Barcelona is a hugely passionate city, and that holds true when it comes to sports as well.
As home to one of the most legendary soccer teams in the country as well as several other noteworthy clubs, Barcelona offers sports fans plenty to experience. Whether you want to step back in time to experience Olympic magic or check out the most exciting teams of the modern age, there’s a whole wealth of experiences waiting for you at the many stadiums in Barcelona. Here are a few of our favorites that you should definitely include on your itinerary!
Camp Nou (FC Barcelona)
When it comes to stadiums in Barcelona, you can’t get any better than Camp Nou. As home to the legendary FC Barcelona soccer team, it can hold nearly 100,000 passionate fans. This makes it the largest stadium in Europe, and the second largest in the world! Although it opened in 1957 under the name “Estadi del FC Barcelona,” fans began referring to it as “el camp nou,” or “the new field,” to distinguish it from the club’s former stomping grounds. The name stuck and became the official moniker of the stadium during the 2000-01 season.
Touring this iconic stadium is a must when visiting Barcelona, even if you don’t fancy yourself much of a soccer fan. There are various tours available at different price points depending on what you want to see. Check out the team’s five European cups, feel your heart race as you enter the field through the tunnel, live the history of the club at the fascinating museum and more. No matter which option you choose, you’re in for a treat at one of the most important stadiums in Barcelona.
Address: Calle d’Aristides Maillol, 12
Some fans may remember watching the 1992 Barcelona Olympics on TV. Now that you’re in town, you can visit the most important venues from the games and relive the magic! The city’s Olympic Ring has actually been around since 1929, when it was built for the Barcelona Universal Exposition. It was also the planned venue for the controversial 1936 Olympics, which eventually took place in Berlin. After falling into disuse for decades, the stadium got a complete makeover in the 1980s just in time for the Olympics in 1992.
Perched on Montjuïc Hill overlooking the city, the complex consists of three areas: the Olympic Stadium, Palau Sant Jordi, and the Olympic Esplanade. Despite being one of the most historic stadiums in Barcelona, tours are absolutely free! The grandeur of the stadium will take your breath away and create memories to last a lifetime.
Address: Passeig Olímpic, 15-17
One of the newer stadiums in Barcelona, RCDE Stadium, is home to the city’s other major soccer team: RCD Espanyol. The team had played at the Olympic Stadium for 12 seasons, but moved into this state-of-the-art facility in 2009. It has the honor of being the third-largest stadium in Barcelona, with a capacity of 40,000, and is one of the most modern stadiums in Europe.
Although the stadium itself is quite new, the tour is not lacking in history. A fascinatingly modern augmented reality section will show you some of the best moment’s from the club’s storied history, practically making you feel as if you’ve been transported back in time. You’ll also be able to see the team’s museum, where portraits and jerseys of legendary players, gilded trophies and more adorn the space. And of course, you’ll get VIP access to areas such as the locker room and press room, walking in the footsteps of your favorite players.
Address: Avenida del Baix Llobregat, 100
Just across the street from the legendary Camp Nou sits a smaller, lesser-known FC Barcelona facility. The Mini Estadi (“mini stadium”), known locally as the Mini, typically hosts FC Barcelona’s B-team and women’s team, as well as some youth teams. With a respectable capacity of nearly 16,000, it’s often dwarfed by its larger counterpart, but should not be overlooked.
Despite its smaller size and cute-sounding name, the Mini has played host to several important matches since its inauguration in 1982. One of the most important was the 1983-84 King’s Cup game, in which Barça’s B-team tied with Real Madrid’s first team in a historic result. Quite a few musical legends—including Queen, Elton John and David Bowie—have also played shows there. Although you can’t tour the stadium itself, it’s worth stopping by to check out a game and experience this integral part of FC Barcelona.
Address: Calle d’Aristides Maillol, s/n
Tucked away in picturesque Gracia, one of the smaller stadiums in Barcelona is easy to miss. Nou Sardenya is home to the CE Europa club. This historic team was one of the founding members of La Liga and won the Catalan championship in 2015. Their stadium, while on the smaller side with a total capacity of about 7,000, gets packed with passionate fans on game days, making it a great place to have an authentic experience among local fans.
The stadium itself does not offer official tours. However, it is usually open to the public on training days, during which time you’re free to explore the stadium at your own pace. It’s a great way to get up close and personal with a team that can truly be considered a hidden gem. This is one of the must-visit stadiums in Barcelona for diehard soccer fans who want to get off the beaten path.
Address: Carrer de les Camèlies, 42BWant our insider’s guide to eating in Barcelona? Just add your email address in the form below!
Life is too short to speak one language and stay in one place. In 2015, this philosophy took her from familiar Ohio to sunny southern Spain. Usually drinking tinto de verano, reading Lorca, or attempting to dance flamenco (not all at once). Follow her blog, Viatic Couture, for more.