From beach to winding ancient streets, quaint little cafes to ritzy restaurants, Barcelona has it all when it comes to leisure and pastime. No matter the purpose of the trip, you can be sure you’ll be itching to go explore the Catalan’s capital’s endless list of things to do, whether your visit is for business, or pleasure. Check out our list of the 4 best free things to do in Barcelona, and explore the city like a local!
Parc De Cuitadella
Just finished a stroll on the beach, and looking for something different? Look no further than Parc de Cuitadella. This small green space packs a mighty punch, with a central fountain constructed by Josep Fontserè with the assistance of a young Gaudi, a small lake, the city zoo, the Palau del Parlament de Catalunya, and a few museums, making it the perfect place to grab a blanket, some wine and cards, and indulge in some people watching. Lounging not your thing? Ping-pong tables can be found in many corners, ensuring the competitive nature in you will get it’s kick, too!
El Bunkers del Carmel
If you consider yourself a sunset chaser, look no further than El Bunkers del Carmel. Constructed during the Spanish Civil War in 1937, the location acted as an anti-craft battery, housing weapons and serving as a hideout for those fighting against Franco’s fascists. Today, it attracts locals and visitors alike for its mesmerizing 360 view of Barcelona, often complete with a few buskers. Grab some wine, cheese, and cava, and watch day turn to night in this iconic sunset perch.
Home to some of Barcelona’s best museums, such as the MNAC, the Fundació Joan Miró, and the Olympic museum, the famous Montjuïc offers countless activities for visitors to Barcelona without sacrificing spectacular views or breaking the bank. Free activities include several exotic gardens (the Jardí Bontànic, Jardins de Joan Brossa, Jardins de Costa i Llobera), an old military fortress (Castell de Montjuïc), and some striking Santiago Calatrava architecture around the old Olympic stadium. If visiting in the summer months, you’re in for a real treat, as the castle’s moat is used as an outdoor cinema, the perfect night cap on a hot July evening.
Food and Artisan Markets
If there is something that Spanish and Catalan people love to do, it’s eat and drink! An excellent way to combine this local activity with a bit of exploration and window shopping is the“Palo Alto” artisan Market, held in the artistic neighbourhood of Poblenou. Held once a month, the distinct outdoor event boasts stalls with local craftsman and designers selling anything from vintage clothes, to handmade sunglasses and stationary. Foodtrucks and Aperol stations dot the stall circuit to assist with the browsing, and live jazz and funk music adds the perfect musical backdrop to mingle with locals.
So whether it’s taking a stroll through some exotic cacti or sampling some aged cheese while sipping on an Aperol Spritz, avoid the overcrowded streets in Barrì Gotic have a leisure day a la Barcelonès on your next visit.