Barcelona, Spain

I’m very fortunate to have an amazing network of well-traveled friends and readers on Facebook. When I ask them for travel advice, they never disappoint—as seen this past week when I asked for Barcelona tips before a radio segment. Below are some of the best answers I got when I asked for Barcelona travel tips. Enjoy!

And of course: If you have your own Barcelona travel tip, share it in the comments below.

On hotels…

“Hotel Arts Barcelona (Ritz) has amazing spa on top floor with outdoor balconies .. also there is a craft bartender who makes amazing cocktails (works of art) at their Tapas restaurant”
—Danielle Leitch

“Cotton House is a super sweet Autograph hotel (use Marriott points). Fantastic roof top pool.”
—Charles McCool (Instagram: charlesmccool)

“The Mandarin has dope views of the city, it’s a fab place for a meal”
—Roni Faida (Instagram: ronithetravelguru)

On food and drink…

“Best tapas restaurant = La Bodega. Been there forever. Local. I send all my clients!”
Stacy Small

“La Boqueria is the city’s most famous food market and everyone complains about how it has become so touristy and how the locals never shop there. But it is still a must see in a city so in love with food, and there is lots of varied prepared food and places to eat inexpensively. It’s fun and busy and shouldn’t be missed.”
—Patricia Schultz (Twitter: @1000places)

“I loved so much about Barcelona we stayed in a little hotel in Las ramblas. I really enjoyed [4 Cats] cafe as well as the Picasso museum and so much more.”
—Brenda Chan

“4 Cats was supposedly Picasso’s hang out and is close to the museum.”
—Patricia Schultz (Twitter: @1000places)

“La Pepita…we went there 2 times for dinner! Then the eatery in Market off of Las Rambas….Universal…we ate lunch there 2 times!”
—Kirsten Kontis-Gleydura

“Quimet y Quimet. A tiny little, stand up hole in the wall with the best tapas in Barcelona.”
—David Handschuh (Instagram: flyingmanatee)

“Away from the bustle of Las Ramblas is one of the best pastries we had in all of Europe. Hofmann Pastisseria is in El Born. Try the mascarpone croissant, their specialty- unreal. Also, enjoying the Vermut (vermouth) culture of Barcelona is unique. A refreshing drink to have before dinner and not one that we commonly know here. Although now a staple in our home.”
—Jami Burpee

“May Dry Martini Bar! What classy, elegant bars should be! White coated, gentleman serving the PERFECT Dry Martini & others.”
—Toni Arpaia May

“Absolutely! Ranked as one of the best gin tonic bars in the world.”
—Diana Conconi

On what to do…

“Ditto re Park Guell! Imagine an indescribable park bench covered in brilliant mosaic. That’s just a tiny part of this unforgettable feast for the eyes.”
—Bonnie Crail

“Gaudi, of course, La Sagrada, Parc Guell, and Casa Botilo for starters, but also the walking tour of old Barcelona is fascinating, especially when they lead you down little alleyways, one that leads to the ruins of the Roman Forum that was once there.”
—Jenny Peters (Twitter: @jennpeters)

“Check out El Raval, for something more offbeat! Lots of art in a fascinating local neighborhood.”
—La Carmina (Instagram: lacarmina)

“The Museum of Catalan Art and the Miro Institute.”
—Tom Bartel

“I highly recommend a three-hour bike tour that takes you to the beach, the Olympic site, 1888 Exposition site and more. The best part: They have the little bumpers in the bike lanes so cars can’t cut you off. It was the best. I also did a late-evening light show at the Gaudi Apartments that was fantastic — complete with Champagne.”
—Mary Forgione

“There’s an antique early 20th century dress shop called L’Arca that also provided some of the costumes in ‘Titanic’.”
—Don Ferrara

“I read, ‘La Sombra del Viento’ then downloaded the walking tour. It hits all the city’s must see sights. The book is good too.”
—Cynthia Wylie (@BloomersIsland)

“Gothic quarter with Europe’s oldest and smallest synagogue”
—Inka Piegsa-quischotte

“Take a tour of Santa Maria de Montserrat. It’s a gorgeous drive through the most unusual smooth rocky mountain and the Benedictine Monks make their own brandy there too. Great views of Barcelona also.”
—Nancy Pitman

“Best daytrip from Barcelona!”
—Patricia Schultz (Twitter: @1000places)

“Was there yesterday onboard Crystal Cruises. They took over the amazing newly opened as a museum, Ricente Modernista de Sant Pau. A turn of the century hospital for the poor that is an art Nouveau masterpiece. Crystal took it over for a private dinner. Check my timeline for video. Magnificent.”
—Jean Newman Glock (Twitter: @jeannewmanglock)

“Was just there last week. Hopefully the taxi strike is over. I agree with everyone that Park Guell is a must (both the free and the paid side) along with La Sagrada Familia , but buy tickets prior to arriving to get in. Don’t miss out on the phenomenal views of Barca from the top of Tibidabo where you also find a beautiful cathedral and an amusement park for kids. The Soccer fans will love Camp Nou too, the Gothic Quarter and Jewish Synagogue is cool to see. We ate an amazing array of tapas at Paco Meralgo – highly recommend and breakfast at Brunch and Cake was so yummy.
Also, day trips to Girona, Besalú, and Figueres specially if your a Salvador Dali fan is a must.”
—Melissa Lorenzo

“For tapas, go to Ciudad Condal and Cervecería Catalana.. the BEST tapas and very reasonably priced..
Drink as much cava sangria as you can while in Cataluña (its white sangria made with champagne)
Do the hop on, hop off bus
Look up free walking tours; they are very good
Book La Sagrada Familia tickets in advance
Go to Montjuic for panoramic views above Barcelona
Go to Parc Guell
Take a tour of Camp Nou (the soccer stadium Barca plays at!)”
—Abe Sanchez

“Do a half-day or day-long Gaudi architecture tour.”
—Janet Krietemeyer Keeler

“Highly suggest private tours from Forever Barcelona – walking or with Car/Driver. We did half day with driver and covered everything easily , while entertaining a teen!”
—Danielle Leitch

“…THIS is the food tour that MUST NOT BE MISSED!”
—Scott McMurren (@alaskatravelgrm)

General tips…

“Watch out for pickpockets. Esp near Las Ramblas. Very very bad!”
—Lea Lane

“Don’t go in summer unless you want to feel like you are surrounded by Americans. Eat your way through the old town, selecting tapas from each place.”
—Melissa Curtin McDavitt (Instagram: LaLaScoop)

“Get out of the city and take a side trip to Girona, Costa Brava”
Vivienne Chapleo

“Yes, don’t get mugged :)”
—Cynthia Cunniff (see her story for Johnny Jet here)

“Catalan is the official language and most signs are in Catalan. Spanish is spoken but Catalan is king. So don’t be surprised at all of the Catalan signs. Signs are also in Spanish, but many places only have Catalan.”
—Roni Faida (Instagram: ronithetravelguru)

You can take the bus from the airport to the center of town (Placa Catalunya). The bus is air conditioned and clean.”
—Roni Faida (Instagram: ronithetravelguru)


17 Comments On "Reader Roundup: Barcelona Travel Tips"
  1. Charles McCool|

    Wonderful travel tips for Barcelona Spain. Thank you for including my lodging suggestion.

  2. Amy|

    Respect the Catalan tradition even when ordering wine. In Barcelona, at our first meal after flying in, the waiter scoffed when I asked for a Spanish red. He glared at me, and said “Spanish OR CATALAN?!?!” I never made that mistake again while in Barcelona and Girona. The best part? It turns out Catalan wine is SO good (and reasonably priced). I’d also add that you should definitely explore Girona. It’s a perfect little town for exploring cathedrals, baths and a city wall that you can walk on top of – giving you a bird’s eye view of a gorgeous city. Plus, the food is superb!

  3. harsh Raj|

    Really enjoyed reading your blog.It is highly informative and builds great interest for the readers. For the people like us your blogs helps to get ideal information and knowledge. Thanks for providing such blogs.

  4. Marta Laurent|

    So happy to see Danielle Leitch recommending our Barcelona private tours!

  5. Ashley Hoober|

    Headed to Barcelona soon with the hubby! thanks for the great post, :)

  6. Juan Ovalle|

    Awesome tips! Will definitely go back to this when I go to Barcelona!

  7. Freya Pavitt|

    This is quite handy, you should definitely consider Barcelona Private Experiences next time you visit.

  8. Isadora Guidoni|

    I love Spain but have never been to their capitol. Thanks for the head’s up!

  9. Deise de Oliveira|

    OMG! I love Barcelona! That 3 hour bike tour must be amazing!

  10. jessica|

    Really Awesome tips and very useful article.It’s very useful for us, because we are planning to visit Barcelona for family vacation.

  11. Kavleen Kaur|


  12. Mary|

    Thanks for tips I will be visiting Barcelona with my boyfriend in following month.

  13. Leonore Wiltse|

    Pickpockets are everywhere! We were attacked by mugger. Lost all our money and credit cards. Police are useless. Lines of tourists who had been robbed were around the block at the police station. One couple outside our hotel had their carry on bag stolen for the front seat of their rental car while they were loading suitcases into the trunk. All their money, passports, airline tickets gone in an instant. YOU cannot be too careful!

  14. Italian Trip Abroad|

    I love spain so much. I have been all around, especially in the south of the country. I love this place, I love the food, the weather, drinks the night life.

  15. Matt Adams|

    Very nice and informative!
    Thanks for sharing.

  16. Kurt|

    Very interesting article. Barcelona is a wonderful city. Somehow I will come sünah to rest again. Next time I plan to rent a car and ride through the area

  17. rizz|

    Travelers love Barcelona your tips are amazing.Thanks for sharing.

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