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Planning Your Trip

With its stunning architecture, world-class dining scene and unbeatable weather, Barcelona has a little something for everyone. Here’s what you’ll need for your stay in this seaside metropolis. 

A tall building overlooking the sea

Exploring the City

Whether you’re strolling to one of Gaudí’s buildings or down Las Ramblas, you’ll find that Barcelona’s pedestrian-friendly sprawl makes it easy to see the sights.


  • You’ll likely be out all day so pack a pair of stylish, comfortable shoes that can take you over cobblestone streets and out to dinner.
  • Bring a portable phone charger so you can stay connected while you’re on the go.
  • If visiting during the summer months, throw a swimsuit in your daypack. You never know when a day of exploring will lead you to the beach. 

Summer Escape

July and August can be particularly hot and humid, but cooling off is easy when the beach is so close.



  • Beach season is from May to September. Pack your swimsuit, sunglasses and sunscreen to hit the seaside.
  • Stick with light colors and breathable materials, like 100 percent cotton and linen, to help keep cool.
  • Sandals and sneakers are appropriate for daytime activities but you’ll want a pair of stylish flats or dress shoes to wear to dinner.
Aerial view of a city overlooking the sea

Weekend Getaway

If you only have a few days in Barcelona, you’ll want to focus on the highlights: food, sightseeing and the beach. 


  • The dress code is to always be fashionable but not strictly formal. A maxidress for women and sport jacket for men are good choices for a night out. 
  • Bring your beach essentials — swimsuit, sunscreen and cover-up — for an easy transition from the boardwalk to a casual lunch.
  • Leave the jackets behind in the summer. Barcelona’s fall and winter seasons, however, do require a lightweight coat. 

Don't Forget:

If you plan on visiting the Barcelona Cathedral, know that the dress code will be strictly enforced: Knees and shoulders must be covered. Women can bring shawls or scarves to drape over bare shoulders in the summer months. 

Barcelona is known for its laid-back culture and amazing weather. But it’s also no stranger to long lines and waitlists. Make the most of your time in this seaside city by booking these activities in advance.  

Museum Tickets and Cultural Sights

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It’s hard to think about Barcelona without Antoni Gaudí’s surreal buildings coming to mind. There are 11 Gaudí buildings in Barcelona but his most popular ones are Sagrada Família, La Pedrera, Casa Batlló and Park Guell. Buy your tickets online in advance and you’ll be able to skip the long lines when you get there. For a special experience — and a few surprises — book the La Pedrera night tour that only allows small groups at a time. Glass of cava, included. 

Dining Reservations


Barcelona is home to the most Michelin-star restaurants in Spain. One of them Enoteca Paco Pérez, is located at Hotel Arts Barcelona, where Chef Paco Pérez creates imaginative Mediterranean delights with an emphasis on fish and seafood. Awarded two Michelin stars since 2013, his cooking philosophy is based on quality raw ingredients, simplicity, elegance and creativity. 

Day Trips

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Escape city life and take the train one hour northwest to Montserrat for a serene experience. Here, nature lovers can revel in the numerous hikes — difficult and easy — that offer breathtaking mountain views; or visit the Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey where people line up to pay the Virgin of Montserrat statue a visit. Another short train ride away is Girona, a medieval city famous for its well-preserved Jewish Quarter and colorful houses nestled along the Onyar River. Farther north, visit the birthplace of Spain’s most famous artist, surrealist Salvador Dalí, and see his work at the Dalí Theatre-Museum. But buy tickets in advance because the lines to get in are predictably long. 

Spa Appointments

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After a long day of sightseeing, treat yourself to a little rest and relaxation at 43 The Spa. Taking inspiration from the beauty of the sea, the 3,000-square-foot retreat sits in the highest floors of the hotel and offers everything from massages to facial treatments to manicures. For a luxurious experience, book the Sublime Diamond Journey, which uses diamond dust to exfoliate and revitalize the skin. Or soothe your skin after a day in the sun with the Citrus Body Scrub and Body Soufflé, an intense treatment that moisturizes and protects skin through the natural powers of pure vitamin C. 

View of Gaudi park

Cultural Treasures

Contemplate Barcelona’s wealth of wonderful museums and you realize the depth of cultural heritage the city offers. You’ll find the splendor of this time still reflected in the Gothic Quarter. In the early 20th century, the modernisme movement, with architect Antoni Gaudi at the fore, left a boldly unique mark on the city.


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Couple walking on beach

A Romantic Getaway

Rich in history and vibrant in culture, Barcelona is a city that charms and surprises and forever has you wanting more. Fall in love all over again, or for the first time, amid the walkable boulevards, stunning views, delectable cuisine, thoughtful museums and architecture that truly is art.


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Family Adventures

Barcelona’s incredible array of cultural, culinary, leisure-time, wellness and adventure offerings is sure to appeal to everyone in your extended brood — from Gen Zers to baby boomers and everyone in between. 



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