museum of Catalonia and the Plaza España, the Magic Fountain is the best free experience in Barcelona. Late in the evenings, the huge fountain in the centre of the square lights up in a magical musical show. Check online for the timetable.
The perfect day trip from Barcelona, go back in time at the magnificent Monastery Santa Maria de Montserrat. Located on a mountain peak, the views are outstanding. The surrounding nature offers a great contrast to the busy city.
Local Hotspots & City Sights to Explore
Mercado La Boqueria
This famous market is located just off Las Ramblas. Buy fresh fruits and veggies, get some seafood, or just wander along the bustling alleys. Visiting a local market is a great way to connect with the culture of the city.
Ideally located on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona has beautiful beaches to explore. The mild climate keeps it nice and warm, and perfect for a swim! The Barceloneta area has all the most beautiful beaches.
Camp Nou Stadium
This enormous venue is the biggest football stadium in Europe. Get tickets for a match and you’ll witness a-once-in-a-lifetime experience. There is also an FC Barcelona Museum here, or you can tour the stadium on the Camp Nou Experience.
Barcelona Airport Transfers & Weather
Airport: Barcelona El Prat (BCN)
Distance: Approx. 14km from city centre
The metro into the city centre departs roughly every 7 minutes. There is a stop inside Terminal 1 and a stop outside Terminal 2, next to the train station. The cost per journey is approximately €4.50.
The bus runs to Plaça de Catalunya o Plaça d'España. The trip takes approximately 35 minutes and departs every 5 to 10 minutes. The bus station is located outside the terminal, and the journey costs approximately €5.90.
The train into the city centre takes approximately 20 to 25 minutes and departs about every 30 minutes. The train station is located in Terminal 2, and there is a free shuttle bus (approx. 10 minutes journey) from Terminal 1.
A private transfer into the city centre would take approximately 30 minutes and would cost about €46pp for a return trip based on two people sharing.