Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

Geography : Location | Economy | Trade fair and exhibitions | Tourist Industry | Manufacturing sector | Fashion | Education | Culture | Entertainment and performing arts | Media | Sport | Squatter Movement | Transport : Air | Seaport | National and international rail | Metro and regional rail | Transport : Tram | Funicular and cable car | Transport : Bus | Taxi | Transport : Road | Tourist Industry | Historic buildings and monuments | Culture : Museums | Parks | Beaches

🇪🇸 The city of Barcelona is the capital of the autonomous community of Catalonia of Spain and it is the second-largest city in Spain. The urban area extends to numerous neighbouring municipalities within the Province of Barcelona and is the fifth most populous urban area in the European Union. It is one of the largest metropolises on the Mediterranean Sea, located on the coast between the mouths of the rivers Llobregat and Besòs, and bounded to the west by the Serra de Collserola mountain range.

Founded as a Roman city, in the Middle Ages Barcelona joined with the Kingdom of Aragon to form the confederation of the Crown of Aragon, Barcelona, which continued to be the capital of the Principality of Catalonia, became the most important city in the Crown of Aragon and the main economic and administrative centre of the Crown. Barcelona has a rich cultural heritage and is today an important cultural centre and a major tourist destination. Particularly renowned are the architectural works of Antoni Gaudí and Lluís Domènech i Montaner, which have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The city is home to two of the most prestigious universities in Spain: the University of Barcelona and Pompeu Fabra University. The headquarters of the Union for the Mediterranean are located in Barcelona. The city is known for hosting the 1992 Summer Olympics as well as world-class conferences and expositions and also many international sport tournaments.

Barcelona is a major cultural, economic, and financial centre in south-western Europe, as well as the main biotech hub in Spain. Barcelona is an important transport hub, with the Port of Barcelona being one of Europe's principal seaports and busiest European passenger port, an international airport, Barcelona–El Prat Airport, which handles over 50 million passengers per year, an extensive motorway network, and a high-speed rail line with a link to France and the rest of Europe.

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Geography: Location Barcelona is located on the north-east coast of the Iberian Peninsula, facing the Mediterranean Sea, on a plain approximately 5 km (3 mi) wide limited by the mountain range of Collserola, the Llobregat river to the south-west and the Besòs river to the north. This plain covers an area of 170 km² (66 sq mi), of which 101 km² (39.0 sq mi) are occupied by the city itself. It is 120 km (75 mi) south of the Pyrenees and the Catalan border with France.

Tibidabo, 512 m (1,680 ft) high, offers striking views over the city and is topped by the 288.4 m (946.2 ft) Torre de Collserola, a telecommunications tower that is visible from most of the city. Barcelona is peppered with small hills, most of them urbanised, that gave their name to the neighbourhoods built upon them, such as Carmel (267 m or 876 ft), Putget (es) (181 m or 594 ft) and Rovira (261 m or 856 ft). The escarpment of Montjuïc (173 m or 568 ft), situated to the south-east, overlooks the harbour and is topped by Montjuïc Castle, a fortress built in the 17–18th centuries to control the city as a replacement for the Ciutadella. Today, the fortress is a museum and Montjuïc is home to several sporting and cultural venues, as well as Barcelona's biggest park and gardens.

The city borders on the municipalities of Santa Coloma de Gramenet and Sant Adrià de Besòs to the north; the Mediterranean Sea to the east; El Prat de Llobregat and L'Hospitalet de Llobregat to the south; and Sant Feliu de Llobregat, Sant Just Desvern, Esplugues de Llobregat, Sant Cugat del Vallès, and Montcada i Reixac to the west. The municipality includes two small sparsely-inhabited exclaves to the north-west.

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Economy The Barcelona metropolitan area comprises over 66% of the people of Catalonia, one of the richer regions in Europe and the fourth richest region per capita in Spain, with a GDP per capita amounting to €28,400 (16% more than the EU average). The greater Barcelona metropolitan area had a GDP amounting to $177 billion (equivalent to $34,821 in per capita terms, 44% more than the EU average), making it the 4th most economically powerful city by gross GDP in the European Union, and 35th in the world in 2009. Barcelona city had a very high GDP of €80,894 per head in 2004, according to Eurostat. Furthermore, Barcelona was Europe's fourth best business city and fastest improving European city, with growth improved by 17% per year as of 2009.

Barcelona was the 24th most "liveable city" in the world in 2015 according to lifestyle magazine Monocle. Similarly, according to Innovation Analysts 2thinknow, Barcelona occupies 13th place in the world on Innovation Cities™ Global Index. At the same time it is according to the Global Wealth and Lifestyle Report 2020 one of the most affordable cities in the world for a luxury lifestyle.

Barcelona has a long-standing mercantile tradition. Less well known is that the city industrialised early, taking off in 1833, when Catalonia's already sophisticated textile industry began to use steam power. It became the first and most important industrial city in the Mediterranean basin. Since then, manufacturing has played a large role in its history.

Borsa de Barcelona (Barcelona Stock Exchange) is the main stock exchange in the north-eastern part of the Iberian Peninsula.

Barcelona was recently recognised as the Southern European City of the Future, based on its economic potential, by FDi Magazine in their bi-annual rankings.

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Trade fair and exhibitions Drawing upon its tradition of creative art and craftsmanship, Barcelona is known for its award-winning industrial design. It also has several congress halls, notably Fira de Barcelona – the second largest trade fair and exhibition centre in Europe, that host over 50 national and international events each year. The total exhibition floor space of Fira de Barcelona venues is 405,000 m² (41 ha), not counting Gran Via centre on the Plaza de Europa. An important business centre, the World Trade Center Barcelona, is located in Barcelona's Port Vell harbour. The city is known for hosting well as world-class conferences and expositions, including the 1888 Exposición Universal de Barcelona, the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition, the 2004 Universal Forum of Cultures and the 2004 World Urban Forum.

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Tourist Industry Barcelona was the 20th most-visited city in the world by international visitors and the fifth most visited city in Europe after London, Paris, Istanbul and Rome, with 5.5 million international visitors in 2011. With its Rambles, Barcelona is ranked the most popular city to visit in Spain. Barcelona is internationally renowned a tourist destination, with numerous recreational areas, one of the best beaches in the world, mild and warm climate, historical monuments, including eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 519 hotels, including 35 five star hotels, and a well developed tourist infrastructure.

Due to its large influx of tourists each year, Barcelona, like many other tourism capitals, has to deal with pickpockets, with wallets and passports being commonly stolen items. For this reason, most travel guides recommend that visitors take precautions to ensure their possessions' safety, especially inside the metro premises. Despite its moderate pickpocket rate, Barcelona is considered one of the safest cities in terms of health security and personal safety, and was considered to be the 15th safest city in the world by Business Insider.

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Manufacturing sector Industry generates 21% of the total gross domestic product of the region, with the energy, chemical and metallurgy industries accounting for 47% of industrial production. The Barcelona metropolitan area is home to around 67% of the total number of industrial establishments in Catalonia.

Barcelona has long been an important European automobile manufacturing centre. Today, the headquarters and a large factory of SEAT (the largest Spanish automobile manufacturer) are in one of its suburbs. There is also a Nissan factory in the logistics and industrial area of the city. The factory of Derbi, a large manufacturer of motorcycles, scooters and mopeds, also lies near the city.

As in other modern cities, the manufacturing sector has long since been overtaken by the services sector, though it remains very important. The region's leading industries are textiles, chemical, pharmaceutical, motor, electronic, printing, logistics, publishing, in telecommunications industry and culture the notable Mobile World Congress, and information technology services.

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Fashion The traditional importance of textiles is reflected in Barcelona's drive to become a major fashion centre. There have been many attempts to launch Barcelona as a fashion capital, notably Gaudi Home. According to the recent Global Language Monitor's annual ranking of the world's top fifty fashion capitals Barcelona was named as the seventh most important fashion capital of the world.

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Education Barcelona has a well-developed higher education system of public universities. Most prominent among these are the University of Barcelona (established in 1450) and the more modern Pompeu Fabra University. Barcelona is also home to the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, and in the private sector the EADA Business School (founded in 1957), which became the first Barcelona institution to run manager training programmes for the business community. IESE Business School, as well as the largest private educational institution, the Ramon Llull University, which encompasses schools and institutes such as the ESADE Business School. The Autonomous University of Barcelona, another public university, is located in Bellaterra, a town in the Metropolitan Area. Toulouse Business School and the Open University of Catalonia (a private Internet-centred open university) are also based in Barcelona.

The city has a network of public schools, from nurseries to high schools, under the responsibility of a consortium led by city council (though the curriculum is the responsibility of the Generalitat de Catalunya). There are also many private schools, some of them Roman Catholic. Most such schools receive a public subsidy on a per-student basis, are subject to inspection by the public authorities, and are required to follow the same curricular guidelines as public schools, though they charge tuition. Known as escoles concertades, they are distinct from schools whose funding is entirely private (escoles privades).

The language of instruction at public schools and escoles concertades is Catalan, as stipulated by the 2009 Catalan Education Act. Spanish may be used as a language of instruction by teachers of Spanish literature or language, and foreign languages by teachers of those languages. An experimental partial immersion programme adopted by some schools allows for the teaching of a foreign language (English, generally) across the curriculum, though this is limited to a maximum of 30% of the school day. No public school or escola concertada in Barcelona may offer 50% or full immersion programmes in a foreign language, nor does any public school or escola concertada offer International Baccalaureate programmes.

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Culture Barcelona's cultural roots go back 2000 years. Since the arrival of democracy, the Catalan language (very much repressed during the dictatorship of Franco) has been promoted, both by recovering works from the past and by stimulating the creation of new works. Barcelona is designated as a world-class city by the Globalization and World Cities Study Group and Network. It has also been part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network as a City of Literature since 2015.

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Entertainment and performing arts Barcelona has many venues for live music and theatre, including the world-renowned Gran Teatre del Liceu opera house, the Teatre Nacional de Catalunya, the Teatre Lliure and the Palau de la Música Catalana concert hall. Barcelona also is home to the Barcelona Symphony and Catalonia National Orchestra (Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya, usually known as OBC), the largest symphonic orchestra in Catalonia. In 1999, the OBC inaugurated its new venue in the brand-new Auditorium (L'Auditori). It performs around 75 concerts per season and its current director is Eiji Oue. It is home to the Barcelona Guitar Orchestra, directed by Sergi Vicente. The major thoroughfare of La Rambla is home to mime artists and street performers. Yearly, two major pop music festivals take place in the city, the Sónar Festival and the Primavera Sound Festival. The city also has a thriving alternative music scene, with groups such as The Pinker Tones receiving international attention. Barcelona is an international hub of highly active and diverse nightlife with bars, dance bars and nightclubs staying open well past midnight.

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Media El Periódico de Catalunya, La Vanguardia and Ara are Barcelona's three major daily newspapers (the first two with Catalan and Spanish editions, Ara only in Catalan) while Sport and El Mundo Deportivo (both in Spanish) are the city's two major sports daily newspapers, published by the same companies. The city is also served by a number of smaller publications such as Ara and El Punt Avui (in Catalan), by nationwide newspapers with special Barcelona editions such as El País (in Spanish, with an online version in Catalan) and El Mundo (in Spanish), and by several free newspapers like 20 minutos and Què (all bilingual).

Barcelona's oldest and main online newspaper VilaWeb is also the oldest one in Europe (with Catalan and English editions).

Several major FM stations include Catalunya Ràdio, RAC 1, RAC 105 and Cadena SER. Barcelona also has a local TV station, Betevé, owned by city council. The headquarters of Televisió de Catalunya, Catalonia's public network, are located in Sant Joan Despí, in Barcelona's metropolitan area.

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Sport Barcelona has a long sporting tradition and hosted the highly successful 1992 Summer Olympics as well as several matches during the 1982 FIFA World Cup (at the two stadiums). It has hosted about 30 sports events of international significance. FC Barcelona is a sports club best known worldwide for its football team, one of the largest and the wealthiest in the world. It has 74 national trophies (while finishing 46 times as runners-up) and 17 continental prizes (with being runners-up 11 times), including five UEFA Champions League trophies out of eight finals and three FIFA Club World Cup wins out of four finals. The club won six trophies in a calendar year in 2009, becoming one of only 2 male football teams in the world to win the coveted sextuple, apart from FC Bayern Munich in 2020. FC Barcelona also has professional teams in other sports like FC Barcelona Regal (basketball), FC Barcelona Handbol (handball), FC Barcelona Hoquei (roller hockey), FC Barcelona Ice Hockey (ice hockey), FC Barcelona Futsal (futsal) and FC Barcelona Rugby (rugby union), all at one point winners of the highest national and/or European competitions. The club's museum is the second most visited in Catalonia. The matches against cross-town rivals RCD Espanyol are of particular interest, but there are other Barcelonan football clubs in lower categories, like CE Europa and UE Sant Andreu. FC Barcelona's basketball team has a noted rivalry in the Liga ACB with nearby Joventut Badalona.

Barcelona has three UEFA elite stadiums: FC Barcelona's Camp Nou, the largest stadium in Europe with a capacity of 99,354; the publicly owned Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys, with a capacity of 55,926; used for the 1992 Olympics; and Estadi Cornellà-El Prat, with a capacity of 40,500. Furthermore, the city has several smaller stadiums such as Mini Estadi (also owned by FC Barcelona) with a capacity of 15,000, Camp Municipal Narcís Sala with a capacity of 6,563 and Nou Sardenya with a capacity of 7,000. The city has a further three multifunctional venues for sports and concerts: the Palau Sant Jordi with a capacity of 12,000 to 24,000 (depending on use), the Palau Blaugrana with a capacity of 7,500, and the Palau dels Esports de Barcelona with a capacity of 3,500.

Barcelona was the host city for the 2013 World Aquatics Championships, which were held at the Palau San Jordi.

Several road running competitions are organised year-round in Barcelona: the Barcelona Marathon every March with over 10,000 participants in 2010, the Cursa de Bombers in April, the Cursa de El Corte Inglés in May (with about 60,000 participants each year), the Cursa de la Mercè, the Cursa Jean Bouin, the Milla Sagrada Família and the San Silvestre. There is also the Ultratrail Collserola which passes 85 km (53 mi) through the Collserola forest. The Open Seat Godó, a 50-year-old ATP World Tour 500 Series tennis tournament, is held annually in the facilities of the Real Club de Tenis Barcelona. Each year on Christmas Day, a 200-meter swimming race across the Old Port of Barcelona takes place. Near Barcelona, in Montmeló, the 107,000 capacity Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya racetrack hosts the Formula One Spanish Grand Prix, the Catalan motorcycle Grand Prix, the Spanish GT Championship and races in the GP2 Series. Skateboarding and cycling are also very popular in Barcelona; in and around the city there are dozens of km of bicycle paths.

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Squatter Movement Barcelona is also home to numerous social centres and illegal squats that effectively form a shadow society mainly made up of the unemployed, immigrants, dropouts, anarchists, anti-authoritarians and autonomists. Peter Gelderloos estimates that there around 200 squatted buildings and 40 social centres across the city with thousands of inhabitants, making it one of the largest squatter movements in the world. He notes that they pirate electricity, internet and water allowing them to live on less than one euro a day. He argues that these squats embrace an anarcho-communist and anti-work philosophy, often freely fixing up new houses, cleaning, patching roofs, installing windows, toilets, showers, lights and kitchens. In the wake of austerity, the squats have provided a number of social services to the surrounding residents, including bicycle repair workshops, carpentry workshops, self-defense classes, free libraries, community gardens, free meals, computer labs, language classes, theatre groups, free medical care and legal support services. The squats help elderly residents avoid eviction and organise various protests throughout Barcelona. Notable squats include Can Vies and Can Masdeu.

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Transport: Air Barcelona is served by Barcelona-El Prat Airport, about 17 km (11 mi) south-west of the centre of Barcelona. It is the second-largest airport in Spain, and the largest on the Mediterranean coast, which handled more than 50.17 million passengers in 2018, showing an annual upward trend. It is a main hub for Vueling Airlines and Ryanair, and also a focus for Iberia and Air Europa. The airport mainly serves domestic and European destinations, although some airlines offer destinations in Latin America, Asia and the United States. The airport is connected to the city by highway, metro (Airport T1 and Airport T2 stations), commuter train (Barcelona Airport railway station) and scheduled bus service. A new terminal (T1) has been built, and entered service on 17 June 2009.

Some low-cost airlines, also use Girona-Costa Brava Airport, about 90 km (56 mi) to the north, Reus Airport, 77 km (48 mi) to the south, or Lleida-Alguaire Airport, about 150 km (93 mi) to the west, of the city. Sabadell Airport is a smaller airport in the nearby town of Sabadell, devoted to pilot training, aerotaxi and private flights.

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Seaport The Port of Barcelona has a 2000-year-old history and a great contemporary commercial importance. It is Europe's ninth largest container port, with a trade volume of 1.72 million TEU's in 2013. The port is managed by the Port Authority of Barcelona. Its 10 km² (4 sq mi) are divided into three zones: Port Vell (the old port), the commercial port and the logistics port (Barcelona Free Port). The port is undergoing an enlargement that will double its size thanks to diverting the mouth of the Llobregat river 2 km (1 mi) to the south.

The Barcelona harbour is the leading European cruiser port and a very important Mediterranean turnaround base. In 2013, 3.6 million pleasure cruise passengers used the Port of Barcelona.

The Port Vell area also houses the Maremagnum (a commercial mall), a multiplex cinema, the IMAX Port Vell and one of Europe's largest aquariums – Aquarium Barcelona, containing 8,000 fish and 11 sharks contained in 22 basins filled with 4 million litres of sea water. The Maremagnum, being situated within the confines of the port, is the only commercial mall in the city that can open on Sundays and public holidays.

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National and international rail Barcelona is a major hub for the Spanish rail network. The city's main Inter-city rail station is Barcelona Sants railway station, whilst Estació de França terminus serves a secondary role handling suburban, regional and medium distance services. Freight services operate to local industries and to the Port of Barcelona.

RENFE's AVE high-speed rail system, which is designed for speeds of 310 km/h (193 mph), was extended from Madrid to Barcelona in 2008 in the form of the Madrid–Barcelona high-speed rail line. A shared RENFE-SNCF high-speed rail connecting Barcelona and France (Paris, Marseilles and Toulouse, through Perpignan–Barcelona high-speed rail line) was launched in 2013. Both these lines serve Barcelona Sants terminal station.

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Metro and regional rail Barcelona is served by an extensive local public transport network that includes a metro system, a bus network, a regional railway system, trams, funiculars, rack railways, a Gondola lift and aerial cable cars. These networks and lines are run by a number of different operators but they are integrated into a coordinated fare system, administered by the Autoritat del Transport Metropolità (ATM). The system is divided into fare zones (1 to 6) and various Integrated Travel Cards are available.

The Barcelona Metro network comprises twelve lines, identified by an "L" followed by the line number as well as by individual colours. The Metro largely runs underground; eight Metro lines are operated on dedicated track by the Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona (TMB), whilst four lines are operated by the Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya (FGC) and some of them share tracks with RENFE commuter lines.

In addition to the city Metro, several regional rail lines operated by RENFE's Rodalies de Catalunya run across the city, providing connections to outlying towns in the surrounding region.

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Transport: Tram The city's two modern tram systems, Trambaix and Trambesòs, are operated by TRAMMET. A heritage tram line, the Tramvia Blau, also operates between the metro Line 7 and the Funicular del Tibidabo.

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Funicular and cable car Barcelona's metro and rail system is supplemented by several aerial cable cars, funiculars and rack railways that provide connections to mountain-top stations. FGC operates the Funicular de Tibidabo up the hill of Tibidabo and the Funicular de Vallvidrera (FGC), while TMB runs the Funicular de Montjuïc up Montjuïc. The city has two aerial cable cars: the Montjuïc Cable Car, which serves Montjuïc castle, and the Port Vell Aerial Tramway that runs via Torre Jaume I and Torre Sant Sebastià over the port.

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Transport: Bus Buses in Barcelona are a major form of public transport, with extensive local, interurban and night bus networks. Most local services are operated by the TMB, although some other services are operated by a number of private companies, albeit still within the ATM fare structure. A separate private bus line, known as Aerobús, links the airport with the city centre, with its own fare structure.

The Estació del Nord (Northern Station), a former railway station which was renovated for the 1992 Olympic Games, now serves as the terminus for long-distance and regional bus services.

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Taxi Barcelona has a metered taxi fleet governed by the Institut Metropolità del Taxi (Metropolitan Taxi Institute), composed of more than 10,000 cars. Most of the licences are in the hands of self-employed drivers. With their black and yellow livery, Barcelona's taxis are easily spotted, and can be caught from one of many taxi ranks, hailed on street, called by telephone or via app.

On 22 March 2007, Barcelona's City Council started the Bicing service, a bicycle service understood as a public transport. Once the user has their user card, they can take a bicycle from any of the more than 400 stations spread around the city and use it anywhere the urban area of the city, and then leave it at another station. The service has been a success, with 50,000 subscribed users in three months.

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Transport: Road Barcelona lies on three international routes, including European route E15 that follows the Mediterranean coast, European route E90 to Madrid and Lisbon, and European route E09 to Paris. It is also served by a comprehensive network of motorways and highways throughout the metropolitan area, including A-2, A-7/AP-7, C-16, C-17, C-31, C-32, C-33, C-60.

The city is circled by three half ring roads or bypasses, Ronda de Dalt (B-20) (on the mountain side), Ronda del Litoral (B-10) (along the coast) and Ronda del Mig (separated into two parts: Travessera de Dalt in the north and the Gran Via de Carles III), two partially covered fast highways with several exits that bypass the city.

The city's main arteries include Diagonal Avenue, which crosses it diagonally, Meridiana Avenue which leads to Glòries and connects with Diagonal Avenue and Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, which crosses the city from east to west, passing through its centre. The famous boulevard of La Rambla, whilst no longer an important vehicular route, remains an important pedestrian route.

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Tourist Industry The Barri Gòtic (Catalan for "Gothic Quarter") is the centre of the old city of Barcelona. Many of the buildings date from medieval times, some from as far back as the Roman settlement of Barcelona. Catalan modernista architecture (related to the movement known as Art Nouveau in the rest of Europe) developed between 1885 and 1950 and left an important legacy in Barcelona. Several of these buildings are World Heritage Sites. Especially remarkable is the work of architect Antoni Gaudí, which can be seen throughout the city. His best-known work is the immense but still unfinished church of the Sagrada Família, which has been under construction since 1882 and is still financed by private donations. As of 2015, completion is planned for 2026.

Barcelona was also home to Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona Pavilion. Designed in 1929 for the International Exposition for Germany, it was an iconic building that came to symbolise modern architecture as the embodiment of van der Rohe's aphorisms "less is more" and "God is in the details". The Barcelona pavilion was intended as a temporary structure and was torn down in 1930 less than a year after it was constructed. A modern re-creation by Spanish architects now stands in Barcelona, however, constructed in 1986.

Barcelona won the 1999 RIBA Royal Gold Medal for its architecture, the first (and as of 2015, only) time that the winner has been a city rather than an individual architect. Barcelona is the home of many points of interest declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO:

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Historic buildings and monuments • Minor basilica of Sagrada Família, the symbol of Barcelona. • Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau, designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, included in the UNESCO Heritage List in 1997. • Works by Antoni Gaudí, including Park Güell, Palau Güell, Casa Milà (La Pedrera), Casa Vicens, Sagrada Família (Nativity façade and crypt), Casa Batlló, crypt in Church of Colònia Güell. The first three works were inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1984. The other four were added as extensions to the site in 2005. • The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and St. Eulalia (Gothic) • Gothic basilica of Santa Maria del Mar • Gothic basilica of Santa Maria del Pi • Romanesque church of Sant Pau del Camp • Palau Reial Major, medieval residence of the sovereign Counts of Barcelona, later Kings of Aragon • The Royal Shipyard (gothic) • Monastery of Pedralbes (gothic) • The Columbus Monument • The Arc de Triomf, a triumphal arch built for entrance to 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition. • Expiatory church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on the summit of Tibidabo. • The Historic Building of the University of Barcelona

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Culture: Museums Barcelona has a great number of museums, which cover different areas and eras. The National Museum of Art of Catalonia possesses a well-known collection of Romanesque art, while the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art focuses on post-1945 Catalan and Spanish art. The Fundació Joan Miró, Picasso Museum, and Fundació Antoni Tàpies hold important collections of these world-renowned artists, as well as the Can Framis Museum, focused on post-1960 Catalan Art owned by Fundació Vila Casas. Several museums cover the fields of history and archaeology, like the Barcelona City History Museum (MUHBA), the Museum of the History of Catalonia, the Archeology Museum of Catalonia, the Maritime Museum of Barcelona, the Music Museum of Barcelona and the privately owned Egyptian Museum. The Erotic museum of Barcelona is among the most peculiar ones, while CosmoCaixa is a science museum that received the European Museum of the Year Award in 2006.

The Museum of Natural Sciences of Barcelona was founded in 1882 under the name of "Museo Martorell de Arqueología y Ciencias Naturales" (Spanish for "Martorell Museum of Archaeology and Natural Sciences"). In 2011 the Museum of Natural Sciences ended up with a merge of five institutions: the Museum of Natural Sciences of Barcelona (the main site, at the Forum Building), the Martorell Museum (the historical seat of the Museum, opened to the public from 1924 to 2010 as a geology museum), the Laboratori de Natura, at the Castle of the Three Dragons (from 1920 to 2010: the Zoology Museum), the Historical Botanical Garden of Barcelona, founded 1930, and the Botanical garden of Barcelona, founded 1999. Those two gardens are a part of the Botanical Institute of Barcelona too.

The FC Barcelona Museum is the third most popular tourist attraction in Catalonia, with 1,51 million visitors in 2013.

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Parks Barcelona contains sixty municipal parks, twelve of which are historic, five of which are thematic (botanical), forty-five of which are urban, and six of which are forest. They range from vest-pocket parks to large recreation areas. The urban parks alone cover 10% of the city (549.7 ha or 1,358.3 acres). The total park surface grows about 10 ha (25 acres) per year, with a proportion of 18.1 m2 (195 sq ft) of park area per inhabitant.

Of Barcelona's parks, Montjuïc is the largest, with 203 ha located on the mountain of the same name. It is followed by Parc de la Ciutadella (which occupies the site of the old military citadel and which houses the Parliament building, the Barcelona Zoo, and several museums); 31 ha or 76.6 acres including the zoo), the Guinardó Park (19 ha or 47.0 acres), Park Güell (designed by Antoni Gaudí; 17.2 ha or 42.5 acres), Oreneta Castle Park (also 17.2 ha or 42.5 acres), Diagonal Mar Park (13.3 ha or 32.9 acres, inaugurated in 2002), Nou Barris Central Park (13.2 ha or 32.6 acres), Can Dragó Sports Park and Poblenou Park (both 11.9 ha or 29.4 acres), the Labyrinth Park (9.10 ha or 22.5 acres), named after the garden maze it contains. There are also several smaller parks, for example, the Parc de Les Aigües (2 ha or 4.9 acres). A part of the Collserola Park is also within the city limits. PortAventura World, one of the largest resort in Europe, with 5,837,509 visitors per year, is located one hour's drive from Barcelona. Also, within the city lies Tibidabo Amusement Park, a smaller amusement park in Plaza del Tibidabo, with the Muntanya Russa amusement ride.

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Beaches Barcelona beach was listed as number one in a list of the top ten city beaches in the world according to National Geographic and Discovery Channel. Barcelona contains seven beaches, totalling 4.5 km (2+3⁄4 mi) of coastline. Sant Sebastià, Barceloneta and Somorrostro beaches, both 1,100 m (3,610 ft) in length, are the largest, oldest and the most-frequented beaches in Barcelona.

The Olympic Harbour separates them from the other city beaches: Nova Icària, Bogatell, Mar Bella, Nova Mar Bella and Llevant. These beaches (ranging from 400 to 640 m (1,310 to 2,100 ft) were opened as a result of the city restructuring to host the 1992 Summer Olympics, when a great number of industrial buildings were demolished. At present, the beach sand is artificially replenished given that storms regularly remove large quantities of material. The 2004 Universal Forum of Cultures left the city a large concrete bathing zone on the eastmost part of the city's coastline. Most recently, Llevant is the first beach to allow dogs access during summer season.

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Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain 
Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Image: Adobe Stock grzegorz_pakula #145397350

Barcelona is rated Beta + by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) which evaluates and ranks the relationships between world cities in the context of globalisation. Beta level cities are cities that link moderate economic regions to the world economy.

Barcelona is the #22 city in the world according to the Global Power City Index (GPCI) which evaluates and ranks the major cities of the world according to their magnetism, or their comprehensive power to attract people, capital, and enterprises from around the world. It does so through measuring six key functions: Economy, Research and Development, Cultural Interaction, Liveability, Environment, and Accessibility.

Barcelona is ranked #66 by the Global Urban Competitiveness Report (GUCR) which evaluates and ranks world cities in the context of economic competitiveness. Barcelona was ranked #21 by the Nomad List which evaluates and ranks remote work hubs by cost, internet, fun and safety. Barcelona has a population of over 1,636,762 people. Barcelona also forms the centre of the wider Barcelona Province which has a population of over 5,575,204 people. Barcelona is the #80 hipster city in the world, with a hipster score of 4.7998 according to the Hipster Index which evaluates and ranks the major cities of the world according to the number of vegan eateries, coffee shops, tattoo studios, vintage boutiques, and record stores. Barcelona is ranked #37 for startups with a score of 11.918.

To set up a UBI Lab for Barcelona see: https://www.ubilabnetwork.org Twitter: https://twitter.com/UBILabNetwork

Barcelona is a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network for Literature see: https://en.unesco.org/creative-cities

Twin Towns, Sister Cities Barcelona has links with:

🇯🇴 Amman, Jordan 🇧🇪 Antwerp, Belgium 🇬🇷 Athens, Greece 🇹🇷 Bağcılar, Turkey 🇻🇪 Barcelona, Venezuela 🇺🇸 Boston, USA 🇰🇷 Busan, South Korea 🇨🇳 Changning, China 🇩🇪 Cologne, Germany 🇮🇪 Dublin, Ireland 🇹🇷 Esenyurt, Turkey 🇵🇸 Gaza City, Palestine 🇮🇹 Genoa, Italy 🇨🇳 Guangzhou, China 🇨🇺 Havana, Cuba 🇻🇳 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 🇮🇷 Isfahan, Iran 🇹🇷 Istanbul, Turkey 🇯🇵 Kōbe, Japan 🇯🇵 Kyōto, Japan 🇮🇹 Lampedusa, Italy 🇬🇷 Lesbos, Greece 🇫🇷 Lyon, France 🇨🇴 Manizales, Colombia 🇲🇿 Maputo, Mozambique 🇫🇷 Marseille, France 🇨🇴 Medellín, Colombia 🇮🇹 Milan, Italy 🇲🇽 Monterrey, Mexico 🇺🇾 Montevideo, Uruguay 🇫🇷 Montpellier, France 🇪🇸 Monzón, Spain 🇺🇸 New York City, USA 🇨🇳 Ningbo, China 🇷🇸 Niš, Serbia 🇫🇷 Paris, France 🇫🇷 Perpignan, France 🇨🇳 Qingpu District, China 🇧🇷 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 🇦🇷 Rosario, Argentina 🇩🇿 Saïda, Algeria 🇷🇺 Saint Petersburg, Russia 🇺🇸 San Francisco, USA 🇧🇦 Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina 🇮🇹 Sassari, Italy 🇰🇷 Seoul, South Korea 🇪🇸 Seville, Spain 🇨🇳 Shanghai, China 🇨🇳 Shenzen, China 🇨🇳 Shenzhen, China 🇨🇳 Siming District, China 🇮🇱 Tel Aviv, Israel 🇲🇦 Tétouan, Morocco 🇹🇳 Tunis, Tunisia 🇮🇹 Turin, Italy 🇨🇱 Valparaíso, Chile 🇧🇬 Varna, Bulgaria 🇨🇳 Xiamen, China 🇯🇵 Yokohama, Japan
Text Atribution: Wikipedia Text under CC-BY-SA license | GPCI | GaWC | GUCR | Hipster Index | Nomad | StartupBlink

Antipodal to Barcelona is: -177.832,-41.388

Locations Near: Barcelona 2.16835,41.3875

🇪🇸 L'Hospitalet de Llobregat 2.105,41.363 d: 5.9  

🇪🇸 Santa Coloma de Gramenet 2.209,41.451 d: 7.8  

🇪🇸 L' Hospitalet de Llobregat 2.1,41.35 d: 7.1  

🇪🇸 Badalona 2.233,41.433 d: 7.4  

🇪🇸 Cerdanyola del Vallès 2.133,41.483 d: 11  

🇪🇸 Cornellà de Llobregat 2.071,41.356 d: 8.9  

🇪🇸 Sant Feliu de Llobregat 2.047,41.383 d: 10.1  

🇪🇸 Sant Boi de Llobregat 2.043,41.336 d: 11.9  

🇪🇸 Mollet del Vallès 2.213,41.539 d: 17.3  

🇪🇸 Sabadell 2.1,41.533 d: 17.2  

Antipodal to: Barcelona -177.832,-41.388

🇹🇴 Nuku'alofa -175.216,-21.136 d: 17749.8  

🇦🇸 Pago Pago -170.701,-14.279 d: 16923.1  

🇼🇸 Apia -171.76,-13.833 d: 16895.3  

🇵🇫 Papeete -149.566,-17.537 d: 16237.5  

🇺🇸 Hilo -155.089,19.725 d: 12826.6  

🇺🇸 Maui -156.446,20.72 d: 12765.5  

🇺🇸 Maui County -156.617,20.868 d: 12755.2  

🇺🇸 Honolulu -157.85,21.3 d: 12746.3  

🇺🇸 Wailuku -156.505,20.894 d: 12748.9  

🇺🇸 Kahului -156.466,20.891 d: 12748  

Bing Map

Option 1