Known for its unique architecture and art, the cosmopolitan city of Barcelona welcomes millions of tourists each year and is a popular European cruise destination. Famous buildings, parks, boulevards, beaches and more – while 12 hours in this dazzling metropolis may not seem enough, we’ve put together a short guide to help you get the most out of your visit.
In the Morning
Stroll down La Rambla
More than likely you are going to disembark your ship at the Barcelona’s cruise terminal, neat Port Vell. It is only a short 15-minute walk to one of Barcelona’s most famous walkways; La Rambla. Start your time in Barcelona, strolling this tree-lined, vibrant street, teeming with life. People watch with a coffee in hand, shop and watch local performances.
Visit the Sagrada Familia
After wandering La Rambla head to one of Barcelona’s most iconic landmarks; Sagrada Familia (full name: Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família). Esteemed Catalan architect, Antoni Gaudi designed the towering Catholic church. Construction on the Gothic-inspired church began in the 1880s and continues to present day, highlighting the city’s long-lasting affair with the building. Opening hours vary throughout the year, so be sure to check details online. To get from La Rambla to the church, we suggest jumping on the metro, making the journey around 20 minutes.
Make your way to Casa Batlló
Approximately 15 minutes by the metro from Sagrada Familia, is the eye-catching Casa Batlló. Located in the centre of Barcelona it was designed by Antoni Gaudi and is a visually arresting mixture of colour, detail, materials and more. After taking photos of the building’s perfect façade, head inside where you can wander through the house and immerse yourself and your imagination in a place of magic. Casa Batlló is open 365 days a year, from 9 am till 9 pm Monday through Sunday. Guided tours are available.
Keep an eye out for dishes such as ‘butifarra’ (a sausage and staple in Catalan cooking) and ‘fideuas’ (a kind of seafood pasta that’s similar to paella but features noodles instead of rice). Pa Amb Tomaquet, or Pan Con Tomate as known in Spanish, is a simple dish consisting of bread rubbed with fresh tomatoes and drizzled with oil and salt.
In the Afternoon
Enjoy the fresh air and scenery at Parc du Montjuic
After lunch travel to beautiful Parc du Montjuic, a sprawling wonderland of verdant greenery. Here, you can also use the Montjuic Funicular, a railway system, or the Montjuic Cable Car, to transport you up the Montjuic hill.
Learn and discover at the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC)
Conveniently located in Montjuic, you won’t have to travel far to reach MNAC, where you’ll be able to complete your journey of Barcelona’s rich artistic history.
In the Evening
Explore the Gothic Quarter
Head back towards the port and, on your way, stop at Barcelona’s beautiful Gothic Quarter. Get lost in the neighbourhood’s medieval warren of narrow, winding streets and quaint plazas.
Have dinner and drinks at Port Vell
With your cruise ship nearby, you’ll have plenty of time to relax and enjoy fresh, sumptuous local cuisine at one of the many restaurants that line the port and overlook Barcelona’s waterfront.
Return to your cruise ship
After an action-packed day, you’ll no doubt look forward to retreating to the comfort of your cruise ship and swapping stories with fellow passengers.
Can’t wait to experience Barcelona? Check out our phenomenal European Cruise packages here or give us a call on 1300 509 338, and one of our friendly cruise consultants can help you book the European cruise adventure of a lifetime.