Barcelona is Spain’s second largest city and some might say its most cosmopolitan: Beeing the Capital of Catalonia, Barcelona ofers a unique culture within Spain, with its own language, arts and cuisine. Barcelona has wide, Paris style avenues and many surrealist architectural details, crowned by the unfinished Gothic-surrealist masterpiece of the Sagrada Familia Cathedral, designed by Antonio Gaudi. The names Barcelona derives from the Phoenician word Barkeno. The Romans created a fortified town there in the 15th century and the city was subsequently taken over by several different invaders, including the Moors until Barcelona was re-conquered in 1801 by Charlemagne’s son. Charlemagne’s Dukes eventually allied with the Aragonese to create the crown of Aragon, which at its height during the 14th and 15th centuries, occupied large areas of the western Mediterranean, including the Balearic Islands, Sicily and southern Italy. During the Franco dictatorship, Catalonians were not allowed to speak Catalan and their culture was suppressed. One of the most unique aspects of visiting Spain today, is to be immersed in the wonderful cocktail of its regional dialects, so enjoy the Catalonian language, Cuisine and Arts: Visit the Picasso Museum; take the cable car up to Pueblo Espanol on Montjuig hill, built for the world fair of 1929, a theme park of all the villages of Spain and their contrasting architecture. Walk along the Ramblas, one of the most pleasant pedestrian boulevards in the world, ending in Barcelona’s beautiful port and Marina, one of the largest in the Mediterranean, complete with an IMAX theatre, a multi story shopping mall and open air discos and bars.
Transmeditteranea ferries to the Balearic Islands also depart from this port. Walk along the waterfront and admire Columbus’s pillar and the wavy Rambla del mar Jetty. Further up the coast you will reach the ultra modern Olympic villa and marina, built for the 1992 Summer Olympics, turned into a high tech dinning arcade with café’s and restaurant offering wonderful views of the marina and Barceloneta beach. Hit the Barri Gotic for a late evening meal and bars but save some energy for a drive north along the Costa Brava, a twisting 92 mile stretch of rocky coast and craggy aquamarine coves heading towards the French Border, home of El Buli, mani times voted the best restaurant in the world.
Barcelona is served by Barcelona El Prat International Airport. Its massive port connects it with the Mediterranean and the rest of the world. A modern bus station connects the city with all major towns in Spain and its train station offers overnight long distance trains to Spain and France, the speed train and many local commuter rail lines. Inside the city you can get around using its super efficient Metro and each district can be easily explored by foot individually, specially the Barri Gotic, Las Ramblas and Port Olimpic.
Things To Do:
Take the cable car to Montjuit for the Pueblos de Espana Park and the sweeping views of the city. Visit the UNESCO site of Park Guell, a garden in the sky designed by Antonio Gaudi, with intricate surrealist architecture and great views of the city. Visit the Sagrada Famila Temple, a symbol of Barcelona and Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece. Go to Barceloneta beach, just off Port Olimpic for beach frolics in the sun. Hit the town in the evening, discos and restaurants abound in the Maremagnum pier and in and around the Bari Gotic. FC Barcelona stadium, the third largest football stadium in the world, is also a must visit place.
The best way to explore the city’s best attractions is to rent a car. Discover the real Barcelona by driving around and stop over where ever you wish to. No schedules to follow!
Barcelona has Mediterranean climate with warm, dry summers and mild winters. The hottest month is August where the mercury can rise up to 35 degree Celsius and the humidity levels can raise up to 70%. January is the coldest month where the temperature can dip up to 10 degree Celsius. The rainy seasons are normally in between autumn and spring. The best time to visit Barcelona is during the autumn where you will experience the perfect blend of sunny climate with occasional rains.
From low-budget accommodation to five-star accommodation, Barcelona hotel offers all the tourists a variety of lodging options that suit everyone’s choice, needs and pockets.