This blog post was originally posted on April 8, 2016, and was updated on January 14, 2018.
One of the best ways to take in a city is from above, and when it comes to spectacular views, Barcelona doesn’t disappoint!
Barcelona is a city that effortlessly combines stunning natural landscape with the architecture, both modern and traditional, that the Catalan capital has become famous for. But in order to really appreciate everything the city has to offer, you can’t confine yourself to seeing it from street level alone! You have to head upwards to discover some of the most breathtaking views in Barcelona!
Thankfully, as a city surrounded by mountains, there are a whole host of viewpoints throughout Barcelona that provide you with spectacular views you won’t soon forget! Choose from roof terraces to Civil War bunkers to a castle in the sky! Read on for our full list of the most breathtaking views in Barcelona and prepare to be amazed.
The Carmel Bunkers
When it comes to breathtaking views in Barcelona, it doesn’t get much better than the incredible 360-degree experience from the Carmel Bunkers (Carrer Maria Labérnia). These bunkers, built in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War, are located on the Turó de la Rovira. They provide a fascinating contrast between Barcelona’s early 20th Century history and its stunning, modern cityscape.
Still a relatively unknown gem in Barcelona, there is quite a hike to get to this off the beaten track viewpoint. However, the sight of the entire city when you reach the top makes the effort completely worth it. Grab some snacks, throw on your comfy shoes and head up in the late afternoon to catch a romantic sunset. It’s a completely unforgettable experience!
For many people, one of the first things that come to mind when they think of Barcelona is the stunning architecture of Antonio Gaudí! Among those architectural gems is Park Guell—home to some incredibly spectacular views of the city!
While a lot of the park is open free of charge to the public, there is an entrance fee to the Monumental Zone. However, it’s here that you get the chance to appreciate areas such as Plaça de la Natura. Your eyes may initially be drawn to the vibrant tile work covering the bench on arrival. However, gaze beyond that to see some of the most breathtaking views in Barcelona and also the Mediterranean. It’s the perfect combination of nature and art!
La Sagrada Familia
Another iconic piece of Gaudí architecture is, of course, the famously unfinished Sagrada Familia. The detail in this breathtaking masterpiece will blow your mind! Head up the Basilica’s enormous towers and the view of the city stops you in your tracks once again! The only downside of this particular view? It doesn’t include the amazing building itself!
When in Barcelona, climbing the hill of Montjuic is something that you simply must do. There are great vantage points dotted all throughout the hill itself, each providing a unique view of the city.
In order to experience all of the many wonders of Montjuic, catch the Teleférico (cable car) to the top of the hill. Enjoy the bird’s eye views along the way, then stroll around the incredible Montjuic Castle to catch the commanding harbor view on the east side. Finally, stop by the Mirador de Migida and relax in the terrace of La Caseta del Migdia. Here you can enjoy the scenery among locals, drink in hand.
Finally, head to Palau Nacional near the foot of the hill where you’ll find the Museo Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, a fascinating museum which houses an impressive collection of Catalonian art. After visiting the museum itself, round off your day with a perfect view of the iconic Magic Fountain show in the center of Plaça d’Espanya. Safe to say that, when it comes to breathtaking views in Barcelona, Montjuic has you covered!
Tibidabo, much like the Carmel Bunkers, is somewhat of a trek to get to, but the stunning city views make all the effort worth it. As the highest mountain in the Serra de Collserola, Tibidabo can be reached by bus or by car. Furthermore, it’s not just one of the most breathtaking views in Barcelona either. Atop Tibidabo, you can also find the beautiful Sagrat Cor church along with a popular amusement park. Meaning your trip to the top of the mountain is something the whole family can enjoy!
Not all of the breathtaking views in Barcelona require hiking or paying for a cable car. The impressive view from atop Las Arenas (Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 373-385) is one you can enjoy for free! The Las Arenas building, originally built in 1900 as a bullring, was opened as a shopping center in 2011. The rooftop is lined with bars and restaurants. Furthermore, for those of us on a budget, the many shops you pass inside the mall on the way to the top may test your willpower!
Another alternative to immersing yourself in nature in pursuit of an epic view in Barcelona is to head to one of the many rooftop bars in the city. There are few things more satisfying than sipping a cava with the backdrop of Barcelona in the background.