Barcelona
City Focus
The capital of Catalonia and arguably Spain's most cosmopolitan city, Barcelona is an enchanting seaside spot which thrives day and night, as Jared Tinslay reports.

It's hardly surprising that Barcelona consistently ranks as Spain's most visited city for tourists. Whilst the temperate Mediterranean climate attracts visitors all year round, the city's boundless attractions appeal to every personality.

 

 

Art-lovers can be treated to the city's fabled architecture, epitomised by some of Antoni Gaudí's finest works. The Gothic, forever unfinished Sagrada Familia is the city's iconic landmark, whilst the colourful mosaic facade of Casa Batlló is a magnet for cameras. Directors of Fedele Barcelona schools www.fedele.org, recommend the Bellesguard Tower. "It gives you the chance to appreciate Gaudi's work from a more human perspective as it's an inhabited house in a natural part of Barcelona."

 

Another impressive architectural structure is Camp Nou, home to FC Barcelona and the largest football stadium in Europe. Close to 100,000 fans flock there on match days, creating an almost unrivalled atmosphere and a fantastic sporting experience.  

 

 

With so many cultural attractions, it's sometimes easy to forget that Barcelona is a coastal city. In the summer, people head to Barceloneta Beach to get their dose of vitamin D, with pop-up beach bars, or chiringuitos, extremely popular with sun devotees.

 

Of course, a trip to the Catalan capital wouldn't be complete without a stroll down La Rambla, the city's human river and most emblematic walkway. It joins the city's historical centre to the port, and is also home to La Boqueria - Barcelona's most vibrant market. Lined with clubs and bars, La Rambla never rests, although don't expect locals to start their night before 11pm! jared@studytravel.network

 


 

Things to do/see

 

Take a stroll
Oscar Merino, Head of Admissions at EU Business School of Barcelona www.euruni.edu, says, "Get a feel for the city by wandering through the narrow streets of El Born and the Gothic Quarter, and enjoy some Catalan culture at the Palau de la Música Catalana or Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya."

 

Climb Columbus
At the end of La Rambla stands a climbable 60m-tall monument to Christopher Columbus, also marking the start of the port area. Visitors can pay e5 for a bird's-eye view. 

 

 

Hop on the cable car
For spectacular views of the city, take the cable car at the port to the top of Montjuïc Mountain. Afterwards, wander back down to the Magic Fountain; a combination of music, water acrobatics and lights.

 

Sant Felip Neri square
Fedele Barcelona school directors say, "It reminds us of the sadder parts of our history but provides the tranquility needed from the Gothic quarter." 

 


 

A taste of Barcelona

 

"The Catalan capital boasts a rich and varied cuisine that is distinct from the rest of Spain," says Oscar Merino at EU Business School.

 

 

"Typical dishes include: Pa amb tomàquet (toasted bread rubbed with tomato pulp, olive oil and salt); Botifarra (uncured spiced sausage); and Fideuà (seafood paella made with noodles instead of rice). Another Catalan classic is Mar i muntanya, literally translated as sea and mountain, which is the Catalan version of surf and turf." For dessert, he adds, "Try the Crema Catalana (similar to the French crème brûlée) or Mel i mato (cheese drizzled with honey and nuts)."

 

Those seeking a more unusual experience can visit bar/café Bosc de les Fades, which transports customers into a fairy forest with sporadic 'thunderstorms' and sangria on tap.

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