Recommending the best of Barcelona such as the best places to visit, best things to do and see in Barcelona, best hotels and restaurants, and best tours is quite challenging. Here we summarize what we believe is the "best" not only for adults but also for families with children.
How Can You See the Best Places in Barcelona?
There are so many amazing things to do and see in the city! Whether you visit for one, two, three days or more, you can still appreciate the best places to visit in Barcelona. We assembled this article to give you a game plan for what to do and experience if you can only visit the city for a short period of time. It's still possible to see many Barcelona highlights if you plan correctly.
- The Best of Barcelona in One Day
- The Best of Barcelona in Two Days
- The Best of Barcelona in Three Days
- Best Place to Stay in Barcelona
- Best Tours in Barcelona
Places to Visit in Barcelona in One Day
La Sagrada Familia is the most visited attraction in Barcelona
1. La Sagrada Familia
If you were going to choose just one place to visit on your trip, it should be La Sagrada Familia. Many people really do travel to Spain just to see this landmark. La Sagrada Familia truly is Antoni Gaudi's masterpiece.
The building is so ornate and detailed that it still isn't completed. It is scheduled to be done in 2026 although work started in 1883. In 2005, La Sagrada Familia was named a UNESCO World Heritage site.
If you like Antoni Gaudi's work (and you certainly will!), Park Guell is another one of the Barcelona attractions that you don't want to miss, even on a one-day trip. This outdoor garden is full of mosaics, fresh air, and impressive architecture. Also if you go to the top, you will have an utterly amazing view.
La Sagrada Familia Tour - Skip the Line Ticket
The Boqueria market on Las Ramblas
2. Las Ramblas in Barcelona
No matter what type of entertainment, cafe or store you like, you will probably find it at Las Ramblas. This downtown area always has something interesting going on, which can range from human statues and musicians to dancers and fortune tellers. As a result of its incredible diversity, we put it at the top of our list of best places to visit in Barcelona.
Las Ramblas is packed with several attractions, such as the Boqueria Market (don't miss it!), the Wax Museum, the Erotica Museum, the Ham Museum, and a bit off Las Ramblas, in front of the Columbus memorial, you'll find the Maritime Museum.
When you go to Las Ramblas in Barcelona, don't miss the Columbus Monument, dedicated to none other than Christopher Columbus. Take the elevator to the top for a beautiful view.
You can also easily get to the Gothic Quarter from Las Ramblas. This beautiful part of town has lots of alleys and narrow streets. There are a wide variety of restaurants and bars as well as some really nice hotels.
Plaza Catalunya is another one of the Barcelona attractions that you can conveniently visit from Las Ramblas. You will find a fountain, sculptures, and people relaxing and enjoying themselves outside in this square.
Tapas tour including La Boqueria Market at Las Ramblas
Fantastic views from Montjuic hill
One area that you won't want to miss on your one day trip is Montjuic. This area provides a rather astonishing view of the city, water, and mountains. As a result, it is a great introduction to Barcelona.
There are many places to visit in Montjuic, such as the Olympic Stadium, the Olympic ring, the Poble Espanyol (the Spanish Villa), and the Magic Fountain of Montjuic which is a beautiful, free attraction for the family. On a future trip, you can visit Fundacio Joan Miro at Montjuic. This fantastic modern art museum is dedicated to the artist Joan Miro.
Panoramic Tour including Cable Car - Skip the Line!
Places to Visit in Barcelona in Two Days
If you are visiting Barcelona for two days we, of course, recommend seeing all the Barcelona highlights listed above. Plus, you will also have time to visit Paseo de Garcia street, which has famous modernist buildings by different architects. There are also great stores, cafes, and restaurants. In fact, some of the most expensive stores are in this avenue. We also recommend the amusement park Tibidabo, especially if you are traveling with children.
Paseo de Gracia - The Block of Discord
4. Paseo de Gracia
At Paseo de Gracia, you can find the Block of Discord, which contains stunning architectural work by four architects with sharply contrasting styles, namely, Antoni Gaudi, Joseph Puig i Cadafalch, Enric Sagnier and Lluis Domenech i Montaner. In addition to the interesting architecture, Paseo de Gracia contains great shopping that will particularly excite visitors that love fashion.
The most famous modernist buildings at Paseo de Gracia street are the both of Antoni Gaudi such as Casa Batllo and Casa Mila (also known as La Pedrera), Casa Amatller by Joseph Puig i Cadafalch, and Casa Lleo Morera by Lluis Domenech i Montaner.
Buy Ticket to Skip the Line at Casa Batllo - Fast Pass Tickets
Tibidabo Amusement Park and Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
If you happened to see Woody Allen's film Vicky Cristina Barcelona, you are already acquainted with Tibidabo amusement park. It is at the top of the Tibidabo hill, which provides a beautiful view of Barcelona city and the Collserola mountains. You can take a very cool funicular to the top.
You can also find the impressive Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor) in this area. We recommend a visit to this beautiful church, and if you have the time, climb to the top (elevator plus stairs) to have the very best views from Tibidabo.
Tibidabo Amusement Park - Includes all the Attractions
Places to Visit in Barcelona in Three Days
If you are spending three days in Barcelona, you will have a chance to see even more Barcelona highlights. For this length trip, we recommend adding the Barcelona Aquarium, the Barcelona Zoo, Barceloneta beach and Santa Maria del Mar Church to your itinerary for the best places of interest in Barcelona.
Underwater tunnel in Barcelona Aquarium
6. The Barcelona Aquarium
If you are traveling with kids, you will definitely want to check out Barcelona's fabulous aquarium, which is conveniently located in an extension of Las Ramblas called Rambla de Mar and Maremagnum area.
You'll find the Maremagnum area contains the aquarium. Even without children, this is one of the most fantastic Barcelona attractions which ranks among the most visited places in Barcelona.
Book the Barcelona Aquarium and Skip the Line!
7. Parc de la Ciutadella
Parc de la Ciutadella is home to the beautiful Barcelona Zoo. There is a fountain designed by Gaudi as well as a lovely lake where you can row boats. Parc de la Ciutadella is also home to the Museum of Zoology and Museum of Geology.
The park is a little oasis in Barcelona city and is easily accessible from the old town by a short walk. Moreover, Parc de la Ciutadella is linked with the Arc de Triomf by a beautiful, broad avenue. In 1888 Barcelona was host to the Universal Exhibition, and the Arc de Triomf was built as a gateway to the fair held in Parc de la Ciutadella. From the Arc de Triomf you have about 10-12 minute walk to Plaça Catalunya.
Tickets to Barcelona Zoo - Skip the Line!
8. Barceloneta Beach
Additionally, a great trip would be to visit the Olympic Port and Barceloneta beach, which is one of the best Barcelona beaches, especially if it is good weather. You can visit various beaches around Port Olimpic, eat at some of the best restaurants in Barcelona, as well as enjoy the best Barcelona nightlife in hot nightclubs at this exciting part of the city.
Book Our Small-Group Sailing Trip in Barcelona
Santa Maria del Mar church
9. Santa Maria del Mar Church
We also recommend adding Santa Maria del Mar Church for a three-day trip. This Gothic church, located in the El Born-La Ribera district, is uniquely beautiful and many people put it down on their list of best places of interst in Barcelona. Even if you aren't religious, you will appreciate this impressive work of ancient Gothic architecture.
El Born-La Ribera is a particularly beautiful area to visit in Barcelona. There you'll find some of the best restaurants for tapas, many of the best vintage and second-hand shops, one of the best museums in Barcelona such as the Picasso Museum, the El Born Cultural Center, and La Llotja, which is a beautiful neoclassical-style building. It was the former Fine Art Academy and art school which Picasso attended when he was young.
This article should help you see all of the best of Barcelona even on a short visit. However, you will only scratch the surface of what there is to see in Barcelona on a one, two or three-day trip! As a result, you will likely find yourself returning to Barcelona city.
Follow the Footsteps of Picasso in Barcelona Plus Priority Museum Access
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What is the Best Place to Stay in Barcelona?
If you want to be near the most famous attractions, then the best areas to stay in Barcelona are Las Ramblas, the Gothic Quarter, Plaza Catalunya, and the Eixample district.
You can book the Best Barcelona Hotels, Hostel, Bed & Breakfast, and even Barcelona Villas at the best location to stay in Barcelona. But to find the best Barcelona hotel deals, any travel to Barcelona, Spain, requires proper planning. Barcelona is a busy city almost all over the year, and hotel occupancy is quite high. So, please book your Barcelona accommodation in advance!
Book Cheap Accommodation in Barcelona
Tours and Things to Do in Barcelona
All in One Place!
What is the Best Barcelona Tour?
There are many tours in Barcelona that you can do by foot, by bus, by bike and segway, by scooter, by sail boat or regular boat, by hot air balloon, by helicopter, and tours that combine two or more modalities. Here you can book what we believe are the best tours in Barcelona:
Other best tours in Barcelona - Book here!