Catalan delicacies, neo-Gothic structure, sandy seashores, rugged mountains, and a colourful historical past. Did we point out Catalan delicacies? Barcelona, Spain has each motive to be excessive on the record for journey bucket lists.
The town is a mix of influences, there may be the general Spanish tradition however tucked alongside proud Catalan tradition. There’s a lengthy historical past of independence claims, civil warfare and unrest. Combine this in with an enormous migrant and expat group and also you discover a mix of cultures, cuisines, languages and kinds.
Possibly you want to keep within the coronary heart of the previous city and Gothic structure, or do you need to expertise the mix of metropolis and seashore in Barceloneta? It might be that you’re extra of an uptown kinda particular person and need to keep within the coronary heart of Eixample, surrounded by towering buildings, limitless purchasing alternatives and Gaudi round what looks like nearly each nook.
Both approach, now we have the very best of the barrios (neighborhoods) laid out so that you can determine for your self!
This information was written by Sensible Wanderlust’s Head of Electronic mail and Affiliate Advertising and marketing Natalie Collins, Barcelona resident, avid metropolis explorer and fellow Cava lover. Take it away, Natalie!
Psst: Searching for extra issues to do in Barcelona throughout your journey? We’ve bought a submit about our favourite meals & wine tour in Barcelona, which we extremely advocate. We even have extra posts on journey in Europe.
Psst: Obtain the strolling tour to seek out all of the hidden spots from a Barcelona resident!
Barcelona Journey Ideas
Earlier than we dive into the barrio round-up, listed below are just a few ideas that will help you put together in your journey to Barcelona.
- Be conscious of the season: Barcelona splendidly experiences all 4 seasons, so don’t assume it’s heat year-round. Winter will get chilly and damp! The perfect months for vacationers are the Spring (late March to early June) and Autumn (late September to early November) months. Temperatures are snug, and town parks and tree-lined avenues look lovely. Additionally means fewer thick winter layers to pack!
- Put together just a few Spanish phrases: Barcelona is in Catalonia, a Spanish area with a historical past of independence claims from the Spanish state. True Barcelona locals are sometimes fiercely Catalan, with Catalan as their first language, Spanish second and English coming someplace after that if wanted. So you’ll do higher with both a fundamental grasp of Spanish and even some Catalan – don’t simply assume you may get away with English, though most vacationer locations do converse English!
- Keep secure: Pickpockets are a giant downside in Barcelona, and the locations I like to recommend avoiding are the worst locations you’re prone to encounter thieves. Don’t go away your telephone on a desk, preserve your valuables in a cash belt, don’t journey carrying an expensive-looking watch and preserve your bag both tied to your chair or in your knee. At all times be vigilant!
- Eat all of the foods and drinks all of the cava: Catalan and Spanish delicacies is scrumptious, with a lot of contemporary hearty components, good olive oils and little tapas plates. There’s additionally the Basque affect with some nice pintxo eating places, which is my favourite technique to eat! Cava can also be made within the area so respectable cava prices little or no. Take a meals and wine tour in the event you can to expertise it multi function afternoon.
- Don’t name it Barca: Locals and long-term residents get actually sniffy about Barca/Barna. The right abbreviation is Barna; Barca is the soccer staff. I nonetheless really feel bizarre calling it Barna so simply persist with Barcelona.
- Carry snug strolling sneakers: The town is extremely walkable however elements of it are hilly and you’ll cowl way more floor than you notice whereas gawking on the structure. So pack respectable sneakers you realize will preserve your ft completely happy and benefit from the stroll! To assist, we’ve bought a Barcelona self-guided strolling tour – and we’ve additionally bought options for the very best strolling sneakers for journey. Listed here are our favourite journey sneakers for males and for girls.
- Completely different areas even have completely different hyperlinks to different elements of town: The metro system is great and pretty straightforward to navigate however in the event you favor to keep away from utilizing it or buses then it’s essential to base your self strolling distance to the belongings you need to see or at the very least on the identical metro line to keep away from a number of stops and adjustments. An space could also be quarter-hour away in a taxi however takes 45 minutes by metro or bus, so remember the place you need to be in relation to the place you need to keep.
- Keep away from short-term residence leases: The housing market in Barcelona has been monopolized by vacationer leases, driving costs up a lot greater than is reasonably priced for residents and creating a variety of scams and disparity. Inns have been badly affected by the pandemic in order that they deserve the assist fairly than grasping property homeowners who would fairly go away an residence empty as a substitute of renting it for an affordable value to an area. There are even new legal guidelines proscribing vacationer licenses and you’re now not allowed to lease a room short-term, so don’t contribute to the housing disaster, be a accountable vacationer, and keep in a resort!
- In case your check-in and check-out occasions don’t sync up along with your must roam the streets and also you want a spot to retailer your baggage, try LuggageHero: This service helps you discover a secure place to maintain your baggage when you’re working round so that you don’t stand out like a blatant vacationer! Use the code PRACTICALW for two hours of free baggage storage on us.
The place to Keep in Barcelona
Barcelona is damaged up into separate neighborhoods known as barrios, every with its personal distinct character, vibe and attraction. To the uninitiated, you could wrestle to know the place to go and what to do, however don’t fear, I bought you coated!
As with many cities, there may be additionally an enormous financial variation. Strolling alongside Passeig de Gràcia you’ll see customers swinging baggage from Gucci, Versace and Saint Laurant, after which step down La Rambla simply 10 minutes away and discover quirky low-cost hippy retailers promoting handmade crafts, knock-off clothes and road meals. Barcelona is that type of place!
This provides to the allure of town, you’re all the time only a brief stroll or turning a nook away from discovering one thing utterly completely different and discovering a hidden gem. Which does make looking down meals and souvenirs actually enjoyable – every thing your coronary heart wishes may be present in Barcelona!
Outdated Metropolis: El Born & Gothic
The previous a part of Barcelona is the very first thing that involves thoughts for many vacationers once they consider Barcelona, and it’s true it’s the most charming a part of town. Filled with previous winding streets, lovely historic buildings, church buildings, lovable eating places and hidden options round each nook.
That is the place you will discover Barcelona Cathedral, the Picasso Museum, Arc de Triomf, La Rambla, and a complete host of different well-known landmarks. It truly is the very best place to remain in Barcelona for a primary go to.
Nonetheless, you do want to select fastidiously as some streets are a bit shadier than others, some are noisy, and people cute winding streets aren’t as enjoyable to remain in in the event you don’t see daylight out of your resort room window.
This barrio has nice transport hyperlinks to the remainder of town and is a brief stroll to the seashore, with elements of it opening out onto the marina at Port Vell so that you get views of the blue Mediterranean Sea. The world can also be extra open to vacationers so that you usually tend to discover a place to seize a espresso and a pastry in case you are an early morning kind of particular person.
That is additionally the very best place to base your self in case you are planning on taking our Self-Guided Strolling Tour of Barcelona. A lot of the tour covers this space and can also be the place you end so you’re a brief stroll again to your resort afterward.
The place to Keep in El Born & Gothic
There are a mix of expensive accommodations on this space in addition to some severely finances hostels. Beneath are a few of our favorites:
- Hostal Fernando is a type of good types of hostels with clear, vibrant rooms. It additionally overlooks Església de Sant Jaume, which is a fairly, previous church. Historical past in your windowsill!
- For one thing a bit fancier Barcelona Lodge Colonial is correct within the coronary heart of Gothic in a wonderful colonial constructing, a brief stroll down the road takes you to Port Vell Marina and a visit in another course takes you thru medieval streets.
- If you wish to keep as shut as attainable to the eccentric La Rambla then the Could Ramblas Lodge is the one for you. It’s situated just a few doorways down a aspect road from La Rambla and can also be the identical road you head all the way down to get to the Basílica de Santa Maria del Pi.
Barceloneta / Seashore
For these trying extra for the seashore vibes then Barceloneta is for you. This barrio is a small space made up of completely aligned streets so it’s nearly unattainable to get misplaced. To 1 aspect is Port Vell, to the south is the seashore, head north to El Born and east to Villa Olympica, the Olympic village from when Barcelona hosted the 1992 summer time Olympics.
Barceloneta correct is a good place to really feel you’re staying proper on the seashore with out lacking out on that Barcelona previous metropolis allure. The buildings aren’t essentially as fairly as different elements of town however the seashore environment is sort of year-round.
You’ll discover chiringuitos (seashore bars) open from Spring to mid-Autumn and there are all the time folks skateboarding and curler skating down the cycle paths alongside the entrance, so be careful as you stroll!
The place to Keep in Barceloneta / Seashore
There are just a few bigger accommodations on this space as you’d count on with it being beachside however the costs are wildly costly. Try the well-known landmark resort The W, lovely and epic views however out of finances for many vacationers! You’ll be able to nonetheless catch the views at their rooftop cocktail lounge and nightclub, in the event you can snag a desk!
- Whereas technically not in Barceloneta it’s simply throughout the street from the place the barrio begins, the Lodge Oasis has a tremendous rooftop pool and terrace and appears out in direction of the marina. From right here you may entry El Born, Gothic and Barceloneta in only a brief stroll.
- Lodge 54 Barceloneta is correct on the entrance overlooking the marina and steps away from the seashore, this may be my choose if going for the seashore resort possibility. The rooftop bar can also be like a bit backyard paradise, good for resting after an extended day of exploring.
- For a extra finances room, the Sea Hostel is a good choose for dorm room-style lodging, it is usually subsequent door to a restaurant, Buenas Migas, that does fairly superb pastries. Get up early, seize a espresso and pastry for a dawn stroll alongside the seashore.
Welcome to Eixample, the realm that you simply’ll see most in aerial pictures of Barcelona, these good crimson sq. blocks and streets aligned to OCD ranges. This a part of town is the place the well-known avenues of Diagonal and Passeig de Gracia run via, it’s the place the designer retailers are and can also be the bigger of the districts in Barcelona.
The roads are additionally very driveable, other than the irritating crimson mild cease/begin system which does make visitors heavier right here. However most accommodations have respectable sound insulation so you may keep away from visitors noise so long as you retain your home windows closed.
This space is charming for its typical Barcelona type with lengthy avenues, Guadi’s spectacular buildings, and exquisite balconies. You’ll discover Casa Batlo and Casa Mila, Plaza Catalunya to the south, Casa de les Punxes and plenty of different architectural beauties. Strolling round this space you’ll simply preserve stumbling into one other lovely constructing after one other, and in the event you get onto a rooftop someplace you’ll see much more.
The purchasing can also be unbelievable right here with every thing from high-end designer shops, to excessive road purchasing, to unbiased boutiques. If you wish to store with out having to stroll far to drop your baggage again on the resort, that is the place to do it.
This space can also be very well related with public transport, the buses run frequently and there are a variety of metro stations in addition to practice stations at each Passeig de Gràcia and at Plaza Catalunya.
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The place to Keep in Eixample
As you’d count on there isn’t any scarcity of accommodations in Eixample, from simpler budgets to luxurious high-end accommodations. Listed here are some fo the very best ones:
- After I first arrived in Barcelona I booked into Hostalin Barcelona Gran Through and it’s the place I like to recommend pals to remain for an awesome worth resort. The workers was a dream throughout my keep, the rooms are vibrant and cozy and it’s canine pleasant!
- For bougie fanciness proper on Passeig de Gràcia with the views to match the Lodge Royal Passeig de Gràcia is a good selection, and although the value is a bit greater it’s not eye-watering. You can go all out for a set with a non-public terrace or simply benefit from the rooftop terrace which is equally beautiful.
- If you wish to exit your resort to the odor of contemporary bread and pastries then it’s essential to e-book Praktik Bakery, with rooms as contemporary because the bread and a brief stroll to Diagonal. Simply ensure to not hang around and go discover (hehehe)!
The place else to remain in Barcelona apart from near the long-lasting Basílica de la Sagrada Família! If that is your major motive for visiting Barcelona, and no person will choose you whether it is then that is the place to remain. You’ll be able to meander across the cafes within the space, sit in parks surrounding the basílica and customarily gaze on the unbelievable work of Antoni Gaudí.
Admittedly the restaurant decisions aren’t the greatest, and apart from the Sagrada itself, the structure isn’t the prettiest in Barcelona, however it’s tremendous near Eixample and straightforward to get to different elements of town.
The place to Keep in Sagrada Família
After all, in case you are staying on this space then you definately completely want a resort with views of the basílica, which aren’t the most affordable rooms within the metropolis however there are some well-priced accommodations price checking into.
- Sensation Sagrada Família has serviced flats with a wonderful shared roof terrace overlooking the long-lasting church. Right here you may get the bonus of a non-public residence whereas nonetheless having the chance to get pleasure from a shared house with fellow vacationers.
- For a resort possibility, the Sercotel Rosellón has vibrant rooms, an awesome breakfast and a roof terrace with solar loungers pointing at Sagrada, an iconic technique to spend a day in the event you ask me!
Searching for a hidden boho artist vibe? Then Gràcia is your spot. Till the nineteenth century, this was an unbiased city and residents are sometimes long-term locals and happy with their neighborhood.
Now the realm is fashionable and filled with unbiased retailers, boutiques, and cafes. Plaça de Sol is a central level the place folks hang around to socialize, drink and indulge within the bakeries and gelato retailers close by.
This space is comparatively near Passeig de Gràcia however looks like a special world to the designer shops and busy avenue. The streets are largely pedestrianized and there’s a extra eclectic combine of individuals strolling the streets.
The world can also be identified for its festivals, historically every neighborhood has its personal mini-festivals however the one in Gràcia is broadly often called the very best. Streets are lined with decorations and stalls, with some streets working in competitors for the very best decor. Though bear in mind in the event you go to in the summertime throughout these festivals you shouldn’t count on any peace and quiet, the events can go on all evening!
The place to Keep in Gràcia
This isn’t a primary selection amongst vacationers so you’ll really feel such as you’ve hit a bit hidden gem, and accommodations are typically a bit cheaper too.
- Lodge Ronda Lesseps is a cute resort with a wonderful inside courtyard backyard connected to the resort bar. Additionally it is only a 15-minute stroll to a different of Gaudí’s iconic designs, Parc Güell. Benefit from the peace hidden away from the bustle of town on this little oasis.
- A extra upmarket possibility with a rooftop pool is the Catalonia Park Güell resort, costs aren’t vastly completely different however it’s barely extra outdoors the central a part of Gràcia. Rooftop swimming pools in accommodations are an actual deal with however they do get busy so bear in mind to order a solar lounger in your afternoon poolside.
Canine-Pleasant Inns in Barcelona
If you’re like the remainder of Staff Sensible Wanderlust and are a proud canine proprietor you can be happy to listen to that Barcelona is a good place to journey along with your furry greatest good friend.
Most eating places are accommodating, a variety of retailers have water bowls outdoors for passing canines and it isn’t unusual to see canines becoming a member of purchasing journeys. My canine loves coming purchasing, it normally means getting a lot of love from retailer attendants, treats and new locations to smell.
Actually most locations you may carry your canine with you, much more so if it’s a smaller canine. Nonetheless, simply bear in mind that in the summertime months (from Could to October) canines aren’t allowed on the primary seashores so you’ll have to discover the canine seashore simply outdoors the primary metropolis heart.
After I arrived in Barcelona with my pup I booked right into a dog-friendly resort and I’ve just a few pals who’ve additionally carried out the identical. A variety of accommodations are used to canine companions and accommodate them fairly simply. So in the event you journey along with your little good friend these are the very best locations to remain.
- Motel One Barcelona-Ciutadella: This resort is correct reverse Ciutadella Park, which is by far the most effective parks for canines within the metropolis. Mornings and evenings are a hub for canine homeowners with pups taking part in on the grass collectively, and there’s a kiosk within the park for human refreshments. The resort can also be a brief stroll to the seashore and throughout from El Born, completely positioned for exploring town. The resort itself is gorgeous, it’s designed to merge nature with native structure and elegance, and the bar space is spacious and overlooks the park. There’s additionally a beautiful outside space to get pleasure from an aperitif.
- Lodge Balmes: An actual gem of a resort, they really have a particular package deal for canines, Keep & Canine. This treats your pup as a particular visitor with its personal mattress, meals and water bowls, treats and snacks and toys, and housekeeping can also be delicate to their particular guests. There’s additionally an African artwork assortment all through the resort, a backyard and a pool.
- Hostalin Barcelona Gran Through: This resort has 2 areas not too removed from one another, as talked about once I arrived in Barcelona I stayed on the Gran Through resort and it was really unbelievable. The rooms are clear and spacious, and the workers are superb and really accommodating. The identical vibe can also be at their different resort Diputación, each are in Eixample and very well situated for accessing the remainder of town.
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The place To not Keep in Barcelona
Barcelona as a complete is fairly secure and there are few areas to keep away from, these are normally simply sure streets fairly than entire areas and it’s extra of simply being conscious fairly than anticipating to be robbed. You hear horror tales and sure they do occur however in case you are an skilled traveler and preserve your wits about you, you’ll be tremendous. It helps to bear in mind that Barcelona has a variety of poverty and the typical wage completely doesn’t match the price of residing and housing right here.
There’s additionally a big impoverished migrant inhabitants and homeless folks in sure areas, if this offends you then higher to keep away from town completely as nobody space is best than others.
Other than that, there are some areas of town which might be simply not price staying in, and I’ll clarify the place and why.
Typically if you hear tales of pickpockets, you’re listening to tales of Raval, which is situated to the west aspect of La Rambla.
The world is charming in its personal approach, however I wouldn’t advocate it for vacationers. There are some nice eating places tucked away and a few actually enjoyable bars however strolling house at the hours of darkness will not be advisable.
- The place to Keep as a substitute: If you’re nonetheless searching for the quirky previous city type that elements of Raval have then keep in Gothic as a substitute. You’ll nonetheless have the identical tourist-friendly hustle and bustle and loads of previous buildings to marvel at however much less of the after-dark considerations. Could Ramblas Lodge is properly situated for La Rambla with out the night security challenges.
Sant Gervasi-Galvany is up within the hills of town and may be very residential. Housing may be fairly costly right here and the boutiques and cafes cater to a special clientele than what most vacationers could be fascinated with.
It’s near the hills of Tibidabo, Barcelona’s highest peak, and the views throughout town may be beautiful however transport hyperlinks aren’t nice so it will likely be an extended stroll or a number of metro and bus stops to get to the place you need to be.
- The place to Keep as a substitute: Shut by is Eixample, this has the identical metropolis residential vibe however with extra allure and simpler entry to the remainder of town. Additionally think about Gràcia for a similar causes. Praktik Bakery provides you that very same native vibe however in a greater location.
In case you hunt for lodging that’s quick access to the airport then that is the primary neighborhood to take a look at, it is usually near the long-lasting Montjuïc which is fantastic to discover. You can even go see the fountain present at Plaza Espanya.
Nonetheless, to get wherever you will want to leap on the metro or practice, it’s properly related however if you wish to stroll to the remainder of town you’ll have fairly an extended stroll. It’s a quieter space to remain in however the fixed want to make use of the metro can gradual you down.
Additionally as it’s a major transport connection level it does are typically actually busy within the stations, which might get overwhelming in case you are determining how one can get to the place you need to be.
- The place to Keep as a substitute: For straightforward entry to the airport look near Plaza Catalunya. The metro cease is central so will get you the place it’s essential to be in addition to the Sants cease does. Additionally it is a major level for the airport shuttle buses to start out from, which is by far the simplest technique to get to the airport fairly cheaply. Praktik Bakery once more is very well situated for ease to journey.
The place to Keep in Barcelona: Abstract
That’s various info! So to wrap it up right into a bite-size piece, right here now we have an at a look abstract:
- The Finest Areas to Keep in Barcelona: Go for the Outdated Metropolis or Eixample for traditional Barcelona vibes.
- The Finest Inns in Barcelona: Finest choices are Barcelona Lodge Colonial, Hostelin Barcelona Gran Through and Motel One Barcelona-Ciutadella, any of these will make your keep iconic.
- The Finest Canine-Pleasant Inns in Barcelona: Once more one other vote for Hostelin Barcelona Gran Through and Motel One Barcelona-Ciutadella. Can’t beat these for canine lovers!
So why aren’t we recommending any AirBnBs? In brief, AirBnB and brief time period residence leases have screwed the housing market in Barcelona, in addition to many different cities around the globe. Discovering an precise house within the metropolis is an actual downside and the costs have been pushed so excessive by vacationer leases that the typical particular person can not afford them. Legal guidelines have now restricted vacationer licenses however this hasn’t carried out a lot to cease the issue that was already created. So that you don’t contribute to the very actual housing disaster within the metropolis, we advocate you to be a accountable traveler and select to remain in accommodations as a substitute, which have been after all closely affected by the pandemic and deserve all of the vacationer love once more.
That ought to provide the greatest concepts of the place to remain so you may plan the remainder of your journey! When you are within the strategy planning stage don’t overlook to join our Self-Guided Strolling Tour of Barcelona to get a downloadable information to discover town!
Which space would you want to remain in? Is there a sure a part of Barcelona you’re most enthusiastic about seeing? Tell us within the feedback beneath
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