Barcelona is a real European "pearl" with a rich historical heritage and excellent prospects. The capital of Catalonia was founded in the III century BC. Carthaginian commander - the father of the famous Hannibal. Since then, the city passed from the Romans to the Visigoths and Moors, and then to the descendants of the Frankish kings. At the same time, it constantly developed and subsequently became the capital of the powerful Catalan-Aragonese kingdom.
Barcelona attracts millions of tourists every year. This is a city with magnificent Gothic quarters, the most beautiful Catholic churches, the immortal creations of Gaudí and the unique atmosphere of the Mediterranean embankments. The bright national festivals "La Merce", "Parade of the Magician Kings", "Gracia" reveal the local culture in all its glory and allow you to plunge deeper into the traditions.
What to see and where to go in Barcelona?
The most interesting and beautiful places for walking. Photos and a short description.
An unusual Catholic church in the Art Nouveau style, which is being built according to the unique design of the famous Antonio Gaudi. The building is still being built solely on donations from all comers. Considered one of the world's most visited attractions, La Sagrada Falimía has been queuing for hours in Barcelona to climb the bell tower or explore the quaint interiors.
The most famous promenade in Barcelona, the symbol of the city. Separates the old Gothic Quarter from the Raval district. For tourists, the Rambla is a landmark place. Here they relax in street cafes, watch impromptu performances by street artists, buy souvenirs. Even before the start of a large tourist influx, the boulevard was loved by local residents, but now they are very rarely seen in the many-sided mass of walking guests of the city.
Medieval quarter, the very heart of the city, where many interesting sights are located. Ancient stone houses of the XIV-XV centuries. divided by narrow streets, on the first floors of the buildings there are traditional tapas bars. There are also modern shops, trendy restaurants and clubs. Hectic life is in full swing until dawn, keeping the locals awake. Only in the morning the Gothic Quarter is quiet.
City park designed by Antonio Gaudí. Initially, it was conceived as a place for building mansions of wealthy citizens, but the project failed and the owner of the land, the industrialist E. Guell, sold the park to the authorities. The territory is decorated with figures and sculptural groups created by the famous architect, as well as several houses of his work. The park contains a public school and several administrative buildings.
Also called Citadel Park. Before the destruction, this Citadel was one of the largest fortresses in Europe. Museums, a zoo, an artificial lake, the Parliament of Catalonia - it will take a whole day to explore the park. Antonio Gaudí himself worked on one of the sculptures, which is the decoration of the park's fountain. Notable are the buildings built specifically for the World Exhibition of Buildings - the Winter Garden, the Palm Greenhouse and the Castle of the Three Dragons.
Historical park on the slope of the mountain. The landscape is represented by neoclassical and romantic style gardens. To preserve the park, a restriction on its visit has been established - no more than 750 people can be in it. The park houses the former palace of the Desvalls family with a medieval tower. The labyrinth, which gave the name to the park, consists of cypress trees. The hedge is 750 meters long and 2.5 meters high.
One of the most interesting sights of Barcelona, created by Antonio Gaudí. The house was built by order of the Mila spouses, who planned to rent out some of the rooms. Gaudi used the concept of a “moving mountain” during construction, so the lines of the building seem alive and “flowing”. The house is considered one of the spiritual symbols of the city. Nowadays, people live in one part of it, and the upper floors are given over to the museum.
Rebuilt in the 1900s. A. Gaudi profitable house of Josep Batllo y Casanovas, which after the reconstruction became an architectural masterpiece, an ideal model of thought of a brilliant architect. Researchers of Gaudi's work believe that the work on the building marked the beginning of a new independent stage in the work of the architect. The ideas tested at the Casa Batlló, he used for his further creations.
House of Vicens
One of the first major works of Antonio Gaudí. The residential building is protected as one of the UNESCO heritage sites. Built from raw stone. Decorated with colored ceramic tiles with floral ornaments. An interesting fact is that the manufacturer of the tiles was the customer himself - the manufacturer Manuel Vicens. Turrets, balconies, and facades were used as decorative elements. This gives the house dimension.
A modern building of 34 floors, erected using advanced engineering technologies. Outside, the tower shimmers with different colors, inside the structure independently opens and closes the blinds and regulates the power consumption. The optimum temperature is also independently maintained. The name "Cucumber" was assigned to the tower because of the rounded conical shape of the roof.
Residential building in the Venetian style. One of the early works of Antonio Gaudi, the famous architect. The complex project of this structure is located between two other houses on a small area measuring 18 by 22 meters. The palace is crowned with a dome of an unusual shape. The interior decoration contains many elements of different architectural styles. And Gaudi himself was the designer of all the furniture in the palace. The palace is open to visitors daily.
Plaza of Spain
One of the central city squares, located at the foot of Montjuic. Appeared thanks to the World Exhibition of 1929. In the center of the square there is a huge musical fountain by the Catalan sculptor M. Blay. Periodically, bright light and music performances take place here. The architectural ensemble of the square is intended to symbolize the unity, greatness and power of the entire Spanish nation.
Loved by both the people of Barcelona and the guests of the city, the square from where the main city routes start. Here begins the Rambla, Paseo de Gracia, and here the borders of the old and new areas of Barcelona converge. Tourist buses and transport to the airport and suburbs stop at Plaza Catalunya. The place is popular and always full of people, even at night.
Located in the Gothic Quarter. It is often confused with King's Square in the same quarter. Royal Square often becomes a crowded place. It hosts festivities, festivals, entertainment events. The square was built in a romantic style in the 19th century on the site of a burned-out Capuchin monastery. She captivates travelers with her beauty and grace. A special decoration of the square is the Three Graces fountain.
An open-air exposition consisting of more than 100 buildings. The museum presents different parts of Spain: copies of traditional houses of Andalusia, Galicia, La Mancha, Aragon, Asturias and other regions of the country. In the village you can walk along the streets, eat in a traditional restaurant and buy souvenirs. The complex was created for the World Exhibition of 1929, and then preserved as a museum at the request of the townspeople.
Palace of Catalan Music
Concert hall in the style of "modern", located in the center of Barcelona near the Gothic Quarter. The building is richly decorated with mosaics and figured frescoes, the auditorium is crowned with a roof with colored stained-glass windows, wide windows are also made of multi-colored glass. Famous folklore performers, classical orchestras and contemporary musicians with original programs perform at the Palace of Music.
Sant Pau Hospital
The hospital complex of 27 buildings is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The hospital was founded in 1401. And only in 1901 the construction of a modern building began, which lasted 29 years. The architect Lewis Domènech y Montaner built the departments of the hospital in the Art Nouveau style and connected them with underground passages. In appearance, the building looks more like a palace than a hospital. Its walls are decorated with intricate decorations.
The collection of paintings by the famous artist is located in the Berenguera d'Aguilar Palace in the La Ribera quarter. The museum mainly presents works of the early period of Picasso's work, there are several later works. In addition to the paintings themselves, there are expositions of ceramics, engravings, and photographs. Lectures are periodically held on the territory of the museum, which talk about the life and work of Picasso.
National Art Museum of Catalonia
The gallery building is located on Mount Montjuic and is part of the National Palace complex. The museum has been operating since the 1990s. XX century, the exposition is collected from two funds - the Museum of Art of Catalonia and the Museum of Modern Art. It contains several paintings by El Greco and Velasquez, as well as engravings, photographs, woodwork, coin collections, old banknotes, and medals. Picturesque fountains beat at the entrance to the National Palace.
Barcelona History Museum
Located on the Royal Square in the Gothic Quarter. Combines several historical objects. Of greatest interest is the underground complex of ancient structures. You need to go down to the ground on the elevator for 12 meters. The museum complex also includes the Pedralbes Monastery, the Leisure Center in Park Güell, Park Güell, the Verdage House Museum, the Temple of Augustus and the Ensemble in Plaza del Rey.
Joan Miro Foundation
Modern Art Museum. The founder is Joan Miro, an avant-garde and surrealist of the 20th century. The museum is a platform for exhibitions of young contemporary avant-garde artists. For the construction of the building, the architect chose a site in the park on the mountain. He created a unique building in the Mediterranean style with arches between the exhibition halls and glass roofs. And from the roof of the museum offers a great and picturesque view.
Museum Cosmo Caixa
Science Museum, one of the most famous in Europe. The cost of building the museum building in the Art Nouveau style at the beginning of the 20th century amounted to about 100 million euros. Its area is more than 40,000 m². The museum is interactive, not only scientific, but also educational. Expositions of different scientific categories are presented in an entertaining way, which is interesting for both children and adults. Visitors can experiment - call a tornado or make a sandstorm.
Erotic Museum of Barcelona
Despite the unusual theme, it is one of the most visited in Barcelona. The museum's fund contains more than 800 exhibits, some of which are of considerable archaeological value. Historical exhibits allow you to trace how erotic motifs have changed in the cultures of different peoples. Among them are frank sculptural compositions and erotic works by Picasso. And at the entrance to the museum you can take a glass of champagne.
The symbolic entrance to the Ciutadella Park is 30 meters high. Built of red brick with stone and ceramic tile decorations. The architect was Josep Vilaseka. Sculptors Josep Reines, Josep Limona and Antoni Vilanova worked on the arch. The composition style is neo-Moorish. 50 emblems of Barcelona itself and other Spanish provinces were used as decorations for the arch. Bats are carved from stone on the columns.
The main Catholic church of the city is located in the Gothic Quarter. The cathedral was erected on the site of a Roman basilica of the 6th century, where the relics of the holy martyr Eulalia, the patroness of Barcelona, were kept. After the Moors destroyed the basilica, a cathedral was rebuilt in the early Romanesque style in the 11th century, and a Gothic building appeared in the 13th century. In subsequent centuries, the temple was completed, the main facade appeared already in the 19th century.
Monastery of Pedralbes
Located in a rich and prestigious area of Barcelona. The monastery itself is distinguished by luxurious interior decoration and pomp of interiors. It was erected by the will of Queen Elisenda de Moncada during the heyday of the Catalan Gothic architectural style and became an excellent example of this school. Some cells do not look like monastic ones at all - they are decorated with magnificent frescoes and ornaments.
Monastery of Montserrat
Millennial Benedictine monastery dedicated to Our Lady of Catalonia. It is located in a picturesque place in the middle of the rocks, the walls of the buildings seem to be “glued” to the rock. There is a museum on the territory of the monastery where you can admire the works of Caravaggio, Picasso, El Greco, Dali. Montserrat appeared in the 11th century thanks to the efforts of the venerable abbot-architect Olibe of Ripoll.
Church of Santa Maria del Mar
An ancient temple in the La Ribera quarter, a classic example of the Catalan Gothic style. The church was built in the 14th century with donations from seafarers and merchants who needed their own patron. At this time in Barcelona, the heyday of navigation, maritime trade and discovery was just observed. The outer doors are decorated with reliefs depicting scenes of ship life. The church often hosts classical music concerts.
Mount Tibidabo and Temple of the Sacred Heart
Tibidabo rises 500 meters above Barcelona. The name of this mountain is associated with a legend from the Gospel, according to which Satan tempted Jesus in this place with unearthly beauty and power. On the mountain there is an unusual temple of the “air gothic” style with a statue of Christ at the very top. This is the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, it has a magnificent interior and elegant architecture. You can get to the mountain by funicular, bus or tram.
Monument to Christopher Columbus
Monument to the discoverer of America, installed at the end of the Rambla. The structure rises 60 meters above the historic port, where Columbus arrived at the end of his epochal campaign. The monument was erected in 1888. The base of the column is decorated with bas-reliefs telling about the voyage of the pioneer, at the top there is a small observation deck from where you can admire the sea and city blocks.
The structure crowns the mountain of the same name in Barcelona. Until the 16th century, there was a watchtower here, in the middle of the century (during the uprising of the Catalans against the Habsburgs) a fortress wall and defensive structures appeared. In the 18th century, the British took the fort, but very soon the Spaniards retook Montjuic back. Today, there is a military museum on the territory of the fortress.
Magic Fountain of Montjuic
Musical fountain in the square in front of the National Palace, which is located on Montjuic. The fountain was built in 1929 for the World Exhibition, repaired and renovated in 1992 in preparation for the Olympics. The lighting system of the structure (about 5,000 light sources in 3,600 streams of water) creates interesting visual illusions during operation, which is why the fountain was called "magic".
One of the largest European aquariums, which contains 11 thousand representatives of the aquatic world. It is an important center for the study and conservation of the natural diversity of the Mediterranean Sea. The aquarium features 14 ecosystems: caves, grottoes, coral reefs, rocky coastline, sandy coastline, algae colonies. Several ecosystems represent the tropical natural belt.
Camp Nou stadium
The stadium where the famous, revered and almost iconic Barcelona football club trains. Football fans and supporters consider this place a real symbol of the city and, first of all, they strive to get here. The stadium can accommodate almost 100,000 spectators and is the largest in Europe. Barcelona has been awarded 5 stars by FIFA for functionality, comfort and capacity.
Trading rows leading the history from the XIII century. The colorful Boqueria is a great place to eat and stock up on Catalan delicacies. It has everything: fresh seafood, excellent aged jamon, a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, wines, Catalan sweets, the best cheeses. On Boqueria, tourists will be able to fully appreciate the generosity of the fertile lands of the Mediterranean and its underwater depths.
3 best beaches in Barcelona
Rating of popular beaches, photos and a short description.
Nova Mar Bella beach
Municipal beach. Reconstructed and ennobled in the process of preparing the city for the Summer Olympic Games. Clean and beautiful sea, fine sand attract vacationers, but the view is somewhat spoiled by new buildings on the coast. The length of the beach is a little more than 400 meters, the width is about 40 meters. A feature of the beach is its section, which was chosen by nudists. The beach is equipped with a medical aid station, lifeguards are on duty.
For landscaping and cleanliness, awarded the Blue Flag. The beach is 640 meters long and 39 meters wide. This is a municipal beach, the entrance to it is free. The beach is non-tourist, there are few people on it. For lovers of outdoor activities there is a beach soccer field, a ping-pong table, a volleyball net. You can rent a surfboard and a kayak, sun loungers and beach umbrellas.
The oldest and most famous city beach, located on a wide sandy spit. The territory of Barceloneta stretched to the Olympic port. There are many clubs, restaurants, bars, volleyball courts and other active activities on the beach. The place is popular with young people, as during the high season, vigorous activity does not subside for an hour, discos and dances are organized even during the day.