Perched on Spain’s northeast coast, Barcelona is one of the hottest holiday spots in Europe. With a population of 1.65 million people in the city proper, Barcelona is Spain’s second most populous city. Barcelona is one of the top destinations for art, architecture and sport especially, drawing thousands of football fans to the city each year.
Barcelona has generally fantastic weather throughout the year. August is the hottest month, with temperatures averaging 30°C. Between May and July is generally considered the best time to visit Barcelona, and is when many of the city’s visitors holiday in the Catalan capital.
The Sagrada Familia is one of the most popular tourist sites in Barcelona. The world famous cathedral, built by Antoni Gaudi, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Construction on the cathedral began in 1882 and is still yet to be finished, meaning the Sagrada Familia presents many facades, as architectural tastes have varied over the years.
No trip to Barcelona would be complete without a trip to FC Barcelona’s Camp Nou stadium. The mammoth stadium seats over 93,000 football fans, and is jam-packed on match days. Visitors can take the Camp Nou Experience Tour and explore the stadium.
Despite being a city bustling with activity, Barcelona has several beautiful beaches for tourists to soak up the sun on. While Barceloneta Beach is the busiest of the beaches, Nova Icaria is well known for the young crowd it attracts. However, for those seeking a peaceful beach away from the hubbub, Caldetes Beach is the perfect spot.
Catalans are extremely proud of their history and cuisine, and this pride reveals itself in many of the foods and recipes found in Barcelona. Depending on the area of the city, tastes can differ. Although fish is one of the favourites of the city, people who live further inland tend to eat more pork-based dishes. One of the city’s more unique culinary tastes is the pa amb tomaquet. Tomato, olive oil, garlic and salt on toasted bread, the dish is a favourite amongst Catalans, and can be eaten at any time, from breakfast to dinner.
For those travelling to Barcelona in the cooler months, they should try Escudella. This traditional stew is made by simmering pig cheeks and chicken, sausages, pork bones (for flavour), and a variety of fresh vegetables. Pasta is added at the end to complete the dish.
Barcelona’s nightlife is not concentrated in one area, rather it is all over the city. Las Ramblas is one of the most popular spots for nights out. Visitors can enjoy tapas bar hopping, as they make their way through the area. The Gothic Quarter features many areas frequented by locals, and is a maze of bars, nightclubs and discos full of people throughout the week.