Barcelona is steeped in history, floating in good wine and tapas, and crawling with architectural wonders. It’s a lot to grapple with. Given the time and means, taking a walking Barcelona tour with a local expert can streamline getting around and introduce you to the city in ways that only a long life in the area can accomplish.
I’m a big fan of small tours, even in towns I live in! It’s fun, you hang out with a cool group that shares some of the same passions and learn so much. Here’s a trio of short tours to try the next time I’m walking Barcelona.
The Picasso Museum and Gothic Quarter Walking Tour
When I was in Barcelona long ago the Picasso Museum was a magnet that never stuck – I was running around the city too much and staying too far away. That wouldn’t happen again.
The tour starts in the city core, the ancient and beautiful Gothic Quarter. You’ll learn about the many ties between the Master artist and the city, explore charming squares and explore ancient narrow streets. The Cathedral was the scene of a massive blessing on the Palm Sunday I was there but I missed seeing the remains of the Roman Wall nearby. It’s on the tour and then you get to skip to the front of the line at the Picasso Museum. Trace his evolution as a young artist through over four thousand pieces of art displayed, according to his wishes throughout five Medieval Palaces.
The New Barcelona Tour
Cities renew themselves through reinvention and Barcelona is no exception. For three hours join an architect guide to explore the vibrancy of new architecture. It ends with coffee and a skyline view, as the small group (no more than 12) lingers. It can be heady stuff as your guide offers insights contrasting radical contemporary architecture with the industrial heritage, the textile revolution and the spawning of the Catalan bourgeoisie. You’ll walk away with a file that includes reviews, photos, plans, historical documents and a bibliography. Wow.
Montserrat wine, tapas and a castle tour
After all those urban and intellectual machinations, it would be time to get out into nature and more sensual pursuits. I’d join a half day tour of the Montserrat wine region and the Oller del Mas Castle. The guides and family, if they’re around, will share their expertise and insights about harvesting the grapes, the soil and weather while we explore French oak barrels and centuries old stone wine cellar walls. The tour concludes with a table laid with the best organic and locally-made food – cold meats, cheese, breads and pastries. I’d drink to that.
P.S. All of these are offered by Excursiopedia. The company is based out of Munich but they work with local tour professionals in cities around the world. I’m an affiliate. Should you sign up for one of their tours from this post, there’s no extra cost for you and it helps keep Trip Wellness going strong. Thanks!
Created as part of the Hipmunk City Love Project
These walking tours sound like a great way to learn and enjoy Barcelona, thanks for sharing.
Thanks for commenting and Barcelona? Wonderful, yes.
These tours sound amazing! I love that smaller tours really allow you to connect with the city and learn more about an area’s history. I hope you get to try out one (or more!) of these tours when you’re in Barcelona next!
Thanks, Jessica, I hope you get a chance to try the Barcelona tours for yourself one day too.
Absolutely love Barcelona! Thanks for the lovely photos and reminders of a great city.
Barcelona’s one of the best! Glad you enjoyed the pictures.
Great images and tour suggestions for Barcelona. I like to take tours, too.
Thanks, Carole. My favorite city tours are small (under 12) and done primarily by foot or public transportation. Glad you enjoy them as well.
Love your imagery AND your writing. And it’s nice to see you’re a part of something ‘Massive’! (I’m part of the Toronto gang here!
Hi Jane, I’m honored that you like what’s going on here. Just worked up a post about Toronto that I hope will meet with your approval as well once it’s published. Our San Diego Travel Massive is still peanut sized but we aspire to your success.
We love doing small guided walking tours, even better are bicycling tours, but that’s because I’m kinda of a cycling fanatic. It’s midnight here in Washington State, and reading of the tapas and wine has my stomach grumbling. Thanks a lot! Love this post. Haven’t been to Barcelona yet, but looking forward to it in the future.
Thanks for the midnight ramblings! I’m posting soon about bicycling in Miami although I’m no fanatic, just love seeing places from the ground. Barcelona is truly wonderful.
The Montserrat wine, tapas and a castle tour sounds like so much fun. You get to explore and you get to eat!!
I agree, the tour sounds wonderful. I’d especially like to be there when the Castle family is in residence.
These look like great tours of Barcelona. I’ve done a self-guided tour of the Gothic area (using pages from a couple of guide books as reference) and I did wait in line and go to the Picasso Museum. It was worth the wait. It would be interesting to take a look at the new Barcelona. And I did not get a chance to get to Montserrat, so that is on my list for next time.
You’ve seen some of the best parts of Barcelona already, it sounds like. I hope you get a return trip soon.
We just finished several days in Barcelona, and this post chronicles the exact experiences we’ve had. Although we didn’t use Excursiopedia, your suggestions to focus on foodie, neighborhood and Montserrat are spot on. We loved touring the Gracia and Gothic neighborhoods, and are so pleased that we decided to make a day of it and go up to Montserrat on a Sunday to hear mass and the boys’ choir.
How lovely that must have been to hear Mass with a boys choir. I’ll add that to my list.
I’d love to join an architect guide to explore Barcelona’s new architecture. It’s something I really haven’t read much about and if it wraps up with a glass of wine and some tapas, that’s even better!
It does sound fun, doesn’t it? Anything that wraps up with tapas and wine would be!
Will be in Spain at the end of May and June and this is very helpful. Food, art and a beautiful environment.
Glad you hear you found these tips helpful, Paula.