Solo Traveller's Guide to Barcelona - Things To Do Alone
By Jess Soler, a paddleboarder, yoga lover, snorkeller and lover of all things outdoors.
Edited by Holly Stark
Adventuring Catalonia and seeking things to do alone in Barcelona? When organising a solo Barcelona adventure, it’s important to see everything you want to see and make the most of your visit, which should be easy enough since you don’t have to wait for anyone else when you’re making plans! Whether you’re taking the leap with your first ever Barcelona solo travel or are already an enthusiastic independent traveller, discover the best of what to do in Barcelona alone with my ultimate Barcelona solo travel guide that encompasses the ideal mix of the city’s quirky neighbourhoods, historic churches, great tapas spots and some of the best things to do in Barcelona at night!
Exploring Barcelona on your own? Check out the lovely El Born neighbourhood; a popular, vibrant area with some of the oldest buildings in the city. Located in between the Gothic Quarter and the Ciutadella Park, El Born is one of Barcelona‘s most historic areas, and one of its liveliest. With a bohemian vibe and artsy edge, the area is popular with the local international community, and is home to great tapas bars, gothic churches, interesting museums and cool cafes. Don’t miss it when visiting Barcelona alone. A stroll arpund this area would be part of my ideal day in Barcelona alone, after a morning out on the ocean on a paddle board. Lunch would be pinchos at Bitacora, and I’d wander through El Born, browsing boutique shops, then maybe have some churros and molten chocolate at La Granja.
When travelling to Barcelona alone, one of the natural starting points of any exploration must be Barrio Gòtico, the Gothic Quarter. Steeped in history, traditional buildings, castles, labrinth narrow back streets and the must-see Barcelona Cathedral Barrio Gòtico is a fun place for exploring Barcelona on your own. Combining the historical and the contemporary, the area is home to beautiful examples of gothic architecture with bell towers and stonework. Enjoy the outdoor cafes, great Barcelona food and summer concerts in the area if you’re exploring Barcelona nightlife alone. In this laid-back, arty neighborhood, you’ll never feel too alone anyway.
Located between the foothills of Montjuïc and the port, Poble-sec is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Barcelona. Historically a relatively poor, desolate area, home to some of Barcelona’s working class residents; factory workers and fisherman, nowadays, Poble-sec is an up-and-coming corner of town with a great food scene, with a mix of upmarket restaurants, traditional bodegas and tapas bars. Check out hidden gem Quimet y Quimet, tucked away with only a tiny sign (and probably a queue out of the door) to indicate its existence is widely regarded by locals as one of the best tapas bars in the city. Eat and meet in the tiny standing bar in the El Poble-sec neighbourhood and you’ll be one of only about 15 people happily sipping vermouth and nibbling great Catalan cuisine at the stainless steel bar or huddled around one of the tiny tables.
Loved by locals, Bar Bitácora is home to delicious tapas for really good value. For food and drinks, you never pay more than 20 euros per person. Try the small dishes; croquettas, chipirones, patatas bravas, tuna tartar, calamares, tortilla (spanish omelette) and the deserts! The portions are generous and the food is well worth a try when eating alone in Barcelona.
Bar Bitácora is home to a good mix of traditional and contemporary tapas. Always ask for the daily specials, the friendly staff can guide you through the fusion menu. The place has an unpretentious relaxed atmosphere which makes it the perfect spot to try new things. Give it a try and enjoy their dishes based on fresh ingredients and cooked with great flair.