Barcelona. The city I have lived in for the past 6 years, the city where I got married and where my son was born.
I love Barcelona because it has such a variety of different things to offer.
There is the city itself, busy and cosmopolitan, with its great architecture, museums, cafés and restaurants. Then there is the beach, where you can sunbath and sip a mojito or a shandy in the cool shadow of a chiringuito, as the beach bars are called here.
Just a short drive south you’ll find the famous Penedès wine region, where the much-valued Catalan sparking wine called cava is produced. North of Barcelona, on the other hand, is the rough beauty of the Costa Brava, a stretch of the Mediterranean coast that deserves its very own destination spotlight in a different post.
And then, land inwards, there is the Catalan countryside, full of forests, fields, country houses and rustic charm. All of that at an hour or two from Barcelona airport.
Barcelona is known for the emblematic architecture created by Antoni Gaudí, such as Park Güell or Sagrada Familia, that famous church that has been in construction since 1882 (and no, it is still not finished, see this recent Instagram picture of mine).
Park Guëll provides a wonderful backdrop for an engagement session, as you can see above. But the inner city, especially the old gothic quarter around the cathedral, or the area around the marina, are equally charming.
When it comes to wedding venues in Barcelona, there are plenty of options to chose from. Couples with a higher budget wanting to stay in the city might want to opt for one of the city’s big hotels such as Casa Fuster (another marvelous example of Catalan modernist architecture), or the modern beachfront Hotel W.
Masias, traditional Catalan country houses, are also fantastic wedding venues with lovely outdoor spaces and delicious local cuisine. The often century-old houses just ooze rural Mediterranean charm. Some masias don’t have their own kitchen, but have long-standing relationships with local caterings.
Often times it also works the other way around, caterings have a range of venues they work with, once you have decided on a catering company, they’ll tour different sites with you.
A few masias worth checking out are Masia Ribas, Can Ribas de Montbui, La Garriga del Castelladral. Furthermore two old castles turned hotels: Castell d’Empordà and Parador de Cardona. Or how about a bodega in the Penedès region such as Joan Sardà?
Notwithstanding these (very few) recommendations, I strongly advise you to let a wedding planner help you with the choice of the venue, especially if you don’t speak Spanish or Catalan.
My husband and I had our wedding (ceremony and reception) at a masia in the Penedès region (you can see a picture of our venue here) and provided transportation for our guests, so they could stay in the city.
There is lots to do in Barcelona. A good starting point is to take one of the hop on – hop off busses, which lets you tour the city at your own pace and yet gets you to the most popular sights easily and comfortably.
Tip: You can book for your guests online and maybe include a ticket in their welcome package.
I would like to thank Barcelona wedding photographer Gabby from En Route Photography for providing me with the beautiful images for this post, it’s very much appreciated!!
So…. have I sparked your interest for this versatile and lovely city?