Travelling as a family, you sometimes feel pulled in a million different directions, especially when you are visiting a city with kids. Everyone wants to do something the other doesn’t and there simply isn’t enough time for everything. The best solution is to find activities that you can all enjoy. Here are seven fun things to do in Barcelona that will keep the whole family happy and entertained, from those with tiny tots to groups travelling with teenagers.
Head to the Beach
The best way to kick off your trip is by visiting Barceloneta Beach. During the warmer months, the children are sure to enjoy the warm sand and cool water of the Mediterranean Sea while you unwind with the beachside mojito service. You may want to rent a kayak or paddleboard to explore the water further. This is easy to do, and you can find discounts for these services in many of the beachside bars. In winter you can still enjoy a nice walk along the seafront, too.
There are plenty of ice-cream kiosks and cafés for a tasty treat and refreshments, tapas bars and restaurants for a traditional meal, and supermarkets where you can pick up the essentials for a picnic on the beach.
Barcelonta Beach by Meindert van D
Getting to Barceloneta: Metro Barceloneta, L4
Tibidabo Amusement Park
This epic funfair first opened on top of Tibidabo Mountain over 100 years ago, making it one of the oldest amusement parks in the world. Boasting 25 rides and amazing panoramic views over the city, Tibibado is a great place to spend the day.
Getting to the park is also fun, as you can ride up from the FGC Tibidabo station to the lower part of the mountain on a vintage blue tram, the “Tramvia Blau”, which has been carrying people up the hill since 1901. To reach the top you can complete the journey by rack railway, bus, or a leisurely hike through the Natural Park of Collserola.
Tibidabo by Jeremy Thompson
Getting to Tibidabo: Various options include the FGC to Tibidabo, and T2 direct bus from Plaça Catalunya
TOP TIP: If you’re heading to Barcelona as a family, I recommend staying in a holiday apartment. It is one of the best ways to enjoy your stay to the fullest as the whole family can be together in the same place, you have your own kitchen so you don’t have to eat out every evening (ideal when travelling with tiny tots), plus most apartments come with Wi-Fi included in the rental price, so if you need to you can stay connected to the world after bedtime. ApartmentBarcelona.com, for example, offers all of the above and has hundreds of apartments all over the city at good prices.
A fun and educational way to spend the day with your children is at Barcelona Zoo, which is home to well over 300 species which live in recreations of their natural ecosystem separated by world regions. You can explore the zoo by train or on foot; either way make sure you stop to see the famous dolphin show and the “Children’s Zoo”, where the little ones can pet the animals.
Bring your own lunch to enjoy in the lovely picnic area, or try one of the delicious meal options available at the restaurant.
Barcelona Zoo by cdamian
Getting to Barcelona Zoo: Metro Ciutadella-Vila Olímpica, L4
Barcelona Aquarium is one of the largest in the world, showcasing over 450 different species. One of the highlights is in an 80m underwater tunnel that gives you the feeling of walking on the ocean floor as you marvel at the sharks swimming overhead.
It is divided into three areas: the Aquarium which contains most of the sea life, Planeta Aqua where you can learn about the importance of water in our world, and the Explora area where kids are able to play and explore interactive exhibits.
Barcelona Aquarium by Martin Pilat
Getting to Barcelona Aquarium: Metro Drassanes, L3
The MIBA Museu d’Idees i Invents
The MIBA Museum of Ideas and Inventions is an interactive and educational experience that will put everyone’s creative mind to work. Enter the museum and travel by tunnel slide to the lower level, where you’ll visit the Corner of the Absurd which presents what the museum curators believe to be the funniest inventions. There is also a Kids’ Space where children can try their hand at inventing.
In the museum shop you can purchase inventions you have never seen before to take home as a souvenir of a great day.
photo courtesy of MIBA
Getting to MIBA: Carrer de la Ciutat, 7. Metro: Jaume I, L4
The Bosc Urbà, or ‘Urban Jungle’ is your adventurous child’s dream playground, with over 50 attractions spread over circuits ranging in difficulty from beginner to professional. Your family’s agility will be put to the test through zip lines, bungee jumping, and high ropes, just to name a few activities.
There is no need to worry you’ve never done something like this before, as you’ll receive some basic training on the circuit before the real fun begins! Be sure to come prepared with athletic clothes and shoes.
Bosc Urbà courtesy of ogrodowasmpz.blogspot.com
Getting to the Bosc Urbà: Parc del Fòrum. Metro: El Maresme-Fòrum, L4
XMAX Speed Boat
XMAX is the fastest way to see the Barcelona coastline, as you zoom past all the beautiful beaches on a 50 minute long high-speed boat ride. This is a thrilling experience for kids and adults alike. Rides depart from the Port Vell, and tickets can be bought directly from the adjoining seafront kiosk.
photo courtesy of XMAX Speed Boat
Getting to the XMAX Speed Boat: Portal de la Pau, Moll de Drassanes, Port Vell. Metro: Drassanes, L3