Considered the tourist capital of Spain, Barcelona is a hotspot for those seeking sun, siesta and sangria. Before the pandemic, the city had a record 12 million visitors in 2019, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics series. This is a 5% increase in the number of visitors compared to the previous year.
It’s no secret why people are scrambling to land in the city. Eclectic colours, lively markets, a stunning coastline and so much paella, cerveza and vino as your heart desires.
In order to get the most out of your trip, we’ve compiled a list of where to eat, sleep and what to see in the city.
Where to stay
Just a few steps from the Sagrada Familia, this hotel is ideally located to take advantage of all that the city has to offer. The hotel is a fusion of Mediterranean guest houses and functional spaces. Located in Gracia, you will be situated amongst the timeless beauty of one of the most picturesque locations in the city.
The Seventy will make you feel like home, except it’s elevated in luxury, with a swimming pool, fully equipped gym, business center, spa, and conference rooms. Prices per night vary, starting at AU$287.
Soho House Barcelona
Straight out of a Wes Anderson movie, Soho House is a quaint hotel located on Plaça del Duc de Medinaceli, a short distance from the Gothic quarter of the city. The hotel itself is part of an exclusive club for high-level creatives and only accepts members periodically, so if you want to get into this hotel, you better join the waiting list.
The house has 57 suites, as well as club areas, a rooftop terrace, a gym and two swimming pools, all in stunning interiors designed to match the typical Soho House decor . Prices per night vary by membership.
Where to eat
The five-star Galileo serves the best of Mediterranean cuisine in the heart of L’Antiga Esquerra de L’eixample. The menu features typical Spanish cuisine including patatas bravas, tomato pesto, artichokes in oil, carasau bread and porcini croquettes, all served in Galileo’s elegant dining area.
Enoteca Paco Perez
Led by Executive Chef Paco Pérez, the Enoteca team offers a two-star Michelin restaurant experience positioned along the city’s coastline. Enoteca’s menu is inspired by the freshness of local products from the Mediterranean, emphasizing “the freshness of the sea and the essence of farm and mountain products”.
Choose between lobster salpicón, white asparagus and wagyu or an extensive drinks menu featuring some of Spain’s finest wines. If you are lucky enough to visit the restaurant in November, you will be entitled to the white truffle month and its exclusive tasting menu.
What to see
The Sagrada Familia
Built in 1882, the Sagrada Familia is one of the greatest architectural marvels in the world. The temple is unfinished and remains the largest unfinished Roman Catholic church in the world. The eminent Antoni Gaudí took over as chief architect a year after the start of production of the church and created a fusion of Gothic style and curvilinear forms of Art Nouveau.
A ticket to the Sagrada Familia currently costs A$29.70 or €20.00.
Port Vell Sunset Sailing Tour
Discover the city after dark and enjoy a magical sunset from the comfort of your own yacht or charter boat. A professional skipper will take you along the beautiful Catalan coast while enjoying food and drinks while watching some of Barcelona’s biggest attractions go by.
Tickets for this tour start at A$104.
Learn to Cook Like the Locals: Paella & Sangria Cooking Class
It would be almost impossible to leave the city without tasting the local paella and accompanying it with a glass of sangria. If you want to take home a spoonful of the local cuisine, why not try a four-course dinner, led by a professional chef.
Perfect the art of paella, plus a menu that includes gazpacho, bread with tomaquet, dessert and sangria. Prices for this cooking lesson start at around A$128.
If you’re looking for the next European destination to add to your travel bucket list, check out our guide on how to spend 72 hours in Paris.