Our Guide to Barcelona

We love Barcelona and if you are following us on social media you might have noticed that we return there in the summers. Our family has an apartment in the Raval area and Barcelona has therefore become almost like a second home to us. It has that rare combination of big city vibe, great weather and long beaches. We have shared a few recommendations on instagram but we wanted to put together a more proper guide of the places we like to visit for good food and family friendly places.

We are leaving out the Gaudí attractions, the Picasso museum and all other regular tourist attractions and focus on good vegetable centered places to eat, great coffee and delicious ice cream. There are thousands of restaurants and places in Barcelona and this is by no means a complete guide. But it’s the places that we often return to or have been recommended by people that know our preferences. If you think we have missed something good, please leave a comment and we might include it when we update the guide.

We have also marked all these places in a Green Kitchen Barcelona on Google Maps so you can easily find them. And to make things even better, we also marked all our favorite playgrounds because they can be pretty tricky to find. (If you don’t have kids you can just close that layer.)

Thanks for following along and enjoy Barcelona!


Cafés

Satans Coffee – This has been one of our favorite coffee bars for years. It’s hidden away in an alley in Gotica. Apart from awesome coffee they serve a couple of cool food options and served quinoa bircher before we did :)

Caravelle – This place quickly became one of our favorites. The ambience and service is great and the coffee is on spot. The food are inventive and taste amazing. You can easily ask for your flat white with oat milk and their cow’s milk comes from small farm just outside Barcelona.

Little Fern Cafe – A New Zealand / Aussie style cafe in Pobleneu with lots of modern veggie options and great coffee. We loved the corn fritters and avocado and smashed pea sandwich. 

Federal Cafe – A typical hipster place with cool interior and good coffee. They allow laptops so we go here when we need to work and enjoy a tomato and melted cheese croissant sandwich.

Bohl – If you are looking for smoothie bowls and porridge bowls in Barcelona, this is the place to go. A beautiful location located in the Eixample neighborhood.

Nømad Coffee Lab & Shop – Specialty coffee roasters with 3 locations serving hot coffee and signature cold brew.

Onna Coffee – Serious coffee café, making their coffee with small batch hand-roasted coffee beans. You can find sweet breakfast and match lattes too. Located in the nice neighbourhood Grácia.

Restaurants 

Bormuth – A classic catalan tapas restaurant in Born that we always return to. It’s decently priced and has many good vegetarian tapas options. Try the red pepper and goat’s cheese, the aubergine with honey and the wilted spinach with pine nuts and raisins.

Teresa CarlesFlax & Kale  – This is a vegetarian institution in Barcelona. Famous for their creative vegetarian food, colorful smoothies and beautiful locations. Teresa Carles was the first restaurant but now they have a few more have two sister restaurants and also Teresas Stairway as their third location focused on smoothies and smaller bites. A little pricey but shouldn’t be missed if you are a vegetarian visiting Barcelona.

El Jardi – A little tapas and drink bar hiding inside a garden in the middle of busy Raval. They often have live music in the afternoons and then it’s well worth stopping by for a drink and a snack.

Bar Lobo -A fancier tapas bar on a quieter street just behind La Rambla. The food is good and the location is pretty although a little expensive. It’s a good place to bring friends to as they have a big outdoor seating area in the sun, but you might want to reserve a table first.

Tantarantana – An old favorite tapas restaurant in Born that we have visited for years. Food and service are great and they make the best fried aubergine.

Honest Greens – New cool and huge restaurant and café with breakfast, lunch and dinner and a separate coffee bar with healthy-ish treats and snacks. Perfect if you are around Plaça de Catalunya and are looking for something green. Extra points for their kombucha on tap.

The Green Spot – A fancier vegetarian restaurant right in the beginning of Barceloneta. We have tried their charcoal pizza with zucchini and smoked burrata, root carpaccio with spirulina and iced turmeric latte with espresso.

Parking Pita / Parking Pizza – These two neighbor places were recommended to us by a bunch of people but we went there without checking their opening hours and came before they were open for dinner (kids life!). We didn’t have time to go back but will def try it next time we are in town. The photos on their instagram look great.

Sopa Barcelona – We haven’t made it here yet but heard that we should go for good vegetarian food and soups. Might be worth a visit if you are in the Poblenou neighborhood.

Baldomero – We haven’t made it here yet, but it has been recommended to us by many. And the photos on their instagram looks aesthetically pleasing with shades of pink and a communal style kitchen.

Väcka – A small vegan place with lots of fun and creative vegan burgers, waffles, vegan cheeses and cakes.

Ice Cream Bars

Gocce Di Latte – A great ice cream bar between Born and Barceloneta. We often stop by here own the way back from the beach. They have an all vegan location around the corner.

Amorino gelato – Super touristy but our kids love that they shape their ice cream into roses. They have serval locations in the city, we usually go to the Portaferrissa street.

Dela Crem – Several people tipped us about this ice cream place which is located on a cosy walking street with several nice cafes and restaurants a little north of Plaça Catalunya. The salted pistachio ice cream was insanely good and their coffee and mascarpone too.

Bar Campana – Located next to a cute courtyard in Born. Worth a stop for their coffee ice cream and good nougat flavors too.

Paralello Gelato – Artisinal ice cream shop. We actually never made it here but it’s on our list for next time.

STORES

Veritas – This is an organic supermarket where we go if we want decently priced and clean ingredient products like nut butters, plant milks, quinoa, vegan ice creams, kombucha, veggie sausages, the best tempeh and tofu. We often stop by here during our first days and stock up on things that we enjoy to keep at home. 

La Bouqeria – The classic market in Barcelona filled with colorful and creatively displayed fruit and vegetables, (sweetened) fruit juices, nuts, cheeses, restaurants (and meats)

Santa Caterina Market – This is a similar market to La Bouqeria but indoor with a little less tourists.

Ferment 9 – An entire shop and workshop space devoted to ferments like sauerkraut, kimchi, vegetables and kombucha. If you love bubbles and gut friendly bacterias, you must stop by and if you haven’t tried it yet, go and get your ferment addiction started.

Origo – An organic sourdough bakery in Graçia, in case you get tired of the standard Spanish baguette type of bread.

Things to do with kids

There are plenty of small playgrounds spread out in every neighborhood in Barcelona and many of them also have a coffee shop or tapas bar next door which we think is excellent. They aren’t really marked on any official maps, so we have marked a few of our favorite playgrounds on our Google Map so you easily can find them. If you are looking for larger playgrounds, check out the parks Joan Miro, 

Labyrinth de Hoerta – Take the metro here and walk up through the peaceful garden, watch the old fountains and then get lost in the large garden labyrinth. We usually bring lunch and have it there as there aren’t any good food options. They have a pretty fun playground as well. 

Tibidabo Amusement Park – A little tivoli on top of a mountain with a view over Barcelona. It’s a fun day trip if you have kids but bring food as they don’t have many vegetarian options other than fries and popcorn.

Beach – Barceloneta is a long beach that can be reached within a 15 minute walk from La Rambla. It’s well taken care of and have lots of lifeguards although water can get a little dirty as with most city beaches. If you rent a bike, it’s worth riding a bit further away to Bogatell beach and further on. Water gets cleaner and it gets a little less crowded. If you are in Bogatell, you should also take a walk up the beautiful Rambla del Poblenou after the beach.

Swimming Pools – There aren’t that many great swimming pools for kids (unless you want to invade one of the hotels). However, if your kids can swim you should go up to one of the two swimming pools on Montjuic. Both places only have deep pools but they are reasonably priced and have 50 meters pools. Piscina Municipal de Montjuïc has an amazing panoramic view over the city but apart from that it’s all very basic with no sunbeds or shadow places. Piscines Bernat Picornell don’t have the view but it has both an indoor and an outdoor pool, lifeguards, sunbeds and a little café.

  

17 Comments

  • When I'm in Barcelona I HAVE to order from Milla's Lunch. It's a plant based fresh lunch delivery service which deliver all across the city to home or work places. If i cant be bothered to cook its only 6€ including delivery. Perfect to take to the beach or park. Her instagram is super fun too and you can see how they make them etc in the kitchen www.instagram.com/millaslunch
  • Kate
    We were at La Sagrada Familia today and asked a woman in the playground for food recommendations, knowing that much of what nearby would be super touristy. She told us about Paisano Cafe - a tiny little Italian place around the corner. I had a delicious smoked salmon salad, with tomatoes, green apple, baby spinach, yoghurt and lime, and they were so wonderful with our toddler. Would highly recommend checking it out.
  • I've pinned your post, thank you so much. Barcelona is on my bucket list. Is it terribly hot in the summer? With global warming I have been reading horror stories about the weather all over the globe.
  • Laura
    Flax & kale is my favourite restaurant in Barcelona!!!
  • Diana Björkman Blania
    Hej! Vill tipsa om Bar Central i Raval, Natas heladeria
  • Fiona
    Thanks for the guide! Can’t wait to try the ice cream shops!
  • Natasha
    Great list. I would also add Café Cometa, El Niño Viejo, Petit Brot, Woki Market, Casa Gispert, as some other places for you to check out.
  • Tibo
    Awesome! How did you know, I’m going to Barcelona in two weeks??? It was perfect timing!!!
  • DP
    Thank you for this list! We'll be traveling with an 18 month old in August. You say playgrounds are hard to find - any advice for how to search google maps for playgrounds, or other sources to find them (other than your list, of course!)?
  • Ana
    Espai Mescladis in Carrer dels Carders, 35
  • Laia
    Great guide! I suggest you include The Living Food store. It should be in any vegan-friendly guide of Barcelona! Their vegan handmade cheeses are a must. They also make handmade tempeh. And they are wonderful people!
  • Sarah Smelik
    Swiit in Gotico deserves a mention for gelato - seasonal, natural, organic, locally and lovingly owned by long-time expats, it's around the corner from our house and we're there at least once a week! It's amaaazing!
  • Lene
    I skulle besøge La Riera lige ved Vallcarca metrostation. Megahyggeligt sted.
  • I love this guide! My mom is going next month, I am sending this to her!
  • I’m adding Barcelona to my bucket list!

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