This is a guest post by Tendelle of Travel a la Tendelle.
Barcelona has got to be one of the most romantic cities in Europe. Where to begin? I could talk about its dim, winding streets in the old quarters. Or I could gush about the gorgeous views to the ocean from the many vantage points in the city. And let’s not forget the amazing gastronomy that never fails to disappoint, even for the most die-hard foodies. You can’t go wrong with Barcelona as a romantic getaway – your time in Barcelona with a special someone will be one to remember. These 7 romantic things to do in Barcelona will jump-start your planning.
Romantic Things to Do in Barcelona
Day Trip to a Catalan Winery
Catalunya is home to many wine regions that produce amazing red and white wine, as well as the Catalan sparkling wine, cava. Many of these wineries are on the hills adjacent to the ocean, along the coast of Catalunya. From the vineyards, you can often get a great view of the ocean. What’s more romantic than learning about wine production, tasting some quality wine, then having a picnic among the vineyards with views to the ocean?
For a perfect half day or full day trip, Alella is a wine region that is an easy day trip from Barcelona, only 25 minutes by car or 1 hour by train and bus. At the esteemed winery Alta Alella, you can take a winery tour with wine tasting. At the neighboring winery Bouquet d’Alella, you can even have a picnic among the vines!
[Another great day trip is to Montserrat. This guide to a day trip to Montserrat from Barcelona offers tips for going by train.]
Font Mágica de Montjuic
Although the Magical Fountain of Montjuic can seem like a bit of a cliché and brimming with tourists, (much like the famous sites of the exciting Gracia neighborgood) it is undeniably romantic and dare I even say, “magical”. With the stunning backdrop of the Palau Nacional, the gigantic fountain in front of the Montjuic mountain has a light and music show every Thursday-Saturday, and more frequently in the summer (schedule here). The synchronization of music (always the classics), light, and water will leave you in awe. Stand too close to the fountain you’ll even get wet – there’s nothing like sneaking a kiss in “the rain” to turn the romance up a notch.
Lose Yourself in El Born & Barrio Gotico
El Born and Barrio Gótico, in the medieval section of the city, are likely the most romantic quarters of Barcelona. They are home to narrow, winding streets full of tapas restaurants and bars, each with its own flair. By night, many of the famous buildings are also illuminated by light at night, such as the Catedral de Barcelona and Palau de la Música Catalana, adding to the mystery and romance of the old town. Explore these quarters, then sit down for some sangria or wine on an outdoor terrace. Snuggle up, feed each other some tapas, and whisper sweet nothings into each others’ ears.
Tucked away in El Born, the Antic Teatre is just as it sounds, an “old theater”. Unless you’re in the know, you wouldn’t look for what’s hidden behind the doors of the theater. Shaded by lush vegetation, it is one of the nicest indoor terraces in Barcelona. The bar of Antic Teatre is romantic both for a nice morning coffee or an evening drink after walking around the city all day. True to its name, it’s also a cultural center so you can see theatrical performances here (although most programs will be in Catalan or Spanish).
PS: Heading to Madrid next? Here’s a great list of things to do there.
Ohla Hotel Rooftop Bar
The Rooftop Bar at Ohla Hotel is hands down the most romantic rooftop bar in Barcelona. Right in the heart of Barrio Gótico, lovebirds can sit facing the view of Gothic architecture rooftops while sipping cocktails. There’s even a rooftop pool for those that wish to take a dip. Go at dusk and watch the sky turn colors as the sun goes down. This could be perfect for summertime in Barcelona…or any other time of year.
Go to the Beach at 4am
When the weather is nice, the beaches of Barcelona are usually crowded with tourists during the day. But at night, the beach provides a rare respite from the hoardes of tourists in the city. If you’re the partying type, you can dance the night away at the beachside clubs like Opium Mar, CDLC, Pacha. After a big night out, you can stumble out onto the beaches conveniently located right outside the clubs and cuddle with your honey on the beach. Perambulating vendors, aka the “cerveza beer” guys. Cerveza is Spanish for beer and these vendors are in business on the beach at all hours of the day. They will come offer you beer for a euro, but when they see canoodling couples the script slightly changes to “Cerveza beer, cerveza beer… Condom?”
Hike to Tibidabo
Those that have been to Barcelona might wonder what is the large white church up on the tallest mountain. When illuminated up at night, it looks a bit like the Disney castle! That in fact, is not only the church, Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor, but it also marks the location of the Tibidabo amusement park.
You can go directly up the mountain and amusement park by public transportation, or for the active couple, you can hike up there from Parc Guell (Vallcara Metro Station), climbing four kilometers. Once up the mountain, you can spend the afternoon enjoying the best views of the city and bond over the adrenaline rush from the rides!
Extra Cultural Tip: Sant Jordi
Sant Jordi is the Catalan version of Valentines Day. And in my opinion, it’s more romantic than Valentines Day! Sant Jordi falls on April 23rd annually, and it has very romantic tradition: the men give a rose to the women, and the women gives the men a book. Love is in the air not only for the couples, but all over the city; on this day, Barcelona is filled with street stalls selling flowers and books wherever you go. What a beautiful, literary holiday!
Have you been to Barcelona? What is the most romantic thing you’ve done there?
About the Author: Tendelle is an American expat whose love affair with Barcelona began 10 years ago, and who is drawn to return to the city again and again. She was most recently in Barcelona doing a Master’s degree in Tourism Management and working for a gastronomic tourism startup. In her spare time she works on her blog, Travel à la Tendelle, which documents her other passion, festival & nightlife tourism.