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A Barcelona 2 Day Itinerary: What to See and Do

Grab your sunglasses, finish your cafe con leche and let’s start this whistle-stop tour of the Catalonian capital

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La Barceloneta Beach, Barcelona, Spain

The city of Barcelona is a charming place to spend 48 hours. Whether you're spending time in Barcelona with kids, or whether you're there for a spot of slow travelling in the Catalonian capital by yourself – there really is something for everyone. With a seemingly endless amount of classic architecture to see, tapas to eat and sangria to drink, our Barcelona 2 day itinerary will ensure that you don’t miss a thing. And you can trust us, because here at Plum Guide we've done some serious hard work to ensure that we have your holiday covered, whatever it is you hope to experience.

Day 1: Take in some famous sights

Morning: Get a fresh breakfast from the market

Mercado de la Boqueria, Barcelona, Spain

Mercado de la Boqueria, Barcelona, Spain

Once you’ve enjoyed a coffee on your private balcony and admired the stunning view from your apartment in Barcelona, you’d better get dressed and get moving, because we’ve only got two days for you to fall in love with Barcelona and there’s a lot to see. Start your first day by heading over to La Boqueria, the city’s biggest and best food market - a must for any Barcelona 2 day itinerary. Choose a fresh juice and browse until you find something for breakfast that catches your eye. This is also a great place to pick up souvenirs for your picky work colleagues and harmless-but-annoying family members. Once you’ve had your fill of snacking and Spanish market venders, walk off your breakfast by strolling down the city’s most famous street, Las Ramblas. Yes, it’s crowded with tourists and you think you’re better than that - but trust us, you’ll feel stupid if you leave without seeing the sights.

Glasshouse, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Glasshouse, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Afternoon: Head to La Sagrada Familia

Assuming you’re still full from breakfast, capitalise on your burst of first-day-of-holiday energy to get some culture in. Walk through the charming Eixample district, filled with intriguing boutiques and tiny cafes, to get to UNESCO world heritage site La Sagrada Familia. The enormous church is famous for a reason, and it’s an unmissable stop on a two day itinerary of Barcelona. Make sure to buy a ticket online beforehand, or your family will spend the rest of the afternoon glowering at you because the queue was too long. Wander around Gaudí’s world-famous, still-unfinished bonkers masterpiece and take in the view.

Taffy Balcony, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Taffy Balcony, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Evening: Wind down at a beach bar

After heading home to change for dinner before going out, hit the streets. Or more accurately, hit the beach, because tonight you’re pretending you’re a couple of decades younger than you are by visiting some beach bars. Saunter over to Barceloneta and order a chilled glass of Spanish wine in one of its xiringuitos. The sun-seeking crowds disperse in the evening, making it an ideal place to relax while the sun sets. For dinner, Alkimia is a Michelin-starred restaurant with tasting menus that will blow your mind. We recommend the grilled turbot with sherry suqu (clam sauce) - and we give you permission to be a food bore while you eat, because the food really is that good. Stumble home to your very comfortable bed, because you’ve got an early start tomorrow.

Day 2: Explore the city and enjoy fresh food

Morning: Discover Gaudi's architecture

Gaudi's La Pedrera apartment building, Gracia, Barcelona

Gaudi's La Pedrera apartment building, Gracia, Barcelona

Shake off that slight hangover from the night before, grab a pan con tomato to get your energy levels up and head on over to the Passeig de Gràcia. It’s the second instalment of your 2 day Barcelona itinerary, and there’s nothing your kids and grandkids want more than to upload selfies to social media all day see some more culture. Passeig de Gràcia is one of Barcelona’s most well-known avenues, combining architecture and shopping into one easily walkable route. As well as a myriad of designer shops - we hope you brought your credit card - you’ll see Gaudí’s undulating apartment block La Pedrera as you make your way down the street. Slightly further down is his awe-inspiring Casa Batlló, a glittering marvel of a building.

Cine Miria, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Cine Miria, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Afternoon: Enjoy lunch with the locals

We know your stomach is grumbling, so for lunch, get yourself to Embat. Combining some of Catalonia’s most authentic foods with a chic, minimalistic interior is no mean feat, but they’ve pulled it off. And plenty of locals eat here, so you’ll score some cool points with your travelling companions. Once you’ve had your fill, hop in a cab and speed to the Picasso museum in Barcelona’s El Born neighbourhood. Set across five palaces, it has a lot of the famous artist’s earlier work, so you can observe how his style developed.

Catalina Terrace, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Catalina Terrace, Plum Guide home in Barcelona

Evening: Round off the trip with an enviable meal

While the famous El Bulli restaurant empire (think molecular gastronomy) is still going strong, unless booking three months in advance is your thing, we recommend that you eat dinner on your last night of your Barcelona 2 day itinerary at Estimar. Hidden down a tiny alleyway in El Born, chef Rafa Zafra does magical things with fish. Celebratory and interesting, the shrimp carpaccio will give you something to rave to your jealous colleagues about when you’re back at work. If you’re travelling early the next day, feel free to head back to your envy-inducing beachside apartment to pack, but if not, it’s time to go out on the town. Grab your dancing shoes and get yourself over to jazz, funk and soul spot Marula Café, where you’ll forget all your troubles as you groove. Just don’t forget the Alka Seltzer in the morning.

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