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As you are probably aware of Barcelona is one of the most popular cities in Europe. Although we haven’t visited Barcelona, we had the chance to host a girl for a couple of weeks who was born and raised in Barcelona. As a local, she is sharing with us 10 Free Things to do in Barcelona.

We hosted her through Workaway, which is a website where you can volunteer in exchange for food and accommodation. It’s a great way to travel with a low budget and immerse yourself in another culture. You’ll usually have to work about 5 hours of work, 5 days a week. Check our article on the Best Volunteering Websites if you want to know more about this concept.

Catedral de Barcelona

The first free thing to do in Barcelona is to visit the famous Cathedral.

The 14th-century Gothic cathedral is dedicated to the city’s patron saint, Santa Eulalia. Inside is the Chapel of Santo Cristo de Lepanto, the altarpiece of the Transfiguration, the cloister and the Crypt in which Santa Eulalia is buried.

Visiting hours are free during Masses and prayer time.

In addition, the Basilica of Santa María del Mar, famous for the book by Ildefonso Falcones The Cathedral of the Sea, also has free access during mass hours.

Catedral de Barcelona
La Catedral de Barcelona

Sagrada Família

The Sagrada Familia of Gaudí is one of the most emblematic monuments in Barcelona.

Believe it or not, entering for free one of the most attractive and expensive places to visit in Barcelona, is possible.

There they celebrate an international mass every Sunday in different languages. The mass begins at 9 in the morning and although the entrance is free, the capacity is limited. Therefore, we recommend arriving early since the doors open at 8:30 and there are usually a long line of people waiting to take advantage of the free entrance.

La Sagrada Familia
The inside of the Sagrada Familia

Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

Visiting the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau for free, located very close to the Sagrada Familia, is another of the best things to do in Barcelona, which we recommend not to miss.This large complex, declared a World Heritage Site, is made up of several modernist-style buildings.

Every first Sunday of each month from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., admission is free.

Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau
A picture of the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

The Bunkers, the Carmel’s viewpoint

It is considered one of the best viewpoint in Barcelona, is located at the top of the Turó de la Rovira hill, in the Carmel neighborhood, more than 250 meters above sea level.

It is always open, we recommend, especially in summer, to arrive at dusk to enjoy a beautiful sunset.

Free Things to do in Barcelona: the Carmel’s viewpoint
Picture at the top, courtesy of our Workawayer

The terraces of MNAC, in Montjuïc

The MNAC is the National Museum of Art of Catalonia and there you can find from their two terraces with magnificent panoramic views of the city, with the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc and the Venetian Towers in the foreground.

Also, the museum, considered one of the best in the world for Romanesque art, the art collections, inside this huge classicist-style palace, you can see several rooms with murals and decorative elements.

Entrance to the museum is only free on Saturdays from 3pm and the first Sundays of each month.

The terraces of MNAC
The Terraces

Emblematics buildings in Passeig de Gràcia

The Passeig de Gràcia is the most expensive in Barcelona and Spain, probably thanks to an unique fact in the world: the same street houses two buildings classified by UNESCO as World Heritage of Humanity made by the same architect, Antoni Gaudí. We are talking about Casa Batlló and Casa Milà, popularly known as La Pedrera.

Also, in this Street you can find more beautiful buildings. You need to pay in order to enter but you can see the front/facade for free.

This is a list of interesting buildings: Casa Amatller, Casa Lleó Morera, Casa Mulleras de Enric Sagnier, Casa Josefina Bonet de Marcel-li Coquillat, Casa Fuster, Unión y el Fénix, Casa Malagrida, La Casa de les Punxes

10 Free Things to do in Barcelona 1

Roman Temple of Augustus

In the Barri Gòtic, hidden in a house on Calle Paradís, you will find the remains of the temple of Augustus, from the 1st century BC, 4 columns of almost 9 meters high are preserved.

The admission is free, and it’s open every day. The visiting hours are from Tuesday to Saturday, from 10am to 7pm. Monday, from 10am to 2pm. Sundays, from 10am to 8pm.

10 Free Things to do in Barcelona 2

Horta Labyrinth

Located in the Horta neighborhood, you can find this neoclassical garden from the 18th century, the oldest preserved in the city, where you can see a labyrinth made of cypress walls.

The garden is open from April to October, from 10am to 8pm, closing the rest of the months at 7pm. Admission is free on Wednesdays and Sundays, although capacity is limited to 750 people.

10 Free Things to do in Barcelona 3

Mercat del Born

Before it was a municipal market but it became a cultural center where various archaeological remains from the 17th century are exposed.

From March to September, it opens from Tuesday to Sunday, and holidays, from 10:00 to 20:00.

From October to February, it opens from Tuesday to Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., and Sunday and holidays, from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

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A picture of the market from the 18th century

Parc del Fòrum

In this park you can find various spaces near the sea, among them you can find the Plaza Leonardo Da Vinci, which is the Building of the Museum of Natural Sciences and the International Convention Center of Barcelona, and the esplanade where is El Bosque de las Columnas y los Pajaritos.

Parc del Fòrum
A picture of the park

Conclusion of the Free Things to do in Barcelona

I’m sure there are plenty more free things to do in Barcelona, but I hope this article will give you an idea on where to start. As you can see, you can visit various attractions without having to break the bank.

If you are on a tight budget, always remember that many museums and religious buildings have free entrance hours, just do your own research before traveling!

And remember that Barcelona is a huge city and you will be able to find many more parks, buildings and spaces that you can also visit without having to pay. We hope you enjoy this wonderful city and all the hidden corners.

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A young father following his dream of travelling the world, now joined by HiuYing, his wife, Darian, and Mati, their two sons.
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