Spain's best-loved city is a showcase of madcap architecture, wildly inventive restaurants and cava-fueled nightspots that keep the party rolling till dawn. Add scenic hillside parks, a medieval center and sun-kissed beaches, and it's easy to see why so many visitors fall for this Mediterranean beauty.
The cobblestone streets of the Ciutat Vella (Old City) provide a window to Barcelona’s glorious past, with soaring Gothic churches, Roman ruins and palm-fringed plazas where you can sip a cafè amb llet (coffee with milk) beneath 14th-century spires. Further north, the Eixample neighborhood is a showcase of stunning Modernista architecture. Here you’ll see works by the famed Antoni Gaudí, including his Sagrada Família, a jaw-dropping cathedral that's over 100 years in the making — and still far from completion.
Take a breezy stroll along Barceloneta beach, then head into the narrow lanes nearby for a seafood feast. After sundown, visit the bohemian drinking dens of El Raval, go tapas bar-hopping in El Born or watch the legendary FC Barcelona take the field at Camp Nou.