Where to Stay in Barcelona → 5 Best Areas (Sorted by Price!)

where to stay in Barcelona

Barcelona, although not the capital of Spain, is still one of the most popular travel destinations in Europe and a superb city that has something to offer for all types of travelers out there, regardless if you’re interested in history, architecture, art, culture or gastronomy!

If you are planning a vacation there, you might be wondering where to stay in Barcelona, right? No worries, I’m here to help! In this post you’ll find out everything you need to know about the 5 best neighborhoods to stay in Barcelona together with the best hotel recommendations in each of them (boutique hotels, midrange accommodations, hostels etc).

I, like many others, fell in love with Barcelona and visited it many times! Moreover, I even lived in the city for some time which allowed me to get to know it better (please read all my tips on Barcelona here). So you can rest assured that I only have inside tips for you!

Bunkers del Carmen Lookout 4 Unusual Things To Do In Barcelona Spain

NOTE: By the way, please remember to book as much in advance as you can because all hotels with good reviews always get sold out fast!

Now, let me help you a little bit with the best neighborhoods of Barcelona where it is best to stay for a tourist!

Are you ready? Let’s go!

If you’re in a hurry…

The best area to stay in Barcelona for first-time visitors is Barrio Gotico (the Gothic Quarter). This is the historical and geographical heart of the city and one of the best neighborhoods to stay in Barcelona if you want to be close to all the important landmarks, attractions and activities – not to mention the tapas bars!

Which area should you choose?

First of all, here is a map of all the 5 neighborhoods I am recommending in Barcelona, so you can better visualize them:

best areas to stay in Barcelona

Barcelona is divided into 10 official areas named “districts” and each of them is extremely different from the others. In this article I will recommend 5 neighborhoods where you can stay if you are visiting the city for the first time or if you just want to be close to the most important attractions.

In order to choose the best places to stay in Barcelona for you, I have created this personalized list of recommendations:

  • Best area to stay in Barcelona for luxury: Eixample
  • Best area to stay in Barcelona for budget travelers: El Raval
  • Best area to stay in Barcelona for nightlife: El Born
  • Best area to stay in Barcelona for families: La Barceloneta

For each district or neighborhood, I carefully selected some of the best hotels for every type of budget, be it 5-star hotels, middle-priced accommodations or hostels.

You should know that each of these neighborhoods has unique advantages, so choose the one that fits you most. So, here we go, let’s find out everything you need to know about the 5 best neighborhoods to stay in Barcelona with hand-picked Barcelona accommodations in each of them sorted by your budget:

And here is a video so you can better understand the atmosphere of the best neighborhoods in the city:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5zzEUvThuU

1. Barrio Gotico – where to stay in Barcelona for the first time

Barrio Gotico where to stay in Barcelona for the first time

Barrio Gotico means the Gothic Quarter and it is actually one of the oldest neighborhoods of the city, also known as the Old City Center. This is a very touristic area, buzzing of shops, museums and events, especially during the summer days!

This is definitely the best area in Barcelona for people who are visiting the city for the very first time!

The famous avenue La Rambla is the center of this neighborhood and you can also find the popular La Boqueria Market there – one of the most famous food halls in the entire city where you can go to buy authentic ingredients and food!

This neighborhood is perfect for people who want to do sightseeing, especially those of you who are visiting Barcelona for the very first time. If you stay there, you will be close to the central area and most of the attractions.

2 5 Neighborhoods To Stay In Barcelona (And Best Hotels Recommendations For Each Of Them!) Gothic Quarter

Luxury (US$200 and up)

Because the Gothic Quarter is such a popular and touristic area with a great central location, the rooms are selling out very fast and that’s why I recommend you book yours as soon as possible!

  • Hotel The Serras is a 5-star luxury hotel located right in the heart of the city! I am sure you will fall in love with the infinity pool on the rooftop, the Michelin-starred restaurant and the amazingly decorated rooms! This hotel is actually the building where Pablo Picasso lived and started his career in 1896!
  • The Wittmore has amazing city views and extremely quiet rooms where you will be able to relax after a full day. I am sure you will also enjoy the on-site restaurant and bar where they await you with a wide range of tasty meals and different types of wine! Make sure to book your stay here if you want to be in one of the best hotels in the heart of the city!

Middle-priced (US$110 – US$200)

  • Catalonia Avinyo is a cool 3-star hotel with bright and modern decorated rooms. They even have a rooftop pool and their own gym in case you don’t want to lose your shape during your vacation! Of course, you will be right in the heart of the city, close to many restaurants, clubs and tapas bars if you want to go out and have a good time!
  • Catalonia Portal de l’Angel is located right in between Plaza de Catalunya and Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter. They have free Wi-Fi, delicious breakfast options and lots of nice spots for shopping and dining around. Plus, staying here means you’ll only be a short walk away from all the important attractions in the Old City!

Budget (up to US$110)

  • Hostal Benidorm is a good budget option in the Barrio Gotico, walking distance from the beach. The rooms are clean and modern and you can even stay and relax in the lounge area. The 24-hours reception is a great bonus, as it will give you some flexibility in planning your stay in Barcelona. Get ready to have a great time here!
  • Cuatro Naciones is set in an 18th-century building and is very close to La Rambla. The rooms are very simple and clean, perfect for a comfortable stay in the city. Plus, you will be a short walk away to all the important attractions in one of the best neighborhoods in Barcelona!

2. La Barceloneta – where to stay in Barcelona with a family

La Barceloneta where to stay in Barcelona with a family

I am sure you heard about the famous Barceloneta Beach before, have you? It is one of the authentic neighborhoods of Barcelona and also the most demanded one amongst tourists!

Barceloneta is the perfect area for beach lovers! The city has a coastline of six kilometers of beaches and the very first one and most accessible is Barceloneta. This transformed it into a place full of tourists, but also of amazing seafood restaurants where you can get to taste the real Spanish cuisine!

Here are my recommendations of hotels – all of them have fabulous reviews, great location close to the beach and I also sorted them out by price for your convenience:

1 5 Neighborhoods To Stay In Barcelona (And Best Hotels Recommendations For Each Of Them!) La Barceloneta

Luxury (US$200 and up)

  • W Barcelona is probably the most famous hotel in Barcelona and a landmark of the city, as you can clearly see it on the beach. It offers excellent service, amazing design and a unique view over the sea and the entire city. The perfect place for a luxury, signature stay in Barcelona!
  • Hotel Arts Barcelona one of the best boutique hotels in Barceloneta on the beach that stands up with its cool outdoor pools, panoramic city views and incredible spa where you can completely relax after a day of exploring Barcelona. It even has its own hair salon and luxury boutiques and the spacious rooms will make you feel like a queen/king!

Middle-priced (US$110 – US$200)

  • NH Hesperia Barcelona del Mar is another cool 4-star hotel, only 4 minutes away from the beach, even though it is a bit more far away from Barceloneta beach (closer to Sant Martí neighborhood). This one awaits you with amazing restaurants that serve traditional Spanish cuisine!
  • Som Nit Born is a beautiful guest house, only 10 minutes walking from the beach, located in the middle of a wide range of tapas bars and restaurants that serve traditional Spanish cuisine!

Budget (up to US$110)

As you might have already guessed, I haven’t found any good budget options in Barceloneta, as it is one of the most popular and touristic places in the city. If you really want to stay close to the beach and save some money I suggest you to check out the budget hotels in the previous area (Gothic Quarter), still walking distance from it!

3. Eixample – the most exlusive neighborhood

Eixample the most luxury neighborhood

Eixample is a newer neighborhood than, for example, the Gothic Quarter. It was built on a grid system called “superblock”, it’s very geometric and some of the best city planners worked on it. I definitely recommend it to travelers that are planning to be based in one of the best areas in Barcelona for an upscale stay!

This is the perfect spot to stay in if you want to be as close as possible to some of Antoni Gaudi’s masterpieces such as Sagrada Familia, Casa Batllo and La Padrera.

Eixample is not as crowded, as it is made of large avenues where you can have a nice walk and discover the city. It is also very close to the city center and if you want to stay in some of the most gorgeous boutique hotels in Barcelona, this is the place to be!

That being said, here are the best hotels I could find in one of the best areas around:

3 5 Neighborhoods To Stay In Barcelona (And Best Hotels Recommendations For Each Of Them!) Eixample

Luxury (US$200 and up)

  • Monument Hotel – This is my first luxury recommendation and a gorgeous hotel located only 5 minutes away from Casa Batllo and La Pedrera, as well as Passeig de Gràcia. Besides being near some of Gaudi’s masterpieces, Monument Hotel awaits you with an amazing gourmet restaurant with 3 Michelin stars. You should also know that this hotel is actually Enric Batllo’s house from the 19th century, so you will literally stay in a monument!
  • Ohla Eixample – When I said that Eixample has some of the best boutique hotels in the city, I wasn’t kidding! During your stay here, you will be spoiled with a heated outdoor pool, a Michelin-starred restaurant and gorgeous, spacious rooms! Plus, it’s located very close to Passeig de Gràcia, one of the most important venues in Barcelona!

Middle-priced (US$110 – US$200)

  • Ona Hotels Mosaic – Here’s an amazing hotel featuring air-conditioned and spacious rooms with a private terrace or balcony! Located in a historic building in the heart of Rambla Catalunya, the hotel is also very close to Gaudi’s houses, Passeig de Gràcia and tons of tapas bars.
  • HCC St. Moritz is a cool and super modern 4-star hotel with middle-priced options. I am sure you will enjoy the exceptional breakfast and the on-site restaurant and bar! By the way, staying here means you’ll be in one of the best neighborhoods in the city, close to plenty tapas bars and pubs, so get ready to have a good time here!

Budget (up to US$110)

  • Rodamon Barcelona Hostel is the best budget accommodation if you REALLY want to save some money during your stay in Barcelona! Set in a 19th-century building, this great hostel offers simple rooms and dorms with access to a communal lounge area and kitchen. A great place to make international friends!
  • 360 Hostel Barcelona Arts&Culture is another good budget hostel with nice rooms. You can also benefit from the shared kitchen where you can cook your meals. This hostel is super close to Placa de Catalunya (750m away), so you can rest assured that you are close to Barcelona’s heart.

4. El Born – where to stay in Barcelona for nightlife

Barcelona Passes – which one is worth the money arc de triomphe

Are you a night owl looking to dance the night away? Then search no more, as El Born is one of the best areas for nightlife!

El Born is another historical area of Barcelona, in fact, it is part of the Ciutat Vella (Old City), but a little bit more modern than the Gothic Quarter. I recommend it for people who want to enjoy the city’s nightlife.

If you pass right through the Arc de Triomf you will reach the beautiful area of El Born, a place rich in good restaurants and tapas bars. You can also find there Santa Caterina Market, a food hall almost as popular as Boqueria!

NOTE: There aren’t that many accommodation options in the gorgeous neighborhood of El Born, so I recommend you book yours as soon as you can:

4 5 Neighborhoods To Stay In Barcelona (And Best Hotels Recommendations For Each Of Them!) El Born

Luxury (US$200 and up)

  • K+K Hotel Picasso 4* Superior is one of the best boutique hotels in Barcelona, that awaits you with a rooftop swimming pool, contemporary décors, and free Wi-Fi. You can also have some great meals at their on-site restaurant, or you can relax with a delicious cocktail at their amazing bar! Plus, staying here means you’ll be close to many tapas bars and nightlife places, so get ready for an unforgettable time in Barcelona!
  • Doquesa Suites is my second luxury recommendation and I am sure you will like the fact that the hotel is actually a building from the 18th century, just 6-minute walk from the beach! The rooms are super chic and clean and they have access to a cool rooftop pool. Make sure to book a room here if your dream is to stay in one of the best areas for nightlife!

Middle-priced (US$110 – US$200)

  • Ciutat de Barcelona is actually a 3-stars boutique hotel featuring a rooftop swimming pool, a restaurant, and stylish rooms with free Wi-Fi! One of the best middle-priced hotels in one of the best areas around!
  • Barcelona Hotel Colonial is my second middle-priced recommendation in this area. This 4-stars hotel has one of the best locations: it takes only 15 minutes to go to the beach by foot and is very central in the city. What more would you need?!

Budget (up to US$110)

  • Factory Gardens Barcelona is my recommendation for every budget traveler that wishes to stay in El Born. The rooms are very simple and clean and they will offer everything you need for a good quality budget stay in Barcelona. Make sure to book your stay here and you’ll be close to many nightlife options and other interesting sights around!

5. El Raval – to stay on a budget

El Raval where to stay in Barcelona on a budget

In case you want to taste some of the real Barcelona life, with both its good and bad sides, El Raval is your choice! It is one of the most controversial neighborhoods of the city, as you will get to see there very clearly the multiculturalism and gentrification of Barcelona.

El Raval is bursting with hipster cafes and cool shops and there are things happening every minute over there! Plus, it’s located close to El Poble Sec as well, so you can visit it if you want!

I recommend it to youngsters who don’t mind the vivid Barcelona vibe!

If you feel like this is the best area for you, here are the top hotels in El Raval I have hand-picked for you:

5 5 Neighborhoods To Stay In Barcelona (And Best Hotels Recommendations For Each Of Them!) El Raval

Luxury (US$200 and up)

  • Hotel 1898 is a 4-star hotel located right along the famous La Rambla street, in the heart of El Raval! It is actually a 19th-century building that was restored and transformed into luxury accommodation with a heated rooftop pool, a cool restaurant, a sun terrace and more! Definitely one of the best boutique hotels around!
  • Catalonia Ramblas 4* Sup is another 4-star accommodation, walking distance from Placa Catalunya. You can taste the authentic Catalan cuisine, bathe in the awesome outdoor or indoor pool or get an awesome massage! Plus, it’s also close to El Poble Sec and other interesting sights around!

Middle-priced (US$110 – US$200) 

  • Hotel Raval House – is an amazing middle-priced accommodation that also has an outside swimming pool, awesome rooftop terrace and some delicious breakfast options, all for accessible, middle prices!
  • Gaudi Hotel – Do you want to stay in a stunning hotel in Barcelona where you will have a view of Park Guell on the terrace? Then this is the place to be! Gaudi Hotel has very clean and modern rooms, a great bar, laundry and ironing services and more!

Budget (up to US$110)

  • Hostal Operaramblas is a great budget hostel in El Raval, Barcelona. The rooms are tidy and decorated in a simple manner, perfect for relaxing and having a good night’s sleep. You will also find many cool cafes and restaurants in the surrounding area! This accommodation is also close to El Poble Sec and other cool landmarks around. Just make sure you book your room far in advance if you don’t want to loose the spot!
  • Ronda House is another good idea for its incredible location, comfy and simple rooms, and very good breakfasts with a lot of choices! Book your stay here if you want to be in one of the best budget areas in Barcelona and get ready to have an enjoyable time!
🛏️ Budget: €50
🏨 Mid Range: €150
👑 Luxury price: €300
🏠 Airbnb: €80
💰 Accommodation prices: Medium
📍 Best Area: Barrio Gothico
🛎️ Best luxury hotel: Hotel The Serras
💵 Mid-range hotel: Ciutat de Barcelona
👛 Best budget hotel: Cuatro Naciones

BONUS 1: Best apartments in Barcelona

Best apartments in Barcelona

Maybe you’re the type of traveler that prefers a cozier, homey feeling when they’re traveling, right? In which case I will tell you that I feel the same! Luckily for both of us, Barcelona has TONS of amazing Airbnb options that will satisfy any preference and pocket size.

Below I have selected the best apartments in Barcelona, all of them in the city center and with fabulous reviews:

Luxury (US$200 and up)

  • Esplendido apto de tres dormitorios con terraza – This is definitely one of the best luxury apartments in Barcelona, just check out the pictures and you’ll understand what I mean! Plus, it has a great central location in one of the best areas in the city – the town center! It’s the best place if you’re looking for a local atmosphere and lots of tapas bars!
  • Elegant Zen Studio with Superb View of Las Ramblas – Here’s another excellent choice for all travelers looking for a superb place. This one looks amazing and it’s also very well located, with quick access to all the main attractions in the city, including Las Ramblas. Keep an eye out if they’re free during your dates!

Middle-priced (US$70 – U$200)

hotel barcelona

  • Gorgeous vintage room with AC (Old Town) – This beautiful room in a shared apartment is very well located, right in the soul of the Old Town, close to all the important attractions and activities in Barcelona. Clean and cozy!
  • BEACH & HEART OF BARCELONA (PRIVATE ROOM) – This is another private room in an apartment that I recommend to all those of you that are looking to save some money on accommodation. Plus, the location is pretty close to the beach as well!

Budget (up to US$70)

  • Double room in the heart of Barcelona – Here’s an awesome private room that’s also very well located, right in the city center. It’s the best place to book if you’re looking to live like locals and have a good stay in the city!
  • Room near the center – This private room for two has lovely views from the balcony and is definitely one of the best budget accommodations located so close to the city center. It is only a 10-minute walk to the subway and various bus stations.

BONUS 2: Best hotels near Barcelona El Prat Airport

Best hotels near Barcelona El Prat Airport

Barcelona El Prat Airport (BCN) is the main airport in the city and most probably the place where you’ll land if you arrive to the city by plane. The airport is located 15 km from the city center, which means around 20 minutes by car with no traffic.

In case you have a very late or very early flight, a wise idea would be to book your stay as close to the airport as possible. If you have decided to do so, here are the best airport hotels I have selected for you (one for each type of budget):

  • (Luxury) Gava Ocean View – Here’s my recommendation for all travelers that are looking for easy access to El Prat Airport while also enjoying a super luxurious stay! This accommodation is very well placed, only 10 km from the airport.
  • (Middle-priced) Ciutat del Prat – This awesome hotel offers great value for the money you’ll be paying and it is also very well located, only 3.2 km from the airport!
  • (Budget) Airhostel Barcelona Airport – Are you traveling on a tight budget but still looking for accommodation close to El Prat? No worries, this one is a good choice at only 3 km from the airport, and offers free shuttle service!

Frequently Asked Questions about Hotels in Barcelona


📍Where to stay in Barcelona for the first time?

The best area to stay in Barcelona for the first time is Barrio Gotico, the old city center. Choose The Wittmore for luxury or the more affordable Catalonia Avinyo!

🏖️ Where to stay in Barcelona near the beach?

The best area to stay in Barcelona near the beach is Barceloneta, a great option also for families! Here you find the best boutique hotels, such as W Barcelona or Hotel Arts Barcelona.

💸 Where to stay in Barcelona on a budget?

The best area to stay in Barcelona on a budget is the multicultural Raval, either in the Hostal Operaramblas or Ronda House, both very cheap!

🍹Where to stay in Barcelona for nightlife?

The best area to stay in Barcelona for nightlife is El Born, rich in good restaurants and tapas bars! Stay at Ciutat de Barcelona or
Barcelona Hotel Colonial, both offering great value for price!

Conclusion

Barcelona Passes – which one is worth the money park guell 2

Yay, you have reached the end of my complete post on the best neighborhoods and hotels in the city! Barcelona is so unique and diverse, it was really hard finding only 5 neighborhoods to recommend! Each of these areas are very different from each other, and the choice really depends on your own preferences and budget!

I want to give you my 2 favorite hotels in the best area, the Gothic Quarter, both with great reviews:

  • The Wittmore – One of the best boutique hotels in the heart of Barcelona, with amazing city views!
  • Catalonia Avinyo – A cool 3-star hotel in the heart of the city, close to the best attractions!

The city is definitely worth visiting, I have spent 3 months there, and it still was not enough!

I hope my ultimate guide on where to stay in Barcelona, with the best areas and hotels, has helped you to decide on which area is the best for you to stay in and find your perfect accommodation!

NOTE: However, if you want to read my tips on things to do in Barcelona, how to avoid the crazy lines to Sagrada Familia, what to visit outside Barcelona and more, please click here to find all my content about this beautiful city!

As usual, do not hesitate to ask me any questions in the comments section below if you want to ask for additional information, it is always welcomed!

Yulia

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14 Comments

  1. Maria Sales 19.08.2020 at 01:42
    • Yulia MissTourist 14.10.2020 at 18:33
  2. Ethan Scott 16.06.2020 at 18:24
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  3. Amy Peck 02.01.2020 at 22:07
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