Anyone who seeks for a beautiful site for vacation is welcomed in Barcelona. The capital of Catalonia is a prosperous seaside city full of life. Its boundless energy is concentrated in industry, business, art and music. Barcelona is located on the northeastern Mediterranean coast of Spain. Certainly it is the most cosmopolitan and economically best developed city in the country. And with its population of 3 million the city has a long reputation of one of the most modern European cities.
Barcelona is also a home to exceptional museums artists – Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Antoni Tapies. The phenomenal examples of Gothic architecture and art nouveau style (Gaudi) are scattered throughout the city bringing its glory as the advanced Design Capital in Spain.
One week stay is the opportunity to touch the soul of the city, but it is so rich and vast, that a month will go to penetrate its essence. It is such a magnificent place to visit and there are so many places of interest for the tourist to see, but the following 10 attractions of Barcelona are highly recommended to be seen if you have less than a week to spend there:
1. Sagrada Familia (translated as “Holy Family”)
The church was designed by Antonio Gaudi. The Start of its construction was laid in 1882, but today the building is not finished. Its parts are in different architectural styles, dominated by the idea of Gaudi for items taken from the best, according to him, architect – Mother Nature. Stairs in the towers of the church are in the form of a stone giant snail. Some of the outer columns are carried by turtles. The columns of the temple resemble a forest of trees that branch into the roof and some of them reach 21 meters in height. Viewed from afar, the eight towers and the facade look like a sand castle, built by a child on the beach. Having in mind, that inside works are carried out, it is more interesting to view it from outside and the entrance fee is not worth. But if you decide, you may use the elevator to reach the top of the tower, from where the entire city can be overlooked.
2. The Port of Barcelona (Port Vell), The Aquarium
This is the favorite part of the town for many visitors. All coastal cities have a special charm, but Barcelona has a special place in my heart for its beautiful, long about 3 km promenade with palm trees. A brand new wooden pedestrian bridge connects the Rambla de Mar with the Maremàgnum, a complex with shops, cinemas, bars and restaurants. Behind the Marèmagnum are the IMAX theatre and the Barcelona’s aquarium. Here is the Barceloneta district where you can eat delicious seafood. The port lands hundreds of yachts and ships from the height of technology to old refurbished galleries. Boat trip provides an interesting insight into the city from the sea. I think the spirit and the atmosphere of the city are felt best near the sea. In the area of Port Vell old and new, modern and classic, tourists and locals are mixed and you may really feel the pulse of Barcelona.
3. The Park Güell
Designed by Gaudí between 1900 and 1914, the Park embodies his idea of ”garden city” where to escape from the industrial city and return to nature. Beautiful mosaics, the original anatomical benches and kiosks are like out of a fairy tale.
4. The Batiyo houses (Casa Batllo), La Pedrera (La Pedrera)
Both are works of Gaudi, commissioned by industrial barons and are located on the main shopping boulevards. The Batiyo House is known as “the house of bones” because of the facade of this amazingly strange and modernistic house. The facade of Casa Batiyo reminds of a story from the bottom of the ocean. The balconies on the first floor resemble a coral reef, the wall itself – the seabed, the terraces are like staring at the mouth of a whale. The Roof tiles resemble fish scales, and inside there are no right angles. The architecture of the buildings of Gaudi is like nothing else. The shapes are inspired by the study of nature – flora and fauna. Typical is the intensive use of ceramics.
5. The Camp Nou Stadium and Barcelona Football Club Museum
The largest stadium in Europe with a capacity of nearly 100,000 people is impressive, and the museum of the football club is just huge. The stadium is very steep, and all seats have a perfect view of the terrain. The museum brings together the Barça past in terms of photographs, audio-visual material, athletic items and all the trophies the club has won over the course of its history. In the basement is the team’s souvenir shop. When FC Barcelona plays, the streets deserts. All people are at home or in coffee shops and restaurants where they watch the game.
6. The National Art Museum MNAC and magical fountains of Mont Zhuik (Montjuic)
The rich collection of the museum includes sculptures, paintings of El Greco, Velazquez, Rubens, engravings, photographs and so on. From the entrance of the museum, located on the hill Mont Zhuik, there are beautiful views of the city, and the evening show of the fountain in front of being quite impressive.
7. The Spanish Village (Poble Espanol)
A little village is introducing different types of authentic houses from all over Spain. This is one specially built mini-resort, in which each house represents a different region and craft from Spain. Each house has an architecture that is typical for different regions. Probably the best place to buy souvenirs and gifts.
8. The Zoo
The zoo is rich in animal species. It also has a restaurant, a shop, electric cars, picnic area, ponies and a mini-train. It is a place where you can spend a whole pleasant day.
9. The Picasso Museum – contains early works by Picasso when he lived in Barcelona.
Tip: Queues for tickets are huge and the wait – a long time.
10. The Street Ramblas (Las Ramblas)
Starting from Catalonia Square and ending at Port Vell, this is the most famous tourist street in the city and one of the first places where tourists come. It has a special flavor. It is filled with stalls with all sorts of trinkets, souvenirs, postcards, restaurants with tables on the street and many masked characters who entertain tourists and decorate their pictures for a few cents. It is lively until late at night and sometimes it is so crowded with tourists that the discrepancy is difficult.
In summary: Barcelona is the beauty of the coast, the unique masterpieces of Gaudi, the scent of jasmine, which is carried by almost every garden, near which you pass along. Barcelona leaves an incredible charm to anyone who visits it and a desire to return there again.