Planning a trip to Barcelona - things to see and do

Planning a trip to Barcelona – things to see and do

The city of Barcelona offers a wide variety of activities and ideas for visitors. Here are some interesting and exciting things to do in the city, whether you are there for a weekend or a lifetime.

When planning a trip to Barcelona, you must make hotel reservations and plan activities and entertainment. Not to worry, though, because, in Barcelona, you will find countless options to make your trip one remember.

Paella in Barceloneta

Barceloneta, one of the nicest neighborhoods in the city, is located right next to the beach. With small streets, a quiet atmosphere, and interesting shops and restaurants, Barceloneta is one of the city’s hidden treasures. The neighborhood also serves the best and most traditional Paella in town. Paella is a rice and seafood dish, served sizzling on a big metal pan and full of oysters, clams, lobster, and shrimp.

The dish is a Catalunyan specialty and should not be passed up. Once the meal is finished and you have eaten your fill, take a stroll down to the waterfront, where you can relax on the beach, play in the sand or swim in the ocean. If you have had enough sun for one day, you might choose to peruse the shops and stores instead, keeping an eye out for deals on swimsuits or keepsakes to remind you of your time in the city.

Tour through the city

Starting in the center of town, off Plaza Catalunya, the large plaza at the end of La Rambla, several bus companies offer driving tours or bike tours through the city. These tours generally take several hours, but along the way, you will get to see a wide variety of attractions and buildings.

Often, the tours will stop for lunch at a famous city cafe or restaurant, allowing visitors to stretch their legs at some of the most famous landmarks around the city. Bike tours are a great way to get around the city, which is relatively flat in the center area for the more active. The weather can get very hot during the summer months, so bring along plenty of water and a hat to protect you from the sun.

Museum visits

Art is huge in Barcelona, and your trip wouldn’t be complete without visiting some of the museums. The Picasso museum is a must-see, even if you aren’t his biggest fan. Other museums will portray art from the Modernist period through the Romanesque and Gothic periods. Visiting these museums on your Barcelona trip will not only entertain you but will serve as a lesson in Art History at the same time.

Barcelona offers a wide range of museums and cultural centers for tourists looking to get a little more art or history from their experience. Start out at the famous Picasso Museum, nestled into Barrio Gotico in the center of town. Take a look at paintings spanning the entire career of the famous Spanish artist. Then make your way to the CCCB, the Center for Contemporary Culture of Barcelona, which has an ever-changing list of exhibits and events highlighting the city’s ongoing cultural changes.

If you’re feeling naughty, you can check out the Erotic Museum, right on La Rambla, which has a variety of historical and anatomically correct objects and paintings to pique your interest. Finally, for those with a sweeter tooth, you can’t go wrong with the Museu de la Xocolata, the Chocolate Museum, which features caricatures of soccer players such as Zidane, Ronaldo, and Ronaldinho, all done in the sweet confection. The gift shop is another treasure trove, with a variety of gourmet chocolate bars from all over the world, in a surprising number of varieties.

Parliament Park

Next to La Rambla is the large city park, containing a number of activities all within a short walk of each other. With plazas and benches everywhere, the large park is a great place to watch people go by. You can rent a pedal bike and cycle around the park grounds for a few euros.

Within the park are the Parliament building and an aquarium, and the Museum of Natural History. However, the real gem is the Zoo, with animals from all over the world screeching and roaring. It’s the perfect place to take your kids or to just enjoy yourself on a warm, sunny day in the city.

Park Guell

This city park is located to the north of the city, easily located via metro. It features perhaps the best view of the city and various shady locations for a picnic lunch or just to relax. Further down the slope of the hill is a large plaza designed by the famous Spanish architect Gaudi that draws visitors with its organic lines and creative colors. You’ll enjoy the sounds of parrots and the rustling of the eucalyptus trees that line the paths in this park. Settle in at a table in the cafe, and enjoy a hot cappuccino while relaxing in the most famous park in Barcelona.

Decide on a hotel

Depending on your budget, you will be able to find a Barcelona hotel to match. From 5 star to economy, Barcelona is home to hotels in all different price ranges. So, even the pickiest consumer will find the perfect hotel for their stay. Some of the grander hotels will offer the best in dining, entertainment, and amenities. Take Hotel Omm, for example.

This hotel offers incredibly luxurious rooms and a creative architectural design. Another hotel you might want to consider staying at is the Hotel Arts. If you would like to rest your head in a lavish bed, this hotel is for you. To top it all off, the sea views and service are amazing too! If these hotels seem too modern for you, why not check out Hotel la Florida? This historic hotel has a history but still maintains a five-star rating.

What to eat and drink

Once you have your hotel decided upon, it’s time to visit some of the local Barcelona eateries. You have to eat breakfast to prepare you for your long day of sightseeing ahead, so stop into the Barqueria Market for something to start your day off right. Delicious croissants, pastries, ensaimadas, and other local treats will keep you coming back for more. For lunch, try tapas, Mediterranean dishes, or seafood. Splurge a little on dinner so you can try some of the famous restaurants that offer authentic Barcelona cuisine.

Hit the shops

Your Barcelona trip must include spending some time shopping, right? You will want to pick up souvenirs for yourself as well as family members and friends to remember your vacation. But, don’t visit the malls; instead, spend time shopping in the local shops around town. It’s there that you will find the best treasures and the best deals.

Barcelona nightlife

Nightlife is fantastic in Barcelona, so this is the place to be if you like to party. For a quieter trip, catch drinks at one of the local lounges or bars while you people watch if an exciting night is what you crave, dance and drink at one of the local clubs in town. You will find that the music gets you moving before you even walk in the door.

Cathedrals are another attraction to a Barcelona trip, so don’t miss these either. The beautiful architecture and scenery of Barcelona will make your vacation trip complete. There are various outdoor activities you can plan as well if you’re looking for a little more adventure. From biking to hiking, take advantage of all Barcelona has to offer.

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