Vibrant, enchanting city? Tick. Incredible atmosphere? Tick. Fresh, flavourful dishes? Double, even triple, tick! For a destination fuelled by cosmopolitan vivacity and intriguing history, look no further than Barcelona. Situated in Spain’s Catalonia region, the city embodies a rich modernist personality anchored by a strong restaurant scene – complimented by the central Boqueria market - and whimsical architectural works by Antoni Gaudi encompassing towering columns and gothic-style cathedrals.
But even with its tourist traps and sun-bathed beaches, there is so much more happening within this province that can offer unique glimpses into the hidden life of the city.
Live local experiences with Trip4Real
Satisfy your wanderlust for treasures off the beaten track with Trip4Real. A community driven platform, Trip4Real enables locals to become tour guides for travellers thus offering them the chance to live local experiences and discover an authentic way of travelling – secret beaches to underground shopping malls, it’s all possible. From there whizz around the city using Bicing - a simple and practical form of transport allowing you to reach all parts of the city at any time, on bike. Hop off and head to El Lokal to reflect and debate about daily issues over drinks with locals with the aim of developing a free and fair society. Or why not join up with Permacultura Barcelona, a movement dedicated to ecological and social transformation in the community
Sonar Music Festival
Best time to go
Anytime is the best time to pack your bags and head off to Barcelona but time your getaway for the middle of June – 18th to 20th - and you’ll find yourself at Sonar, a three day progressive, new wave and popular electronic music. Billed with amazing headliners including LCD Soundsytem, Chemical Brothers and many more, its dedicated approach and unique vision make it one of the best festivals around.
Top 3 Hipster districts to visit
Born Cultural Centre
El Born: One of the most fashionable locations in the city, we recommend browsing the lovely, charming shops adorning the alleys and main paths alongside the following stops:
- El Mercat de la Princesa (restaurant & market)
- La Vietnamita Born (Vietnamese food deli & bar)
- Born Centre Cultural (Cultural destination)
Gràcia: An independent and very lively district, there are many terraces to drink and chill with friends. Visit during August to take part in the weeklong street fair and party of ‘Festa Major’.
Raval: Home to some of the trendiest bars and cafes in town, a once no-go area, Raval has transformed into a popular gentrified area. A multi-cultural destination with skateboarders through to hipsters, the area is a perfect place for people watching.
Insider Locations to dine and hangout
But, what to do on the other days when exquisite food, bustling bars and spirited music are calling? Check out our top Barcelona insider spots below:
Av. Diagonal, 505, 08029 Barcelona, Spain
+34 934 19 31 91
A buzzing restaurant-bar, expect friendly staff and trendy food as well as great vibes and people.
Pg. Picasso, 32 · El born · Barcelona
+34 932 956 732
A melting pot of experiences and tastes, Ikibana is a fusion of Japanese and Brazilian culture all on one delicious plate.
Carrer de la Unió, 17 · 08001 Barcelona
+ 932 703 458
Discover fresh seafood straight from the Catalan fish markets, fried delicacies, local wine and beer all in one smooth motion at this 4-star gourmet restaurant.
Ctra. de Miramar, 38, 08038 Barcelona, Spain
+34 931 06 60 52
Martinez Restaurant Barcelona
The best place to eat Paella in the city partnered with amazing views. Need we say more?
Almirall Aixada 22. (Playa de la Barceloneta), 08003 Barcelona, Spain
(+34) 93 250 70 23
Fresh fruit cocktails, delicious salads and sandwiches, Surf House Barcelona has it all. Don’t forget to join in with the daily workouts including yoga and paddle surfing.
Passeig del Mare · Nostrum 19-21 · 08039 Barcelona
+34 933 123 585
Promising a relaxing ambience, Gallito serve simple homemade food made with fresh, quality ingredients.
Plaza Real 13, 14 & 15 ·08002 Barcelona
+34 93 676 48 14
Ocana Bar & Restaurant
Live the spirit of alternative Barcelona with Ocana. Boasting original 1850 architecture, revelatory discoveries lie in its surprising cuisine amongst other delights.
Whatever your budget, Barcelona is a picturesque destination for a quick European break offering you captivating art, flavourful dishes and most importantly, great Sharing Economy opportunities. To book with esteemed holiday letting providers like Roomorama or holiday apartments with HouseTrip, simply head over to our accommodation page.
All images are from the respective websites and social pages.