Travel to Barcelona, an enchanting seaside city with a relaxed pace
Barcelona is a city that seems to have everything going for it: great weather, coastal location, beaches, architecture, culture, shopping, dining and nightlife… what more could you ask for?! This vibrant city, which is the second largest in Spain and is the capital of Catalonia, is a key tourist destination as well as being a major center for business and commerce. A popular weekend destination for Europeans, tourists from around the world also visit Barcelona for longer vacations, but with so many attractions in the city you’ll be hard pushed to see everything, even in a week.
Barcelona’s history goes back a long way, even before the Romans, and the precise origins of the city still remain unclear to this day. It was the Romans who really began to develop the city though, and their legacy can still be seen around the historical center, the Gothic Quarter, today. After the Visigoths conquered in the early 5th century and the Arabs conquered in the early 8th century, Barcelona came under the rule of the Counts of Barcelona, but still faced a rocky future especially during the Spanish Civil War between 1936 and 1939. Following the war the city grew in leaps and bounds, attracting mass immigration and finally worldwide attention when it hosted the Olympic Games in 1992 and over the past twenty years, Barcelona has become one of Europe’s most visited cities.
With its mild climate you can visit Barcelona any time of the year though summers are best if you enjoy days on the beach. The warm and dry summers boast average high temperatures in the mid to high 20’s C (high 70s to mid 80s F), though you’re almost guaranteed warm and pleasant weather right from May through to October. Come the winter, Barcelona stays mild and humid, but is relatively dry compared to some other Mediterranean cities so it’s still a good time to walk around the quieter streets and to visit Barcelona’s attractions without such large crowds.
During the summer, the city’s location, right on the shores of the Mediterranean, means that you can go to the beach one day, and stroll the city’s streets and landmarks the next. With so much to see and do, it’s best to come armed with an itinerary if you want to admire the major landmarks, but Barcelona is also a city to take your time in, relax in its bars and restaurants and experience its vibrant street life. Maybe you should save this for your second or third visit though!
There are some things you won’t want to miss such as the city’s quirky architecture, whether it’s the fantastical Sagrada Familia or Park Guell, or the historic Medieval Gothic Quarter which is among the best preserved in Europe. Also visit Barcelona for its impressive museums including MUHBA and Museo Picasso, or just enjoy the greenery of its parks. Barcelona really does have something for all tastes.