Barcelona is a big city with many attractions to visit and a ride on the Barcelona hop on hop off bus is an amazing way to see the city. Hop on hop off Barcelona bus tickets can be purchased when boarding the bus and with your ticket you will receive a Barcelona Tourist Map. The Barcelona tourist map will help you plan the best stops for the day. You can’t miss the Barcelona city tour bus as they are red in colour.
You may even see some things to do in Barcelona at night. The hop on hop off Barcelona bus gives you the choice of two great routes, the East/Green Route and West/Orange Route. These two routes cover the main highlights of the city.
The Barcelona bus turistic as it is known in Spanish has over 35 stops. This allows you easy access to most Barcelona attractions. There are many things to do in Barcelona with a family. Travelling on the bus makes it easier than using Barcelona public transport.
Highlights of the Barcelona hop on hop off bus.
Barcelonetta is an amazing area that was reshaped for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. No visit to Barcelona is complete without a visit to the beach. The beach area of Barcelonetta is characterised by the bay like swimming areas that have been developed and kilometres of white sand.
A wide boulevard for walking and bike riding allows you to stroll along the Mediterranean Coast enjoying the Barcelona sunshine. For many, the sun and beach are big Barcelona attractions. The Barcelona sightseeing bus even stops at the beach for you.
This stop on the Barcelona sightseeing bus is located at the port end of the famous La Rambla. From here you will see the statue of Christopher Columbus with him pointing to the new world.
Spain and Columbus were instrumental in discovering new world lands (for those touring Spain, Seville Cathedral contains the Columbus Tomb). This stop allows you access to the port where you can take a cruise and see the sights of Barcelona from the water.
You can also visit the Maritime Museum Barcelona to learn about seafaring history. We visited the Barcelona Maritime Museum and were extremely impressed with the exhibition on display. The star of the show is a 60-metres-long royal galley Admirals of Juan de Austria. This ship was involved in the Battle of Lepanto on 7 October 1571, in which the Turkish Armada was defeated in a victorious day for the Spanish.
Another area at the Port of Barcelona. From here you will get a good view of the port cable car Barcelona as it glides across the skies of Barcelona. You can’t board the Barcelona cable car from here but we will let you know later when we reach that stop. This hop on hop off Barcelona stop gives you access to the Port Vell shopping centre and the world famous
The Bari Gotic area in Barcelona is my absolute favourite place in the city. It is the Barcelona old town area and this area dates back to Roman times. It is the only original part left from the redesign prior to the 1992 Olympics. The Barcelona old town district stretches from La Rambla to Via Laietana, and from the Mediterranean seafront to Ronda de Sant Pere.
Eulalia was a young virgin who, according to Catholic tradition, suffered martyrdom during Roman times in the city. A legend says the Romans stripped Eulalia naked in the public square. A sort of miracle happened when the snow started falling in mid-spring covered her nudity. This miracle completely enraged the Romans. The Romans put the poor girl into a barrel with knives stuck into it and rolled it down a street.
This hop on hop off Barcelona stop is the starting and ending point for the two tours of the city. Plaça Catalunya marks the start/end of La Rambla. This is one of the focal points of the city. At this stop, you will find street artists working in the square. Kids in Barcelona will love to feed the pigeons that land here. Stalls around the square sell bags of bird food.
On one of the corners is the El Court Englis shopping centre. On one of the top floors is one of the best free Barcelona attractions. The El Court Englis cafeteria has some of the best views of Barcelona anywhere in the city. If you manage to get a window seat by yourself grab a drink and take in the city skyline for free. If you are looking for things to do at night in Barcelona this is a great place to start with many restaurants in the near vicinity.
Eating in Barcelona:
Being by the sea fresh seafood is on the menu at many places throughout Barcelona. One of the favourite dishes is seafood Paella. To find one of the best Paella’s in Barcelona head to O’Toxo Tres Hermanos. It is located a few hundred meters off La Rambla. O’Toxo is a traditional Barcelona restaurant and it is where you will find, without a doubt, some of the best Tapas and Paella in the city. We can recommend this restaurant as we ate here 4 times during when visiting Barcelona. The seafood and chicken/seafood paella is a must. Do not buy the Paella on La Rambla you will only get the mass-produced version that comes frozen in a box. O’Toxo offers the real deal cooked from scratch while you wait. Nothing better than some cod cake tapas and paella washed down by some Sangria!
Home to the mighty Barcelona Football Club. Barcelona FC is worshipped worldwide by millions of fans who flock yearly to the Camp Nou. The Camp Nou offers fan experiences with access to the ground, museum and gift shop. There are many different tour option at Barcelona FC Museum that includes an area dedicated to one of the worlds best football players Leo Messi.
The trophy’s from La Liga and the European Championships are in full view. You can sit in the stands, view the ground from many different angles. If you are a full-on tragic and full of Euros you can walk on the hallowed turf of the Camp Nou. You can see the players dressing rooms and lockers. This is one of the great Barcelona attractions for kids and adults alike.
The 1992 Olympic stadium is on many people’s Barcelona tourist map. Sitting high up on the hill above the downtown region is the Olympic precinct. I can remember images of divers with the city as their backdrop. These sorts of images supercharged Barcelona into the tourist mega you see today. You can explore the Olympic area of Barcelona, you can visit the Olympic Stadium or you can just sit in the stands. For many sports fans visiting Olympic Stadiums are amazing attractions and pieces of sporting history.
Jardins de Miramar
This stop on the hop on hop off Barcelona route gives you access to the amazing garden terraces of Jardins de Miramar. It’s a great place to sit and relax. It allows you to get away and have a rest from the hustle and bustle of the Barcelona attractions. There is a great photo opportunity spot here. You can get the city in the background from this point. It’s well worth getting off just for the picture. The before mentioned Port Cable Car Barcelona/Port Vell aerial tramway has one of its 2 stations located at this stop.
The Cable Car Barcelona can be boarded here as it glides across the harbour until it reaches the Barcelona beach station. The trip takes around 10 minutes and provides you with amazing views of the city. Alternatively, the Montjuic cable car takes you to the top of Montjuic.
The Montjuic Castle awaits a visit from you. The Montjuïc Castle is an old military fortress, with roots dating back to 1640. It is built on top of Montjuïc Hill in Barcelona as a strategic position to see enemies arriving from the ocean. Tickets for both the Montjuic cable car and the Cable car Barcelona can be purchased onsite.
The Barcelona hop on hop off bus tour would not be complete unless it paid homage to Barcelona’s favourite architect. The bus stops at 3 of the most famous Gaudi sights. Antoni Gaudi is the best-known architect of Catalan Modernism.
His masterpiece, the still-incomplete Sagrada Família, is the most-visited monument in Spain. Between 1984 and 2005, seven of his works were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. All the best Barcelona sightseeing tours have Gaudi at the forefront of your Barcelona visit.
Sagrada Família now slated to be finished by 2025 will have taken over 100 years to build. The slow progress is due to the overwhelming costs of the project and the fact that craftsmen who were around when it was originally designed are no longer readily available. I often say to people you have not been to a church till you have been to Sagrada Familia. You will be amazed by the exterior and memorized by the interior. You will look in amazement and ask yourself how is this possible.
The Park Güell is a public park system composed of gardens and architectonic elements located on Carmel Hill, in Barcelona. Designed by Gaudi in 1900 it combines modernist traditional elements to form designs that are truly amazing. Park Guell is high on many people’s list of things to do in Barcelona. The Barcelona bus turistic drops off a few hundred meters away from the park. You need to walk a steep hill but there is an escalator part of the way. The Park Guell can be viewed from the surrounding park or you can pay to get inside for a better view.
Casa Mila in Passeig de Gracia was the last private residence that Gaudi built in Barcelona. The stone quarry as it is known was built between 1906 and 1912. Its undulating stone facade, twisting wrought iron balconies make it a truly unique design. A visit can be one of the coolest things to do in Barcelona, but be warned it comes with a heavy price on your wallet. By all accounts, the inside is just as amazing as its facade.
We hope this inspires you to jump on the hop on hop off Barcelona turistic bus. It really is the best way of sightseeing in Barcelona. Just look out for the red bus tour Barcelona
How to get to Barcelona
Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain, Population 1.6 Million
Barcelona airport is known as El-Prat Airport. It is located 12km from the city centre
Barcelona El-Prat is a hub for Vueling and Level airlines.
Barcelona Nord and Barcelona Sants are two main international/long-distance bus stations in Barcelona. Direct buses for over 11 countries and 20 domestic destinations arrive here. Book your bus today with GoEuro
The Aerobús offers direct transfers from T1 and T2 to the city centre at Plaça Catalunya.
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About the Author
Mark Wyld is a father, husband and traveller. Having been to over 30 countries worldwide I think I know a thing or 2 about travelling with kids. I have been writing about travel on our website for the last 4 years and have featured on numerous other websites. When I am not talking, dreaming and planning travel I can be found working in disability support .