Elijah notices the statue of Columbus matches the one in his book.
Mirador de Colom, Marina & Aquarium – The monument to Columbus is just a quick view, but the book about Columbus we had brought along with us brought the monument to life for my son. (More on Columbus below). The Marina area is a beautiful area to take a walk, have a snack and relax. The Aquarium here is also very nice. Typically, I’m not a big fan of visiting this type of place (we do live in San Diego, CA after all), while in Europe, but if your family needs a historical break this just might be the ticket.
Wandering through the Gothic Quarter – this is such a lovely place for anyone to walk around. I love the many places to sit down for a sidewalk café coffee or an ice cream, seeing the many cathedrals or museums, or browsing the shops. Runner Bean Tours offers a Kids & Family Walking Tour of the Gothic Quarter.
Picasso Museum – Located in the Gothic Quarter, this is a great little gem for an hour or so. With all museums, it’s possible to over-do it and attempt to see everything and read everything. Depending on the age and interest of your kids, I suggest planning accordingly.
Placa De Rei (steps where Columbus asked Ferdinand and Isabella for funds to finance with voyage) – this is a popular stop in the Gothic Quarter and a fun spot for families to rest their feet, people watch, chase pigeons, and ponder the important request made at this exact spot. This is also a perfect spot to pull out a book and read a little about Columbus.
A Little Further Away – Take a Taxi, Uber or use the Hop On/Hop Off Bus:
La Sagrada Familia – This is an amazing historical and architectural masterpiece (that is still being built) and no trip to Barcelona is complete without it. The best way for young families to enjoy this masterpieces is in its shadows at the park and playground across the street. Our boys had a wonderful time there playing with children and getting their wiggles out. We were able to marvel at this structure and read about its history. If you decide to go inside, check for opening hours and guided tours. Children under 10 are free.
Casa Batllo – Creative and thoughtful inside and out, this is a fun museum to visit highlighting Gaudi’s architectural genius.
Museu Egipci de Barcelona – (Just a 3 minute walk from Casa Bastilo) – this has got to be one of the best ancient Egyptian displays apart from Egypt or the British Museum. Your little historians will enjoy seeing the collection of mummies and other Egyptian artifacts.
Hop On/Hop Off Bus – Many cities offer this option and while we have rarely utilized its services, we did so in Barcelona and were not disappointed. We felt like there was a lot of ground to cover and that while we did hop on and hop off at a few locations, we were also just happy to drive through town seeing the outside of many attractions all from the comfort of our seat and audio tour (many of which are Gaudi’s creations that can be appreciated from an outside view).
Favorite books for learning... before, during or after your trip to Barcelona:
Follow the Dream: The Story of Christopher Columbus
by Peter Sis
Picasso and the Girl with a Ponytail
by Laurence Anholt
Who Was Pablo Picasso?
by True Kelley
Building on Nature: The Life of Antoni Gaudi
by Rachel Victoria Rodriguez
Mission Barcelona: A Scavenger Hunt Adventure
by Catherine Aragon