How to visit Barcelona in 2, 3 or 4 days? What are the best things to do in Barcelona? Barcelona is one of the prettiest cities in Europe to visit for its amazing architecture and unique vibe! So, let’s discover together the unmissable places to see absolutely in Barcelona, but also the good places to eat and the best areas to visit in Barcelona for a 100% successful stay with family, lovers or friends. Let’s go!
- TOP 15 to do in Barcelona 🤩
- City Pass to visit Barcelona 🎟
- Nice restaurants 😋
- Best areas in Barcelona 👍
- Getting from the airport to the city center 🚖
- Itineraries to visit Barcelona in 2, 3 or 4 days 🌟
1. TOP 15 must-sees in Barcelona
Here is our TOP 15 must-see places to visit and do in Barcelona:
- Visiting the Sagrada Familia
- Strolling through the alleys of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, Bario Gotico
- Visiting the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Barcelona
- Discovering the famous avenue la Rambla
- Visiting Park Güell
- Admiring Casa Batlló
- Seeing a sound and light show at Casa Milà
- Visiting the Palace of Catalan Music
- Taking the Montjuïc funicular and discover this area of Barcelona
- Going to the beach in Barcelona
- Seeing a Flamenco show
- Climbing the Tibidabo peak and visit the Sagrat Cor
- Visiting the Basilica of Santa Maria de la Mer in Barcelona
- Taking a trip to the Boquería market
- Visiting Mount Montserrat from Barcelona
Good to know! Some places are accessible for free, and others with entrance tickets. If you want to visit Barcelona, you should know that during the high tourist season, it can be difficult to find entry tickets at the last moment, and even a few days before: discover more about Barcelone City Pass ( + time saving).
What to do in Barcelona for a great trip? Discover our selection of guided tours in English from the most essential to the most unusual (on foot, by boat, with a local guide…): Best guided tours in Barcelona.
1.1 Visiting the Sagrada Familia
The Sagrada Familia is a unique monument in the world! Gaudi’s most famous work, the cathedral is still under construction, or more precisely its towers. However, the interior of the Sagrada Familia is ready for the must visit, if you are going to visit Barcelona. The Sagrada Familia is clearly one of Barcelona’s must-sees.
Good to know. If you do not buy the entrance tickets for the Sagrada Familia in advance, beware of the wait. To save time, consider skip-the-line tickets, which are very effective in avoiding waiting in such touristic places: book skip-the-line tickets to visit the Sagrada Familia.
Last minute idea! Moreover, even if you take a few days in advance, it also sometimes happens that there are no more tickets available. If you are already there and you can’t find any more tickets, consider the Barcelona City Pass, which includes the main places to visit in Barcelona (with quick access to the Sagrada Familia as well).
Guided tour. In order to make the most of this fantastic and majestic place in Barcelona, you can also opt for a visit with a guide (book a guided tour). The visit lasts 1h30, and the price is not much higher than a skip-the-line ticket. So why not?
Find all our tips for visiting the Sagrada Familia in this blog post: How to visit Sagrada Familia?
1.2 Strolling through the narrow streets of Gothic Quarter in Barcelona
Bario Gotico is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Barcelona. Do not hesitate to stroll through the alleys of this district, which is very different from the other districts of Barcelona, which were built according to a rather square urban plan. This is the Plan Cerda of 1860, according to which the extension of the city of Barcelona was made.
By electric bike. In order to visit Barcelona and its historic center, you can also opt for a guided tour by electric bike. For example, this Barcelona bike tour in 2.5 hours.
1.3 Visiting the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Barcelona
The Cathedral of the Holy Cross is located in the Gothic quarter of Barcelona. Built on an old church from the Visigoth period, this cathedral was built between the 8th and 15th centuries. The large spire of the Sainte-Croix Cathedral shows up to 80 meters. It is interesting to discover the garden of the cloister of the cathedral, as well as to climb on its roofs. On the other hand, the visit of the cathedral, its cloister and its roofs is paying.
1.4 Discovering Barcelona’s famous avenue La Rambla
La Rambla is a leafy avenue in Barcelona. Rather touristy, the Rambla is not necessarily the most pleasant place in Barcelona. However, the Rambla is one of the central avenues of the city, which runs along the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona.
1.5 Visiting Park Güell in Barcelona
What to do in Barcelona? Discover the works of Antoni Gaudí, of course! And among them, there is the famous Parc Güell in Barcelona. Since 1984, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Park Güell is a somewhat magical place: buildings, sculptures and colorful columns that blend with nature. In the park, you can also visit the House of Gaudí, but it is not necessarily the most interesting monument to visit in Barcelona, if you come here for 2, 3 or 4 days.
Good to know. Parc Güell is located on Carrer d’Olot in Barcelona. Entrance to the monument zone of the park is paying (and in particular the most famous part, that of the mosaic terrace). Also, entries are limited. In high tourist season, especially in summer, in order to avoid unpleasant surprises once there, it is best to book the visit to Park Güell in advance: ticket prices here.
1.6 Admiring Casa Batlló from the inside
Among the TOP of the must-see places in Barcelona, there is of course Casa Batlló! Its architecture is just incredible, day and night, when the whole facade lights up. Casa Batlló is one of the finest examples of Gaudì architecture in downtown Barcelona.
Experience to do! Visiting the interior of Casa Batlló in Barcelona is definitely worth it. There are day tours, as well as night (evening) tours. Find photos, practical details for the visit here: tickets for visiting Casa Batlló. As with the other major monuments of the city, in order to avoid waiting or missing tickets on D-Day, you can book entrance tickets in advance.
1.7 Seeing a sound and light show at Casa Milà
Among the great moments to experience in Barcelona during a trip is the sound and light show at Casa Milà. It is a very nice activity to do, when you are going to visit Barcelona with family, lovers or friends. The show takes place on the roof! Find photos and other practical information here: Night experience at Casa Milà (several possible time slots to choose from from 8:40 p.m. to 10 p.m.).
1.8 Visiting the Palace of Catalan Music in Barcelona
In the TOP of the must-see things to do and see in Barcelona, don’t miss the Palau de la Música Catalana. This concert hall is just magnificent, and is one of the most beautiful concert halls in the world. You can discover the place by taking a ticket for a show or by booking a free visit without a concert. Plan an hour to visit the Palace of Catalan Music.
1.9 Taking the Montjuïc Funicular
Mount Monjuïc is perfect for a walk. The Monjuïc district was marked by two major events: the 1929 Universal Exhibition and the 1992 Olympic Games. To get up there, you can take a funicular (see prices here).
What to see in Montjuïc? The National Palace where the Museum of Contemporary Art of Catalunya is located, the Castle of Monjuïc, a botanical garden of 2000 species and plants, a magnificent fountain and the Joan Miró Foundation, where you can discover the works of Miró! The Monjuïc district is one of the essential areas of the city of Barcelona to visit. Allow at least a good half day, if not more.
1.10 Going to the beach in Barcelona
Temperatures in Barcelona are rather mild even in autumn, winter or early spring. You can therefore enjoy the beach almost all year round. If you come to Barcelona, walking along the beach is one of the things to do. On the other hand, it is certain that in terms of swimming, it is not guaranteed in winter, it is still a little chilly, but in summer it is of course largely possible. In summary, do not forget to take your bathing suits.
Catamaran cruise. If you are going on a trip to Barcelona with friends, you can do a small group activity discovering Barcelona from the sea. During this cruise, it will also be possible to swim. Discover more information here: Catamaran in Barcelona in a small group.
1.11 Seeing a Flamenco show
If you want to visit Barcelona, you can treat yourself to a Flamenco show. Even if Flamenco is an Andalusian dance, the trip to Barcelona can be a good opportunity to discover this dance known all over the world during an evening. Several offer it in Barcelona, including Los Tarantos. The Los Tarantos Flamenco show is quite short (40min), and perfect for a first discovery of Flamenco: discover more about this show.
1.12 Climbing the Tibidabo peak and visit Sagrat Cor in Barcelona
The summit of Tibidabo is 512 meters above sea level. It is the highest hill in Barcelona! From the top of Tibidabo, you can discover a magnificent panorama of the city of Barcelona going all the way to the sea! In addition to a beautiful panorama, you can visit a very pretty cathedral here, and a small amusement park.
1.13 Visiting the Basilica of Santa Maria de la Mer in Barcelona
Built between 1329 and 1383, the Basilica of Santa Maria de la Mer is a very pretty monument to visit in Barcelona. A fine example of the Catalan Gothic style, this basilica is located in the La Rivera district, in the historic heart of Barcelona. You can visit the basilica inside, but also its museum and its crypt. Admissions are chargeable.
1.14 Taking a trip to the Boquería market
What to do in Barcelona? Taste local specialties in the Boquéria market, of course! If you come to Barcelona with family, lovers or friends, it is also a good opportunity to discover the local cuisine. For example, you can learn how to cook a real seafood paella during a guided tour in English in the Boquería market!
1.15 Visiting Mount Montserrat from Barcelona (50km)
50km from Barcelona is Mount Montserrat, the most important and mysterious mountain in Catalonia. If you enjoy hiking and want to experience the spectacular views of the Catalan mountains, Montserrat is a perfect place to visit from Barcelona. Montserrat is a retreat place for Benedictine monks, it is a religious place known all over the world. Find more information here: 5-hour visit and hike with an English-speaking guide.
2. City Pass to visit Barcelona
The City Pass can be a good idea for visiting Barcelona, especially since access to certain places is sometimes limited in number of places. The City Pass includes skip-the-line tickets for the Sagrada Familia and tickets for Park Güell, as well as guides to discover these two places and access to the Barcelona tourist bus. If you can’t find any more tickets for the Sagrada Familia or Park Güell, consider taking a Barcelona City Pass.
3. Nice places to eat in Barcelona
Here are some nice places to eat in Barcelona (click on the restaurant name to place on Google Maps):
Brugarol Barcelona (C/ de Salomó ben Adret, 10): an excellent place to eat in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona! The restaurant is small and offers a 9-course tasting menu.
Milk Bar & Bistro (Carrer d’en Gignàs, 21): located in the heart of the historic center of Barcelona, hidden in an alley, the Milk Bar & Bistro is a good place to eat in Barcelona for lunch or brunch.
Berbena (Carrer de Minerva, 6): a good restaurant where you can enjoy original and inventive cuisine. The setting is warm and intimate at the same time. The restaurant is located next to the Diagonal metro station, in the Gracìa district.
Tosca del Carme (Carrer del Carme, 40): located close to Les Ramblas, this is a very good tapas bar to eat in Barcelona!
El Bosc de Les Fades (Passatge de la Banca, 7): a bar that stands out with a particular decor. The atmosphere is nice. Perfect for a drink with tapas in Barcelona!
4. Best areas in Barcelona
In which areas to stay in Barcelona? Despite the fact that the Gothic quarter of Barcelona is one of the must-visit neighborhoods, it is not always the best area to stay in Barcelona, or rather a part of it. As the streets are small, in general, there is little light or the sound insulation is not the best, but it depends a lot on the hotel and the street. La Barceloneta, seaside district of Barcelona, is not the most interesting place to stay in Barcelona either, but rather to go out. Among the neighborhoods to stay in Barcelona during a trip, there is the Eixample district, the Gracìa district or El Born. Find out more information in this blog post: Where to stay in Barcelona?
Catalonia Portal de l’Angel: located between Plaça Catalunya and the Gothic quarter of Barcelona in a traditional 19th century building, this hotel offers spacious double rooms, some of which have a view of the city. The entrance overlooks a pedestrian street and therefore quiet (without cars).
Catalonia Catedral: a very nice hotel to stay in Barcelona! The decoration and the atmosphere of the hotel are pleasant and remarkable.
Praktik Èssens: located in the Eixample district, the Praktik Èssens hotel is perfect for visiting Barcelona. Some rooms have a private terrace with an outdoor bathtub: ideal for enjoying the Barcelona sun as a couple! 💚
5. How to get from the airport to downtown Barcelona?
Barcelona airport is located 14km from Barcelona. In general, to go from Barcelona airport to the city center, you don’t waste a lot of time. Several options are possible. You can take a transport card to carve up more easily in Barcelona (see the prices for the transport card in Barcelona for 1, 2 or 3 days).
Book a taxi to go from the airport to your accommodation: no hassle with suitcases, the most practical (check the prices here).
Take the shuttle, the aerobus, which leaves from Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 and goes to Place de Catalunya: the journey will take you 35 minutes (6 euros for a one-way ticket, and 11 euros for a round trip) , but you will also have to add the time between the place and your accommodation. Departures are every 10 minutes.
Take the train: the cheapest, 30 minutes journey, departures every 30 minutes, 2 euros per person, two stops in downtown Barcelona (Estació Sants and Passeig de Gràcia)
6. Itineraries to visit Barcelona in 2, 3 or 4 days
Here are some ideas for itineraries to do in Barcelona in 2, 3 or 4 days.
2 day trip to Barcelona
If you are going to visit Barcelona in 2 days, here is what you can do:
- Visit the Sagrada Familia (ticket prices here)
- Discover the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona and visit the Holy Cross Cathedral of Barcelona
- Admire the architecture of Casa Milà or Casa Battlò (tickets here)
- Go to the beach in Barcelona
How to visit Barcelona in 3 days?
For a 3 day trip to Barcelona you can add to the list above:
- Visit the Palace of Catalan Music
- Visit Park Güell (tickets prices here)
What to see and do in Barcelona in 4 days?
For a 4-day trip to Barcelona, here are some other places to visit:
- Take the cable car to Montjuïc
- Take a tour of a Barcelona market
Barcelona is a city that can easily be visited with family, lovers or friends. It is a city where you can find plenty of cultural places to visit, but also romantic places, places to relax and go out. So a very nice trip awaits you!