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Things Not to Do In Barcelona

Find Out Which Things You Should NOT Do in Barcelona


From sneaky pickpockets to rip-off restaurants and dirty beaches, there are a few things to avoid during a trip to Barcelona. Here, we take time out from telling you about things to do in Barcelona to tell you the top ten things to not do.

See also:

1. Go and See a Bullfight

Bullfighting stadium
Sue Manus @suesxpix flickr.com Creative Commons License

A ban on bullfighting in Barcelona came into effect on January 1, 2012. Why? Because it's cruel. And, as any local might well tell you, bullfighting is a Spanish thing, and 'Catalonia is not Spain'. Though there will no doubt be a rush of people wanting to see a fight there before the ban comes into effect, should you really be going to see something the locals are opposed to?

Instead:  You can see a Non-Violent Bullfight Just Outside Barcelona (book direct)

There are also plenty more places to see Bullfighting in Spain.

Read more on the Barcelona Bullfighting Ban

2. Mistake Girona or Reus For Barcelona Airport

Image: (c) Damian Corrigan

Countless people fly to Barcelona Girona and Barcelona Reus each year not realizing they're both miles away from Barcelona. Doh! (In fact, it's only Ryanair that describes these airports as 'Barcelona' airports). They're both cities in their own right in their own separate provinces. Each is an inconvenient hour-long bus ride away.

Instead: Fly direct to Barcelona, or fly to Girona or Reus but check out the local area first.

Read more on Ryanair Flights to Barcelona 

Oh, and while we're on the subject of flying: don't assume that flying is always the quickest way to get to, from and around Spain. Often it'll be the train! Read more about the AVE Train in Spain or check train times and book tickets.

3. Feel You HAVE to Go Inside The Sagrada Familia

sagrada familia
Image: (c) Damian Corrigan

It's much more interesting from the outside. The views aren't among the city's best. Most of the building is under construction. And you'll be saving 12€.

Instead: For good views of Barcelona, go up the Columbus statue at the bottom of the Ramblas.

See also: Sagrada Familia, Barcelona


4. Head to the Nearest Beach

barceloneta beach
Image: (c) Damian Corrigan

Unless you like cigarette butt-infested, concrete sand, scummy water with plastic bags floating around in it and hordes of boisterous beer-swilling tourists, don't go to Barceloneta beach .But that doesn't mean there isn't anything to do in Barceloneta.

Instead:  You're better off taking a short train ride to Ocata or St Pol de Mar. 

See also: Best Beaches in Barcelona


5. Eat On Las Ramblas

Image: (c) Damian Corrigan

Rip-off alert!

Instead: There's far better and cheaper food just off Las Ramblas

See also: Things to Do on Las Ramblas


6. Be Duped By Thieves Pretending to Show You A Football Move

When approached by a complete stranger asking if you like Lionel Messi should he try and wedge a leg between yours in an apparent attempt to show you a football move, then cover your wallet and shout 'thief!'

Instead: Politely say no, keep your hands on your wallet, and consider wearing a security belt under your clothes.

See also: Barcelona Safety


7. Dress And Act Like a Tourist

Walking around topless with a huge sombrero on and a towel thrown over your shoulder might seem like a perfectly good idea. But it really isn't. The less conspicuous you are, the less likely you are to be ripped off, robbed or, for that matter, taken seriously by that hot local chick.

Instead: Just dress sensibly!

How to spot a guiri (foreigner) in Spain


8. Take Pics of The Ramblas Statues Without Paying

Would you like to stand completely still for hours on end being snapped by tourists and not get paid a thing? Well, then.

Instead: Carry a little loose change and drop it in their box before snapping. You'll usually get a little show for your troubles.

See pictures of some Las Ramblas Statues

9. Take Taxis Everywhere

They're far too expensive. 

Instead: Two words. The Metro. It'll get you everywhere, for a fraction of the price. Buy a T10 card, and each of the ten journeys will cost you less than a euro.

More: Barcelona Metro

10. Respect Queues

Ever. It's an Iberian thing.

Instead: Push where necessary and don't take it to heart if someone nips in front of you. You'll do it back to someone else eventually.

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