12 Instagrammable places in Barcelona

Aytan Akhundova 18 April 2021 73 views 6 min. read

Catalonia's vibrant capital, Barcelona, is a stunning seaside "corner" that shows its beauty and sunny lifestyle. The magnificent scenery, breathtaking architecture, and magnificent cultural attractions make Barcelona an attractive travel destination for tourists. Of course, the stunning Mediterranean climate adds to the charm. Barcelona's city is famous for the atmospheric medieval Barrio-Gothic quarter with an almost magical old-world atmosphere, but even more famous for its modernist architecture.

Antonio Gaudi has left an indelible mark on Barcelona with his avant-garde surrealist buildings; some are UNESCO-listed.

Where is Barcelona?

"Where is Barcelona? Well, it's simple, in the paradise, of course." - you will answer. Barcelona is located in a strategic geographical location on the Iberian Peninsula's Mediterranean coast, protected by the Serra de Collserola mountain range, bounded by two river deltas, and with a privileged natural environment. It led to its steady growth: the city became a great European metropolis, integrated into its surroundings.

Let's move on to the most interesting part, Barcelona, whose sights automatically turn into Instagrammable places, shines with stunning beauty and history.

1. La Sagrada Familia

la sagrada familia

One of the most unconventional churches in Europe, the impressive basilica is Barcelona's most famous landmark. The UNESCO-listed Sagrada Familia Basilica stands in the northern part of the city, dominating its surroundings with 18 spindled towers rising high above all other monuments. La Sagrada Familia is also known in Spanish by its official name: the Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família.

Antonio Gaudi was hired in 1883 to design this basilica in the Neo-Gothic style. Instead of following the plans, he created a signature piece of his famous surreal Art Nouveau architecture. He had no firm ideas, preferring to change and supplement the plans as the work progressed. Although Gaudi initially predicted that the church would be built within ten to fifteen years, it was never completed. As a result, the main work of the most important Catalan architect of our time remains only a shell, and no one knows if it will ever be finished.

The general effect of Gaudi architecture is "Jaw-dropping." Gaudi best captured the essence of his architectural masterpiece when he described it as a work that is in the hands of God and the will of the people.

Address: 401 Carrer de Mallorca, Barcelona.

2. Barcelona Old Town

barcelona

This area is one of the best Instagrammable places in Barcelona. The Old Town has 4 subdistricts (barrios) that are completely different from each other: the Gothic Quarter, Raval Barceloneta, and San Pere, Santa Caterina, and La Ribera.

An integral part of Barcelona Old Town, for 2,000 years, the Gothic Quarter has been the city's spiritual and secular center. You can still find relics of ancient Roman buildings, but the Middle Ages are best represented by the historical monuments collected in this quarter. A masterpiece of Gothic Catalan architecture, the medieval cathedral stands on Monte Tabor, the city center's highest point. The Gothic quarter is where Catholic monarchs received Christopher Columbus after his first voyage to the New World, and from the 14th and 15th centuries, it housed the city administration.

3. Casa Mila (La Pedrera)

gaudi casa mila

In the Eixample district, next to the elegant Paseo de Gracia Boulevard, there is the most famous secular building of Antonio Gaudi, listed in the UNESCO list. The Mila House is also affectionately known as "La Pedrera," which means "Stone Quarry," as the building resembles an open pit. It was built between 1906 and 1912, and this vibrant, avant-garde dwelling looks more like a sculpture than a functional building. Each line of the natural stone facade is curved, and the rounded windows and metal railings of the balconies twist in the shape of plants. Even the roof has a wavy shape, complemented by decorative chimneys.

Casa Mila is home to the Fundacio Catalunya Cultural Center, which organizes events throughout the year. The monument is open to the public daily, and audio guides are also available. Cafe La Pedrera offers a relaxing place to eat in a decent location as a welcome stop for tourists.

Address: 261-265 Carrer de Provenza, Barcelona.

4. La Rambla: Barcelona Social Center

la rambla

The heart of Barcelona's social life is located on La Rambla, a wide, tree-shaded avenue that divides the Old Town into two parts. La Rambla stretches from Plaza Catalunya, home to the beautiful 12th-century Romanesque monastery of Santa Anna, all the way to the port. With spacious pedestrian sidewalks, this wide street is surrounded by shops, restaurants, and open-air cafes, making it one of the most popular in the city.

During the day, many locals shop here daily at the Mercat de la Boqueria. At night, groups of friends and families take their evening paseos (walks) along La Rambla to enjoy the fresh air and lively atmosphere. Depending on the day, the audience can be treated to live music, pantomime, or other improvised street performances.

To the northeast, La Rambla borders the Barrio Gothic, and halfway up the avenue is the Plaza Reial, a beautiful palm-fringed square surrounded by historic homes. These elegant buildings have arcades filled with shops, cafes, and restaurants. In the center is the Fountain of the Three Graces with candelabra, designed by Antonio Gaudi.

5. Palau de la Musica Catalana

palau de la musica catalana

Built between 1905 and 1908 as a concert hall for the Orfeo Catala Choral Society, the Palace of Catalan Music was designed by architect Luis Domenech y Montaner in Catalan Art Nouveau style. While the building is characterized by curved style lines and a colorful palette, unlike Gaudi's work, this design puts function above form. Although the interior decor is as colorful and quirky as the exterior, its shape and decor are dedicated to choral and other musical performances.

The Palau Concert Hall, which seats about 2,200 people, is the only hall in Europe that is lit exclusively by natural light during the day. The walls on both sides consist mainly of stained glass windows set in magnificent arches, and above them is a huge stained glass window designed by Antonio Rigalt, the central element of which is an inverted dome in shades of gold, surrounded by a blue color that illuminates the sun and the sky. Designed sculptures frame the concert stage.

Address: Calle Palau de la Musika 4-6, Barcelona.

6. Park Guell

park gaudi

Colorful, cheerful, and full of whimsy, this magnificent surreal park is another UNESCO World Heritage Site designed by Antonio Gaudi. Created between 1900 and 1914, Park Guell has Instagrammable landscaping and architectural elements in Gaudi's signature style. Viaducts, caves, a colonnaded hall, spiral staircases, and semi-enclosed conversational spaces are scattered throughout the space. These creative structures are decorated with colorful ceramic fragments. The impressive terrace offers Instagrammable views of the city and the sea. Gaudi himself loved this area of the city, and his home was located here.

Address: Carrer d'olot, Barcelona.

7. Casa Batllo

casa batllo

Another amazing piece of Gaudi architecture, the UNESCO-listed Casa Batllo is Barcelona's most distinctive modernist buildings. The fantastic mansion was designed as the private residence of textile manufacturer Josep Baglio and Casanovas. With its free-swinging forms and ornate facade, this fabulous building looks like a castle from a surreal fairy tale. Most of the design details completely depart from any architectural precedent. The window frame on the ground floor is fringed with swaying shapes that suggest plants; others resemble cave entrances. On the facade, decorative glazed ceramic tiles in green, blue, and ochre colors add to the flame. The undulating roof, as in Casa Mila, has numerous ornate chimneys. Gaudi also created interior decoration, which can be seen in the Gaudi House Museum in Park Guell. For those looking for an excellent gourmet dinner, the elegant Moments Restaurant with two Michelin stars is just a few steps away at 38 Paseo de Gracia.

Address: 43 Paseo de Gracia, Barcelona.

8. Camp Nou

camp nou

Just as Modernist buildings are must-visit Instagrammable places for architecture lovers, so the Camp Nou is a must-visit travel destination for football (soccer) lovers. The home of FC Barcelona, the 99,354-seat stadium is the largest in Europe and the second-largest in the world. Attend a match here, or go on a lively tour and visit the museum. Camp Nou was one of the venues for the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona.

Address: C. d'aristides Maillol 12, Barcelona.

9. The Magic Fountain

magic fountain

One of the favorite things to do in Barcelona at night is to watch the Magic Fountain of Montjuic, at the beginning of Avinguda Maria Cristina in the Montjuic area. The large Art Deco fountain, built-in 1929, pleases all ages with its light and water show choreographed to music. Carl Buigas designed it for the 1929 International Exhibition held in Montjuic. The exhibition lasts about an hour.

Address: Plaza Carl Buigas 1, Barcelona.

10. Scenic views and art museums in Montjuic

national art museum

This hilltop area is located on an old Jewish cemetery site, explaining its name Mont Juic, which means "Mountain of the Jews." At an altitude of 213 meters above sea level, the hillside is crowned by a fortress at the top and slopes that descend steeply to the Mediterranean Sea. This picturesque area of the city is known for its natural park with Instagrammable views and magnificent museums. The National Art Museum of Catalonia houses an exceptional collection of Catalan art from the X-XX centuries, including sculpture, paintings, drawings, prints, and photography.

11. La Barceloneta

la barceloneta

Next to the cruise port, La Barceloneta's neighborhood is bordered by the long and wide beach of San Sebastia, where locals sunbathe, surf, and socialize in the many restaurants with seafood and tapas dishes overlooking the sea. A long promenade dotted with palm trees connects the beach to the piers filled with yachts. You will get a good view of the docks and the port area from the Port Cable Car, which rises from here to the top of Montjuic hill.

12. Monestir de Pedralbes

monestir de pedralbes

A fine example of Gothic Catalan architecture, the Monestir de Pedralbes Monastery is located in an Instagrammable little park called Jardines Reina Elisenda. This idyllic garden is filled with native shrubs, palm trees, cypresses, and shady trees. Queen Elisenda de Montchada founded the monastery in 1326 for the Order of Saint Clare. The complex includes a magnificent Gothic church, a serene three-story monastery, and quiet monastic buildings. Visitors enjoy relaxing in a peaceful environment and getting to know the nuns' life and work of the 14th century. Another tourist attraction to visit is the Monastery Museum, which displays an outstanding collection of medieval art from the 14th century and more recent examples of religious art created in the 20th century.

Address: 9 Baixada del Monestir, Barcelona

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