Barcelona is the capital of the Catalonia region in Spain, and Catalan is the most widely spoken language. The history of the region and its relations with other parts of Spain is often conflictive but always fascinating.
The port of Barcelona hosts many Mediterranean cruises and the city of Barcelona is an excellent tourist destination at either end of your journey. The city has plenty to do, from admiring Gaudí’s spectacular architectural masterpieces to relaxing and people-watching in a sunny cafe on Las Ramblas, and offers visitors a seductive sense of the laid-back Spanish way of life.
Ships dock at Port Vell, which couldn’t be more conveniently located, being just a mile from Barcelona’s main sights. Today the port has become a tourist attraction in itself with a large Maremagnum shopping center with an IMAX cinema and the largest aquarium in Europe. Port Vell leads directly to Las Ramblas, Barcelona’s main boulevard lined with cafes and street entertainment that leads into the city center (Las Ramblas is alternatively called for its singular shape, La Rambla).
There are eight terminals in the port of Barcelona, divided into 3 docks.
1 Adossat Dock
Cruise terminals A, B, C and D are located at Adossat Quay and are the furthest from the port entrance. Terminal D also has the name of Palacruceros. Shuttle buses make the short trip from these cruise terminals to the start of Las Ramblas.
2 World Trade Center Pier
There are 3 terminals on the World Trade Center pier called the North, South and East terminals. From these it is an easy walk to the start of Las Ramblas.
3 Sant Bertrand Quay
The Sant Bertrand wharf is just in front of the WTC terminal. This terminal, which normally handles ferries, is only occasionally used for cruise ships.
Top 5 Things to Do in Barcelona (Editor’s Choice!)
Even an enthusiastic tourist needs several days to explore Barcelona, so if you only have a day or two it will be a frantic rush. Be sure to include well-known sights such as La Sagrada Familia, Gaudí’s amazing church, the romantic and medieval Gothic Quarter, and the Picasso museum. End your tour with intermittent stops by heading to Montjuic for a wonderful view of the entire city and the surrounding countryside and sea.
1 The Ramblas
A magnificent promenade that connects Port Vell with Plaça de Catalunya, right in the center of old Barcelona. The street is lined with shops, cafes, flower shops, street performers and La Boqueria, a colorful market not to be missed. You will also pass by the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona’s magnificent opera house. Las Ramblas ends at Plaça de Catalunya, a large square surrounded by offices, restaurants and shops.
2 The Holy Family
The modern church in Barcelona was designed by the famous Antonio Gaudí. Work began in 1883 and the intriguing building has not yet been completed. Don’t miss features like the nativity theme of the façade, the towers decorated with mosaics, and the huge doors with inscriptions depicting designs representing faith, hope, and charity.
3 Gothic Quarter
In the Gothic quarter of Barcelona the buildings date back to the 13th century. The streets are narrow and winding and full of busy life. In the center of the Gothic Quarter is the Museu Picasso, which presents the works (unsurprisingly!) of Picasso. Also worth visiting is the Cathedral of Santa Eulalia, a magnificent example of early European architecture.
4 Park Guell
A great treat for Gaudí fans, Parc Güell is an intriguing public park. The planting is imaginative https://www.salirporbarcelona.com/ and colorful, but the main attraction is Gaudi’s harsh landscaping, such as concrete pergolas and mosaic lizards.
The pretty town of Montjuic rises 700 feet above the city’s harbor a