Visit Barcelona in 48 hours

Dynamic and festive, the Catalan capital is the perfect place to spend a weekend. The city attracts young people with its beaches and trendy bars. Set between the mountains and the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona boasts a wide variety of landscapes and almost daily sunshine. It's hard to miss the wealth of architecture built up over the centuries in Spain's second-largest city, which goes a long way to explaining its success as a tourist destination. From its different faces, Gothic, modern and contemporary, lovers of Art Nouveau will be amazed by its Spanish interpretation, Modernismo, staged by the famous architect Gaudí and his unfinished masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia, which has become the symbol of the city. Then there's Parc Güell, the only park in the world to be classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Not forgetting Las Ramblas, and so many other must-see places. Two busy days await us in the sparkling Catalan city, brimming with sights. We've got a packed programme ahead of us, so let's get to it!

Vue aérienne de la plage centrale de Barcelone

- © Dmytro Shevchuk / Shutterstock

Day 1: Discover Barcelona's architecture

Gaining strength

We start our day with a snack at the Xurreria Sagrada Familia restaurant, just a few minutes' walk from the great Sagrada Familia cathedral. In this paradise, you'll find different types of churros. Whether it's sugar churros or chocolate-covered churros, your taste buds won't be disappointed!

Sagrada Familia

Our next stop is one of Barcelona's most popular tourist attractions, the Sagrada Familia basilica. Standing 172 metres high, it has been under construction since 1882. It was none other than the famous architect Antoni Gaudí who began building this monument. And don't forget to keep that name in mind, as he is the author of several works throughout the city. What makes it unique is the play of light inside. Depending on the season and the time of day, the lighting conditions and the play of colours can change, so a single visit is usually not enough. A word of advice: if you don't want to wait long at the entrance, buy your ticket online in advance.

La Sagrada Familia - the impressive cathedral designed by Gaudí

- © Luciano Mortula - LGM / Shutterstock

Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

To get to your next destination, simply take Avenida Gaudí, which starts directly in front of the cathedral, and follow it to the end of the street, where you'll find the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau. This hospice is the largest Art Nouveau building in the whole of Spain! Today, the hospital has ceased to function and has been replaced by a cultural centre and museum.

The Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau complex, the world's largest Art Nouveau site in Barcelona

- © Lena Serditova / Shutterstock

Lunch

After walking a few kilometres, we take the nearby metro to the Verdaguer stop. Not far from this metro station is Café Adonis 1940, where we'll be enjoying an invigorating snack. The menu offers all kinds of dishes: burgers, salads, tapas, as well as Catalan specialities. All at moderate prices and right in the city centre.

Parc Güell

Let's move on to the city's highest point, Barcelona's 'Eiffel Tower': Parc Güell. This park has it all. Designed by Gaudí, it is reminiscent of a fairytale landscape, with all its different colours and patterns. You should allow several hours to observe everything in detail and appreciate the beauty of the place.

Le célèbre Parc Güell

- © Vladitto / Shutterstock

Las Ramblas

We're back on the metro and this time we're heading for a very lively part of Barcelona, Las Ramblas. It's the perfect place for anyone who likes a bit of action. This kilometre-long street is packed with shops, markets, street vendors, bars, restaurants and, above all, lots of entertainment. No other walking street describes the city as well as this one. We followed the street to its end, where we had dinner.

Las Ramblas vue du ciel

- © Luti / Shutterstock

Dinner

The restaurant is located on Las Ramblas avenue and serves Italian cuisine. Pasta Market is a stylish restaurant with a wide variety of pastas and salads. A gourmet atmosphere reminiscent of the flavours of Italy.

Beach

After dinner, it's off to the beach, just a few metres away. In the evenings, there are plenty of students, lovers and joggers who want to spend the last few hours of their day in the fresh air. Even in the coldest seasons, the Mediterranean climate makes it pleasant to stroll along the beach.

Vue sur la plage de Barcelone

- © Kert / Shutterstock

Day 2: City walk

After a good night's sleep, day two begins with a quick bite to eat at La Cala Barceloneta restaurant, located right on Barcelona's harbour, which offers hearty and delicious brunches. In this relaxing paradise, everything is a must-try! Enjoy your brunch!

Montjuic

We then take the cable car from the port to the Montjuic fortress. At a height of 173 metres, you can see the whole city from above and take some incredible photos of the view. We then walk back down and enter the National Art Museum of Catalonia.

Montjuïc National Palace and National Art Museum of Catalonia

- © Aliaksandr Antanovich / Shutterstock

Parc de la Ciutadella

What better place to get some fresh air than in a garden? Parc de la Ciutadella is a green paradise in an otherwise bustling metropolis. Yoga enthusiasts, nature lovers, families and relaxation seekers sit here to picnic on the lawns or simply stroll around the park. We recommend that you take a picnic and sit back and relax in the park. There's also a zoo and street musicians playing their best music. If you're looking to relax, this is the place to do it!

Parc de Ciutadella

- © lornet / Shutterstock

Dinner

Tonight we're going to Bilbao Berria, a restaurant serving mainly Spanish cuisine. It's best to order a glass of red wine and several tapas, as the Spanish do. These little morsels will fill your stomach and it's the best way to discover the different influences and flavours of Spanish cuisine. Don't hesitate to take a look in front of the restaurant, it's right next to Barcelona Cathedral, which also has a lot of charm. And so ends our little escapade in the dynamic city of Barcelona.

by Jude JONES
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