Visit Barcelona

Ciutat Vella - Barcelona

Barcelona is the capital and largest city of Spain. It has a population of 1.6 million people within its limits. It is considered to be one of the most famous tourist destination in Europe with around 8 million visitors every year. Barcelona was first populated in 200 BC by the Celts who lived on a hill called “Ibiricu” which means “the place where Iberians dwell” as it was a stronghold for the Iberian tribe from which Iberia took its name. The Romans conquered Ibiricu in 218 AD and established a settlement there under the name Barcino.

Being the most famous tourist destination in Europe, Barcelona attracts tourists for lots of reasons. It is the capital of Catalonia and hence a must visit for all those interested in history. It has excellent beaches along the Mediterranean coastline, which is also known as the Costa Brava. Other than that it hosts one of the most prestigious football clubs in the world, FC Barcelona, and their home ground Camp Nou is one of the largest football stadiums in Europe accommodating close to 100000 spectators at any given time.

Museu Picasso

For those who are interested in art and culture there is an abundance there as well. The Museu Picasso is Spain’s largest museum dedicated to a single artist; it houses a collection comprising 1000 paintings by Pablo Picasso.

Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

The Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya is considered to be one of the most important art museums in Catalonia and contains over 130 000 art pieces including sculpture, painting, textiles and ceramics.

Museu d'Historia de Barcelona

The Museu d'Historia de Barcelona is another important museum in Barcelona which has a collection of artefacts that trace the history of both Catalonia and Spain.
The city also has some of the best restaurants in Europe which serve a wide range of cuisines that include Spanish, Catalan, Italian, Japanese and Chinese among others. There is also a huge selection of cocktail bars for those who want to enjoy some nightlife with their friends.

Barcelona also has a very impressive nightlife for those who want to party hard. It is called "the city that doesn't sleep". It has one of the most famous nightclubs in the world called "Pacha", founded by DJ Pau Vela and in the 1990s it became one of the most important and famous nightclubs in Europe.

Park Güell

Then there is the "Park Güell" by Frank Gehry, which is a part of Barcelona’s park system that has many bars and restaurants surrounded by water and gardens.

The Old town of Barcelona is another perfect place for those who love history and architecture as it has some of the oldest buildings in Europe.

Palau de la Generalitat

These include the Palau de la Generalitat that was built in 1702 and later became the seat of Catalan government, the Palau Milà that was originally called La Capella Reial de Catalunya and now houses a museum with artistic treasures from Arte Moderno.
There are also some beautiful churches such as Santa Maria del Mar, St. Antoni Martorell, St. Stephen and La Seu, which are spectacular and worth a visit. There are also some great restaurants and shops in the old town where you can experience the best that Barcelona has to offer.

Parc de la Ciutadella

Barcelona also has a multitude of different attractions for travellers of all ages. The Parc de la Ciutadella is an amusement park for children with rides and mini ferris wheels as well as fun activities such as walking on a narrow rope over the sea.
There is also an aquarium where you can see sharks, sea turtles, sting rays, penguins, dolphins and many more marine animals.

Barcelona is endowed with an excellent transport system, which makes moving around the city without any trouble at all. The Metro system is one of the oldest, but still very modern.

Barcelona is home to a number of large festivals attracting tourists from all around the world such as the La Mercè Festival which is a festival dedicated to the patron saint of Barcelona.

Festa de la Mercè

The Festa de la Mercè or “La Mercè” as it is known to the locals takes place every year on September 24, which is also Catalonia’s National Day. The La Mercè Festival features parades, giant puppets, fireworks and concerts celebrating this festival.
It is estimated that 1 million people attend this festival every year. This huge number of people makes it one of Europe’s largest celebrations.

Barcelona is also the home to some of the most famous concerts in Barcelona such as the Rock Harps Festival. This festival which originated in 2003 has been named one of the best festivals in Europe by GQ Magazine. The Rock Harps Festival consists of rock bands from various genres such as jazz, blues, reggae, pop and rock.
The Rock Harps Festival takes place every year at the Fira de Barcelona venue which can hold up to 40 000 people at any given time.
This kind of festival attracts a huge number of tourists as it is one of Europe’s largest and most well-known music festivals attracting visitors from all around Europe.

FC Barcelona

Barcelona’s most important football club, FC Barcelona, is entirely responsible for making the city an even more popular tourist destination. The club has won over 50 trophies which includes the European Cup 18 times and the Spanish league 12 times. Barca is also known to be one of Europe’s most successful clubs attracting thousands of fans every year.
FC Barcelona fans have been known to invade rival stadiums worldwide which has led to other teams installing security guards in their stadiums as a precautionary measure for their safety.(example: see Petrolina), The club is also one of the biggest in the world by revenue with a revenue of €411 million reported in 2011, that's more than any other sports club in the world.