This vibrant city in the heart of Catalonia is at the top of most bucket lists and is renowned for its colourful architecture, warm weather and delicious cuisine. It’s also a popular choice for solo travellers to go, whether as part of a massive Eurotrip or just a one off trip. As with any global adventure, it’s best to go prepared and here’s a few things to think about before you head off.
Barcelona’s an easy city to navigate and one that’s worth exploring on foot with something exciting on every corner, so leave the Louboutins at home and dredge up your walking shoes from the back of the closet. It also has a fantastic public bus system and a metro for longer journeys – there’s even a special Barcelona travel card called Hola BCN! for unlimited travel throughout the city. Another option if you’re short on time is to take one of Barcelona’s Hop on Hop Off buses, which will take you to most of the city’s key sights and give your feet a rest.
If you’re tired of wandering the city alone and want a bit of company, it’s also worth considering a walking tour to see the best of the city at a slower pace. You’ll be able to meet other like-minded visitors and maybe even some other solo travellers.
For the most part, Barcelona is a relatively safe city. However, it always helps to keep your wits about you. The most common complaints that visitors have in regards to their personal safety is the number of pickpockets roaming the streets, so it’s worth keeping an eye on your valuables and doing your best to blend in with the locals – leave the Panama hats and Hawaiian shirts at home.
The best thing about travelling on your own is taking your time to see the sights, particularly when it comes to historical sights and museums. Museu Picasso, Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya and Fundació Joan Miró are some of the city’s most significant contributions to the art world and always promise to inspire.
Architecture-lovers will adore the work of Antoni Gaudí, one of Barcelona’s most significant creatives, and Barcelona is full of his masterpieces: Casa Battló, a stunning modernist house full of unexpected quirks and infused with Spanish culture, Casa Milá, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and breathtaking cultural centre and Sagrada Família, Gaudi’s unfinished, eerie cathedral.
Barcelona lives and breathes Catalan food, with seafood, meat, stews, fruit and nuts playing a big role in their cuisine. Grab a seat at one of Barcelona’s many pintxos bars to try their spikier spin on tapas or try some of their best traditional dishes at a cosy local restaurant, where solo travellers are always welcome. It’s always worth doing a food tour with a group where you’ll be able to meet other visitors – Jamón Experience offer a fantastic Iberico ham tasting, paired with wine, beer and cava.