Travel Barcelona: Top Tourist Attractions and Best Tapas

By , May 27th, 2013

Barcelona is the third city that the winners of the trivago WorldTrip Contest will tour on their 80-day, 10-city globe-trotting adventure.  It follows Rome, the second city on the trivago WorldTrip, which is not an easy act to follow.  Fortunately, Barcelona, with its own breathtaking architecture, art, world-famous dining and nightlife scene, is a global powerhouse city as well, offering travelers a completely different experience.  The city is often described as unique, cosmopolitan and effortlessly cool.

[caption id="attachment_1592" align="alignnone" width="682"]La Sagrada Familia La Sagrada Familia[/caption]

Barcelona’s quirky architecture sets the city apart from any city in the world, with many points of interest declared as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  Seven properties built by Antoni Gaudi, the architect responsible for the eclectic and creative appearance of Barcelona, have earned this status.  These buildings are:  Parque Güell; Palacio Güell; Casa Mila; Casa Vicens; Gaudí’s work on the Nativity façade and Crypt of La Sagrada Familia; Casa Batlló; Crypt in Colonia Güell.

[caption id="attachment_1593" align="alignnone" width="682"]Park Guell Park Guell[/caption]

Top tourist activities of Barcelona include strolling down the famous street of La Rambla and watching street performers entertain, reveling in Picasso’s great works at the Museu Picasso, eating something delicious at La Boqueria, and soaking up sun on the Barcaloneta beach.  A popular day trip from Barcelona is Montserrat, a beautiful retreat perfect for hiking about one hour north of Barcelona by train.

[caption id="attachment_1598" align="alignnone" width="572"]La Boqueria La Boqueria[/caption]

Hungry?  Barcelona is Catalonia’s capital of gastronomy, and while the city has no shortage of Michelin restaurants, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants to please just about everyone.  It is almost impossible to leave Barcelona without trying tapas and sampling cava, the “Spanish Champagne”.  The most famous place for patatas bravas is Bar Tomás, and another legendary Barcelona tapas bar is Champagneria.  However, trivago insiders rave about Café Marcel (Carrer Santaló 42 +34 93 209 89 48)  for patatas bravas, and Morryssom (Carrer de Girona 162 +34 93 458 4817) for tapas.  There are also a number of great pintxos and tapas bars line the streets of Carrer de l’Argenteria and el Born.  Stop at one of these bars if you plan to explore Picasso Museum and the art galleries and shops in the neighborhood.  For a sweet treat, head over to Art Gelato for the best ice cream and waffle.

Barcelona comes to life after dark, and one nighttime activity that everyone can enjoy is the Magic Fountain of Montjuic.  Pack a picnic dinner (or at least some refreshing cava and strawberries) and enjoy the spectacular display of color, light, motion, music and water acrobatics.

[caption id="attachment_1599" align="aligncenter" width="345"]Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona[/caption]
There are numerous hotels in Barcelona, but one hotel that we really like is Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona.  trivago selected Silken Diagonal as the accommodations for the WorldTrip winners because of its great location and über-stylish exterior and interior decor.  The hotel is located just minutes away from the nearest Metro station, which takes you to the city center in 10-15 minutes.   It is also about a 20-minute walk to Gaudí’s Sagrada Familia, and the beach is less than one mile away.  Architecture-enthusiasts will delight in the fact that the hotel is next to the Torre Agbar Tower, an architectural icon of Barcelona and one of city’s most famous and tallest buildings. See more info here.
[caption id="attachment_1601" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona Lobby Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona Lobby[/caption]

Silken Diagonal’s chic and contemporary appearance sets it apart from other hotels with its trendy lobby and bright, stylish rooms.

[caption id="attachment_1603" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Hotel Silken Diagonal Junior Suite Hotel Silken Diagonal Junior Suite[/caption]

After a day of sightseeing, guests can enjoy a drink and listen to live music in the piano bar or head to the outdoor pool and terrace area for breathtaking city views.

[caption id="attachment_1604" align="alignnone" width="1001"]Hotel Silken Diagonal Terrace Hotel Silken Diagonal Terrace[/caption]

The Michelin-recommended Piano Restaurant in Hotel Silken Diagonal Barcelona deserves a special mention.  Offering two of the best cuisines of Spain, the Basque and Catalonian, Piano Restaurant is a great place to sample Barcelona’s best cuisine.

Can’t get enough of this city?  Make sure to stop by the drinking fountain at the start of La Rambla.  Legend has it that if you take a drink from this famous fountain, you will return to the city.  ¡Viva la vida!

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