Barcelona is universally loved for for its sunny beaches, stunning architecture and animated nightlife. However if you’re travelling tight you may feel that a city break might bust your budget, but don’t write Barcelona off just yet!
Our budget travel tips will give you the lowdown on exploring Barcelona on a budget, without missing out on essential experiences! So put your wallet away and read on…
1. Visit in spring
Visiting in spring can save on flights, and Barcelona enjoys a great climate that starts to really warm up from spring onwards. Vilanova Park is within easy reach of the city using a car or public transport and is open from the end of March onwards!
2. Your own walking tour
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Ambling around the old part of the city and the Gothic quarter is a perfect way to feel the immense history of the place. The ghosts of the city’s thrilling past are etched in every corner, from the old Jewish quarter to the little medieval alleyways. There are many ancient buildings and picturesque squares, which are perfect for exploring too.
The Roman Temple of Augustus is one not to miss – if you know anything about Augustus you know it’ll be grand; since he was the Roman Emperor famed for saying ‘I found a Rome of bricks; I leave to you one of marble’.
3. Hit the beach
Barcelona has 9 beaches running for 4.5 km miles along its coast, all easily reached using the yellow metro line L4. They all offer a slightly different seaside atmosphere; from the festive and lively southern beaches closest to the old town, to quieter, less crowded beaches in the north. Do a little research to see which one is best for you, then roll out your towel and enjoy for free!
4. Make the most of food markets
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Mercat de la Boqueria is an indoor market, famous for its colourful array of fruits, vegetables, seafood, slabs of juicy meats and huge pans of paella, making it a great place to explore whether or you’re peckish or not (you will be by the end of your circuit round the market). Also nestled within the hall are tapas bars, pizza places and a whole selection of food to taste before you decide what you want to buy – so you really needn’t spend a fortune.
5. Cheap eats for meat-eaters and vegans
Restaurant-wise, there are so many to choose from and they won’t break the bank, the best of which being the funky burger bars Bacoa and Cat Bar. Bacoa offer a wide range of delicious meaty burgers, whereas Cat Bar is a funky Vegan place. They’re both reasonably priced and equally divine.
6. Sweet treats, sweet prices
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Delacrem is one of the most talked about dessert and ice cream shops in Barcelona, renowned for its range of mouth watering ice creams and pastries, with sweet treats available for just a few Euros!
7. Free entry to museums on Sunday
Barcelona is filled with city-run museums such as Museu Picasso and Museu d’historia de Barcelona, which are free to visit on Sundays from 3pm to 8pm, perfect for a chilled out and cultured afternoon.
8. Music for all
Spain’s biggest party of the year is the eve of Sant Joan. Celebrated on the 23rd/24th June it is famed for its colourful fireworks and beach parties all through the night.
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If you decide to visit in Autumn, there’s a five-day festival in September called Les Festes de la Mercè, which lights up the city with free concerts, fireworks, acrobatic shows and parades.
There are also plenty of festivals and free concerts during the summer if you decide the heat is worth the extra pennies.