Barcelona is a wonderful city. It ranks high on many travellers and other people’s lists of favourite cities and best places in Europe. With good reason. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, you should really visit Barcelona. Here’s some good reasons why:
1. The food
I can’t write this list without mentioning food. Obviously. You can eat your way through this city. I’ve been eating like a royal in this city for the past year, and I still have only tried half the places, that I have on my list.
You can as in many other big cities get food from any corner of the world, whatever you desire. But if there’s one type of cuisine you’ll find better in Barcelona, than anywhere else, it’s tapas and pintxos.
Eat till your stomach bursts and the buttons on your pants gives up. You can get the most amazing and culinary experiences in the Spanish and Catalan kitchen. One of my favorite places to get a more modern selection of tapas, is Sensi Restaurants. They now have 4 different restaurants, which all serves the most exquisite tapas. It’s one of those places, where you’re too full, but you still order dessert, because it was just that good. (Psst, I’ve written a post before about my favorite restaurants in Barcelona. You can find it here.)
Enjoy delicious Pintxos for only 1€ per piece!
2. The culture
Barcelona is well known for having and being one of the most diverse cultures in the world, and it’ll be one of the easiest things to see when you visit. The city is one giant mix of people from all over the world. People here are open, and there’s room for everyone. You can find bars and places all over the city, where people with the same interests or cultures meet. Just sit and relax in the park, and you’ll see what I mean - acro yoga, circus artists, musicians, there’s a bit of everything! (I've written about some of their funnies traditions here.)
Besides only the people, this city hosts different events almost every weekend. I’ve never experienced a place like this, where there’s always something happening. One weekend there’s a beer festival, the next Thai festival, then street parties and whatever you could possibly think of. Here it’s a part of the normal life, and we all love it.
Correfoc at Fiesta de la Mercè - it means Fire Run or Running with Fire and is a big part of their culture
3. Stunning architecture
I’m not only talking about Gaudi’s stunning creations. When you visit Barcelona, remember to look up. Everywhere in the city. Many houses have stunning facades and you’ll sometimes find small gems, hidden amongst the normal buildings. Barcelona is well known for its architecture, and with rights. The city is simply breathtaking.
Looking up at Santa Maria del Mar - one of the many churches in the city
4. A big city - with a beach
Barcelona is a big city. And if you only visit for a weekend you’re gonna be busy seeing it all. Like when you visit many other big cities, such as London, Paris and New York. But the fact that this big city also has a beach, makes it stand out from the rest.
The wide and long Barcelona beaches are really stunning at sunset
5. And it also has mountains
Oh yeah, it also has mountains. Another thing that makes Barcelona stand out from other big cities. If going to the beach or going sightseeing every day is not your thing, you can head for small hikes. You can find hikes for every individual - even in the city. If you’re longing for bigger and longer hikes, Montserrat is just an hour out of the city.
The view from one of the mountains behind Barcelona - not too shabby right?
6. Good weather (almost) all year
Barcelona only has in average 55 rainy days a year. That’s like the opposite of what Denmark has, haha! But this results in a nice and warm climate, where you can go to the beach 6 months of the year. Even the winters are not that bad, since the lowest temperatures will only be around 12 degrees. But if you visit Barcelona in the winter, you’ll see the locals act like it’s -10 degrees. Including yours truly (I’m apparently not the best viking). But the weather here is almost good all the time. Which is a thing a girl from the north needs to get used too. In the north we have something called “sun guilt”. This means, that if the sun shines, we feel guilty if we’re not outside to enjoy it. Even though it’s sunny almost every day here, I still feel guilty if I’m not outside. A thing I really need to get used too, so I keep telling myself “It’s okay. There’s another sunny day tomorrow”.
7. Palm trees and wild parrots in the streets
Do I need to say more? I personally get really happy when I see palm trees. And then parrots flying wild just tops it off. If this doesn’t make you happy, I don’t know what does. I still can’t believe that I live in a country with palm trees and wild parrots.
8. It’s sooo cheap
Going out for dinner, drinks, whatever. It’s all really cheap. A recent study showed that life in Spain is 70%(!) cheaper than life in Copenhagen! That is a lot! So you don’t need to save a lot if you want to visit this beautiful city. A nice dinner for two is possible for only 30-40€, and drinks can be as little as 3€! I will also be the first one to admit, that some places and things are of course much more expensive, but it is possible to have fun without ruining yourself.
Even REALLY good mojitos are cheap here! So it's too easy too drink too much, haha!
9. Shopping, shopping and more shopping
Barcelona has tons of areas to shop till you drop. The best and biggest are Passeig de Gracia and Avinguda del Portal de l’Angel. They’re both long shopping streets filled with stores on both sides. Shop your favorites from H&M, Zara, Bershka, and so on, to a cheaper price than in many other countries. But I warn you - Spaniards are really fond of colours, so prepare your eyes for every colour you can imagine. And it can be extremely hard to find basic wear, that doesn’t have a colourful stripe or some embroidery somewhere. Maybe I’m too Scandinavian (we mostly wear black), but one thing I’ve learned from living here is to incorporate more colours into my wardrobe.
10. It’s possible to walk to everything
Admitted - it might take some time. But that’s one of my favourite things about this city, which you’ll also notice if you visit. It’s really possible to walk to everything. Especially within the old city (Ciutat Vella), where everything is fairly close. It’s also really nice to stroll through these old and narrow streets, as you discover the many small hidden gems everywhere. And it’s a good way to burn of all the food and sangria you’ll be devouring.
I'm still enjoying every minute in Barcelona after one year of living here
There's many reasons to visit the Catalan capital. I'm forever grateful that I took the decision to move here, and I'm so proud to call this city my home. Everyone that visits Barcelona falls in love with it. Come see for yourself why they do.