Why Barcelona should be the next European city on your visit list
One of the most visited cities in the world, Barcelona offers a certain charm that simply can’t be found elsewhere.
From its months of endless sunshine and relaxed pace, to an incredible foodie scene and a plethora of art and history, it’s one of the few European destinations that truly ticks all the right boxes, and though the main highlights can be seen on foot in just a couple of days, it’s the sort of place that makes you want to stick around and soak it all in for as long as you possibly can.
In fact, if you’re a real culture vulture then you could find yourself quite happily spending weeks or months in the city, wandering the museums and art galleries scattered throughout the charmingly narrow streets and working your way around its tastiest and most authentic tapas bars. And, with plenty of Barcelona tours to choose from, offering knowledgeable private tour guides who will take you to see the sights and sounds of the city, there’s no need to miss a single thing.
In 2017, Barcelona received over 8 million tourists, and that number continues to increase as we make our way through 2018. The biggest draws for the city are undoubtedly its numerous and world-renowned architectural monuments – not least, the breath-taking Sagrada Familia, which is still under construction some 100 years on.
Antoni Gaudi’s other works can also be seen throughout the city, with the famous Park Güell attracting 3.1 million people in 2017 alone. Add to that the popularity of the iconic Casa Batllo ,just off main street, Passeig de Gracia, and you’re just beginning to get started.
A patchwork of architectural styles, visitors to Barcelona can expect to see everything from dark, Gothic façades to the harlequin buildings of the Modernistas – with impressive and creatively designed structures that can’t help but impress. Meanwhile, art lovers will be delight in the Picasso Museum, housing one of the most extensive collections of artworks by the 20th-century Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.
If you’re keen to see all the key sights during your visit to the city, then a Barcelona highlights tour will cover off all the main monuments – not just taking you to see the works of Gaudi, but Barcelona FC, too! Boasting one of the most famous football teams in the world, the Camp Nou stadium and museum are unmissable stops for football fans, attracting thousands of visitors each and every year.
A customised, private tour will mean you get to avoid the crowds and the queues – which, when time is limited and your schedule is jam-packed, is a major advantage all round.
A day spent admiring the city’s most famous sites can be rounded off with a sunset sangria on one of the city’s seven beaches – or, for the foodies out there, with dinner at one of the city’s many Michelin-starred eaterys or humble, family-run tapas bars. Don’t forget to take a stroll down the famous Las Ramblas and a meander through the market for that authentic Barcelona experience – though try to experience the city as a local, too, to really discover the best of it.
With a Mediterranean climate which offers warm temperatures throughout the year and glorious, long, hot summers, it’s little wonder that tourists continue to flock to Barcelona each year. It’s one of the few places you can combine a city break and a beach holiday into one, and the friendly locals are the icing on the cake.