Loved for its magnificent capital Barcelona, admired further for its glittering beaches, there are lots of reasons why people come back, time and again to Catalonia. But figuring out exactly how best to spend a week or more in one of Spain's most famous regions, can be tricky. The next time you plan to go? Make sure you put these eight must-see sights firmly on your travel agenda.
From the postcard-adorning landmark that is the towering Sagrada Familia, to more human-scale creations like Park Guell and Casa Mila, Gaudi's architectural creations in Barcelona are just some of the things that have helped visitors fall for the city's charm and splendour. Without Gaudi's art-deco creations, often weird and wonderful, Barcelona just wouldn't look the same.
The mountain range that divides Spain from France while featuring at the heart of both's ancient pilgrimage walk, the camino, the Pyrenees are a must-see Catalonian sight that offer something different to urban centres and beach resorts. Accessible by train from Barcelona, transversing the range into France, it's also a great place to stay, with options like those at Hoteles-Catalonia firm favourites with lots of people all over the world.
El Far de Sant Sebastia, Llafranc
Known for its mid-19th century lighthouse sitting proudly on a Catalonian cliff-face, this spot in Llafranc offers amazing views of the region's coastline and also delivers the chance to walk it on a clifftop path. Discover more from Catalonia's past as you see ancient settlements, watch towers and more.
Calella de Palafrugell
Situated in one of Catalonia's most spectacular spots, the Costa Brava, Calella de Palafrugell shows a side of the region relatively untouched by urban encroachment or the tourist trail. A village sat in the heart of hills and coves, the charm of this place, from its whitewash houses and little fishing boats, is definitely something to be savoured.
Located in the Catalonian region of Tarragona, Priorat is an unmissable sight if you're into sleepy bodegas offering fantastic wine and even more spectacular views of vineyards and fields beyond. Siurana, just one of Priorat's most beautiful villages, is known historically as the last place the Moors occupied in Catalonia.
Dating back to the 2nd century, Tarragona's Roman Ampitheatre is another must-see sight in Catalonia that rarely gets featured or talked about in lieu of the province's many attractions. The former venue of Roman bloodsports, the walls echo here and history breathes. Also on the site are a basilica and Romanesque-Gothic church.
Dali Theatre Museum
Based in Girona, this cultural attraction honours one of the region's best-known names, the artist and cultural phenomenon that is Salvador Dali. Otherwise known as the “world's largest Surrealist object”, this museum is just like the man and his work itself. Definitely worth checking out.
Back to Barcelona for the final recommendation and it's the city's other great symbol, its Gothic Cathedral, that's the last must-see. Built on the site of a paleo-Christian basilica, Barcelona Cathedral is best seen from the inside in order to appreciate its grandeur. Save time especially to roam its side chapels and cloister.
Catalonia has so many amazing things to see we're sure these will keep you busy for your next trip and beyond.
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