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Barcelona Attractions

barcelona attractionAs the second largest city in Spain, Barcelona is known for its open, progressive and cosmopolitan vibe. With a population of over 1.5 million, the city owes much of its renowned character to a long and sorted history beginning with its inception at the end of the 1st century B.C. Barcelona expanded to enjoy several centuries of flourishing independence, new settlements and consideration as a part of the Crown of Aragon territories, which included Athens, Naples and Sicily. Present day Barcelona offers visitors an elaborate cultural inheritance where the splendors of old-world Europe meet the modernity of a tolerant, industrial and artistic city.

The easiest way to experience Barcelona is take advantage of the Metro system, which is both fast and efficient and offers access to some of Barcelona’s most well known cultural sites. Metro tickets allow visitors to change various lines within the train system all for one price making it easy to get around the entirety of the city at a low cost. Taxis are also affordable and most journeys around the main parts of the city come in under 6 Euros.

Availing use of the Metro will enable tourists to visit a myriad of highlights exclusive to Barcelona including Old Town. The Ciutat Vella is the heart and soul of the city. It encompasses a variety of neighborhoods full of old European character easily traveled by winding streets and narrow walkways. Visitors to the Old Town will be pleased to find the most perfect blending both history and a thriving cosmopolitan atmosphere, all supported by the areas trendy bars, exciting nightclubs, art galleries and excellent restaurants.

La Sagrada Familia or the Church of the Sacred Family was deemed by the United Nations as a World Heritage site and is a must-see for all those wanting to indulge in a masterpiece of modernist architecture. Considered the city’s most visited monument, the Church is a haven for amateur and professional historians alike.

For those traveling with children, a visit to CosmoCaixa science museum makes for a lively way to spend an afternoon. With various interactive exhibits and a planetarium, the museum allows kids to run, play and touch their way through natural history. All staff are fluent in English and all displays and exhibits offer English translations. For the grownups, a trip on the metro to see the Nuseu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya should be on the schedule. Considered one of Barcelona’s best and largest fine art museums, the Nuseu contains an exclusive Gothic Art Collection from the 13th through the 15th centuries. Presently, the museum houses the largest anthologies of Catalan paintings from the collection of Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza and for fine art lovers, this exhibit is not to be missed.

Exploring Barcelona shouldn’t be limited to just the main attractions. Visitors should experience the city’s natural areas as well, including Guell Park and an afternoon in the world famous Montserrat. With just a bit of planning, taking full advantage of these sites and the city’s many other splendid attractions, historical contributions and cultural heritage is both easy and fun.