This 2-day route is designed to visit the most important monuments and places in Barcelona.
The 2-day route starts at Passeig de Gracia, one of the most luxurious avenues in Barcelona. Here you cannot miss the 32 bench-lampposts designed by Pere Falqués i Urpí, nor the Gaudí tiles, which covers the entire Passeig.
These tiles were designed by Gaudí in a hexagonal shape with 3 different shapes inspired by marine elements: a starfish, some algae and an ammonite fossil. 7 tiles are needed to see the whole set.
On this avenue you will find the following 3 monuments:
La Pedrera – Casa Milà
If you go down Passeig de Gracia, this monument is on your left side.
In 1900, Passeig de Gracia was the most important avenue in Barcelona and today it is the most expensive street in the city. For this reason, many local bourgeois wanted to build their houses here to show off their wealth and social status. It is then that Pere Milà and Roser Segimon buy a piece of land and commission Antoni Gaudí to build his new residence.
Si bajas por Passeig de Gracia, este monumento se encuentra a su lado izquierdo.
En 1900, Passeig de Gracia era la avenida más importante de Barcelona y hoy es la calle más cara de la ciudad. Por eso, muchos burgueses locales querían construir sus casas aquí para lucir su riqueza y estatus social. Es entonces cuando Pere Milà y Roser Segimon comparan un terreno y encargan a Antoni Gaudí la construcción de su nueva residencia.
Casa Milà is considered Gaudí’s most emblematic civil building for its constructive and functional innovations, with ornaments and decoration that broke with the architectural styles of its time.
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If we continue downhill, on the right side of the avenue, we will see two modernist houses, one next to the other: Casa Batlló and Casa Ametller.
Casa Batlló was remodeled by Gaudí on an old building by order of Don Josep Batlló i Casanovas, a textile industrialist who owned several factories in Barcelona and a prominent businessman.
This set of buildings that we see here, between Aragón and Consell de Cent streets, is known as the Manzana de la Discordia (The appe of discord) due to the rivalry between its architects and the owners who commissioned them.
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Built at the same time as Casa Batlló, Casa Atmetller was remodeled in an urban Gothic style by Jodep Puig i Cadafalch and commissioned by Antoni Amatller, a businessman dedicated to the chocolate industry.
Within Catalan modernism, Josep Puig i Cadafalch was, along with Antoni Gaudí, one of the great architects of this era.
If we continue along Passeig de Gracia we will find Plaza Catalunya, one of the nerve centers of Barcelona.
It was built in 1889 after the Barcelona Universal Exhibition and its function was (and still is) to connect the Eixample district with the oldest core of the city. Here you will find a tourist information point.
La Rambla or as those of us who live in Barcelona know it “Las Ramblas”, is the most important street in Barcelona.
It is a very lively street, full of tourists, with stalls selling gifts, flowers and ice cream and with artists such as painters and human statues.
Depending on the activities that were carried out or the buildings that were there, this street changes its name in its different sections.
Las Ramblas has been transformed but still retains some of its oldest premises such as the Casa Beethoven music store, or the Café de l’Ópera… as you stroll down Las Ramblas, look for these remaining charming shops.
Las Ramblas also have numerous terraces (although prices are quite expensive as it is a tourist area).
Font de Canaletas
The Canaletas fountain is a fountain-lamppost where you have to drink if, as tradition says, you want to return to Barcelona. It is an emblematic place in the city because it is where the fans of the Barcelona Football Club celebrate their successes.
The history of why victories are celebrated in this small fountain is due to the fact that: in the 1930s the building in front of the fountain was the headquarters of the sports newspaper “La Rambla”.
When the information reached the teletype, they wrote it on a blackboard that they showed through the windows. Outside the “cules” they waited, and when the result was positive they celebrated it right there.
After passing the Canaletas Fountain, I recommend that you take a detour from La Rambla along Bonsuccés Street to Plaza de les Caramelles, where the MACBA (Museum of Contemporary Art) is located and where temporary exhibitions of modern art are on show.
The black sculpture that we can see in front of the museum is “the wave” by the sculptor Oteiza.
This square is a meeting point for skaters and the skate scene in Barcelona and one of the most important in the world.
This is the most famous market in Barcelona (and well deserved). They sell fresh and high-quality food products and it is also characterized by the fact that you can find products from all over the world.
Here you can make some of the most colorful photos! On our last visit we had a couple of juices: orange with mango and pineapple with orange for €1.5 each.
The Great theater Liceu of Barcelona is the oldest and most prestigious opera house in Barcelona and is considered one of the most important in the world.
This is where the best opera singers perform. This building located in the center of Las Ramblas witnessed the bourgeois society since its construction and is part of the history of the city.
The current building is a reconstruction of the one that existed after a fire destroyed it in 1994 and from which the Liceu Circle (a modernist-style private club) was miraculously saved, where you can admire 12 oil paintings by the Catalan painter Ramón Casas.
The reconstruction served for the theater to renew its technical systems, which allows it to represent a modern set design. In the 21st century, the stage is opened to citizens and nowadays all kinds of music can be heard.
The statue of Columbus is at the end of La Rambla. This statue honors the discoverer of America. As a curiosity, it might seem that Columbus points his finger at the new continent, but it is not!
There are 3 theories:
- The intention of its author was for Columbus to point to America, but the public would not have understood that the finger pointed towards La Rambla (inland) and that is why he installed the statue pointing to the sea.
- The statue does not point to America, but to the way to America by sea,
- The statue does not point to the route to America but to Genoa, his presumed hometown, and which is in a straight line following the direction indicated by the finger.
At this point, we leave Las Ramblas and head towards the Maremagnum Wooden Bridge. Take your time, watch the boats go by, the seagulls…
Continuing along the path you will arrive at the Maremagnum Shopping Center. You can keep crossing through the middle of the mall or go around it. And if you have a need, It can be a good time to go to the bathroom!
Museum of History of Catalunya
The MHC is located in the Palacio del Mar, an old warehouse building in the Old Port of Barcelona built in 1881. If you feel like it, I recommend you go up to its rooftop on the 4th floor of the so-called Terraza de las Indianas.
The Museum takes us on a journey through the history of Catalonia from its first settlers to the present day.
On another occasion that you visit Barcelona with more time, I recommend that you visit the MHC.
Ciutadella Park is a public park that was built at the end of the 19th century. It is a space where you will find families spending the day, people having picnics, groups practicing sports such as yoga or tai chi, and it is also used for cultural activities.
We can find a lake to walk with boats, a monumental waterfall, walks, numerous sculptures and ancient trees.
Arc de Triomf
If we continue going up Passeig Lluis Companys we will come across the imposing Arc de Triomf.
It was designed by the architect José Vilaseca as the main entrance to the Barcelona Universal Exposition in 1888.
Unlike other triumphal arches with a marked military character, Barcelona’s Arc de Triomf has a greater civil component, characterized by its artistic, scientific and economic progress character.
Palau de la Música de Catalunya
The Palau de la Música Catalana was built between 1905 & 1908 by the modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner as the home to the Orfeó Català (Catalan Orpheus).
The building is a spectacle of Catalan modernism architecture and is currently a meeting point for the cultural and social life of Catalonia. It also constitutes a symbolic and sentimental heritage of an entire town that identifies with its history.
The decoration that we find both inside and outside is full of Catalan and universal musical symbolism.
Just two examples: one of the side sculptures of the stage represents a riding Wagnerian Valkyrie and the sculpture on the corner of the building is Sant Jordi (patron saint of Catalonia) protecting the traditional Catalan song that its people sing
In one of the exterior corners you can admire «Carmela» by the Catalan sculptor J. Plensa.
On this 2-day route it is possible that you will not have time to visit it inside, but on another occasion that you come with more time is highly recommended. If you are a music lover, I recommend that you choose the visit + a concert option.
At this point, if you are very tired or you are not into visiting museums, you can go directly to La Catedral to end the day.
If you like art, it is a must to visit this museum.
Picasso was a Spanish painter and sculptor, creator of Cubism together with Georges Braque, he is considered one of the greatest painters who participated in many artistic movements that spread throughout the world and exerted a great influence on other great artists of the 20th century.
In the Picasso Museum you can see his work through the 4,251 works that make up the permanent collection.
The schedule is from Tuesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and the price of general admission is €12.
The Santa Iglesia Catedral Basilica Metropolitana de la Santa Cruz & Santa Eulalia (Metropolitan Holy Church Cathedral Basilica of the Holy Cross & Saint Eulalia) is the gothic cathedral of Barcelona.
It is one of the most visited monuments in the city and an architectural, artistic, cultural, spiritual and ecclesial jewel.
It was built during the 13th – 15th centuries on the old Romanesque cathedral, built in turn on a church from the Visigoth period that was preceded by a Paleo-Christian basilica.
The termination of the imposing facade in the same style, however, is much more modern (19th century).
Today we start the 2-day route visiting Barcelona in this spectacular 17-hectare park designed by Antoni Gaudi.
Initially, it was designed to be a luxury residential space, but this idea was unsuccessful and the park was built instead.
It has elements inspired by nature and with important symbolism, both political and religious.
Sant Pau Modernist Hospital
Leaving Park Guell you can go on foot (25 minutes) or you can shorten the time (15 minutes) by taking the H6 bus at the Travessera de Dalt street – Torrent de les Flors stop and getting off at Ronda Guinardó – Castillejos.
The Sant Pau Modernist Enclosure, was built between 1905 and 1930, was designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner as a city-garden for the sick.
After serving for a century as a public hospital, its rehabilitated pavilions shine today in all their splendor.
Going down Avinguda Gaudí you will find the imposing Sagrada Familia.
Es el monumento más visitado de toda España y por eso es importante que planifiques esta visita con antelación para que no te la pierdas!
It is the most visited monument in all of Spain. It is Gaudí’s masterpiece, and that is why it is important that you plan this visit in advance. So don’t miss it!
La Plaza Monumental de Barcelona fue la última plaza donde se celebraron corridas de toros en Cataluña, en 2011.
The Plaza Monumental of Barcelona was the last place where bullfights were held in Catalonia, in 2011.
The Parliament of Catalonia, after a vote on a popular proposal, bullfighting shows were banned in 2010.
Currently, the square has been converted into a sustainable, sports and animal-friendly complex.
Port Olímpic (Olympic Port)
Barcelona’s Port Olímpic has become one of the most popular leisure areas in the city.
It is a place to practice water sports, visit the beaches and has many restaurants that serve seafood.
The two skyscrapers that rise on each side are the Mapfre tower and the Hotel Arts, at the foot of which we find a spectacular golden sculpture in the shape of a fish, the work of Frank Gehry built in 1992 for the Olympic Games in Barcelona.
The Barceloneta is one of the most popular and charismatic neighborhoods in Barcelona.
It is a maritime neighborhood full of magic and history that is located in the Port Vell district.
I recommend that you walk along the promenade parallel to the beach until you reach the W hotel or as the locals also call it: Hotel Vela.