A Romantic and Cosmopolitan Barcelona Honeymoon

For art, architecture and tapas galore, head to this sophisticated Spanish city.
Barcelona, Spain
Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
Dina Cheney
Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
Dina Cheney
The Knot Contributor
  • Dina writes for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in food, travel and relationships.
  • With more than 20 years of experience in service journalism, she also pens articles and recipes for publications, such as Good Housekeeping, Parents, SELF, Health, Men’s Health, Men’s Journal, Prevention, Fine Cooking, Weight Watchers and Diabetic Living.
  • Dina graduated from Columbia College, Columbia University and The Institute of Cul...
Updated Dec 02, 2021

Located on the coast of northeastern Spain, Barcelona is the capital city of the Catalonia (Catalunya) region. Spirited, artsy and fun, a Barcelona honeymoon is ideal for active, city-loving couples. After days spent feasting on tapas, sipping wine, exploring bustling neighborhoods and visiting art galleries, newlyweds can head outside the city to relax at a beach resort in the Costa Brava region. Sound perfect? We thought so.

Is Barcelona Good for a Honeymoon?

Interior of the Palau de la Música Catalana in Barcelona, Spain

Cosmopolitan couples will appreciate Barcelona's dynamic dining and cultural scene. The city's stunning setting on the Mediterranean Sea provides the beautiful scenery and beach experience many couples seek out for their romantic getaway.

Pros of a Barcelona Honeymoon

This colorful and vibrant city on the coast offers a wealth of museums, architectural masterpieces and acclaimed restaurants. Fortunately, it's also easy to reach, especially from the East Coast of the US, says Joan Roca, CEO and founder of The Essentialist. Travelers can catch direct flights to Barcelona–El Prat Airport (BCN) from New York, Miami, Boston, Washington, DC, and more. If traveling from Madrid or another European city, couples can take the high-speed AVE train.

Cons of a Barcelona Honeymoon

Barcelona is a major city, so honeymooners envisioning a relaxing vacation with lots of privacy might wish to head elsewhere. At a minimum, it might be worth tacking on a few days at a nearby seaside resort. Couples should also be aware that in high season (summertime) the city can get rather full, says Danny Adler, a Reco trip designer.

The Best Times of Year to Go on a Barcelona Honeymoon for Good Weather

Although Barcelona is a year-round destination, September to October and May to June are ideal times to visit, Roca says. Music-, theater- and dance-loving newlyweds might want to come in June and July, when the Festival Grec de Barcelona takes place. Avoid August since the city gets very hot and empties out for the summer holidays.

Places to Visit in Barcelona for a Honeymoon

Street in El Born, trendy quarter in Barcelona

The Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarter)

Meander through this neighborhood's narrow streets with no schedule or destination in mind, suggests Roca. Couples can soak up the medieval architecture, including the Barcelona Cathedral.

El Born

For trendy and unique boutiques, amble through this similarly historic and charming part of the city. Hit the Mercat de Santa Caterina food market during the day and the cocktail bars and tapas restaurants at night.

La Boqueria

For colorful displays of produce, meat and other food items, stop by this famed public market. Enter from Las Ramblas, the large boulevard running through the center of the city.

The Erotic Museum of Barcelona

Newlyweds can explore the history of sex through this museum's 800 paintings, photographs, sculptures and inventions.


Ascend this hilly neighborhood for majestic views of the city and ocean. While there, stop by Montjuïc Castle (Castell de Montjuïc), an old military fortress, as well as El Jardí Botànic (Botanical Garden).

Bunkers del Carmel

Visit this hidden spot that's less known to tourists, recommends Ana Calvera, a Reco trip designer. Situated above the city, the site of historic military bunkers provides breathtaking views of Barcelona and the Mediterranean Sea.

Barceloneta Beach

Among the city's many beaches, this one offers a lively scene, with seafood and tapas restaurants, nightclubs and a boardwalk.

Things to Do During a Barcelona Honeymoon

La Sagrada Familia
Luciano Mortula - LGM/Shutterstock

Eat Your Heart Out

Barcelona is home to countless casual cafés and tapas joints, plus a whopping 61 Michelin-starred restaurants. For classic Spanish dishes, couples should try seafood paella (saffron rice with seafood), patatas bravas (fried potatoes), croquetas (croquettes), tortilla de patatas (potato omelet) and jamón Ibérico (ham). Wash it all down with cava (sparkling wine) or sangria.

See Famed Art and Architecture

Visit Modernist Catalan structures designed by the famed architect Antoni Gaudí. Many—including his most famous work, La Sagrada Família—have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Climb up the massive church in the Eixample district for bird's-eye views of the city.

For more Gaudí appreciation (and a little bit of exercise), stroll through Parc Güell and by Casa Mila and Casa Batlló (both on the elegant avenue, Passeig de Gràcia). Art hounds will want to spend time at the Picasso Museum, Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya, Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, Picasso Museum, and Museu Europeu d'Art Modern.

Go to a Concert

For a classy nightlife experience, couples can buy tickets to a flamenco, jazz or classical music performance at The Palau de la Música Catalana (Palace of Catalan Music). This concert hall has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is worth visiting for its architecture alone.

Venture Outside of Barcelona

For a break from the city, couples can take various romantic day trips. Adler recommends visiting wineries in the Penedès or Priorat regions, or going on a hike along the coves of the Costa Brava. Roca suggests spending time in charming seaside villages like Sitges and Cadaqués, or devoting time to exploring the Empordà region, home to medieval villages and bucolic landscapes. While there, stop by Figueres, the birthplace of the famed artist Salvador Dali and home to the Dali Museum.

Best Hotels and Resorts in Barcelona for a Honeymoon

Barcelona city in evening

The Cotton House

This funky, contemporary hotel is, "a mansion in the grand and gloomy style beloved by the Catalan upper classes," Roca says.

Mandarin Oriental Barcelona

Located on the Passeig de Gràcia (the main shopping thoroughfare), this former bank headquarters with Art Deco design offers Michelin-starred dining and a spa.

Soho House Barcelona

Facing the Port Vell Marina in the Gothic quarter, this hotel boasts elegant and bright interiors, as well as a heated rooftop swimming pool.

Grand Hotel Central

Situated between El Born and the Gothic Quarter, this elegant hotel features a wellness center and a restaurant serving Catalan cuisine.

Hotel 1898

Located in a historic building that's within walking distance of the Gothic Quarter, this boutique hotel features a rooftop terrace and several top-notch dining options.

What to Pack for a Barcelona Honeymoon

Roca recommends dressing in layers and toting a bathing suit for a dip in the sea. Since Barcelona is ideally experienced on foot, don't forget to bring your most comfortable walking shoes.

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