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The monkeys are working hard ...You are seconds away from an amazing trip plan!
Julie Sheridan
Created byJulie Sheridan
Freelance writer and translator based in Barcelona

Family-friendly Barcelona

Featured Guide

City breaks can be tricky when you’re travelling with the family in tow, but Barcelona offers several important advantages. Its stretch of sandy beaches – one of the most meticulously maintained urban beaches in Europe – are a brilliant option for an easy family day out when the heat on the city streets gets too much.

Several attractions such as CosmoCaixa, the Zoo and the Magic Fountain, are compelling enough for adults to enjoy as well. And while specific kids’ menus in restaurants are rare, you’ll find most waiters very accommodating when it comes to smaller portion sizes.

As a Scot who’s been living in and writing about Barcelona since 2011, I’ve taken part in my fair share of family days out with local friends. My top tip is to take the kids up to the mountain-top Tibidabo funfair. The rides, the views over the city, the fresh mountain air – it’s an experience your children are bound to remember for years.  

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Font Màgica

Sidestepping the potential to be cringingly kitsch, Barcelona’s Magic Fountain is a surprisingly stirring spectacle. A worthy symbol of the city, the fountain soars and sinks against the night sky, with a bevy of jets, lights and a specially synched soundtrack that combine to produce a spectacle...

Tibidabo

Tibidabo’s amusement park is a family day out with a difference – the backdrop of stunning cityscape views, stretching right to the Mediterranean horizon. Laid out on different levels of the mountain, all the traditional funfair rides are there, from flying chairs and dodgems to a truly...

CosmoCaixa

If you visit just one museum with your children in Barcelona, make it this one (my Catalan friends with kids are there so often it’s become a standing joke). CosmoCaixa is an engaging, hands-on learning experience for both adults and children, designed to get you thinking and interacting directly...

Parc de la Ciutadella

This park is one big playground for the city’s residents – adults and children alike. With its shady paths, grassy areas, waterfall, boating lake and life-size woolly mammoth (kids can't resist scaling its tusks), this is the place to head when you need a break from your city break. If you have...

Hotel Jazz

This is a 3-star hotel that feels like a 4-star, just a short stroll from the central Plaça Catalunya. It really is in a privileged location, whether you plan on hitting the historic parts of town for sightseeing and nightlife or exploring Barcelona’s shopping options along the swanky Passeig de...

Escriba Xiringuito

If you’re at all into seafood, sun, sand or sangria (and who isn’t?), try and fit in a visit to this open-air restaurant bar on the boardwalk of Barcelona’s Bogatell beach. This stretch of sand, away from the city centre, is favoured by families, with plenty of space for kids to run around as well as a...

Can Castellvi

A country house with a farm, this Catalan eatery on the outskirts of Barcelona poses the perfect place to escape to nature, enjoy local cuisine and keep the kids entertained all at the same time. The grub is home cooked and hearty – think a spit of roast meats and the Catalan spring specialty of...

Silken Gran Hotel Havana

This 4-star hotel has a great location on the Gran Via, within walking distance of loads of landmarks but a nice distance away from the hustle and hassle of the old town. The penthouse pool is a nice touch, but the main advantage for families is the hotel’s closeness to the inner-city ‘beach’ and...

Chocolate Museum

Nestled (sorry) in the bohemian Born district of Barcelona’s old town is a museum with exhibits good enough to eat, helpfully signposted in English, French, Spanish and Catalan. This quirky museum is a heartfelt homage to the humble cocoa bean, with intricately worked chocolate sculptures of...

Hard Rock Café

If you don’t mind a bit of a wait to get in, the Barcelona branch of the Hard Rock Café is an easy option for those travelling with children (or just craving a satisfying burger). Its location, on the central Plaça Catalunya, is accessible, and the tables outside are perfect for people watching. The...