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Barcelona Tourism: Best of Barcelona
Perfect beaches, world-famous tapas, and Gaudí—the Catalan capital is a Mediterranean dream
There’s nowhere in the world like Barcelona. From days spent strolling the Gothic Quarter to afternoons at the beach and nights partying ‘til dawn, the city is magnetic. While tapas and bustling mercados are worth every bit of attention they get in guidebooks, Barcelona’s true crown jewel is the work of Antoni Gaudí. His iconic creations, like the jaw-dropping Basilica of La Sagrada Familia, are instantly recognisable and have fuelled millions of travel dreams. You won’t be the only tourist here (especially during the summer), but even amid the crowds you’ll find your own Mediterranean magic any time of year.
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My favorite design-forward places to eat & drink
Interior masterpieces designed by Lázaro Rosa-Violán. Bold branding conceptualized by Mucho. Relish in the detail and charm of these aesthetically pleasing eateries, realized by Barcelona’s creative and culinary geniuses.
Bianca Galán-Guzmán, Boston, MA
- El Nacional6,141Since it's inception in 1889, this architectural marvel has housed many businesses, including a café-theatre, a textile dyeing factory, a car dealer shop and then a garage. Today, it stands as an iconic culinary concept, broken up into four distinct eateries, each with their own look. See (and eat) for yourself!
- Casa Lolea Barcelona2,744Strolling through El Born? Looking for that quintessential glass of sangria? This is your place. Lolea serves over five artisanally crafted varieties from their "Sangria Lolea" brand. Paired with some classic tapas...bam. A beautiful combination. Oh, and take a coaster or two for the road. They're just so darn cute!
- Collage Art & Cocktail Social Club335¡Chinchín! Craft cocktails, done right. Collage serves up just about any drink you can imagine....and then the ones you can't. Make small talk down at the bar or relax with friends up in the balcony. The funky living room vibes make you feel right at home.
- Palo Market Fest172Located in the creative barrio of Poblenou, Palo Market is open the first weekend of every month. Grab lunch from one of the many food trucks and spend the afternoon getting lost among craft tables, dessert stalls, art prints, beauty products, handmade apparel and more, all for a small entry fee of €4.
- Batuar270One of the many interiors by Rosa-Violán, Batuar is located inside the historic Cotton House Hotel. Have brunch on the terrace or grab a drink at the bar, but don't forget to snap a photo...for the gram of course.
- Casa Bonay655A boutique hotel concept by entrepreneur Inés Miró-Sans, Casa Bonay is the product of a collaboration between lighting designers, furniture makers, graphic artists, interior decorators, food experts and many more. Whether it's a refreshing Saturno at hotel bar Libertine or aceitunas at the rooftop restaurant Chiringuito, this is the place to get a taste of everyday life in Barcelona.
- Entrepanes Diaz353This may seem like your ordinary bocadillo joint, but the old-fashioned ambiance and charming service makes you feel like you've taken a leap into the past. The space itself is small, perfect for dining solo. And on your way out, ask for "un tarjeta." The one-of-a-kind momento you're handed is far more special than a mere business card.
- Chaka Khan2,301No, not the singer. Take a break from traditional Spanish tapas and eat at Chaka Khan. This exotic restaurant serves up flavorful dishes from Mozambique to Ecuador. And the custom built furniture and African textiles help bring the brand to life.
- Bubo Born1,077The decadent dessert shop where everything is crafted to perfection and no two treats look the same. Try to eat here without snapping hundreds of photos of the sweet sculpture before you. Bet you can't.
- Parallelo190Tucked away on a quiet street in Grácia, Parallelo might just be the best gelato in the city. Stop in for a scoop, or three, and watch the founders (four childhood friends hailing from San Remo!) create seasonal & innovative flavors in the funky shop lab.
- LA DAMA256Bold velvet banquettes. Rococo wallpaper. Elevated and sophisticated dishes. This place is great for an intimate dinner or date.
- Disfrutar1,972A beautiful orchestration of tastes so good, you might cry. This gastronomic gem isn't ranked No.9 in the world for nothing. Behind each plate is an inventive world of flavor. And it's bright and airy interior makes you feel like you are dining in a dream. Come y disfruta!
- Tragaluz1,097Oof. There's just something so magical about the way the sunlight filters down through the ceiling windows and onto your plate.