Barcelona is framed by three mountains and the sea. Of course that means plenty of places to enjoy an amazing panorama view over the city. Quite frankly, I am sure that I have seem them all. I just can’t miss a nice view over the city!
The first one is from the famous Park Güell. Originally planned and designed by Gaudí as a residential area for wealthy residents of Barcelona, it’s a bit outside of the city and has a great view over the houses down below. It is not the highest point you can find, but the architecture is beyond beautiful. It is definitely touristy and packed during summer, but don’t miss out on it because you consider it as a tourist trap. It definitely isn’t – even as a local I used to spend my free time there because it is just a nice place.
Tip: They started charging an entrance fee recently. Your guidebook might tell you it is free, but it is not anymore.
Close by is actually another park with an even better view. Unfortunately (or luckily), hardly anyone knows about this one. Located in the park, Parc del Guinardó, there is an old air-raid shelter called The Turó de la Rovira. It is the most beautiful view of Barcelona I could find and my favorite place to have a picnic and enjoy the sunrise. You are somewhat in the middle of the city and have an almost 360° panoramic view. It is not as known, and therefore a bit tricky to find, but it is worth it.
Directions: The easiest way to get there is to take bus number 24 from Place Catalunya and exit at stop Ctra del Carmel-Gran Vista (15 Min walk), or take the metro until stop Alfons (25 Min. walk). Follow the signs directing you to Carrer dels Castillejos and you will find the park and the way to the air-raid shelter is easy to find.
Next, there is the Montjuic hill. You have a great and huge park on top of the mountain and plenty of recreational areas. For example, there is a botanical garden and the Montjuïc Castle which dates back to 1640. I like that you are high enough for a great view, but close enough to spot single sights such as the Sagrada Familia or the Torre Agbar. This is also the only viewpoint where you can see the harbor.
Tip: You can ride the cable car down to the harbor which provides a fantastic view and is the personal highlight for me!
Finally, another one of my favorite viewpoints is from the top of the Mountain Tibidabo. It is the tallest mountain closest to Barcelona, and gives you a fantastic view over the city and the facing mountain, “Montjuïc”. And not only that, my highlight is the small vintage amusement park you will find on top. This is a fun activity for kids, but actually one of the most romantic spots in Barcelona. Have you ever watched Woody Allen’s movie “Vicky Christina Barcelona”? Remember the scene to the end of the movie where they have a date at the amusement park with the great view? This is exactly the place I am talking about. Also, there is the small church called Sagrat Cor, which you absolutely need to see. It always reminds me of the castle from the introduction of Disney movies.
Tip: Do not go when there are public holidays in Spain, as many local families will visit the Tibidabo with their children and it is very crowded. The best time to visit is during the week.
If you don’t yet have the perfect home to enjoy after the perfect views, you should take a look at the luxury rental homes in Barcelona, which the Time & Place experts have picked for you. Enjoy your stay!
About the Author
Originally from Germany, Kia Hampel used to live in Barcelona, studied tourism and event management in The Netherlands and Southeast Asia and worked in Public Relations in New York. Read more on her blog, Traviness.