The good news is: you’re going to Barcelona, the bad news: you only have 24 hours. Normally it would take at least one week to do the sightseeing. If you have to schedule all of this in one day, planning is key. Unfortunately there will also be some skipping involved. We’re sorry but you won’t be able to see the beach unless you think sand and water are more important than Gaudí. If you do prefer the beach, we suggest you chose Benidorm over Barcelona next time. Another one that fell of our list is the Picasso Museum. We’re a big fan but the museum focusses mainly on his early work. To see his true masterpieces you’ll need to travel around the world.
1. Long live public transport
As most big cities, Barcelona has an excellent public transport network. You can get almost anywhere quite quickly by metro or bus.
2. Don’t forget to eat
The Spanish (or Catalan) cuisine is delicious. In Barcelona there are good tapas bars all over the place. Tickets (Av. del Paraŀlel, 164) and Cal Pep (Plaça de les Olles, 8) are two of the many restaurants that can be recommended. For lunch Milk Bar & Bistro (Carrer d’en Gignàs, 21) and Elsa y Fred (Carrer del Rec Comtal, 11) are always a good idea. And don’t forget to also taste the delicious Churros for breakfast, as a snack or desert. Side note: if you’re on a summer diet, the traditional Spanish food might not be the best option.
3. You absolutely can’t skip La Sagrada Familia
Barcelona definitely would be less interesting without the creations of Antoni Gaudí. He personally turned the city into a touristic attraction. His biggest accomplishment (and by this were not only talking about the size) is the Sagrada Familia. Constructions started in 1882 but he was only appointed as architect director in 1884. Up till now, the Roman Catholic church still isn’t finished.
If you know just a little bit of the history of Catholic churches, you realize that the Sagrada Familia is an absolute masterpiece. It’s phenomenal, progressive, gradiose. In no country around the world, even Italy, have they ever dared to build a church as fascinating as this one. This is one of the many reasons the Sagrada Familia absolutely has to be on your list.
4. You can’t skip Casa Batlló neither
Another one of Gaudí’s creations you can’t miss: Casa Batlló. It was bought by Josep Batlló in 1900 and renovated by Gaudí in between 1904 and 1906. The facade is absolutely stunning but we suggest you also visit the inside. When you enter, you get a smartphone with videos that explain the entire history of the house. It even shows videos of how it was originally decorated.
5. Take at least one hour to just stroll around the city
Taking the metro is fast but the downside is that you don’t see anything of the city. After leaving Casa Batlló, take some time to go for a little walk. Passeig de Gracia and its surrounding streets were and still are known as a very prestigious and fashionable area.
6. If you have some time left: visit Park Güell
Park Güell isn’t only worth a visit because of Gaudí, the view on top is just amazing. You get to see the entire city and finally it becomes clear what an impressive impact the Sagrada Familia has on its landscape. Also, if you ignore the salesmen and singers that are present to entertain the other tourists, it’s quite relaxing to have a stroll around the park.
Photo credits: Ruth Van Soom for ENFNTS TERRIBLES