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Museums in Barcelona

With over 70 different museums and exhibition spaces, Barcelona offers something for everyone. Highlights like the Picasso Museum and the Fundació Joan Miró are a must-see for art enthusiasts, as well as the MNAC, which houses the largest collection of Catalan art. Those interested in the history of Barcelona should definitely visit the MUHBA. Architecturally, Barcelona boasts a wide array of monumental buildings worth seeing, such as Casa Batlló and Casa Milà. Football fans should not miss a visit to the museum of FC Barcelona.

Famous Museums in Barcelona

Fun Attractions in Barcelona

Best Museums in Barcelona

Barcelona offers a wide range of museums in various fields: art, culture, history, science, sport, architecture… From fun museums for the whole family, like the Illusion Museum, to small-scale museums with diverse collections, such as the Museum of Ancient Egypt, or special exhibitions featuring leading artists, like the annual World Press Photo at the CCCB.

The list of most visited museums in Barcelona include:

  1. FC Barcelona museum
  2. Born Centre Cultural
  3. Picasso Museum
  4. Museu d’Història de la Ciutat (MUHBA)
  5. Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC)
  6. Fundació Joan Miró
  7. Montjuïc Castle
  8. CosmoCaixa
  9. Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona (Museu Blau)
  10. Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA)

But which museums are really worth visiting? To guide you through the long list of museums in Barcelona, I’ve curated a list of my top 5 favorite museums in the city. Additionally, on this page you’ll find valuable tips for optimizing your museum experience in Barcelona. With these insights, you can ensure that your visit is both enjoyable and enriching.

My Favorite Museums in Barcelona

Over the years, I have visited many museums in Barcelona and have developed my own top 5 favorite museums. The Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC) is, in my opinion, a fantastic art museum. It showcases the rich art history of Catalonia with some top pieces by renowned artists. The Museu d’Història de Barcelona (MUHBA) is a must for those interested in the city’s history and the Museu d’Història de Catalunya for the history of Catalonia. The last two museums in my top five are dedicated to two top artists who lived in Barcelona: Picasso and Miró.

Visiting Museums in Barcelona: Tips and Tricks

As a cultural capital of Catalonia, Barcelona offers many museum options. The quality of these museums is reflected in their visitor numbers: many of the museums in Barcelona reach a million visitors per year! Therefore, buying tickets online in advance for the most popular museums in Barcelona is advisable, especially if you want to avoid long queues at the ticket office. Below, I’ve gathered some tips and information that might be useful in preparation for your visit to a museum in Barcelona.

Museum Tickets

Unlike other major cities, visiting a museum in Barcelona requires paying an entrance fee. To avoid long queues at the ticket office, you can opt to buy your tickets online in advance. Most museums now offer online tickets through their own websites or partner sites. Advance booking is usually required for guided tours or specific tours.

Discounts on Museums

There are multiple ways to visit museums in Barcelona at a discount. For example, you can use the following discount passes. Additionally, children up to 16 years often enter many museums for free. Students often get discounts upon presenting their student ID. Seniors (+65) and disabled individuals can also receive discounts.

As a city resident, you can benefit from discounts at many museums in Barcelona if you are a member of GaudirMés (by registering your fingerprint with the municipality) or during the summer campaign “Estiueja al teu modernisme” (by signing up at the Ruta del Modernisme’s campaign site).

If you can prove that you are a resident of Catalonia, you also receive discounts at various places such as Casa Milà and Palau de la Música Catalana.

Museum Pass

In Barcelona, there are various museum passes, such as the Articket for art lovers, the Arqueoticket for history enthusiasts, and the Gaudí Pass for Gaudí fans. Another popular pass is the Barcelona Card, which allows unlimited travel on public transport and free access to as many as 25 museums in Barcelona, along with various discounts on other museums and attractions.

  • Barcelona Card: To visit various museums in Barcelona affordably, it is advisable to purchase a Barcelona Card. With the Barcelona Card, you also benefit from free public transport and discounts at various shops and restaurants. The following museums offer free entry with the Barcelona Card: Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), Fundació Joan Miró, Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Museu d’Història de Barcelona, Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA), Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB), Museu del Modernisme de Barcelona (MMBCN), and Museu Egipci.
  • Articket: If you are an art enthusiast, the Articket Barcelona is for you. The Articket gives you free access to the city’s best art museums: Museu Picasso, Fundació Joan Miró, Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), Centre de Cultura Contemporànea de Barcelona (CCCB), Fundació Antoni Tàpies, and Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA). It’s good to know that the Articket costs only €30 per person and is already more economical than visiting just 2 of these museums!
  • Arqueoticket: For history enthusiasts, there is Arqueoticket, a multi-ticket that offers discounts at four different history museums: Museu d’Arqueologia de Catalunya, Museu Egipci, Museu d’Història de Barcelona (MUHBA), and Museu Marítim de Barcelona. The Arqueoticket costs only €13 per person and is valid for an entire year.

Visiting Museums for Free

Many museums in Barcelona are free on certain days, like every first Sunday of the month, and during special events like 48h Open House and Museum Night. For this, it’s advisable to check the museums’ websites in advance.

Museum Tours

Most museums offer special guided tours, often in Spanish or Catalan, but also in English. Unless your Spanish is good enough, it’s advisable to join the English-speaking tour to not miss any of the explanations. These tours are often conducted in small groups and are the best way to get to know a museum or exhibition well. Some museums also offer special tours for children.

Some places like the Teatre Liceu and Palau de la Música Catalana can only be visited during a guided tour.

Another option is to hire a private guide who will show you around the city (and museums). In Barcelona, only officially recognized guides are allowed to lead tours within museums and attractions.

Museum Opening Hours

In general, museums in Barcelona open every day from 10:00 am to 7:00 or 8:00 pm. Many museums extend their opening hours during the summer and offer special evening openings. Some museums are also closed on Mondays. Therefore, check the opening hours of the museum you want to visit in advance.

Events in Museums

Museums in Barcelona also maintain a busy agenda with numerous events and temporary exhibitions. This makes visiting a museum you’ve already been to always interesting. Don’t miss the music evenings held in the summer at various places, such as Casa Milà and Casa Batlló. Other fun events are the 48h Open House and Museum Night, which offer free access to many museums in the city.

Museums for Children

Barcelona has numerous child-friendly museums. Most museums also offer children’s activities or special tours for families and schools. Some popular museums among children in Barcelona are the CosmoCaixa (Science Museum), the Museu de la Xocolata (Chocolate Museum), and the Museu Marítim (Maritime Museum). Events for the little ones are also regularly held at the Poble Espanyol (Spanish Village).

Children of young age often enter museums for free or at a reduced rate. For teenagers, it is advisable to bring a student ID, ID card, or passport in case they need proof of their age.