Barcelona in a few hours: tips for short stops and time between meetings

Barcelona in a few hours

Barcelona is a dynamic city, strategically located between the French border and the Spanish mediterranean coastline. If you find yourself passing through Barcelona and have a few hours to kill, this article is for you!

Make the most of a short stop in Barcelona

Guided visits are the best way of seeing as much as possible in a very short period of time. You’ll be able to get in to sites without queuing, and you’ll learn lots of fascinating details about the places in question.

Private visits to Sagrada Familia


  • You’ll discover the edifice in the company of an authorised guide, who will explain the hidden symbolism present all over Sagrada Familia, tell you about the surprising life of Gaudí, and answer any question you may have.
  • You’ll be free to stay for as long as you like once the guided part of your visit is finished.

Take a look at the Sagrada Familia guided visits that we recommend here.


Barcelona in a few hours: sagrada familia tower

Click here to discover other guided tours on offer.

A private tour for cruise passengers stopping off in Barcelona

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Barcelona is a popular stop-off for Mediterranean cruise ships. Boats are generally in port from 9am to 5pm, giving you a day to explore the city.

We have an article written especially for cruise passengers stopping off in Barcelona which explains how to get from the port to the city centre, and contains all of the tips and advice you might need.

You can also take a tour specially designed for travellers stopping off in Barcelona. It lasts 4 hours, and it is a made-to-measure visit, it’s a great option to make the most of your time!

  • The guide can even organise transfers to and from the port – one less thing to worry about!

The tour costs €250 (for up to 6 people – contact us for larger groups), and you’ll need to pay for tickets if you want to go in anywhere, as well as for transport. The taxi  fee will come in at around €35; the public transport option works out at around €10. With the second option, you’ll save money, but you’ll have less time to visit the city. Your call!

Avoid queueing to save time

If you prefer not to take a guided tour, we recommend booking tickets to the monuments you want to visit in advance. That way, you’ll be able to get in without queueing, saving a considerable amount of time.

  • For more information, see our book a visit or discount pass category!

Stopping off in Barcelona on a car journey

fiat 500 drawing

There are lots of tourist destinations to the south of Barcelona, including Valencia, Alicante, Benidorm and Cabo de Gata, or even the Costa Daurada or PortAventura. If you’re travelling by car, you’re almost certain to pass through Barcelona.

Drop in for a few hours on your way past to catch a glimpse of this fascinating city and stretch your legs a little!

Budget-friendly parking

If you’re travelling to or from a holiday destination, your car is bound to be full of luggage. In this case, on-street parking is not a good idea – there’s a risk of theft from, and damage to, the vehicle.

Avoid getting clamped…

The traffic police in Barcelona are eagle-eyed, and particularly merciless with foreign cars. If you park in an unauthorised spot or if you stay longer than you should have, there’s a good chance your car will be towed, even if it isn’t causing a problem.

If the worst comes to the worst, see our article Impounded vehicles in Barcelona: where and how to get your car back – but obviously, it’s better to choose your parking space carefully instead!

Make the most of free time during a business trip

Coming to Barcelona for work? You’ll find all of our top tips for business travellers in Barcelona in this article.

Flight changes in Barcelona

plane drawing

Barcelona isn’t a major air transport hub, but there’s still a chance you may find yourself changing planes there.

Getting to the city centre from the airport

You only need a few hours to get a taste of what Barcelona has to offer. The quickest ways of getting into the city centre are by taxi or by Aerobus.

Left luggage options

If you have bags with you, consider leaving them in a safe left-luggage facility in the city centre in order to make the most of your time in Barcelona. We recommend LockerBarcelona, a stone’s throw from Plaça Catalunya and the Aérobus stop, which is practical and budget-friendly.

Take us with you!

Go forth and explore!

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