Insider Tips: How to Experience Barcelona Like a Local

Discover the Authentic Barcelona: Live the Local Experience

There is a lot to see and do in Barcelona. We are here to give you our best advice on how to experience Barcelona like a local.

In this post, we will provide you with an overview of our five favorite places where you can experience authentic life in Barcelona. We will cover something good to eat and drink as well as a few ideas with green spaces and parks to escape the city bustle.

Stay tuned as our insider tips will also include some extra, less touristy neighborhoods and hidden gems to explore.

"Sip and Savor: Barcelona's Top Coffee Spot for Coffee Enthusiasts"

If you are a coffee lover or simply feel like a good coffee may hit the spot, you must go to Lukumás. The owner and the place share the same name. Lukumás came from Greece to Barcelona almost 20 years ago and has become one of many ex-pats to set the roots down in this city.

A specialty coffee in Barcelona - Lukumás. Experience Barcelona like a local and start a day with a delicious cup of coffee.
A specialty coffee in Barcelona. Daily home-made donuts with delicious fillings and topings - Lukumás coffee in Gràcia.

His personal goal is to serve the best coffee in Barcelona and to add some interesting specials from time to time. If you are ready for something exciting and strong go for the Freddo Espresso iced coffee.

If you prefer some milk in your iced coffee go for the Freddo Cappucino. Just make sure you give him a heads-up if you also want some sugar in your coffee.

While waiting for your drink you may be tempted to grab one homemade in-the-house donut to accompany your coffee.  These are made daily and are mouth-watering treats with different fillings and toppings.

It is really hard to resist! Just grab one as you will most likely need the calories to keep exploring the other parts of Barcelona.

Petros’s dedication to bringing a little bit of Greek influence and aroma to Barcelona makes this place a unique and authentic stop to get one of the best coffees in Barcelona.

You will find this happy Greek guy and his shop right here. Enjoy your coffee and experience Barcelona like a local!

The Best Slice of Pizza in Barcelona

If you happen to be strolling down the famous La Rambla Street towards the Columbus Monument you have to try a slice of the best street pizza in Barcelona. Pizza Circus is a tiny establishment where, for roughly 3 euros, you can buy the most delicious slice of pizza to boost your energy levels and keep hopping around the city.

Our favorite pizza slice in Barcelona. Enjoy a premium and affordable pizza like a local.
The best and affordable pizza in Barcelona right of La Rambla street. Grab a slice and experience Barcelona like a local.

There are always vegetarian and vegan options to suit all clients and you can opt for a full 8-slice pizza or have a feast ordering the XXL format takeaway.

All super fresh ingredients, the pizzas are made right in front of you and the staff are always ready to help you.

The success story of this place is very simple. The owners wanted to offer cheap but premium-quality pizza to all Barcelonés y Barcelonesas (residents of Barcelona in Castellano).

And they have indeed accomplished their goal. Our favorite pizza is with spinach, grated cheese, and sun-dried tomatoes. The artisans can be found right here. Enjoy your pizza!

Barcelona's Outdoor Escapes: Uncovering the Best Parks in the City

The city parks in Barcelona provide well-needed shaded areas in the hottest months of the year, an easy way to escape from the bustle of the city. Enjoy a picnic or simply relax on the grass with the best panoramic views of Barcelona.

The biggest and most visited parks include:

  • Park Güell
  • La Ciudadela Park
  • La Barceloneta Park
  • El Guinardó Park
  • Collserola Natural Park
  • Gardens of Palacio de Pedralbes
  • Cervantes Park
  • Gardens of Joan Maragall

Our favorite green area in Barcelona is La Primavera Park right above the Poble Sec neighborhood and in the proxy of the famous Montjuïc Mountain. This park will make you feel like you’re a resident of Barcelona.

Nature escapes and parks in Barcelona where you will feel like a local resident.
Nature escapes and parks in Barcelona. Viewpoints and things to do around the Montjuïc Mountain.

It provides a simple kids’ playground, a fenced-up dog run, and the most common examples of Mediterranean vegetation. You won’t get disturbed by a big passing group of tourists at this park. Simply enjoy the views and tranquility.

The most typical plants and trees represented in this park include Aleppo pine trees, poplars, cherry trees, holm oak, and cork oak.

The best time of the year is the spring (April – May) when you can smell all the Levander and Rose bushes flowering around the park. 

If you decide to explore La Primavera Park you will also find out one of the best-preserved underground shelters built during the Spanish Civil War.

Exploring Montjuic Mountain: Barcelona's Iconic Landmark with Breathtaking Views

From La Primavera Park you can continue exploring the vast possibilities of Montjuïc Mountain which boasts monuments, botanical gardens, stadiums, and exhibitions to fill the entire day.

  • The Montjuïc Fortress
  • Barcelona Botanical Gardens
  • The Olympic Stadium of Montjuic
  • Montjuïc Viewpoints
  • Sant Jordi Cultural Center
  • CaixaForum Cultural Center
  • The Spanish Village in Barcelona
  • The National Palace of Montjuic
  • The Magical Fountain of Montjuic

When you decide to come back to the city you should stop in the most famous Tapas, Pintxos, and Montaditos street in Barcelona called Calle Blai.

You will find a couple of dozens of original bars and small restaurants serving delicious food for local prices.

Moreover, it is a pleasant pedestrian street away from the crowds and traffic. Enjoy your time!

Barcelona's Authentic Bars: A Journey into the City's Soul

There are bars on every single corner in Barcelona where you can enjoy a simple glass of Estrella or Clara. But there are also more authentic bars that have been serving their guests for centuries.

Places like Bar Marsella date back to 1820 and have most likely served some famous people (Picasso and Hemingway) who used to live in or frequently visited Barcelona over the past two centuries.

Authentic bars in Barcelona - Bar Marsella. Places where you can have local drinks for non-tourist prices.
Authentic bars in Barcelona. Experience the traditional drinks in the Bar Marsella in El Raval.

Bar Marsella breathes tradition the very second you walk in. Very little has changed over time and you should bring some cash to pay for your drinks.

The bar does not play any music ‘EVER’ as the preferred acoustical background is the simple roar of multiple conversations at once.

It is a place where artists meet non-artists and confront their views and paradigms of this world while enjoying the local beer, wines, or absinthe.

You have not tried absinthe yet? You are in the very best place to try this very alcoholic and herby shot. If you fancy a long drink you should order the Catalan martini called – Vermouth!

The energy of Bar Marsella, which has bold rules and outdated decorations will certainly make you feel like a local traveling into the past.

Sit down, leave your phone alone, and simply enjoy the wonders of this authentic bar in Barcelona. 

"Churros in Barcelona: Exploring the Sweet Side of the City"

Have you heard of Churros? Even though these deep-fried flour dough delicates made of only 4 ingredients originated in China they became very popular in Spain in the 19th century.

Till today the ‘Churrero’ in Spain is an artisanal profession dating back some 200 plus years.

These snacks are by no means a part of a healthy diet but rather something very traditional and exceptional worth trying if you want to experience Barcelona like a local.

Look no further as Granja Dulcinea is the place where you can eat the most authentic and delicious churros, and drink a cup of thick melted chocolate while travelling back in time.

The best churros in Barcelona - Granja Dulcinea. Experience Barcelona like a local in sweet street - Carrer de Petritxol in Barcelona.
The best churros in Barcelona - Granja Dulcinea. Exploring the sweet treats of Barcelona.

Located right off the famous La Rambla in the Carrer de Petritxol on the edge of the Gothic Quarter.

The shop has remained true to the Catalan traditional decoration since its opening in 1941. Simple but timeless wooden furniture and the staff always dressed in black pants and white tops are ready to serve you the best churros in Barcelona.

Granja Dulcinea shop respects the traditional Spanish ‘Siesta’ opening hours so just make sure you visit this place either in the morning or after half four in the afternoon.

While you are in Carrer de Petrixol you can also try traditional Christmas Turrones and other chocolate and sweet delicates.

Enjoy your treat and continue experiencing Barcelona like a local.

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