It’s easy to see why Barcelona is the most-visited city in Spain. As the capital of the country’s Catalonia region, this cityscape’s cultural mosaic pieces together a 2,000-year-old hodgepodge of sun-drenched beaches, cutting edge architecture, and a world-renowned dining and drinking scene. Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí left his modernist handprint all over the city, while medieval treasures linger in historic Gothic Quarter squares. Get lost in the whimsical gardens of Park Güell or savor a chef-led Catalan cooking class. Browse art collections dedicated to Picasso and Miro— or ride a cable car to the top of Montjuïc Hill, relishing citywide views along the way.
THINGS TO DO IN BARCELONA
SKY HIGH DELIGHTS
Get an up-close glimpse of La Sagrada Família, a cathedral masterwork designed by celebrated Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Marvel at its sky-piercing spires and then step inside to admire intricate mosaics, Montjuïc stone pillars and the Nativity façade. You can even climb to the tippy-top of the spires for panoramic city views.
SEAS THE DAY
With seven beaches spanning more than two miles of Mediterranean coastline, Barcelona’s harborfront is known for some of the world’s best sun-seeking and on-the-sea adventures. Lounge along the shore, kayak deep blue waters— or charter a fishing trip for the chance to reel in tuna, swordfish or Mediterranean spearfish.
IN THE MIX
Take a stroll along La Rambla’s pedestrian boulevard to experience the city’s pure essence. Souvenir shops, street artists, flower stalls, sidewalk cafes and Catalan folk sardana dancers set a lively scene. Its marvelous centerpiece, La Catedral, dates from the 1200s— and its tower delivers sweeping views of medieval Barcelona.
Barcelona has mastered the art of eating. Many restaurants serve up creative nueva cocina española, while waterfront spots dish out seafood paella and multi-course lunch menus include a glass of sparkling cava wine. For a taste of Catalan cooking, try pa amb tomàquet (tomato-topped bread). Or nibble on Spanish tapas (bite-sized appetizers) around the bar like a local, with house-made vermouth in hand.
You could spend hours checking out the markets of Barcelona for high-quality leatherwear, jewelry, old books and unique housewares. Passeig de Gràcia and Barcelona Shopping Line are two popular retail promenades— and the Gothic Quarter is home to dozens of family-owned shops that sell textiles, stationery, decorative ceramic tiles and earthenware kitchenware.
One of the busiest cruise ports in the Mediterranean, the seaside city of Barcelona is known for its iconic architecture, colourful culture, and world-class drinking and dining.
Explore Antoni Gaudí’s surreal Sagrada Família, the famous boulevard of the Ramblas, the medieval Barri Gótic, and the Museu Picasso. But there’s even more to discover in this sprawling Spanish city, a Mediterranean Cruises destination: from hidden tapas bars and fabulous food markets to Europe’s biggest football stadium.
Choose your favourite tours from a list of unforgettable Cruises excursions including:
Antoni Gaudí’s Sagrada Família
The Montserrat Mountain and the Abbey of Santa Maria de Montserrat
Camp Nou Stadium
A Cruise excursion to Sagrada Família offers you the unmissable gift of visiting Gaudí’s ingenious Roman Catholic basilica. Journey to this architectural feat with the option of an electrically assisted Mercedes-Benz eBike which you can then use to ride through the city. On your travels, discover the nearby town of Santa Coloma de Cervelló and take in Gaudi’s incredible Church of Colonia Güell. Or visit his other architectural masterworks — Casa Batlló and Casa Milà.
Choose an adventurous Cruise excursion to the majestic Montserrat Mountains. See Passeig de Gràcia, Barcelona’s lively boulevard, and pause to marvel at Gaudí’s Sagrada Família. Then, travel through picturesque countryside to the rugged sandstone peaks of the Montserrat Mountains where the Abbey of Santa Maria de Montserrat is situated. Founded in the 11th-century, the monastery still houses over 70 monks and functions to this day. Discover the charming village of Sant Sadurni and visit the prestigious Vilarnau Wine Cellars. There, you’ll learn how Spanish cava wine is made and you’ll get to partake in a tasting session.
Cruises excursions in Barcelona provide endless excitement for the whole family. But what could be more thrilling than visiting Camp Nou, Europe’s largest stadium? This temple of football seats nearly 100,000 people and plays host to international matches every year. It’s also an impressive concert and events venue hosting acts such as Sting, Peter Gabriel, U2, and Bruce Springsteen. Experience game day energy when entering the players’ dressing rooms or visit the museum and the interactive zone for a virtual view of the arena.
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