Barcelona has eclectic neighborhoods and city beaches, but its growing popularity has meant a rise in prices. Other than walking down the Ramblas or exploring the main cathedral, many attractions will require expensive tickets. Still, there are always special times, travel tricks and hidden gems to get the best out of a place for free. Plan strategically, and conquer this Mediterranean city without doing too much damage to your bank account.
La Sagrada Familia
Believe it or not, it’s possible to visit Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece for free. Every Sunday there’s a free mass at La Sagrada Familia. It’s best to get there early, before mass starts at 9 a.m. While inside, be sure to take in the concept, architecture and colors of the legendary cathedral.
The Bunkers of Carmel
Barcelona is a city that shines from above. One of the best views is from the Bunkers of Carmel, which are free and open every day. These bunkers were built as anti-aircraft surveillance spots during the Spanish Civil War. Now, they sit on a hill overlooking the city, and provide one of the best spots in Spain to take in the sunset.
The oldest park in Barcelona is an escape from the touristy center. The park hosts a labyrinth made up of perfectly manicured hedge walls, with Greek mythology sculptures inside. Plus, the surrounding neoclassical architecture makes Labyrinth Park seem even more like a fairytale. Open to the public from April to October, this unique attraction is free on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Barcelona's seafront promenade is a wonderful place to people-watch. Walking next to the ocean and an array of shops and restaurants is a constant reminder that this is the Mediterranean, where life is pleasant and relaxed. The Barceloneta is an iconic neighborhood which now hosts famous artwork, such as Frank Gehry’s El Peix.
The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc
This combination of lights and water is a fantastic nighttime activity. Located in the Montjuïc neighborhood, the Magic Fountain is a colossal construction that holds several dancing water performances throughout the evening. Each one lasts about 20 minutes and showcases music ranging from current hits to classical compositions. Luckily, it’s completely free every day.
About the Writer: Rashmi Chugani is a correspondent for Efe, the Spanish news agency. News is her second love, after coffee.