Things to Do in Barcelona With the Kids - Al Fresco Holidays

The gloriously chaotic, vibrant city of Barcelona is traditionally considered the sole property of artistic types, lively stag parties and romancing couples. However, the secret is now out – Barcelona is fast becoming a hot destination for families, thanks largely to its vibrant, colourful ambiance and multitude of things to see and do.

If you’re looking for something a little bit alternative for your next child-friendly break, then Barcelona may well be the perfect location for you. Exciting museums, sprawling, exuberant streets and entertainment galore can be found in the charismatic Catalonian capital, and best of all, it’s close enough to the coast to enjoy a bit of beach-side relaxation too.

Family-Friendly Barcelona: 10 Things You Need to Do Whilst Touring Catalonia’s Capital with the Kids

Ramble on La Rambla

La Rambla

Source: Flickr

Barcelona’s most famous road is simply irresistible to meander along and while away an hour or so, mainly because of its lively street traders and live bird fair. The kids will be particularly impressed by the street performers that line the pavements, and the infectious atmosphere promises to get the whole family perfectly in the ‘Catalonian mood’.

Check Out the Chocolate at the Museo de la Xocolata

Museo de la Xocolata

Source: Flickr

A visit to the Museo de la Xocolata (Museum of Chocolate) is fairly obligatory for anyone visiting Barcelona with the children. Fans of the sweet stuff will be interested by the information on how chocolate is made, but the most enjoyable exhibits are most definitely the intricate chocolate sculptures. The only issue? Navigating a route through the gift shop without purchasing a bar or two of the tasty goods on offer!

Taking a Break on the Beach

Barcelona Beach

Source: Flickr

One of the biggest benefits of holidaying in Barcelona is its proximity to some of the country’s finest beaches. Most families in the know tend to base themselves at one of the more reasonably priced coastal camping resorts, such as the excellent Vilanova Park, which offers an ideal shoreside break, whilst being within easy reach of the city.

Visit the Strangest Cathedral on the Planet

La Sagrada Familia

Source: Flickr

If you think cathedrals are wholly unsuitable for small people, then you’ve obviously not encountered La Sagrada Familia. Barcelona’s most famous building (and strangest) is a bizarre, molten monument, that needs to be seen to be believed. Kids will especially enjoy the trip up the tower, with its views over the city.

The Friendly Residents

Barcleona Dancers

Source: Flickr

Barcelona has a formidable reputation as being staunchly family friendly, and indeed, friendly on all levels. Whether you’re dining on tapas on a street-side café, or wandering the crowded markets, you’ll be sure to encounter some of the typically welcoming Catalonian spirit, which seems, refreshingly, particularly inclusive of children.

Enjoy the Fun of the Fair

Parc d’Atraccions Tibidabo

Source: Flickr

Children of all ages will love the famous Parc d’Atraccions Tibidabo; a frenetic funfair on the top of a hillside, overlooking the city below. From adrenalin-pumping rides such as the free-falling Pendulum, to more sedate rides for smaller kids, the recently renovated park makes a great destination for a special treat for the whole family.

Visit the Land of the Mammoths

Mammoth Museum

Source: Flickr

The region around Barcelona is particularly notable for the many mammoth remains that have been discovered there. Keen young prehistoric fanatics will relish the prospect of visiting the Museum of the Mammoth, which has life-sized models of the hairy beasts, as well as bones that the children can handle freely.

Escape the Heat at Torre de les Aigües

Torre de les Aigües

Source: Flickr

The building of the Torre de les Aigües, over 100 years old, is one of the best places in Barcelona to refresh yourself after exploring the balmy city streets. The old building, now converted into a swimming pool and park, provides the perfect spot for splashing in the cool water and relaxing amidst pleasant scenery.

Get Inventive at MIBA


Barcelona’s wonderfully wacky Museum of Ideas and Inventions is a marvelously quirky place to explore with the kids. Best of all, kids are encouraged to submit their own crazy inventions, and each month, three of the best will be created by MIBA’s own team of builders and inventors.

Go Crazy at the Urban Jungle

Bosc Urbà

Source: Flickr

If you’re the type of family who thrive on adrenalin, then the Urban Jungle (Bosc Urbà) is the place for you. Speedy zip lines, bungee ropes and rope swings are the order of the day, and all that you need to bring with you is a healthy dose of bravery and a lot of energy!

In short, if you’re seeking a holiday that offers a whole lot more than just a week or two by the beach, then Barcelona is a strong contender for the most varied and child-friendly destination in Europe. Looking for somewhere to stay? You can find some excellent holiday parks close to the city right here.

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