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Wondering what to do in Barcelona with kids? You’re in luck! Kids in Barcelona are welcome almost anywhere, transportation with them is easy, and there’s so much visual stimulation, it’s dizzying with choices. In fact, you don’t have to spend any money on your Barcelona family vacation — they city’s an open-air museum in itself. As a mother who’s raised three kids here, I reached back into my memory of all my outings in Barcelona with my kids and used some research too. Having withstood 49 tons of public toddler tantrums, I compiled this comprehensive list of kids’ activities in Barcelona. First-time visitors, repeat visitors, and expats will find something new for their toddlers to teens. Scroll down to find where to stay in Barcelona with kids!
Whoa! 100 is a lot! What about FOR first-timers? Well here is my top 15 best things to do in Barcelona with kids (in general order of preference) CLICK TO JUMP down to that section:
These are places where you have to be a bit more vigilant, where kids won’t even touch the artwork. Almost all Barcelona museums have a children’s program. Here are just a few.
1. Explore Gaudí’s vivid Casa Batlló: This UNESCO building’s explosive shapes and forms throughout the building. Kids will enjoy discovering peculiar windows, bumpy ceilings, azure tiles, and brilliant trencadis (broken tilework). They’ll enjoy the rooftop where they can spot a dragon. The building can get crowded, which may be stressful if you have very little ones. So come early and buy online. Special tours for kids are also available. Skip the line and buy your advance tickets here.
2. Get lost on the wavy rooftop of La Pedrera – Antoni Gaudí put his stamp on this apartment building with his wavy balconies and flowing forms – you won’t find any 90º angles in this building. It’s not a place to run around, but you do have some more elbow room. But kids can be more free at the rooftop, playing around the soldier-like chimneys and organic forms. Check out the museum store below for some unique, non-cheesy souvenirs to take home. Buy your advance tickets with an audio tour here.
3. See the Gothic Monastery of Pedralbes – The 700-year-old Monestir de Pedralbes is spacious on the outside as it’s set in a quiet residential neighborhood of Sarria. Let the kids run free on the outside! The inside has a more serious tone worth a visit of the 3-storied cloister with beautifully arched hallways. Take a family audio guide of the church, museum, kitchen, cloister and more. They also have several workshops and tours like making Christmas sweets or taking a garden tour. It’s free the first Sunday of the month.
4. Explore the Roman ruins of Born Cultural Center – The Centre Cultural Born is housed in the former 19th-century Born market, now transformed into a site of Roman ruins, occupying the huge central space of the ironclad center. The architecture is a modernist beauty, and it’s fun to explore both the inside and outside areas in the heart of the Born district. For kids’ activities, CC Born has “El Bornet”, a kids program like theater, film, scavenger hunts, story time, and more.
5. Go up the tall Christopher Columbus monument at the end of Las Ramblas – Is Columbus pointing to the new land? Nope! Word on the street has it that he’s probably pointing to his hometown of Genova. The elevator takes you up 60 meters high, and from there you can see the port, Montjuic, and Barcelona city.
6. Check out the instruments at Museu de la Musica – The Museum of Music showcases 500 instruments from different cultures – like the Swiss stellavox or a bell from Benín. You can even touch some of them! The best time to participate with kids is on Sundays for their workshops. It’s free to enter on the first Sunday of every month after 3pm.
7. Create 3D illusions at the Museo de Ilusiones – An optical illusion museum where it looks like you’re part of large paintings or scenes. Superimpose your body on to painted walls like Dali’s melted clock painting, or get licked by the giant dragon at Park Guell. It’s a tiny but fun place, so get your money’s worth and your Groupon discount HERE.
8. Pose with famous wax figures at the Museu de Cera – Perhaps not quite at the level of Madame Tussaud’s or other wax museums, this Barcelona wax museum will give you a good snicker. With about 200 figures, the Wax Museum also holds special events, like a behind-the-scenes look at horror makeup (which you can see on their Facebook page), or a scene from Star Wars or Mother Teresa.
9. Create something artistic at the Barcelona Design Museum – The Museu del Disseny focuses on design but offers high-quality activities for kids. On Sundays, they have well-designed children’s creative workshops like making stamps or bookplates. The run about 2 hours. The DHUB building (where the museum is housed) also has a library – with its own enclosed kids’ section. Kids can run around freely on the extensive lawn outside afterward!
10. Create more art at MACBA (Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona) – The Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art in Raval also has targeted activities, MACBA en Familia, has workshops that allow kids to experiment and create art. Check out their programming and photos on Twitter.
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11. See Pablo Picasso’s early work at Museu Picasso – The Picasso Museum itself isn’t so kid-friendly because of its limited space and heavy crowds, however, it does offer weekend family activities like decorating a table Picasso-style. See more on their page that sorely needs updating here.
12. Discover Egyptian culture at the Museu Egipci de Barcelona – Staring at ancient artifacts are probably a yawn-worthy event. But the people at the Egyptian Museum get it. That’s why they have a guided tour and workshop on the second and fourth Saturday of every month. Kids can learn about mummification, types of sarcophaguses, and more. Reservations must be made, maximum 10 visitors.
13. Learn about biology and life at the Museu Blau science museum – Located at the Parc del Forum by the sea, the Museu Blau is a low-cost museum for kids to learn about natural science. The permanent exhibition, called The Planet Life, shows the beginning of organisms in its evolution until today. The most impressive part of the museum is the interminable rows of 4,000 fossils and taxidermied animals, where you can look closely into the eyes of an African lion without getting mauled! Children up to 6 years old can also enter a special Niu de Ciencia (Science Nest), an interactive room where kids can get hands-on experience observing pods through microscopes, handle a shark’s jaw, or discover the plumage of various birds.
14. Visit the premium art gallery Caixaforum near Montjuic – Sponsored by the Spanish bank La Caixa, the CaixaForum structure is an old textile factory-turned-cultural center with galleries and exhibits of modern art. Each art gallery has a CaixaForum Kids section, a sophisticated and educational space that offers more than papers, feathers, and glue. Kids can learn about the exhibition and further explore the art represented in each featured gallery — translating the art into their own terms. They can create their own pieces for display in the space or to take home. CaixaForum Kids also offers cultural shows, concerts, family workshops and films throughout the year.
15. See the art and enjoy the views at the Fundació Joan Miró – The artist Joan Miró produced seemingly simple surrealist art that’s playful and appealing to kids. The Joan Miró museum has a handful of weekend family activities. The terrace area is fun to explore to because of it’s wide open space in Montjuic. Skip the line and buy your advance tickets to Fundació Joan Miró here.
16. Check out submarines and ships at the Museu Marítim – The Maritime Museum of Barcelona is by Las Ramblas and is housed in an attractive former shipyard. Kids explore reproductions of massive ships – like the galley “Admirals de Juan de Austria”, measuring 60 meters long. The terrace area has a submarine sculpture, a small lake with fish, and outdoor restaurant area are a fun place to explore after your visit.
17. Check out highbrow kids’ art at the Plom Gallery – It’s a contemporary modern art gallery in Gracia, all the paintings created by future Picassos. The art that does not consist of dried up pasta and cotton balls, but it’s a serious center that fosters kids’ appreciation of the value of an artistic work and turns them into serious art collectors.
18. Sail through the streets of a miniature Spanish village, Poble Espanyol – The Poble Espanyol is an enclosed but expansive open-air museum in Montjuic, imitating streets and architecture of real pueblos around the country. 117 buildings, streets, and squares are represented. You can have lunch, peruse the artisan shops, or join in the activities. Sundays are family activity days. They can also participate in Gymkhana, a treasure hunt around the village. As a temporary detective, you’ll be loaned a rucksack, a guidebook and investigative tools for a real search for interesting things. It’s available in Spanish, Catalan, English, and French. Click on the link below to get a 10% discount on your Poble Espanyol entrance through the Barcelona tourism office. GET YOUR DISCOUNT TICKETS HERE
19. Discover a real rainforest at the Cosmocaixa Science Museum – You don’t really have to love science to appreciate the richness of information in this museum. Its permanent exhibits the Geological Wall (70 pieces of nearly 90 tons of rock), an impressive planetarium, a stunning indoor rainforest with over 100 species such as anacondas, alligators, and poisonous frogs. One fun place is the Sala de la Materia encourages hands-on experimentation of matter. Kids can test Newton’s Law, discover how sound waves work, and understand the Big Bang theory. There are over 200 of these fun interactive models to play with. Lots of fun buttons to press! Reader my post about Cosmocaixa and Get your discount Cosmocaixa tickets here
20. See the giant puppets at La Casa dels Entremesos. See towering giants made of papier mache. Check out my post here.
21. Get a chocolate tour of the Museu de la Xocolata – Enjoy chocolate sculptures like Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia or the Arc de Triomf. They also have several activities ready for the kids, broken down appropriately by age group (must reserve online first). Apparently, the hot chocolate at the end of the visit is a huge winner. While you don’t need a Golden Ticket to get in, the Chocolate Museum does have an entrance fee of 5 euros.
22. Get a cool view at CCCB (Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona) – A modern arts center that holds lectures, workshops, and activities. It also has a mirador, or a lookout point on the fifth floor, where you get a view of Raval, Tibidabo, Collserola tower, the Gothic Quarter, and Montjuic. It also has a bookstore and restaurant with a back terrace, where kids can run freely and enjoy. See their list of family activities here. It’s free on Sundays after 3pm.
In between shopping and go-go-going, Barcelona is filled with parks where kids can burn their interminable energy.
23. Spend a day at Barcelona’s central park, Parc de La Ciutadella: This is the city’s main park – it’s a centrally located oasis in El Born. Not just a beautiful tree-lined park to stroll, the Ciutadella Park is 70 acres of land where you can spend the whole day. I know because I’ve even spent 6 or 7 hours hanging out here with our friends! You can find a small, picturesque lake with green foliage, calm waters, and ducks quacking around. Here you can rent a small rowboat for a half an hour and enjoy the fresh air and scenic beauty. You can also find a mammoth sculpture, an impressive fountain, ping pong tables, a cafe, and restrooms. There are also 3 playgrounds. One has a ludoteca, a free playing space primarily for 2- to 6-year-olds, where children can explore with large tires, oversized buckets and spools, wheelbarrows, kiddie pools, and more. It’s open from 11:30am-1pm, but check the schedule for details. Bring some ham sandwiches, cava (OK public drinking is illegal..shhh), and a picnic blanket. You’ll see tourists, families, and los hippy sitting on the grass, reveling in the park’s charm. Check out my post on 12 things you can do at this central park.
24. Take an easy, panoramic hike at La Carretera de les Aigües – This is a long path that runs along the Collserola ridge. Many bikers and runners take it all the way to the top. Hike as a family as it’s pretty easy, especially in the beginning. It’s quite wide, so you won’t get vertigo and there’s no imminent danger. However, if you have a rambunctious kid, you’ll want to put him in a stroller. The Carretera de les Aigües is about 10 kilometers long and every turn will have you wanting to whip out your smartphone camera. If you’re taking the car, go to Plaça Mireia, where there are a few benches and a small restaurant. Or, take public transportation to the Vallvidrera train station.
25. Get dizzy-inspired at Gaudí’s colorful natural wonderland, Parc Guell. A dragon staircase, giant stalagmites, all in bright, beautiful colors! I don’t hide my enthusiasm for this park in my exploratory post about Gaudí’s playful park here. Downsides: Parc Guell is kind of a pain in the butt to get to. It’s not stroller-friendly as it is quite multi-leveled with only stairs as access. The main entrance is accessible after a 20-minute uphill walk from the Lesseps metro stop. Consider taking the public bus (24) from Plaça Catalunya to arrive, which is located on a higher level on the side of the park. Get to know Gaudi’s history: 1.5 hour-tour that delves deeper into its history and architecture, you can buy your Park Guell tickets in advance here.
26. Ride a mini train at Parc del Oreneta – This park has mini steam train rides that the whole family can ride. Serious train hobbyists run this show. You get an old-style punch card tickets. And go ahead – ring the bell and yell, “All abooooard!” Check out more on the Park L’Oreneta in my post.
27. Relax at the Parc del Centre de Poblenou – This minimalist park in Poblenou was designed by Jean Nouvel, the same architect who designed the Torre AGBAR. It’s got lots of wide open spaces (no lawn) but has several playgrounds. Read more about the quirky, futuristic Parc del Poblenou here.
28. Have a picnic at the sloping Jardins de Mossèn Cinto Verdaguer – This is one of my favorite picturesque green spots to have a picnic. On a slope in Montjuic sits rolling hills, and in the middle is a pond with a fountain. Climb up the steps and peek inside the square ponds with lily pads, and see if you find any guppies.
29. Play and admire the funky clown sculpture at Jardins de Joan Brossa – Also a park of Montjuic, it’s on a slightly steeper hill with pathways, a statue of a famous flamenco dancer Carmen Amaya and Spanish clown, Charlie Rivel. It also has musical cushions (kids jump on it, and it makes a noise), water pumps, sand pulleys, and more.
30. See sea creatures at the L’Aquarium Barcelona – Located at Barcelona’s waterfront, the Barcelona Aquarium in Port Vell is the largest Mediterranean-themed aquarium in the world. It has over 11,000 organisms from 450 different species. Kids will love to catch daily feeding times of the sharks, penguins and the ravenous rays. There’s a large tunnel housing the oceanarium. Perhaps the best spot for little ones is the interactive Explora! children’s area, where you can observe waves of the Costa Brava or learn about the marshes of the Ebro Delta. Children can also touch a sea urchin, climb on a faux sea turtle, or run around outside and explore inside a play shark’s jaw. Children 2 and under are free. Skip the line! Click on the link below and buy your advance Barcelona aquarium tickets.
31. Build sandcastles at the best beaches in Barcelona for kids. The beaches are ideal if you’re visiting Barcelona with toddlers. More than just sand and water, Barcelona’s 4.5 kilometers of seven beaches have beautiful scenery and plenty of xiringuitos (bars on the sand), and are family-friendly spots. Although crowded during summer months, Barcelona’s beaches offer lots of space for kids to run around, build sandcastles, and take a dip in the Mediterranean Sea. There’s even a small biblioplatja (library at the beach) in Barceloneta beach, a mobile library with some kids’ books that you can check out while you’re on the sand, but you have to have a Barcelona library card. It’s only open in the summer. For the modest, keep in mind that nudism is allowed on the beaches but rarely seen. Port Olímpic. Kids can admire Frank Gehry’s oversized sculpture of a golden fish, and there are plenty of shops and restaurants a climbing frame. Poblenou. There are also a few playgrounds. And the Rambla de Poblenou starts here — it’s a pleasant pedestrian street full of restaurants, cafes, and shops.
32. Climb the Castell de Montjuic – A 17th-century military fortress, the Castle of Montjuic is a cultural monument where kids can thrust their imagination into medieval history. Half the fun is arriving at this historic castle on a hill via funicular. Upon arrival, guests can cross the high bridge to the castle and large cannons that kids love to climb on and pretend they’re fending off outsiders. The whole family can also enjoy the spectacular panoramic views of the city below. There is also a playground by the drawbridge with two extra-long fun-inducing slides.
33. Check out the permanent outdoor light installation, Bruumrumm! – Come nightfall, head to the brilliant light installation outside of the Design Museum. You yell into an “ear”, a contraption, which activates the whole plaza (3,300 m2) full of neon lights on the floor. Addictive for kids and adults.
34. Check out the strange animal statues at Jardins de Jaume Vicens Vives – What used to be a private garden, this park, built in the 1970s, is near the iconic black towers of La Caixa on Diagonal. Kids will have fun looking at the 30 statues, including deer, gazelles, a curious warthog, sporadically spread out throughout the park.
35. Relax at the tranquil La Pegaso Park – It’s a park in Sant Andreu, an “undiscovered” neighborhood. It’s got a small lake with a fountain, ping pong tables, playgrounds, cascades.
36. Stroll through the Parc de la Maternitat – Not necessarily a “destination park”, but more of a “passing-by”, tranquil park with a mix of lawn, green grass and modernist pavilions right next to the hospital de la Maternitat.
37. Stroll at Turó Park in the posh Sarria neighborhood – Enjoy this storybook park embellished with magnolia and ivy flower beds and sculptures from artists like Federico García Lorca, Pau Casals, or Sylvia Plath. It also has an oval-shaped pond with water lilies and playground for the tots. Have a drink at the outdoor terrace bar.
38. Explore the concealed Jardines Universitat de Barcelona – This is a peaceful park quietly tucked away inside the Barcelona University, so it doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic. It’s an oasis of 10,000 m2 and 250 species of lush plants and overflowing trees. And it’s in the setting of a Gothic-style building over 500 years old.
39. Spend a smog-free afternoon at Parc de Collserola – This is a park just outside Barcelona that makes you feel remote because you’re surrounded by lush trees, paths, etc. It feels “thicker” in nature than the city parks like Parc Ciutadella or Parc Guell. There you can enjoy the fresh scent of the wildflowers, holm oaks and pines. There are 7 routes you can take, ranging from easy (kid-friendly) to difficult (leave ’em home). A basic itinerary for the kids would be to go from the information center, and go toward the Font de la Budellera, where there’s a picnic area. Another fun activity is to visit the Pantá de Vallvidrera, a reservoir where you can spy a few animals like frogs, turtles, and ducks.
40. Play at the Parc Central de Nou Barris – An wide and open space in the barrio of Nou Barris, this park’s central feature is the water. It has a cute bridge that divides the water in two. RIght next to is the neighborhood’s library, the Biblioteca de Nou Barris. You can also have a picnic here as there are tables and chairs ready for some sandwiches and cava.
41. Meander about at the elegant Santa Amelia y Villa Cecilia – Set in a residential neighborhood, this is an upper neighborhood park that’s clean and calm with a romantic feel. Hundred-year-old trees, manicured cypress hedges, a circular lake, 2 playgrounds, and a terrace cafe.
42. Visit the geese at the Plaza of the Barcelona Cathedral – Did you know that there are 13 geese at the plaza? Inside the cloister, you’ll find the feathered animals – it’s a reminder of the age that Santa Eulalia died.
43. Get lost in a hedge labyrinth at the Parc del Laberint d’Horta – You can spend a whole afternoon at this 55-acre park. Have a picnic, enjoy the romantic Italian gardens, or ogle at the Greek busts and sculptures. The oldest park in the city, the multi-leveled Parc Laberint d’Horta is an 18th-century neoclassical garden with plenty of ponds, fountains, gazebos, Moorish arches and statues of Greek gods. Most importantly, you can get lost in its winding maze.
At the entrance of the labyrinth, you have to find your way to the center, which is a statue of the Eros, the god of love. The park also has lots of green spaces for strolling and a decent playground. If you want to have a picnic here, seating areas are pretty limited — well-manicured lawns are mostly for admiring from a distance. There are a few benches around, so it won’t be too comfortable.
Tip: if you have a stroller, enter through the right side where there’s a ramp. If you enter from the front, there is a high set of stairs that you’ll have to carry your set of wheels. There is an admission charge, but you can avoid this if you come on a Sunday. Read more about the Labyrinth Park.
44. Explore Parc de Diagonal Mar by the beach – From the outside, the park looks like an amusement park – with its twister roller coaster-like art structure. It also has a tranquil pond and a superslide! When you get tired, you can enjoy some shopping across the street at the Diagonal Mar Shopping Centre.
45. Stroll in the French-style Jardines del Sentmenat – This gorgeous park is peaceful with its circular fountain. It belonged to the family Sentmenat – and in an aristocratic French style. It’s near the Collserola mountains with plenty of pathways, fountains in wear-a huge-hat-for-an-Instagram-worthy setting. Sit at the bar and watch the kids play at the playground nearby. BACK TO TOP
46. Spend the afternoon in nature at the uncrowded Parc del Guinardó –This city park is still in Barcelona but has an “in the woods” feel. Small hiking trails that are super easy for kids, You can also find playgrounds, fountains, and thick trees. I came here for a birthday party, where there are a few tables scattered around the Plaza del Nen de la Ruttla. It’s quite huge – the higher you go, you can get a wonderful view of the Torre Agbar, twin towers, and the Mediterranean Sea. It’s in a quiet, residential neighborhood with alternative views of Park Guell. Start at the bottom Plaza del Nen de la Ruttla, and work your way up. You can arrive at the mirador of Turó de La Rovira, where you’ll get a gorgeous 360 panoramic view.
47. Take a shopping break at the Jardins de Palau Robert –This private park is truly a mini-oasis in the midst of the bustling center. Not so much a park to spend the day, it’s more of a park to take a break – that is, if you can find a bench. It doesn’t have any grass, but it has some benches, beautiful trees and a small sandpit for the tots and tiny tykes.
48. Enjoy the open city-block park, Jardines del Príncip de Girona – This is a recreational neighborhood park just north of Sagrada Familia. It has a square lake is surrounded by benches, ping pong tables, a playground, and an outdoor bar restaurant area.
49. Visit the Botanical garden in Montjuic – Just behind the Olympic stadium is an exotic botanical garden dedicated to the Mediterranean flora. It’s a peaceful garden where you can admire different flora and fauna divided into 5 different regions. Kids will like it because it’s open, adults will appreciate the beauty of the variety of foliage. Be mindful of new walkers/runners because of the bridge.
50. Play and get a city view at the Jardines del Teatre Grec. This looks like an amazing place if you’ve got older kids and you don’t want to climb lots of stairs. The Greek Theatre was built in 1929 for the Exposition, it’s got enchanting manicured gardens and a mirador (lookout point). Get a view of the Collserola mountains and Tibidabo. You might go a little crazy if you have a toddler who likes to explore water and climb mountains, so watch out.
51. Discover the Parc de Joan Miró – Formerly a city slaughterhouse, the extensive 4 blocks-long park has a flat lawn, palm trees, and an iconic sculpture by Joan Miró is called “Dona i Ocell” (woman and bird) that juts out of a shallow pool. A few playgrounds for the littles and a fantastic place to take a break if you’ve been shopping at Las Arenas Shopping Center. It has a few landscaped areas of palms, oaks, and pines.
52. Slide down the super slides at Montjuic. There’s also a good one at Poble Espanyol!
53. Play a sport at the locals hangout, Parc del Clot – There’s nothing but feel-good, vibrant neighborhood life at this locals-only park. Arches, fountains, 3 playgrounds, stairs, ramps, and several spaces to play handball, football, and more. Read more about this park here.
54. Slither down a dragon slide Parc de l’Espanya Industrial – Near the Sants Estacion, this park is most known for its large and wide dragon-shaped structure which also doubles as a slide. Its row of watchtowers makes it a curious place. Not necessarily a park to spend all day or picnic in, it’s a fun stop for kids to climb the steps, go down the slide and run around the lake.
55. Go on a city treasure hunt with Unpuzzle Barcelona. Choose an “adventure” on the website. You go to your starting point. You answer questions on your smartphone and solve it based on what you see in your location. Answer the problem, then move on to the next location! Every treasure hunt is unique has 15 challenges. It will take about 2-3 hours. Find the answers by looking around but also learning about Barcelona’s history. More here.
56. Be dazzled by the Magic Fountain Show at Plaça Espanya: Want to see waters that move gracefully like Nancy Kerrigan? Check out the Magic Fountain show of high-reaching waters, colorful hues of lights, and classical music. Shows run in the evenings and are a great way to cap a busy day after checking out sights in the city. A mesmerizing symphony of cascading ever-changing colors of water soaring up to 54 meters high. The surrounding area is impressive as well – it sits in front of the majestic Palau Nacional de Montjuic. Operating hours vary by season, but check the schedule.
57. Visit the curious animals at the spacious Barcelona Zoo – You won’t be disappointed with this zoo. Know what a facoquer is? Neither did I. It has 400 animal species and 4,000 animals, plenty of roaming space, and even picnic areas. Our family favorite is the reptile house. Go ahead – try to make the crocodile blink! Opening its doors in 1892, this zoo has grown to care for the typical giraffes, zebras, and elephants but also houses such curiosities like the Eastern bongo, Komodo dragons, giant anteater and pygmy marmoset. You can spend the whole day at the zoo. It has several restaurants, picnic and grassy areas (you can bring your own food), pony rides, a petting zoo, and two large playgrounds. One of the playgrounds is for older children, and also features an adventurous zip-line. Peacocks also run freely around the park. If you’re lucky, you’ll find a happy one spreading his feathers. You can also rent electric cars if you feel like kicking back for a bit. With plentiful space to roam, the Barcelona Zoo is comfortable and enjoyable even on its most busy days. TIP: If you live in the city, it’s worth it to buy a family membership. In just three visits in one year, we already have our money’s worth! Get your advance Barcelona Zoo tickets
58. Ride a roller coaster at the Tibidabo Amusement Park – Over 100 years old and the only large amusement park in Barcelona, Tibidabo Amusement Park sits atop the Tibidabo mountain looking down on the urban landscape. With a mixture of classic rides and modern rides for thrill seekers, including a pirate ship, a roller coaster, and Hurricane. For tiny thrill-seekers, they can ride the small train, a flying airplane or a mini roller coaster. There is also a cooling water ride for those hot and humid summer days. Get your advance tickets to Tibidabo Amusement Park here.
59. Relive the FC Barcelona glory at the Camp Nou Experience – “Goooooal!!” Get a tour of the Barcelona Football Club, where you can live the team’s glorious moments, see their winning cups, or check out the presidential suite. Price runs from 20€. For 90€, you can enjoy the VIP experience in a small group – visit enjoy VIP appetizers and sit in the locker room, but spots are limited. Skip the line and buy your tickets here.
60. Ride a bike or scooter around the Parc del Forum – The Parc del Forum area is open spread out that you could probably practice rollerblading or learn to ride a bike here without worrying about traffic. Along the route along the beach, you can stop at the photovoltaic plaque, sit on one of the many steps at the port, or stop at the playground close to the Museu Blau.
61. Go bowling at Bowling Pedralbes. Open all year, this bowling alley has 14 lanes. You can order snacks (pica-pica, “have finger food snacks”) while you play. It even has its own restaurants if you want to celebrate a birthday party or another event.
62. Ride your scooter or skateboard at the Skatepark Mar Bella. Does your kid like to skateboard or ride her scooter? Check out the skate park at the beach. It’s usually occupied during the day and evenings. Even little ones can glide over some tiny hills.
63. Rent a tandem bike at El Ciclo in Port Vell: Head to El Ciclo to rent tandem bikes, kids bikes, and even those super cool Dutch ones where your kids ride in a basket. I always wanted to do this! Check out their cool Instagram feed.
64. Jump on trampolines at the 100m2 Salting Center: Kids can jump-mad at this trampoline center. The place is usually overrun by older kids 9-ish and over on weekends, but recently they’ve opened one for the littles ages 0-8, called Salting Kids, located in Poblenou. Bring socks! BACK TO TOP
65. Try aerial dancing: Do you ever see those people at the park where they’re hanging from a stretchy ribbon, and they’re doing all kinds of weird acrobatics? This often is a spectacle on weekends among the trees at Parc Ciutadella. Well, your kids can learn how to do this too at OnAir Barcelona.
66. Try indoor climbing: Scale walls, ride a zip line, or balance on a slackline (like a balance beam) at Indoor Wall Climbing Center. There’s only one location in Barcelona at El Clot, but several more in Catalonia. Check out indoor wall centers like Deu Dits or Sharma Rock Climbing.
67. Practice extreme sports at Barcelona Bosc Urbà: At Barcelona’s “first adventure park”, your lil daredevil can try the zip lines, rope bridges, bungee jumping and other seemingly wannabe death-defying stunts. it has 4 different circuits. Harness equipment is certifiably safe and monitors are trained to ensure safety.
68. See the stars at the Fabra Observatory – An event for older kids, you can take a night-guided tour of the observatory and enjoy dinner in the summertime. Learn about astronomy, see the constellations, and have a classy feast with cava. Buy your tickets to have dinner with stars at Fabra Observatory here.
69. Go early to buy fruit at the colorful Boquería market – No list is complete without including this world-famous eyeball feast of a market. Kids and adults drool over the impeccable displays of sweets. Get a fresh, healthy fruit smoothie – coconut, strawberry, and dozens of other flavors for just 2 euros! Get there early as it’s complete gridlock. And be respectful of vendors when taking photos.
70. Buy more food at the Mercat de Santa Caterina – The undulating roof is brilliant, colorful artwork made in the trencadis (that signature mosaic style) with a wide plaza outside. Food-wise, it’s just as comprehensive as all the Barcelona markets in the network, but architecturally-speaking, it’s a gem.
71. Go shopping at the Arenas de Barcelona Shopping Center – A former bullring, this shopping center is 8 flights high. The top floor will give you a little vertigo. Go to the rooftop to get a breathtaking 360 view of Barcelona. Look below, and you’ll see Plaza de Espanya and Montjuic.
72. Or shop on the seaside Maremagnum Shopping Center – It’s a 2-story shopping center with a family restroom and an indoor playground. Your kids can actually drive a kid-sized car on the inside (but you have to exercise precaution, my kids’ car brake got STUCK!) Just outside is the Barcelona Aquarium and the Moll Vell, a nice place to relax and watch the boats to boot.
Plazas, or small squares in Barcelona are great because they build community and are a semi-controlled area where kids need to run around and blow off steam. They can be a good place to keep a vigilant eye out on them while you relax and have a loaded café amb llet (cafe latte).
73. Play at the plazas in the Gràcia neighborhood – The plazas in Gracia are small and are a community-friendly place to enjoy a drink on a terrace bar while kids can play on their own. Try Plaça de la Virreina where there’s a church and one of my favorite toy shops: La Bateau Lune. (Here you can pick up some quality kids’ toys, even tiny ones for 2-5 euros). For a small playground, try Plaça de la Revolució.
74. Relax at the porticoed square, Plaça Reial – Have a meal or drink on the terrace – and give your kids a ball and to keep an eye on them. The palm-treed square is a high-traffic tourist location boasting lamps designed by Antoni Gaudí and the central fountain called “Tres Gracias”. It’s a popular nightlife location come dawn.
75. Enjoy the non-touristy Plaça de Masadas in Sant Andreu – One of the few porticoed squares left in Barcelona, where you won’t see one selfie stick. It was a center for a market but now a cozy square for the neighbors of Sant Andreu.
76. Chill out at the square at Convent Sant Agustí – A former 14th-century convent, the Civic Center of Sant Agustí hides a Gothic plaza, where kids are usually running around. Right next to it is the kid-friendly Bar del Convent – a bar equipped with toys and books.
77. Hop aboard the double-decker tourist bus, Bus Turistic – I get it – you’re too cool to go on a tourist bus. Stop that nonsense, right now. If you’re a first-time, and you’re short on time, you get a good overview of the city. Try to get the top of the bus. It’s fun if you just want to sit back, relax and listen to a tour bus via headphones. Buy your Hop-on hop-off bus tickets here.
78. Take a historical family walking tour. I highly recommend this educational, cultural, and fun kid-centric walking tour by Runner Bean Tours. The guide comes equipped with games, questions, an activity book as you learn about Barcelona in an un-boring way as you make your way through El Gotic. Visit a sweets shop, a papier-mache giants museum, and the Roman columns. Adults will learn a lot too! Read my review and book your tour here.
79. Take a boat to Las Golondrinas. See BCN from the sea. It’s not the Love Boat, but it’s a mini cruise where you can spend a 1.5-hour ride of the coastline, checking out all the beaches, monuments and famous buildings, as it glides toward the Port Forum. There’s also a shorter 40-minute option which gives you a tour around the port. Buy your tickets here.
80. See a puppet show at the rustic La Puntual – Dedicated to puppets, marionettes, and Chinese shadow puppets, La Puntual is a small theater with just 50 seats (actual wooden chairs, not cinema-style seats). It opened in 1986 as a puppet workshop. Then later became a theater in 2005, but you can still also participate in workshops. It’s serious puppetry business here.
81. See a casteller, a human castle – If you could see a human tower being built in action, it’s quite the emotional sight of strength and community. If you happen to be in town, you can see it during the public festivals like Santa Eulalia or La Mercè. See the full calendar for more dates, or check out the websites of these casteller groups: Castellers de Barcelona, Castellers de Poble Sec, Castellers de Gràcia, Castellers de Sagrada Família y Castellers de la Jove de la Ciudad.
82. Visit the train market at Estació de França – This is for you if your kid loves trains. In the restaurant area of the Estació de França, every Saturday there’s a mercado de modelismo ferroviario (train market), where stalls display and sell model trains. from 9-2pm. Find out more at Ferrotren.
83. Get cultured at Sant Andreu Teatre – a serious theater specifically for families with music, dance, and theater. Other cultural theater performances are at Teatro Romea, the kids’ version for the theater of Viu al Teatro, a Barcelona theater company.
84. See a film at Verdi Kids – If you still haven’t taken your kids to the movie cinema because you’re afraid someone will throw popcorn at you for having your kids make noise, fear no more. Verdi Kids is a special program for kids to actually go to the cinema. Special prices on Monday. In November, they even run their own kids’ film festival.
85. See an opera at the Petit Liceu – Instead of kids hitting up the Liceu, the famed opera house that opened in 1847, kids have their own version. Showcasing plays like Romeo and Juliet or the Barber of Seville, check out the kids’ programming.
86. Ride a tram on Tramvia Blau – The oldest mode of transportation in Barcelona, the Tramvia Blau (“Blue Tram”) is a vintage-looking tram that runs 1,276 meters. It heads upward from Avinguda Tibidabo (Plaça Dr. Andreu) al Funicular del Tibidabo, y vice-versa, to the Tibidabo Amusement Park. Tickets can be purchased on board.
87. Get an aerial view of Barcelona with the Teleferic Cable car – Fly away on the cable car, and see over Barcelona. It has 3 stops: the Montjuic park, the Montjuic castle, and the mirador (lookout point). Downside: The windows on these things aren’t that clean, so getting good photos can be tricky. Buy your Teleferic Cable Car tickets here
88. Ride on the funicular railway – It’s a short ride from the L2 metro, but this railway train is a mini train ride from the L2 metro line to Montjuic mountain. One car goes one way and another goes the other way at the same exact time. Ride in the front car to look out the window, and it looks like you’ll crash with the oncoming car – until it goes off another track!
89. Walk down the wacky Las Ramblas. Known for its colorful flower shops, souvenir shops, and shady pickpockets, Las Ramblas fails to bore the average Barcelona tourist. You can’t help but leer at everything down this 1.2-kilometer stroll full of restaurants, cafes, bars, and entertainment. Perhaps the most interesting displays are the sporadic street artists lined along the pedestrian mall. Children will stop in their tracks to ogle at the costume-laden entertainers standing like statues or imitating Elvis or creepy alien-like creatures. While bustling and overcrowded, this street is always a unique, carnivalesque strolling experience, best enjoyed during the daytime. Expect to move at a slow herd-like pace in the summer.
90. Walk down the seaside Rambla de Poblenou – This breezy tree-lined street has various shops, restaurants, and markets, mostly for locals. The main section is a pedestrian promenade and isn’t nearly as crowded and crazy as Las Ramblas.
91. Take a walk on the bridge, Rambla de Mar – It’s a decorative wooden walkway near the sea that extends Las Ramblas, and it leads you to the Maremagnum Shopping Center. In the surrounding area, kids can enjoy the moving boats and the seaside.
92. Stroll down Lluís Companys toward the Arc de Triomf – Take a stroll down Lluís Companys, where kids can ride their scooters or chase random mega bubbles flying around. This central pedestrian walkway is wide, so kids can freely stroll without parents having to worry they’ll run in the streets.
93. Visit a ginormous black cat sculpture on the Rambla del Raval – Fernando Botero’s sculpture of “El Gat” is the fattest, most popular cat in town. People like taking selfies with him or even riding on his back. It’s on the Rambla de Raval, where there are plenty of cafes and restaurants to choose from.
94. Have lunch at the rustic Espai Mescladís – It’s not a kid-centric restaurant, but the Espai Mescladís uses ecological fair trade products set in a cozy atmosphere of stone walls, a beautiful arch, and loads of natural light. The Forat de La Vergonya (a park with an urban garden and playground) is also nearby!
95. Enjoy a buffet lunch at El Corte Ingles Restaurant – This restaurant is on the top floor of the department store. It has a view of Plaça Espanya and also a small kids’ play area. Check it out in my blog post of the Corte Ingles restaurant.
96. Have breakfast with pirates. Arrr! – Every Saturday, kids can step aboard a pirate ship for a 1.5-hour tour of the Barcelona litoral. On board, there’s a show, breakfast, games, and pirate patchy, peg-leg fun. Spaces are limited. Check it out at BCN Naval Tours.
97. Have a chocolate at Casa Amatller – It’s one of the buildings of the Misericordia block. Not really a “kid’s space”, it has a nice selection of chocolates, a small garden in the back and a beautiful sandwich shop.
98. Enjoy the hidden Cafè d’Estiu at Museu Frederic Marès – In the courtyard of the museum, there’s a quiet terrace with a small fountain, a fun place to also enjoy the Gothic architecture.
99. Have a drink at an indoor fairy forest at Bosc de les Fades – While it’s a bar (“The fairy forest”), you can come just come during the day. Kids can enjoy the indoor jungle theme to the likes of the cheesy Rainforest Café in the US.
100. Have lunch at the kid-friendly Suarna restaurant – Priding itself as a family restaurant, Suarna has its own kid-friendly space equipped with toys, chalkboards and the brightest-colored chalk in Barcelona. Rumor has it that they even have iPads at their disposal also. Leave your “no-screen, good parent” ego at the door, take them here and enjoy yourself.
101. Have a sweet dessert at Pudding Bar – Fine, Pinterest-worthy decor and fun in a kid-centric bar. You can rent an iPad too! BACK TO TOP
102. Make candy at Papabubble – Make your own sweets and design in with colors and flavors you want.
103. Have a hot chocolate and melindros (a light, fluffy pastry) at La Nena in Gràcia – This is a small, fun café where kids are welcome. It has a vintage feel with a few toys.
104. Make candy at Çukor in Gracia – A design-y nostalgic-looking shop. They have sweets and chocolate-making workshops, where kids can make their own sweets using organic ingredients.
105. Enjoy a light lunch at Ideal Café in Poblenou – Space is minimal, but there’s a small play area for kids. Check it out in my blog post here.
106. Jump down an inflatable slide at Happy Parc – This is just one of the dozens of indoor park soft play park in Barcelona. It’s a place for children to slide into a pool of balls, jump on an inflatable castle, or bounce on a trampoline.
107. Play and socialize at the hip El Cau – Find more slides, mazes, and soft things to jump in safely. El Cau is a fashionable play center for families: parents of babies meet on weekdays and chitchat over coffee at their hip bar, and after 5pm, school-aged kids run the zone. 5 euros for single-entrance but you can buy a budget pack of 10. They also have workshops and theater performances.
This clean, modern hotel is fabulous for families who don’t want to be in the busy heart of Barcelona. They can enjoy a little bit more space and the beach environment without feeling like they’re isolated.
Neighborhood: Vila Olímpica
Why it’s good for families: Family room with individual twin beds if your kids are too old to share a big bed. Large outdoor swimming pool with views of the city. Spacious bathrooms and good breakfast menu.
How far is it away from everything? It’s a 10-minute walk to the Nova Icaria Beach. 10 minutes to the metro, 4 bus stops to the Sagrada Familia, 5 minutes to the Diagonal Mar Shopping Centre, which also has Carrefour, a large supermarket. The Hop-on, Hop-Off Bus stop is 100 meters away.
A chain of hotels, this clean, tidy and very central hotel near the Ciutadella Park. Guests often repeat their stay here! Past guests rave about the location – it’s not far off from the busy center, but it’s also very close to those main attractions also. You could probably go home and take a siesta and continue your day easily.
Neighborhood: El Born
Why it’s good for families: Rooftop pool with a city view! Wide breakfast selection. Family rooms: a suite which can connect to a triple room of 3 twin beds. A helpful, friendly multilingual staff.
How far away is it from everything? It’s a 13-minute walk to the beach, across from central Ciutadella Park and Barcelona Zoo, 5-minute walk to Picasso Museum, Santa Caterina market.
A 48-room hotel in the gridded, elegant Eixample district.
Why it’s good for families: – a boutique hotel with spacious rooms with the option to connect. They can accommodate a family of 5 – family rooms have two double beds. A friendly, professional staff to help their guests out. It’s central but also has a residential feel.
How far is it away from everything? 500 meters to Plaza Catalunya, near the Passeig de Gracia area (and El Nacional), and 600 meters from Casa Batlló.
An intimate and very stylish hostel is in the middle of the action.
Neighborhood: Right on Las Ramblas
Why it’s good for families: It’s in the heart of the main attractions. Less walking = less stress and more time. If you book a room on Las Ramblas, you’ll have the perfect balcony view. Good breakfast includes cereal, toast, ham and cheese, fruit, yogurt, etc.
How far is it away from everything? 0-minute walk to the Liceu metro station – it’s right in front! 100 meters from La Boqueria, 5-minute walk to Plaza Catalunya.
Has my list of Barcelona for kids convinced you to come to Barcelona? Can you add any other fun places to this list?
California native, churro aficionado, and mom of 3, Justine Ancheta writes fervently about Barcelona and Spain. Since 2008, she's been eating burnt onions (calçots) and tripping on cobblestones in the Gothic Quarter. She shares tips on popular attractions, exposes offbeat non-touristy spots, and gives insight on exploring Barcelona with kids. Her next Catalan culture challenge: top level of a human castle (castellers).
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