48 Hours In Barcelona, Spain - Updated 2021

48 hours in barcelona
Samantha
Samantha
Updated

Barcelona is a world-class city whose attractions are endless. But if you only have 48 hours to spend in this beautiful Catalonian city, then make sure your itinerary includes all of the highlights that Barcelona boasts. This swift itinerary covers iconic Barcelona spots that cannot be missed such as Sagrada Familia, Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, the Magic Fountain, rooftop entertainment, and a stroll in Park Guell. Additionally, be sure to take in the views of Barcelona from Tibidabo’s Amusement Park, and along the streets of Las Ramblas to Via Laietana, while also doing some shopping. With these action-packed activities, it is easy to soak up the culture and cuisine that Barcelona offers. Scroll down to map out your adventure to sunny Barcelona today!

Day 1: Afternoon - Tour Sagrada Familia (from USD 58.0)

A great beginning spot for grounding yourself in local Barcelona culture and history is at the Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece. Started in 1882, this world UNESCO site is set to be completed on the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death in 2026. When completed, the 18 towers (12 currently finished) will represent the 12 apostles, 4 of the evangelists, one for the Virgin Mary, and the tallest for Jesus Christ. The basilica’s architecture mixes Spanish Gothic, art nouveau, noucentisme, and modernism in a stunning display of unparalleled design. Tickets (starting at 17 USD,15 EUR/per adult) can be bought online at the Sagrada Familia’s website, helping to reduce the time spent at the often-times busy lines.

Barcelona Sagrada Familia and Museum Skip-the-Line Tour

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

10 reviews

Day 1: Evening - Have dinner at Maitea Taberna, then enjoy a Segway tour (from USD 61.0)

After all of the sight-seeing at Sagrada Familia, it is time for dinner at Maitea Taberna (Carrer de Casanova, 155, 08036), which specializes in pintxos (small snacks similar to tapas) from the Basque region. Pintxos are generally slices of baguette bread topped with an assortment of toppings such as fried ham to whitefish pate. A sign of a good pintxo bar is one where the bread is never dry or stale; generally, this means a busy environment where food is served quickly and stays fresh! Of course, when in Spain, wine is central to any culinary experience, and Maitea Taberna has no shortage of national wines to pique the palate. You’ll feel fully immersed in the local cuisine at Maitea Taberna, ready to embark on your night adventure of a Segway tour.

An easy way to buzz around the city, without having to pedal, is by Segway. There are multiple companies that offer Segway rentals, usually for about three hours at a time. Look for a tour company that includes helmets, free lock-up for personal items, and a quick training session before letting you loose (Segway accidents can and have happened). Then, enjoy the Barcelona wind in your hair as you cruise through the city streets in Segway-style.

2-Hour Barcelona Live-Guided Segway Tour

Duration: 2 hours

10 reviews

Day 1: Night - Go dancing at Sala Razzmatazz


Do you still have energy? Of course, you do. You only live once and fear of missing out is a real thing! So keep the party rolling and get ready to dance the night away at Sala Razzmatazz. It is an epicenter of fun and music, offering nightly DJs, dancers, and music. Such big names as Coldplay, David Byrne, Kayne West, Blur, Belle and Sebastian, and Arctic Monkeys have all graced Sala Razzmatazz’s stage, making it a key stop when celebrating Barcelona’s music scene. Tickets can be purchased at the door, and range in price depends on the performer.

Sala Razzmatazz

Opening Hours: 12.30 am - 5.00 am (Thursday and Friday); 1.00 am - 6.00 am (Saturday and Sunday)

Price: ‎15 EUR (17.05 USD)

Address: Carrer dels Almogàvers, 122, 08018 Barcelona, Spain

Day 2: Morning - Brunch at Auto Rosellon


After a night of kicking up your heels, it may be a late start to the morning. Enter brunch at Auto Rosellon, a local eatery known for its fresh food and “auto” atmosphere (it was a former car mechanic shop and the interior still reflects this). Vegetarian-friendly, and known for its excellent coffee, brunch at Auto Rosellon will be the morning pick-me-up that last night’s adventures call for. Order a classic eggs benedict or get the royal treatment of banged-by-the-table Carpaccio. Whatever you decide, the concept of Auto Rosellon is small-plates to be shared, so bring a friend to enjoy with.

Auto Rosellon

Opening Hours: Weekdays 8.00 am onwards; Weekends 9.30 am onwards

Price: Cassic eggs benedict (14.2 USD, 12.5 EUR), Carpaccio (18.74 USD, 16.5 EUR)

Address: Carrer del Rosselló, 182, 08008 Barcelona, Spain

Day 2: Late morning - Visit Aquarium Barcelona (from USD 25.36)

48 hours in barcelona | day 2: late morning - visit aquarium barcelona

The Aquarium Barcelona, set in the harbor of Barcelona, offers a glimpse into the watery world of ocean and sea life. Great for young and old, the aquarium offers viewing of feeding times, and extra experiences of shark-cage diving for a hefty 340 USD, 300 EUR. With 35 aquariums, the Aquarium Barcelona hosts over 11,000 animals, with 450 species. Not to be missed is the 80 m (200 ft) long tunnel in which visitors are fully immersed in the underwater life. If you are just looking for the basic entry fee, adult prices start at 22 USD (20 EUR). Discover themed aquariums, as well as a study on region Mediterranean life.

Barcelona Aquarium: Skip-the-Line Admission Ticket

2003 reviews

Day 2: Afternoon - Stroll through Barcelona's Gothic Quarter then shop in El Raval's vintage stores (from USD 14.49)

48 hours in barcelona | day 2: afternoon - stroll through barcelona's gothic quarter then shop in el raval's vintage stores

After taking in the aquarium it is time to get outside and see Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, including the Cathedral of Barcelona (also known as Cathedral of Saint Eulalia). The Gothic Quarter runs from Las Ramblas to Via Laietana and covers the old town of Barcelona. With a labyrinth-like street plan, the Gothic Quarter twists and winds with remarkable Medieval landmarks, and the former Jewish-quarter. However, despite its name, most of the buildings were constructed in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Along Las Ramblas, explore stores and markets such as La Boqueria, known for fresh food and flowers. Additionally, walk along Joan Miro’s tiled floor mural at Pla de l'Os. It’s one of the only times you can actually step foot on a masterpiece!

Do not miss out on the Cathedral of Saint Eulalia, named after a 13-year old martyr, while in the Gothic Quarter. Constructed from the 13th-15th centuries, this neo-Gothic masterpiece is a site for the eyes. The cathedral, known for its gargoyles who sit on the roof, is open in the afternoon until early evening and is free for entrance. Lastly, be sure to check out the vintage stores in El Rival.

Barcelona: Old Town and Gothic Quarter Walking Tour

Duration: 3 hour

32 reviews

Day 2: Evening - Have dinner and then spend time at the Magic Fountain

day 2: evening - have dinner and then spend time at the magic fountain
Source: Pixabay

Enjoy dinner in the Gothic Quarter, full of restaurants, including Barcelona’s supposedly oldest restaurant, Can Culleretes (Carrer d'en Quintana, 5, 08002), founded in 1786. Specializing in traditional Spanish and Catalan dishes, it’s a secret gem that is tucked away on a small side-street on Las Ramblas. Order up such specialties as wild boar stew, roasted duck with prunes, and fresh seafood from the Mediterranean.

After dinner head to the Magic Fountain, a fountain show that mixes water, light, and of course, magic! Known locally as Montjuïc, for the neighborhood, it is set in, the Magic Fountain hosts some 2.5 million visitors annually. The choreographed lights and water are set to contemporary and classic tunes and are a feast for the eyes.

Magic Fountain

Opening Hours: 24/7

Address: Plaça de Carles Buïgas, 1, 08038 Barcelona, Spain

Day 3: Morning - Enjoy breakfast then head out to Tibidabo Amusement Park (from USD 14.0)

day 3: morning - enjoy breakfast then head out to tibidabo amusement park

Traditional Spanish breakfast is small; usually, a pastry and coffee are taken, and then the day begins. Whether you are eating at the hotel, or at a nearby cafe, Barcelona offers no shortage of spots to dine. Following breakfast, head to Tibidabo Amusement Park, Barcelona’s theme park. General entrance is 32.5 USD (28.50 EUR) for adults and includes admission to rides, attractions, and shows. For visitors like yourself from out of town, it might be worth it to also purchase tickets for the panoramic area which gives views of the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona, and the suburbs. Tickets for the panoramic area are an additional 14.4 USD (12.70 EUR).

Barcelona: Tibidabo Amusement Park Admission Ticket

Duration: 1 day

175 reviews

Day 3: Afternoon - Visit Park Guell (from USD 15.69)

day 3: afternoon - visit park guell

Rounding out your Barcelona sight-seeing, as well as learning about the works of Gaudi, explore Park Guell. Colorful mosaics, winding gardens, and views of the city from Caramel Hill are all part of this public park. Like the Sagrada Familia, Park Guell has been named a UNESCO site and highlights Gaudi’s naturalist phase, which draws inspiration on organic shapes. Catholic symbolism and mythology are embedded in the park, so be sure to do some reading before trekking around to get the full historical allusions. Additionally, Gaudi’s former home is within the park and is now the Gaudi House Museum (Casa Museu Gaudi). The park remains free, except for the Monumental Zone, which includes the main entrance, terrace, and part of the park containing the mosaics. Entrance for the Monumental Zone is 8.5 USD (7.5 EUR) for adults.

Barcelona: Park Güell Admission Ticket

12629 reviews

Beautiful Barcelona in just two days

Barcelona / Spain
Source: Photo by user Sandor Somkuti used under CC BY-SA 2.0

A quick trip to Barcelona is all one needs to fall in love with this jewel of a city. 48 hours in this spectacular city should be enough time to experience the major draws of the city, but also to realize there is so much to see. From the culture of Gaudi’s architecture to the cuisine of the Catalonia and Basque region, to the shining waters of the Mediterranean, Barcelona has so much to offer. With this itinerary, you’re off to a great start, only to plan your next visit back again!

Day 2: Night - Enjoy live music performance on the rooftop of Casa Batllo

day 2: night - enjoy live music performance on the rooftop of casa batllo

Casa Batllo, Gaudi’s modernist museum in Barcelona, offers rooftop performances overlooking the city. The museums’ “Magic Nights” begin at 8.00pm nightly, and tickets for the concerts include two drinks. It’s a great opportunity to be immersed in the culture of Barcelona, but getting tickets for the event does take some pre-planning as they sell out quickly. Sign up for the newsletter about a month out from your visit through Casa Batllo’s website to increase your chances of joining in on the magic.

Sunset Concert at Casa Batllo's Rooftop

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Raised in the woods of Northern Wisconsin, adventure pulses through Samantha's veins. Among the most notable adventures have been teaching agriculture in Kenya, WOOFing in Turkey, and learning...Read more

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