For tourists, Barcelona is a secret known to everyone. Over the last decade, the capital of Catalonia has been the star of European urban tourism. The heritage bequeathed by Gaudi and the examples of Art-Nouveau (Modernist) architecture in the Eixample, the authenticity of the Gothic Quarter, the legacy of the city’s medieval past, the history and charm of its streets, the offer of its museums, with the National Museum of Art of Catalonia and the area devoted to Picasso, its offer of services and restaurants, its nightlife, its Mediterranean feel, its range of shops with a model unique to Barcelona that combines large international brands with distinctive boutiques lending character to the city; in short, a whole scope of possibilities that has won the hearts of visitors from all corners of the globe.
Casa Batllo, Casa Amatller and Casa Mila—better known as La Pedrera [the stone quarry]—are just some of the buildings which bring together a host of almost unprecedented, exuberant colours and forms. Modernisme can be appreciated throughout the city. Spectacular buildings like the church of the Sagrada Familia—an unfinished work by Gaudi—the Palau de la Musica Catalana and the Park Guell make up, along with other buildings, a legacy of modernisme that can only be seen here.
The Sagrada Familia, the Casa Batllo, the Casa Vicens, the Crypt of Colonia Guell, La Pedrera, have been designated World Heritage Sites, together with the Palau Guell, the Sant Pau, modern exhibition centres, the Park Guell and the Palau de la Musica Catalana. Barcelona is the largest outdoor museum for Art Nouveau architecture, celebrating visual splendour.
BARCELONA BY DAY – Barcelona’s markets are places where you can enjoy a lively, vibrant atmosphere in surroundings where the cries of the market’s stallholders and the daily bustle intermingle. Few cities in the world can boast a network such as that of Barcelona—39 food markets and four markets selling other goods form a unique heritage that should be maintained and preserved. The Boqueria Market, on La Rambla, is one of Barcelona’s best-known markets, and has become a major landmark.