Let’s be honest: sometimes we squeeze in a trip and most of our travel budget goes towards the plane tickets there and back. It is what it is! So what should you do once you get to Barcelona and you’re pinching pennies? Luckily, Barcelona is a beautiful city on the water that’s full of architecture, people watching, cheap eats, and more. Here’s our list of the best free things to do in Barcelona.
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You know that feeling right when you step out of a plane where you feel like you’ve entered a different dimension? After the fluorescent lighting and recycled air you were steeped in during your flight, the sights, smells, temperatures, and sounds of a new city feel so much more vivid! One of the best free things to do is to keep that feeling of excitement and novelty with you as you explore. Let your senses guide you, be curious, and simply wander through the streets like you have nowhere to be.
You'll be able to find live music at a number of bars and clubs around Barcelona, and this is one of the best free things to do in Barcelona! Grab a drink, sit back, and listen to the music. Check out Cafe Marula, Gypsy Lou, La Rouge, or any of the places listed here.
Another one of the best free things to do in Barcelona is to take photos. There are so many amazing places to take photos in Barcelona - from the beach, to monuments, to colored doors. Get creative, and see the city through the lens of your camera.
One of the biggest food markets in Europe happens to be located in the heart of Barcelona. There's really nothing like the energy of a food market, with the amazing smells, crowds of people from all over the world, and different languages spoken all around you.
There are festivals nearly every weekend in Barcelona in the summer. La Merce Festival in Barcelona takes place at the end of September. Keep an eye on the local council’s website for more local celebrations.
Most of Barcelona’s museums charge entrance fees - except, on the first Sunday of every month, or one afternoon a week. Make sure to show up to the museums early, as the lines can get long - you want to enjoy your free afternoon!
Though many of Barcelona’s main attractions charge entrance fees, that doesn’t mean you can’t see them. Many of the most famous attractions, like Sagrada Familia, are incredibly gorgeous on the outside, and you can still experience the towering architecture in-person as well as take photos. Check out this free guided Gaudi walking tour that will help you find some of the primary landmarks.
There are lots of tours available in Barcelona for free. However, it is customary to tip at the end of these tours, and we highly encourage that you do both to be polite and to support the locals who are showing you around. The benefit of these tipping only tours, actually, is that the guides are often much more invested in entertaining and informing you because of this tipping system than guides that are a part of a company.
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