Barcelona is easily one of my favourite cities I’ve ever visited, and as far as city breaks go I think it’s about as good as it gets. Here are a few things I think are well worth doing and places not to miss to get the most out of this beautiful city.
Hire a Bike and Hit the Beaches
There are plenty of cycle-for-hire shops in Barcelona who will rent a bike out for an hour or two at a very reasonable price (I wouldn’t risk hiring anything more than a cycle personally, quad-bikes are a bigno for me). All the beaches have cycle lanes running alongside them, make the most of your hour and explore as much as you can. We used our time to scout out the best beach-side restaurants and spots we wanted to explore. Super fun and productive!
Gaudi Apartments and Sagrada Familia
Antoni Gaudi’s architectural visions were nothing short of genius. In the centre of town you can find the Gaudi apartments, a thoroughly disorienting but absolutely stunning design (see the featured photo for this post). Another must-see is the famously unfinished Sagrada Familia and believe me, you’ve not seen the extent of its beauty until you’ve actually gone inside. Make sure you book tickets online in advance – we did not do this and were faced with a three hour wait. We ended up going home, booking tickets for the next day and coming back. So worth it.
This was the absolute highlight of my trip. I actually ended up going here on my own (long story, we won’t go into it…) but it was easily the best thing I did in Barcelona. The park itself is quite a walk from the nearest metro station and it is largely uphill but please stick it out. The beauty that awaits you is truly worth it. The park is an explosion of colour and joy, it’s impossible not to love it. There are some really quirky creations within the park too, including a huge gingerbread house and lots of mosaic animals.
Hire a Jet-Ski
It took a lot of convincing for me to go along with this one, but I have to admit that once I stopped being nervous it was such a thrill. My one piece of crucial advice: make sure you listen to the instructions on how to brake. If you don’t, I can tell you from experience that you will end up completely winding yourself hundreds of meters from shore. This is not good. Other than that, my time on the jet-skis was absolutely thrilling and I’m really excited for the next time I get the chance to hire one out.
Magic Fountain of Montjuic
I’m not entirely sure how we ended up here, but I know it was after several hours of wandering around aimlessly. We stumbled upon the magic fountain entirely by accident but it was absolutely stunning and I would highly recommend a visit. Watch out for the colourful birds (painted pigeons) that will come and land on you. It will seem funny at first, until someone comes up and demands 15Euro for your trouble. There are a few scams like this in Barcelona so just keep an eye out!
All of this is easily doable in a jam-packed three day break, but if you want more time for relaxing then obviously extend your stay a little longer. Just make sure not to miss out on the fun and tick these off the Barcelona bucket list!