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I have been to Barcelona twice now. Once in 2016 and this year in 2019. I have seen and done a couple of things during these trips. I wish I hadn’t done some things to save time for the things I did wanted to see, but didn’t end op doing. Here’s the ultimate beginners guide to Barcelona for the best trip!
The Beginners Guide To Barcelona
Buy your metro ticket before arrival
Some websites give you the opportunity to buy your tickets for the public transportation online. I know that Booking.com does this as well and it’s so easy! You get a code to fill in at the ticket machine when you’re in Barcelona and you’re tickets are ready! It can’t get any easier. Most of the tickets work for the bus, metro and a metro-train line as well. Be sure to find the right ticket machine to collect your tickets. There are different ones so look at the instructions on the e-mail you got when you bought the tickets! This is really my best tip in this guide to Barcelona.
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Skip Park Güell
I’m not going to lie, Park Güell is really pretty. However, it’s pretty small and you’re done in about 30-60 minutes. It takes a while to get up the hill if you travel with the public transportation. I must say, the view from the parc outside of the actual park is amazing. You don’t have to pay to visit this park, this park surrounds the Park Güell itself. If you are short in time, I would skip Park Güell and visit something else like the Sagrada Familia. We decided to visit Park Güell and skip the inside of Sagrada Familia. Obviously go with what you love! I decided to write it in this guide to Barcelona based on my personal experience.
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Go up to Montjuïc in time
I didn’t realize that the cable car stops at 9 PM, and we went up at 8:30 PM which means we literally only had 15 minutes to take the last one down. Montjuïc is known for its amazing sunsets, best views of the city and the beautiful buildings and park. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see the buildings and the park because we went up on our last night. I’d advise you to go up late in the afternoon, take some food with you, explore the park and the buildings and end the night with a picnic during sunset! You can walk down the mountain, take the bus or a taxi. It’s up to you!
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Take a taxi to the airport
I feel like I’m pretty good with the public transportation in a city, especially because my mom is really good with maps. However, the journey from the city centre to the airport is a pain in the ass. You can take the train, metro or bus but it does take a long time before you arrive at the airport. I took the train the first time I went to Barcelona and it was fine. We took the metro this time to get from the airport to the city because of our metro ticket.
On our way home, we decided to take a taxi. That was the best thing! You get to see the city one last time and arrive at the airport in 15-30 minutes. It costs you around €30-€40 total. Definitely not the cheapest option, but it is the most relaxed one.
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Buy your tickets in advance
Definitely buy all our tickets online before you visit the place. This saves so much frustration. If you want to visit Park Güell: buy the ticket at least one day before you visit the place or even one week before you go. This park is incredibly popular so tickets can be soled out a week in advance. You can’t buy tickets in the park since it’s almost always sold out! If you visit the Sagrada Familia or any other place: you can buy “skip the line” tickets which is great and time saving!
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Definitely get a metro pass!
This one will save your legs and save you so much time. The metro system is great and you can get anywhere in the city with the metro! The only sad thing is that you don’t see anything from the city above you. You can always chose to walk from point to point but it’s amazing to have if you want to get somewhere fast and cheap. I believe it costs around €15-€20 to have a metro pass for four days. It’s way cheaper than a taxi and you don’t have any traffic. If you’d like to stay above ground, most busses are also included in your metro pass!
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Visit Gothic Quarter
Gothic Quarter is the most fun neighbourhood of Barcelona! It’s full of art and fun buildings, shops and places to eat. The streets are so much fun to stroll around. I love the Spanish boutiques in the streets. I’ve found two lovely dressed in a store here, super cheap and perfect for summer. There is so much to see here! You can even do a walking tour but I’d suggest to just walk around by yourself to have the freedom to visit everything.
I have loved every second of my Barcelona trip! Hopefully you like this beginners guide to Barcelona for your next trip. I’m sure you are going to have an awesome time.