Barcelona Travel Guides

The capital of Catalonia, an autonomous community in Spain’s northeastern Iberian Peninsula, Barcelona was established as a Roman city around 15 BC and is now the largest metropolitan area on the Mediterranean Sea. Barcelona is a hub of fashion, entertainment, media, science and art with a rich cultural heritage that attracts more than 8 million visitors each year.

Where to Stay

Hotels in Barcelona are located all over the city. Choosing where to stay depends on your budget, style and what you want to get out of your Barcelona experience. The Rambla del Raval neighborhood is in the heart of the city and offers several hotels with reasonable prices. If it’s luxury you’re after, stay at the elegant W Barcelona right on the beach. For a more residential feel, Sant Antoni is a bit off the beaten path but offers apartment rentals for vacationers. The village of Gracia gives travelers a small-town quaintness in the midst of Barcelona’s bustling city life. Those seeking a central location adjacent to the main port should consider Ciutat Vella, a historical neighborhood that was once rough around the edges but has been improved to showcase and embrace its cultural diversity. Many first-time visitors choose to stay in the Barri Gotic (Gothic Quarter) because it is where you can tour remnants of Barcelona’s Roman roots alongside more modern structures.

Airports

Most travelers use Barcelona International Airport in El Prat de Llobregat, located approximately 8 miles from the city. It has two terminals serving more than 44 million passengers annually. Transportation to and from the airport includes subway, bus and taxi. Two additional airports, Reus and Girona-Costa Brava, are approximately 62 miles from Barcelona.

Top Things to Do

Despite being only 40 square miles, Barcelona is rich in attractions. One of the most visited spots is Park Guell, originally intended as a housing complex for wealthy residents but now a fanciful garden full of whimsical structures designed by Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi. The Barri Gotic is another popular destination in the oldest part of Barcelona, where you can see Roman and Medieval-era architecture alongside modern shops. If you’re looking for fast-paced city life, you should take in Las Ramblas, which is known for its tapas, artisans and outdoor performers. Foodies should try La Boqueria, one of the most famous markets in the world, and architecture buffs should visit the many incredible Barcelona landmarks, including Santa Maria del Mar and La Sagrada Familia churches. Must-see museums are Fundacio Joan Miro and the Picasso Museum. And don’t forget Barcelona’s beaches! Some of the more popular are Nova Icaria, Bogatell and Barceloneta, where you can bask in the glorious sunshine and swim in the gorgeous Mediterranean Sea.

Weather/Seasonal Information

The best month for swimming and sunbathing in Barcelona is August, when air and water temperatures average in the mid- to high-70s. The weather remains fairly constant in Barcelona, with November through April averaging in the 50s and a delightful warm-up in the summer months. If you want to avoid rainy season in Barcelona, don’t go in October, which is the wettest month.

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