Bebe Voyage member Carla recently shared with us her trip to Barcelona. She also gave us a fantastic walking tour itinerary in Google Maps. Please enjoy her recommendations and we would love to feature your family’s recent trips as well!
I love everything about Spain so my family decided to travel there from France for a 5 day adventure. Barcelona was the perfect place to explore with our toddler as there is so much to see and do (and eat!). It is a lot of walking and the city can be daunting to tackle in less than a week, even for active families. We created a walking guide that we followed (see it in GoogleMaps HERE), and I promise you won’t feel like you’ve missed out during your trip!
Five Days in Barcelona
We arrived to Barcelona around 1:00 and spent our first day strolling and taking it easy after all of the traveling. We went to Casa Batllo and the Jardins de la Torre de les Aigües; however it was so crowded with locals enjoying the water that we never got to go in.
Dinner was at Cerveceria Catalana, a delicious restaurant we highly recommend. There was no wait in line and the huevos cabreados is our new-found love! We walked around the Passei de Gracia and the Ramblas during a stroller nap and ended at the Plaza Catalunya before turning in.
After a restful night, we began day 2 in the El Born area to see the Arc de Triomf and Ciutadella Park. Ciutadella is an incredible spot with children as they have so many designated playgrounds, so be sure to load up on sunscreen and plan to be out for a while letting your kids explore!
We also found that to see the sights in Barcelona requires quite a bit of walking, so I recommend the Cabify app for visitors. If you think you’ll want to see more in less time due to your travel schedule, they offer car seat services for a few extra euros. To us, it was totally worth it since it spared us the extra item to carry through the day when our feet needed a break.
After a stroller nap for our little one and a refreshing mid-day drink, we took a cab to the Sagrada Familia, since I had gotten tickets in advance for a specific time. Entering was a breeze with the tickets and there is an elevator for strollers. One tip for Barcelona would be to research the places you plan to see ahead of time so you don’ t have to get a guided tour in case the little ones are not interested in staying as long as the tour would be. Also, do not wear white unless you have laundry! We went to the park across from the Sagrada Familia and its full of dust/dirt. I ended up with a black pair of pants.
When we were finished sightseeing, we went to a restaurant called Elisabets,where the food was magnificent! We highly recommend getting the Menu Pica Tapa so you can taste a bit of everything! The atmosphere is very kid friendly, but it is small, so try to go during off-meal times and snag a corner spot to tuck your stroller away into.
We started our day by taking a cab to Park Guell where we had again gotten timed tickets online. We took our stroller, but would advise against it in retrospect as the ground is rocky and not easy for maneuvering. We managed with it anyway and it was a great spot for our toddler. There is plenty of space to run, and our advice would be to get your tickets for the VERY early morning or later in the day. If you go during summer time it is sweltering during the day and there is not much shade to escape in.
After the tour in Park Guell, we walked to Villa de Gracia to see more Gaudi buildings and then headed back to hotel to change for the beach. We enjoyed the Rambla de Mar and water; however, you should be prepared to see nude sunbathers when at the beaches as it is an accepted practice in Barcelona.
Dinner was at Mamarosa, which is not touted as the most kid-friendly, but we had no issues as our boy was well behaved through the meal. We attempted to go to The W Hotel to see the sunset, but were told we could not go up with children so we enjoyed from the ground.
Our morning was spent taking in the Mercado de La Boqueria, and it is a MUST see in our opinion! It is not stroller friendly because it is very crowded, but there are tons of places to eat and most are grab and go so you can sample a ton.
After the market we headed to the Cathedral of Barcelona and enjoyed some down time at the Plaza Catalunya.
We visited the Taberna Blai for a “tapas tour” dinner and it was GREAT. Most of the tapas come on a toothpick and you pay $1.5 euros for each of them. We sat outside so we did pay more since Barcelona taxes their restaurants for having outdoor seating, but it was worth the extra cost for how much we enjoyed it!
We ended our day back at the Ciutat Vella and got drinks at Terraza 360 where we enjoyed the view of the entire city before a late dinner at Tapas 24. This restaurant is not stroller friendly at all due to its size, but the food was great!!
Our last day of vacation was a day for rest. After 10 days and 2 countries, we were pretty exhausted so we enjoyed some time at the pool and visited our favorite plaza, the Plaza Reial, for lunch before heading to the airport.
Overall Barcelona is amazing for kids! Not only did my husband and I get to explore some of the amazing things they have to offer but everyone loved our kid! The culture is very family oriented and we loved that they think about kids when offering services (cabs with car seats, baby chairs, bikes with kids seats included, etc). We are definitely going back to explore again and highly recommend it to fellow families looking for their next vacation!
A Tip for Travel
We took the train from Paris to Latour de Carol and then another one to Barcelona which was, in my opinion, the best way to travel with a toddler. No security lines, no sitting still for a long flight, no toddler meltdown in planes, and no baggage fees! We traveled overnight, passing through great scenery in the Pyrenees and tickets cost from €35 (€55 1st class) per couchette. We rented an entire wagon (4 couchettes in 1st class) for privacy reasons and our toddler slept the whole trip overnight!
We arrived to Latour de Carol where we took the connecting local train to Barcelona (€12 per ticket, and you can pay on the train – it will not sell out so don’t worry about reservations). It’s not as quick as the direct Paris-Barcelona TGVs, but a great experience when you do not want to waste that much time traveling during day time. If you have the opportunity to travel by train, I would highly recommend it!
Bebe Voyage is grateful to Carla’s family for sharing their trip and would love to hear from you too! Need more ideas for places to visit with your little ones? Check out our City Guides and be sure to grab one of our handy Travel Checklists for your next adventure!