See Barcelona Like a Local: Do As They Do in Rome

Woody Allen, a filmmaker known for his love letters to New York City, has been on a Lonely Planet style tour of Europe’s greatest cities. He’s set his recent films in places like Rome, Paris and London. However, the best of Woody’s Allen’s travelogue movies takes place in Barcelona.


Located in the heart of Spain’s Catalonia region, Barcelona has a diverse mixture of culture, cuisine and beaches, and the subtle way the Costa Brava sunlight accents the city’s Gaudi architecture is enough to make any tourist (and filmmaker) ecstatic. Sprawling and self-confident, Barcelona has become one of Europe’s must-see destinations. Here are 6 secrets to seeing Barcelona like a local.

1. Barcelona prides itself on its unique diversity

Due to the expensive health care costs in America, medical tourism is on the rise, and the Barcelona Medical Centre has the most comprehensive care in Southern Europe. Whether you fall ill on holiday or travel to Barcelona for a medical procedure, Barcelona’s 8 general and specialized centers are amongst the best in the world. Of course, before you go you will need to invest in an insurance plan like TravelGuard. The platinum plan, which is the best that TravelGuard offers, includes the highest level of medical coverage.

2. Play football

If you visit Barcelona, then you need to at least pretend like you do as every local goes crazy for the beautiful game. Having won both the last World Cup as well as the European Cup, football seems to be part of the Spanish DNA. Camp Nou is Barcelona’s iconic soccer stadium. It is worth a visit just to see the incredible trophy room.

Español stadium

3. Spain has forever changed the way we approach fine dinning

The fussy atmosphere and formal linen tablecloths, long a staple in French restaurants, has been replaced with tapas culture. Tapas means small bites in Spanish, but it is as much a culture as it is a way of eating. Friendly and informal, eating tapas is all about sharing as many plates as possible with family and friends. It is also about hitting as many tapas bars as possible.

Tapas place

4. If you’re traveling to Barcelona and hoping to see your first Spanish bullfight

The locals will be quick to tell you that the age-old tradition was banned in Catalonia as of January 1, 2011. If you want to do the Ernest Hemingway thing, you will have to go to Pamplona.

5. La Rambla, which runs for 1.3 kilometers, is Barcelona’s most famous boulevard

Locals and tourists alike love it. From news stalls and florists to hip eateries and street performers, it is the perfect place to take a leisurely stroll.

Barcelona 2008 - La Rambla -

6. From the Sagrada Familia Church to the Casa Calvet

Barcelona is defined by the architecture of Antoni Gaudi. However, take the advice of the locals and take a tour of the city’s contemporary art galleries. If you’re looking for the next big thing, then this is probably where you will find it.

barcelona, modernisme, casa battlo

Barcelona is a world-class city, and it easily rivals tourist hotspots like London, Paris and Rome. Once you walk down the La Rambla at sunset, you will see why Woody Allen chose this city to revive his career. Barcelona is a place of passion and romance.