5 Things Only Tourists Do in Barcelona

Like A Local Guide • 10 Feb, 2014

Like a Local’s IT savvy Barcelona editor Jesper appreciates good food and music. He’d love it if all tourists who come to Barcelona experience his city like a real local. That’s why he has come up with a list of five things to avoid if you don’t wish to be a typical tourist in Barcelona.

1. Have dinner on Las Rambla

Las Rambla is the main tourist spot in central Barcelona. It’s a 1.2 km long pedestrian street packed with restaurants, cafés, souvenir shops, street performers and hawkers. The food on offer is mostly overpriced and far from authentic and local. Also, due to the crowds of tourists that swarm there, it’s a favourite destination for pickpockets. One way or another you’ll probably end up leaving Las Rambla feeling cheated.

6826998462_e3dcd1f296_bPhoto credit: Felice Zingarelli

2. Think that Barcelona is only about Gaudi

Seriously, sometimes you’d think that Barcelona only ever had one architect. Yes, Gaudi did an amazing job and his contribution to Barcelona’s architecture is treasured, but remember that he was hated for the Sagrada Familia before his death. Also, there are many amazing masterpieces by other architects on the Rute del Modernisme to discover. For example, one of the most beautiful buildings here – the Palau de la Musica Catalana – was designed by Gaudi’s contemporary, the ingenious Lluís Domènech i Montaner. He probably had larger impact on the cityscape than Gaudi ever did.

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3. Be one of the typical football tourists

To Barcelona locals, international football games mostly mean hordes of loud football tourists whose main goal is to binge drink and puke all over the town. Now there’s nothing wrong with football tourism, but if you want the locals to have a friendly and welcoming attitude towards you, try to show a little respect for their culture by learning a thing or two about it. Moreover, don’t presume that just because you’re in a foreign country where no one knows you, you can act like a beast.

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4. Go clubbing in the marina area

It’s mostly young people who congregate along the (admittedly nice) promenade and queue up for the terribly overpriced and overrated harbour nightclubs when darkness  falls. This one’s a bit like hanging out in  Las Rambla – if you want to discover authentic places that are appreciated by locals, than steer clear of the marina area. Although Barcelona is not the top party destination in Europe, there are better places to enjoy a night out than the tourist traps of the marina.

6259382497_9579c5158b_b(1)Photo credit: Jennifer Balaco

5. Park Güell

Park Güell used to be a magical spot for a scenic stroll or even a picnic, and there’s no denying that the architecture is one of a kind and certainly worth seeing. That said, ever since they set up escalators and decided to start charging admission to the park, it has turned into another tourist trap with souvenir shops and overpriced food kiosks.

2052664615_8c9b3e7f69_bPhoto credit: Wolfgang Staudt

Opening photo credit: Keith Laverack


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Like A Local Guide is about stepping off the tourist trail and finding cool and cosy spots where locals like to spend their time. We built a website and mobile app to bring insider recommendations from around the world to your fingertips.


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    We are a real estate in Barcelona and we know the city. There are much more thing to do in Barcelona than be one of the typical football tourists. You have to come to know the real places in the city. Amazing places are waiting for you!
    Lux Habitat • May 21, 2015 • Reply
    Utiliza los servicios de www.edsconcierge.com te ayudaremos a organizar tus viajes y a disfrutar de la ciudad de Barcelona.
    EDSCONCIERGE • Jan 04, 2015 • Reply
    Let's put together a pretend weekend in Barcelona since I love the place so much! Say you purchase a 48-hour valid Barcelona City Tour ticket to get around the sights, the Barcelona Card for its free admissions and discounts, and the Camp Nou Tour and FC Barcelona Museum Experience. Head to the Barcelona Metro make your first stop at the Glories metro station. It's right in the centre of the city and since neither of you have been to Barcelona before and you both figure it's a good place to orient yourselves. The trip requires 1 exchange at Urquinaona but the overall journey is free because of the Barcelona Card. After a few snaps of the Torre Agbar and breakfast at the nearby mall you'll catch the hop-on hop-off bus tour at it's Torre Agbar station. First stop is La Sagrada Familia, followed by a long walk around Park Guell, a visit to the Mila House, then lunch. The rest of the day is spent sightseeing, going to some of the museums and shopping. You get free entry to the museums and generous retail discounts with the Barcelona Card. On Sunday one of you is reluctantly dragged around Camp Nou on a tour of FC Barcelona's home stadium. It was the first attraction of the day before you'll headed for the Mar Bella beach to soak up some rays. As the sun set at the close of the weekend you both ascended to a high southern vantage point atop Montjuïc, where the views of the city below were at their most majestic. All in all it was a wonderful time with no money spent on transport and most attraction entries, and very little on gifts for the folks back home.
    Martin • Nov 06, 2014 • Reply
    It´s all quite true sadly! ... But there's really nothing wrong with visiting Park Güell. Though they may not be in the majority, locals still visit the park.
    Harriet • Aug 14, 2014 • Reply
    I would love to travel there ..lot of things to see there.My colleague was there for two days and he told me a lot about interesting place specially about The Columbus Monument . Thanks a lot for the interesting post..
    raymon • Feb 27, 2014 • Reply
    haha the title made me laugh so much ! i'm going back to barcelona next month, but i don't want to eb a tourist anymore so i rent a flat with this website http://www.barcelonapoint.com/ ! I want to act like a local NOW
    alex • Feb 26, 2014 • Reply