For tourists, Barcelona is a secret known to everyone. Over the last decade, the capital of Catalonia
For tourists, Barcelona is a secret known to everyone. Over the last decade, the capital of Cataloniahas been the star of European urban tourism. The heritage bequeathed by Gaudí and the examples of Art-Nouveau (Modernist) architecture in the Eixample, the authenticity of the Gothic Quarter, the legacy of the city’s medieval past, the history and charm of its streets, the offer of its museums, with the National Museum of Art of Catalonia and the area devoted to Picasso, its offer of services and restaurants, its nightlife, its Mediterranean feel, its range of shops with a model unique to Barcelona that combines large international brands with distinctive boutiques lending character to the city; in short, a whole scope of possibilities that has won the hearts of visitors from all corners of the globe.
Casa Batlló, Casa Amatller and Casa Milà—better known as La Pedrera [the stone quarry]—are just some of the buildings which bring together a host of almost unprecedented, exuberant colours and forms. Modernisme can be appreciated throughout the city. Spectacular buildings like the church of the Sagrada Família—an unfinished work by Gaudí—the Palau de la Música Catalana and the Park Güell make up, along with other buildings, a legacy of modernisme that can only be seen here. The Sagrada Família, the Casa Batlló, the Casa Vicens, the Crypt of Colònia Güell, La Pedrera, have been designated World Heritage Sites, together with the Palau Güell, the Sant Pau, modern exhibition centres, the Park Güell and the Palau de la Música Catalana. Barcelona is the largest outdoor museum for Art Nouveau architecture, celebrating visual splendour.
BARCELONA BY DAY
Barcelona’s markets are places where you can enjoy a lively, vibrant atmosphere in surroundings where the cries of the market’s stallholders and the daily bustle intermingle. Few cities in the world can boast a network such as that of Barcelona—39 food markets and four markets selling other goods form a unique heritage that should be maintained and preserved. The Boqueria Market, on La Rambla, is one of Barcelona’s best-known markets, and has become a major landmark.
Without its constant wealth of raw materials, it would not be possible to enjoy the characteristic elements of Catalan cuisine: the fish and meat dishes known as “mar i muntanya”, the contrasts of sweet and sour, the picada (a mixture of nuts, cooking liquid and garlic or aromatic herbs) and the rapid and enthusiastic acceptance of products from outside Catalonia.
On the first day, it’s a good idea to go out and soak up the city’s modernista ambience. At 4pm, the walking tour ‘Barcelona Walking Tours Modernisme’ is an excellent opportunity to enjoy a guided tour of the Passeig de Gràcia and the heritage district, the Quadrat d’Or.
After this, make the most of your time and let yourself fall under the spell of the architectural gems in the Gothic Quarter, such as the Cathedral in the Plaça Nova, the monumental ensemble in the Plaça del Rei, and the civic and government buildings in the Plaça Sant Jaume.
BARCELONA BY NIGHT
At night, you’ll be able to enjoy Barcelona’s most modern facet if you have dinner in the Born. Here, you’ll be able to see the church of Santa Maria del Mar, and be captivated by a neighbourhood which is a wonderful combination of medieval charm and Barcelona’s hippest bars and restaurants.
Another tempting option is to have dinner in the old harbour, or Port Vell, as you enjoy the Mediterranean sea breezes.
Barcelona never sleeps. The city has set the benchmark for the international electronic music scene and dances to the sounds of the world’s top DJs. It’s also the perfect place for lovers of jazz, rock, Latin rhythms and pop.
You can also choose to purchase the Barcelona NightCard which enables fast-track entrance into Barcelona’s top clubs and discotheques all week with just one ticket.
TOURISM PRODUCTS ONLINE
Turisme de Barcelona is selling its products and services on line through its website: www.tickets.visitbarcelona.com. This initiative offers visitors the the possibility of putting together their own tailor-made travel package, combining their stay with the purchase of products.
We recommend you log on to visitbarcelona.com to discover new ways of visiting Barcelona. The Barcelona Bus Turístic, Barcelona Walks, and the Barcelona Card are the first products which can be purchased on-line.