Barcelona is the de facto capital city of the Catalan region of Spain and is a city which manages to combine the best of all possible worlds. Medieval buildings and Roman remains rub shoulders with some of the planet’s most exciting modernist architecture. The iconic La Sagrada Familia, Antoni Gaudi’s vast Basilica, casts it’s still unfinished shadow over virtually every other building in Spain.
A rich cultural offering includes more than 55 museums offering displays of everything from architecture to maritime artefacts. Lovers of modern art should head for the Barcelona Centre of Contemporary Culture (CCCB), which is easily reached by public transport. It offers a constantly changing roster of paintings, sculptures, photographs and frescos from all over the world.
Anyone keen on combining treatment with a little retail therapy will definitely enjoy exploring Barcelona’s shopping line. This is a 5km stretch of retail indulgence which runs from the Ramblas, through Placa de Catalunya, along Passeig de Gracia and up Avenue Diagonal. Mostly pedestrianized, it offers the chance of a relaxed stroll past luxury retailers such as Armani, Versace and Calvin Klein.
What makes Barcelona virtually unique amongst comparable global cities is the fact that the architecture, culture, shopping and history all sit within easy walking distance of more than 4km of golden sandy coastline.
Barcelona Football Club can, alongside Real Madrid, lay claim to being one of the biggest football clubs in the world. The Camp Nou experience is open almost every day of the year and offers the chance to experience life behind the scenes at this iconic institution. Highlights include access to the away changing rooms, the press box, the players’ tunnel and the Club Presidents’ luxury VIP box.
The best weather in Barcelona, for most visitors, falls between May and the end of July. During this time average temperatures range between 74 and 84 degrees. Although August is only a little hotter, the added humidity can make the temperature seem higher and this may feel uncomfortable for some visitors.
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