We have been known to say Barcelona is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. We were blown away by the stunning architecture, the delicious food and the spectacular public parks. Barcelona is located in the province of Catalonia, on the Mediterranean coast in Spain, just a short flight away from several major cities. We had a short 4 days in this magnificent city so we are longing to return to explore her even more. Barcelona is one of those cities that everyone raves about; I’ve not heard a bad word about it. From the buildings to the food and everything in between, this city has earned the reputation she has. Here are some of our Barcelona Highlights.
Many travelers visit the city for its architecture. There are various Gothic, medieval and renaissance buildings in the city. Some of the most notable buildings were designed by Gaudí.
The city’s symbol is the Sagrada Familia, an unfinished cathedral. This cathedral has several themed facades decorated with carved sculptures, and the Nativity facade, with its Baroque motifs, was the only one completed before the architect passed away. Visitors can explore the cathedral’s interior, which has murals and twisted columns.
Another great piece of architecture is Casa Vicens, which was one of Gaudi’s first buildings. This residential building has a trencadis façade, decorated with colorful ceramic tiles.
Casa Milà is one of the city’s most famous buildings. Known for its undulating stone facade and forged iron balconies, this building is located in the Eixample district. In the same district visitors will find Casa Batlló, a building with a façade covered in colorful tiles that has iron balconies shaped in several shapes. There are several tiled sculptures on the roof.
You could spend days just walking around the city taking in all the amazing pieces of architecture – Remember to watch where you are walking; its very easy to forget to watch your step when you are looking up at all the beauty.
There are many ways to explore this city apart from embarking on a walking tour around the city’s main landmarks. Tapas tours are a popular option for foodies who want to taste local dishes and enjoy the city’s nightlife.
The Mercat de la Boquería is one of the city’s main markets, located off La Rambla. This market sells ingredients traditionally used in the Mediterranean cuisine. There are colorful stalls selling fresh fruit and vegetables, fish and meat, and many local products. The market has several tapas bars, including the famous El Quim.
Another one of the city’s markets is the more traditional Mercat de Sant Antoni. This market is located in the Raval neighborhood, in the city’s historical center. The large steel market sells local products and has several tapas bars. Next to the market there is a small flea market where visitors will be able to buy old comics, ancient coins postcards and stamps.
One of our favorite parks was Parc Güell, which was designed by the very talented Gaudí. Located on a hill north of the city center, the park has great fountains and mosaic sculptures throughout. The colors are beautiful. The observation deck has views overlooking the city and the Mediterranean sea. Gaudi once lived on the premises and his house still remains which has been converted into a lovely museum.
Another beautiful park in Barcelona is Parc de la Ciutadella. This is the cities most formal and historical park. My favorite part was the Cascada, a beautiful fountain and water feature which was built in 1888 for the Universal Exhibition. You will also find sculptures, buildings, a museums and even a zoo here. And there is an abundance of lush greenery and exquisite gardens. Don’t miss this one.
Have you been to Barcelona? What would be your top pick for a Barcelona Highlight?