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Top 10 things to do in Barcelona

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I'm just back from a lovely week in Barcelona with some friends. Here is my hit list of the top things to do in the city... 

1. Las Ramblas 
Probably the most well known landmark in Barcelona. It's simply lovely to just meander down from Plaça Catalunya to the Columbus statue. The wide street is lined with newspaper kiosks, florists, animal sellers, street artists and actual artists. Everything just comes together here and there is a wonderful atmosphere.

2. Barri Gotic
The Gothic Quarter of Barcelona is a beautiful maze of cobbled streets and stunning architecture. Here you can discover the non-tourist streets of Barcelona.

3. Tibidabo
Take a trip up Mount Tibidabo for some spectacular views of Barcelona. Up there is an amusement park and a stunning church, but for me the view is the main attraction.

4. Montjuic
Atop the mountain you can find a castle and the Olympic Stadium (from the 1992 Olympics). If you explore further you can find a tunnel speckled with rocks for climbers, designed by a retired police officer. There are also riding stables. The Olympic swimming pool is open to the public every day, and is definately worth a visit. The views from the mountain are wonderful. Also is the charming Poble Espanyol - an old village. 

5. Port Vell
Filled with stunning yachts, the Port Vell is at the bottom of the Rambla. Aside from the lovely blue sea and the boats, there is an aquarium and a floating shopping centre - Maremagnum.
6. Beaches
With almost three miles of coastline Barcelona is home to seven beaches, Sant Sebastià, Barceloneta, Nova Icària, Bogatell, Mar Bella, Nova Mar Bella and Llevant. The beaches are stunning, with clear blue water and golden sand. Barceloneta is the most popular beach because it has the largest stretch of sand, and there are lots of restaurants and bars alongside it.

7. Olympic Port 
The port was built in 1991 to host the sailing events for the 1992 Olympics. Of course this is along the sea front so boasts some beach front and again, there are lnumerous restaurants and bars.

8. Shopping
Barcelona is a fabulous place to come shopping. Along Portal de L'Angel (alongside La Rambla) Diagonal Mar, L'illa Diagonal, and the Maremagnum are all the mainstream stores. Carrer de Banys Nous de la Palla is home to many antique and vintage shops, and for markets make sure to visit the Mercat de Bellcaire, the Boqueria and San Antoni markets. 

9. Camp Nou
Home of FC Barcelona, this stadium is worth a look even if you're not a football fan. It's an impressive building.
10. Gaudi
All over Barcelona one can see the amazing works by Catalan modernism pioneer Antoni Gaudi, including the world-famous Sagrada Familia - definately worth a look.
Barcelona has to be one of the nicest places I have visted. The people are lovely, the city is beautiful and the beaches are stunning. There is just a wonderful atmosphere permeating the city and I'd recommend it to everyone.
 

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