In the summer of 2017 we spent two days in sunny Barcelona. The city, decorated with the most beautiful architecture by artist Gaudí, has a lot of charm and has the most beautiful places. I listed the best seven free places!
Barcelona Express card
Before I continue with the best places we visited in Barcelona, I want to give you a quick tip if you plan to use public transport. We ourselves slept in an Airbnb outside the city but had the car with us. If you are not by car and are staying outside the center, I recommend that you purchase the Barcelona express card for € 20.
In addition to the fact that you can use public transport for free for two days, you also have various discounts on attractions, museums, restaurants and leisure activities.
1 Park Güell
This colorful park, designed by Antonio Gaudi, features beautiful stone structures, a large collection of different flora and fauna and wonderful buildings. It is quite a climb to get there, but the view over the city is completely worth it! (No worries, there is also a bus).
The park of approximately 15 hectares is free to visit and there is enough to see to keep you entertained for a long time. Please note, not everything can be visited for free. Do you want access to the monumental zone of the park and the Casa del Guarda? Then an entrance ticket for this is only € 13 per person.
Also keep in mind that the park is very popular and busy. So try to plan your visit well. And if you plan to visit the paid areas, be sure to buy a ticket online in advance to avoid long queues.
2 Tibidabo Barcelona
Barcelona has two large hills between which the city is located. Tibidabo is one of them. On this 512 meter high hill stands the eponymous amusement park and church Iglesia del Sagrat Cor. We went up the hill with a carriage.
Once on top of the mountain, you are in the middle of the Tibidabo theme park and a beautiful view of Barcelona awaits you. You read it right; you don’t have to pay an entrance fee to access the theme park, but you have to buy tickets if you want to enter the attractions.
We walked through the amusement park, visited the church and then went down the hill. I would also have liked to see the view in the dark so you can see all the lights in the city.
3 Sagrada Familia
Probably the most famous work of art by Gaudi, what tourists will first name in Barcelona is the Sagrada Familia. This basilica has been under construction since 1882 and the official completion date is 2026.
To visit the inside of the basilica you need entrance tickets. Here you can queue up the day itself, or you can buy them online in advance. (At the time of writing there are no tickets available as the Sagrada Familia is closed due to the pandemic).
4 Gothic Quarter
This district, with narrow Gothic streets and nice restaurants, is completely worth discovering. The Gothic Quarter is the historic center of Barcelona and you will find Barcelona Cathedral in the middle. It is a large maze where you will find a different picturesque square around every corner.
Do you want to be sure that you are not missing anything? Than the Gothic Walking tour, for only €18 per person, is great!
5 Las Ramblas
Probably the most touristic location you will find in Barcelona is Las Ramblas. This popular street starts in the center of the city and runs to the sea. You will find many nice stalls, street performers and pickpockets here. You read it right, watch your pockets.
Personally I found Las Ramblas very disappointing, especially because of the crowds, it is not something I would return to soon. But if you are in Barcelona for the first time it is one of the most visited places.
If you decide to visit las Ramblas, don’t forget to turn off at La Boqueria Market.
Find your itinerary for Vatican City here!
6 Montjuïc Barcelona
Montjuïc is the hill on the other side of the city. At the time we went up with a wagon and then scoured the hill past various sights.
At the very top of the mountain is Montjuïc Castle. When you walk down you will pass the art museum, the Spanish village of Poble Espanyol (entrance without queue ticket for only € 6). And the Olympic stadium with museum.
7 Casa Milà and Casa Batlló
Finally, these two fairytale works of art by Gaudi that you can be found when you walk through the city. It is also possible to view the houses from the inside. For example, a priority ticket including audio guide for Casa Milà is only € 12.
Have you ever been to Barcelona?