Free Things to Do in Barcelona
The lively capital of Catalonia, Barcelona is a city with plenty to offer to its visitors. Its exquisite art, culture and beauty constantly awe tourists year after year. Just the fact that it is the only city in the world to have 9 UNESCO World Heritage buildings is enough of a reason to visit it. But all this sightseeing can start to empty out your wallet pretty quickly so we’ve put together a list of free local attractions in this incredible city. Hitting up these 10 spots will still allow you to experience Barcelona in full without having to spend a dime!
1. Las Ramblas
Barcelona’s iconic landmark and one of the most famous strips around the world, Las Ramblas is a great place to spend a few hours on a pleasant stroll. Its buzzing atmosphere is perfect for the shameless hobby of people-watching and street performers.
Although it will take some leg work, it is undoubtedly worth it to climb up to the summit of Montjuïc. There, you will find few tourists, a stunning view of the city and a peaceful garden.
3. Parc de la Ciutadella
This 74 acre park in the centre of Barcelona contains a lake, several museums, a zoo and much more. It’s the perfect haven to spend a quiet afternoon right in the middle of the bustling city. Lounge by the lake or stroll through the different pathways to discover different sculptures and fountains.
4. Mercat de la Boqueria
Food is a huge part of Barcelona’s culture and for that reason you can’t visit the city without stopping by at least one of its markets. Although Mercat de la Boqueria is one of the most tourist-ridden markets, its astounding architecture and busy shops make for an unforgettable experience. If you can, visit it in the morning to avoid the large crowds.
5. Ruta del Modernisme
For the architecture buffs, Barcelona’s municipal government has put together a free route through the city that will take you to the most famous Modernist works. You can admire works by Gaudi and his contemporaries for free and get to see Barcelona on foot.
6. Barceloneta Beach
Although Barcelona’s beaches are far from being considered the best in Spain, if you’re in the city on a hot summer day, a dip in the ocean will be more than welcome. Barceloneta Beach is located near the old fishermen’s quarter which also provides a great opportunity to explore that part of the city.
7. Catedral de Barcelona
Entrance to this cathedral, set in the Gothic quarter, is free. This 13th century building is a beautiful sanctuary set in the middle of a busy city and contains several little chapels and a garden with a cloister.
8. La Sagrada Familia
Wait a second – yes, you will have to pay to go inside and see Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece from its interior. But you will be able to admire about 90% of the beauty of this building from its outside. So if you’re looking for a place in your budget to save your pennies – this is a good way to do it.
9. Barri Gòtic
Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter is a charming neighbourhood set in the city’s old town. It’s the perfect spot to wander through narrow streets and discover history around every corner. You will also be able to find City Hall and stunning Gothic churches throughout the quarter.
If you plan your trip to Barcelona right, you’ll be able to enjoy some incredible music festivals in the city. Festa Major de Gràcia, Barcelona’s most popular festival, takes place over the course of one week in the summer and Festes de la Mercè happens in late September.