There are a lot of things to do in Barcelona. You’ll probably find yourself seduced by the exciting nightlife and the social scene! But most importantly, Barcelona is a city of art, culture and architecture. If you haven’t explored the cultural side of the city yet, don’t worry – below we have gathered a list of the top museums (many of them with free admission on Sundays!) in Barcelona that is surely going to inspire you to start now!
Museu Picasso opened its doors in 1963 being the only Museum dedicated exclusively to Picasso’s art when the artist was still alive. Picasso Museum consist of the most extensive collection of Picasso’s art with its more than 3 500 pieces in the permanent exhibition. The art collection consist mostly of Picasso’s early years including the Blue period (1901-1904). The highlights of the show are two pieces of art, the First Communion and Science and Charity.
Where: C/ Montcada 15-23
Metro: Jaume I Arc de Triomf & Liceu
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC)
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, shortened as MNAC, is located at the beautiful Italian style building of the Palau Nacional. Here you can enjoy the view of Plaça Espanya and the Fira de Montjüic. The building itself is worth a visit, but also the museum inside houses a remarkable collection of Romanesque art and collection of Catalan art from the 19th to 20th century.
Where: Palau Nacional, Parc de Montjuïc, s/n, 08038
Metro: Pl. Espanya
Casa Milà (La Pedrera)
The Casa Milà building along the Passeig de Gracia is one of Gaudí’s most memorable works in Barcelona. The building was originally built as an apartment complex where the first 2 floors belonged to the wealthy owners of the building. Today it functions as a museum that takes visitors back to the day in the life of a resident of this complex. There are even some samples of Gaudí’s original interior designs and furniture on display. Also, don’t miss out on the chic cafe located on the main floor!
Where: Provença, 261-265, 08008
Museu d’Història de Barcelona (MUHBA)
The Museu d’Història de Barcelona is located under the Plaça Reial in the Gothic Quarter. These Roman ruins were discovered by accident in the 1920’s when the Gothic quarter was dug up to make room for a new avenue. The museum exhibits the archaeological excavation itself including materials like silver, glass, gold and stone, ceramics and coins found at the archaeological digs.
Where: Plaça del Rei, s/n,
Metro: Jaume I
Fundació Antonio Tápies
Antonio Tápies was a Catalán artist is said to be the last of the greatest painters of the 20th century. He started as a surrealist artist and took influence from the work of Joan Miró. Afterwards he changed his style and started using materials such as marble dust. Most of Antonio Tápies’ work reflects the social and political environment at the time in his life. Fundació Antonio Tápies was established by himself and the collection grows every year from donations from him and his wife.
Where: Carrer d’Aragó, 255
Metro: Passeig de Gracia
Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona
The Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB) is one of the most visited art and exhibition centres in Barcelona. This large centre was designed by the architects Piñon and Viaplana who were also involved in building the Maremàgnum shopping center. CCCB hosts exhibitions, festivals, debates and concerts. Their mission is not only to exhibit contemporary art but also to increase knowledge through creative researches and thematic exhibitions.
Where: Montalegre, 5.
Metro: Universitat & Plaça Catalunya
Fundacio Jospeh Suñol is private non-profit foundation located in a beautiful white building in Passeig de Gracia. The foundation’s idea is based on exhibiting a private collection of 1,200 pieces of contemporary art and spreading the knowledge of avant-garde production. You will find art by multiple famous artist from Salvador Dalí to Andy Warhol, all under one roof!
Where: Passeig de Gràcia, 98
Museu Marítim de Barcelona
Spain was once the most powerful force on the sea. With the largest navy and strongest ships, they conquered the New World. The Museu Marítim will take you back to this time in history. At this exhibition you will find the most amazing ships and learn how shipbuilding has changed over the years to this day.
Where: Av. de les Drassanes s/n
Metro: Drassanes & Paral·lel
Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA)
You will find the MACBA located at Plaça del Àngels (el Raval). The Museum is a huge white building with a glass wall to give natural light to the exhibition space. Richard Meier designed the museum, which cost roughly $35 million to complete and was finished in 1995 even though it was planned to be ready for the summer Olympics in 1992. The museum has more than 5000 pieces of contemporary art which they show a bit at a time. If you enjoy today’s art this is a place you can visit more than once.
Where: Plaça dels Àngels, 1
Metro: L1, L2 (Universitat) and L3 (Catalunya or Liceu)
Fundació Joan Miró
Fundació Joan Miró was founded by Joan Miró himself. In 1968 he got the idea to encourage the younger contemporary artists of Barcelona to continue with this less typical art style. The museum consists of a permanent exhibition of Miró’s art and edge-cutting work of other artists with temporary exhibitions. The building was designed to smoothly lead you through the exhibitions and terraces for the statues to fulfil unique ambiance in line with the art.
Where: Parc de Montjuïc
Buses: 55 & 150 or Montjüic Funicular from metro Paral-lel
Museu Europeu d’Art Modern (MEAM)
The Foundation of Arts and Artists owns the Museu Europeu d’Art Modern – also known as the MEAM. The exhibition place is located inside a contemporary, figurative art palace located to El Born area, where the artists actually live! This makes the MEAM different from other contemporary art museum in Spain! The Foundation also arranges a yearly award ceremony dedicated to respected figurativas painters and sculptures.
Where: C/ Barra de Ferro
Metro: Jaume I
CaixaForum is one of the multiple cultural centres that are established by La Caixa Bank. CaixaForum is located in the old clothing factory, Casa Casarramona, that represents the Modernism buildings in Barcelona. It opened in 2002 and hosts exhibitions of well-known artists’ from ancient to contemporary arts which makes CaixaForum versatile and interesting venue to visit.
Where: Av. Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia, 6-8
Metro: Plaça Espanya
Enjoy this article? Also check out our extensive list of lesser known but very exciting museums in Barcelona here! And if you’re a fan of cultural experiences and enjoy visiting these galleries and museums with groups of like-minded people, join us on one of our many FREE guided visits of Barcelona’s top museums! Enjoy exploring!