When the feeling strikes for a weekend getaway with your best friends, look no further than Barcelona!
With its endless list of exciting things to do and see, it’s the ultimate destination for any group of ladies looking for some R&R, shopping and vibrant nightlife.
It’s the ideal place to escape, ensuring that you’ll return feeling refreshed and with some exciting stories to tell.
Brunching in Barcelona is a culture in and of itself. A must see place is Brunch & Cake, located at Carrer Enric Granados 19. This restaurant offers a stylish eating experience, with a very detailed and diverse menu. Every part of each delicious plate is crafted by hand, and all ingredients are locally sourced ensuring a uniquely BCN experience.
Salad for breakfast? Pancakes for lunch? With Brunch & Cake, normal is not in their vocabulary. They also have a wide array of delicious drinks should you decide to make a toast to your weekend! One look at their Instagram should have you hooked, as they have close to 21,000 followers and love sharing their famous dishes: @brunchandcake.
Psst! There are loads of places to enjoy a delicious brunch in Barcelona.
Take in the sights
Sightseeing with friends means memories and wonderful pictures! It’s also a great way to meet other travelers and potential friends. Barcelona has numerous charming locations that are perfect for friends to explore together and soak in the true ambiance of this wonderful city.
Park Güell is a beautiful park as well as work of art from Barcelona’s most beloved architect, Antoni Gaudí. Bring a picnic for all to share, and soak up the symbol of ‘Modernisme’ that the park has come to represent. It’s a huge space and has multiple attractions such as the Gaudí house museum. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site, showcasing the best of Gaudí’s mosaic style and not to mention a breathtaking view of the city.
The Parc de Montjuïc cable cars can be accessed from the Paral·lel metro station. At the top, these cars offer a panoramic view of Barcelona, and access to the Montjuïc Castle which has stood more than 370 years. Imagine this when the sun is setting... It’s simply breathtaking!
A great museum for your group to explore would be MNAC: Museum Nacional d'Art de Catalunya. The building itself is gorgeous, dating back to the 1929 World’s Fair. It houses a beautiful Romanesque collection and a notable Gothic one as well. Your friends will love learning about the rich intermingling of these two styles in Barcelona! This museum can be reached from the Espanya metro stop.
With all that excitement, you’re sure to get a little worn out. Don’t forget to stop along the way and try some of the city’s coffee and gelato shops. They offer the perfect solution to recharge your batteries and at a low cost! There are multiple shops of this sort throughout every ‘barrio’. Whether it’s in between metro stops or on your way to your next adventure, there’s always one close by.
A day at the beach
A chance to cool off in the Mediterranean Sea is a welcomed way to take a break from all that sightseeing. Head to Barceloneta Beach, one of the city’s most beloved beaches, thanks to its fine sands and lively atmosphere.
Here, you can make the most of the beautiful Barcelona sunshine and end your day looking like a bronzed goddess- does life get much better than this? And what’s more, a day out at the beach doesn’t cost you a penny meaning you can save up for more important things… like cocktails.
If you’re looking for a more chilled experience, we recommend heading further down the coast to the Bogatell and Nova Mar Bella beaches.
All that lounging on the beach can be thirsty work, so why not stroll over to one of the well known ‘chiringuitos’ that line the beach for a refreshing beer or soft drink. If you’re feeling peckish, Makamaka (Passeig de Joan de Borbó, 76) is a must and where you’ll find the mother of all burgers. With massive dishes under 10€, it’d be foolish not to finish a day of fun in the sun here.
Shop ‘till you drop!
The thrill of the hunt also holds true for girls and shopping. It would be almost rude to come to Barcelona with the girls and not spend at least one day running retail riot, wouldn’t it? And what’s more, despite the Catalan capital being one of the top locations in the world for fashion, it’s relatively cheap compared to Europe’s other trend-setting cities London, Paris and Milan.
First things first, make a b-line to Barcelona’s most exclusive shopping street, Passeig de Gràcia, in other words, the Fifth Avenue of the city. This wide boulevard is lined with all the major luxury brands: Gucci, Michael Kors, Chanel and Hermès, as well as upscale shops, and not forgetting your go-to high street stores such as Zara, Mango and H&M.
Tip: There are several fantastic places along Passeig de Gràcia where you can enjoy authentic and delicious Spanish tapas. Txapela and Tapa Tapa are both affordable and great places to enjoy a range of classic tapas dishes, such as the famous ‘patatas bravas’.
There is also the area of el Born, which has a wide array of boutique stores. It also caters to a slightly younger crowd. Here, these quaint shops specialize in shoes, clothing, beachwear and everything in between. Not to mention, the area itself is transforming into one of the chicest and trendiest in Barcelona, after going through a period of restoration. You never know what exciting treasurers you will stumble upon in this area.
Treat yourself with a spa day
Let’s face it, girls will be girls. A trip to the spa is what you deserve after all that hustle and bustle. Do your feet hurt from walking? Want to know where to get the best facial in town? Barcelona’s health and wellness industry is booming, as it combines the most famous treatments from many different cultures. You can find different styles of massages and therapies to suit every desire, guaranteeing that you leave the city better than you came.
While there are numerous styles of traditional therapies in Barcelona, one that has taken the city by storm are the Arab baths at Aire de Barcelona. The baths use an ancient Middle Eastern technique that utilizes pools of water of differing temperatures to maximize relaxation. Another customary spa is Aqua Bliss Urban Spa, where you can get the famous garra ruffa fish pedicures! These tiny tootsie cleaners eat away at the dead skin on your feet, leaving the skin fresh and revitalized. Not to mention complementary drinks while the fish get to work – a two-for-one.
Dinner and drinks – now we’re talking!
Enjoy a fabulous evening at the Moritz Factory, the perfect place to catch up with the girls and get the drinks rolling in. El Velódromo provides an exclusive dining experience with its impressive menu devised by the exceptionally talented Jordi Vilà. This guy certainly knows the meaning of quality food, and with a Michelin star to his name, you know that you can expect the best from him.
Each of his tasty creations are inspired by Catalan cuisine and use only the highest quality and local ingredients. Keeping in line with the factory’s theme, you can also expect several beer-based dishes such as the utterly divine, Moritz style “siscentó” tapa. To top it all off, the restaurant stays open until the early hours of the morning, so you can stay here for the duration if you fancy.
For all you wine connoisseurs, the Moritz Factory is also home to the stylish wine bar, Bar à vins. Small and intimate, this place can be somewhat deceiving to the eye with its modest size. With over 400 prestigious Catalan and French wines, from sparkling and sweet, to red, white and rosé, transport yourself to a wine lover’s paradise.
Ronda de Sant Antoni, 39 – 41
Calling all those running for the title of the ‘Queen of Shots’, a short walk down the road will take you to the unique Espit Chupitos. They have an extensive selection of shots, 500 to be specific, and some truly ingenious creations. With so many tempting concoctions available, choosing your shot can be tricky business, however, all you chocoholics simply must try their ‘Willy Wonka’ shot. A delightful combination of chocolate liqueurs topped with whipped cream and Smarties will have your sweet tooth singing with joy.
Carrer Consell de Cent, 268
Alternatively, head to the nearby Raval to the trendy and stylish cocktail bar, Marmalade. Here, you can enjoy its laid back and sophisticated bohemian vibe and fabulous selection of cocktails. Its Gin Fizz and Nicky Lauda Saua are particular winners and always go down a treat!
Carrer de la Riera Alta, 4-6
Head out for the night
Barcelona’s world famous beach clubs are sure to not disappoint. Here, you can party until sunrise with you best friends. Pop your heels on and dance the night away at one of the city’s best beach clubs like Opium Mar, Pacha, CDLC, Shôko and Danzatoria. Often flyers are handed out along the strip offering free entry before 1am. Drinks are notorious for being slightly expensive once inside, but with seafront terraces and amazing views of the glistening Mediterranean, they’re totally worth splashing out on. Not to mention when the club closes you can take a walk along the beach afterwards!
Many of the beach clubs have previously welcomed international DJs with the likes of Tiësto, Avicii and Steve Aoki making an appearance. Be sure to go online or on Facebook and look at the calendar of each club beforehand, just in case you need to buy tickets for a show as you never know what amazing performer you might see!
If beach clubs aren’t your thing, there are many other non-beach bars that are equally as much fun. Sutton Club (Carrer Tuset, 13) and Otto Zutz (Carrer Lincoln 195) are local favorites and slightly less touristy than the beach clubs.
Where to stay
So you have your plan all lined out. But now, where to stay? Renting an apartment in Barcelona is the best way to experience the city, especially when visiting with friends. If you're on a budget you don't have to eat out for every meal, you have your own kitchen where you can try your hand at some typical Spanish and Catalan recipes. What's more, you can stay all together in the same space, in the comfort of your home-from-home, making it easier to relax and enjoy a drink together before you go out. Many apartments even have their own private terraces, perfect for those summer evenings dining together 'al fresco'.
Tip: book your accommodation in Barcelona in advance as hotels can full up quickly! Read our extensive Barcelona Accommodation Guide if you're looking for somewhere to stay while in Barcelona!
Travel tip shared by Erin Ball
Photos courtesy of Cup & Cake, Aire de Barcelona, Shôko, and Flickr: Richardjo53, MattiasBarthel