Insider’s Guide to Visiting the Sagrada Familia

A trip to Barcelona would be incomplete without visiting its most iconic (though unfinished) masterpiece!

The Sagrada Familia is often at the top of any list you’ll find about things to do in Barcelona, and for good reason. From the glittering stained glass windows to the towering columns and arches to the intricate details in the architecture, every aspect of this incredible church will take your breath away. However, even the most impressive sites can be overwhelming if you don’t plan ahead! This guide to visiting the Sagrada Familia will help you make the most of your time at one of Barcelona’s top monuments.

Planning on visiting the Sagrada Familia? This guide will help you make the most of your visit!

Photo Credit: Gary Campbell-Hall, Text Overlay: Devour Barcelona Food Tours

Buying tickets

First things first: before visiting the Sagrada Familia, you need tickets! Luckily, you have a few options when it comes to securing your spot. We strongly recommend buying tickets online in advance before you visit. This will ensure you get in, help you avoid waiting in long lines, and even save you money!

Another money- and time-saving option is to buy the Barcelona Card. This handy tourist pass ensures skip-the-line access to the city’s most important sights, including the Sagrada Familia!

If you’re more flexible, you can also simply wait to buy tickets the day of your visit. Just be aware that lines can get quite long, and capacity is limited so you’re not guaranteed a spot.

Tip number one in our guide to visiting the Sagrada Familia: buy your tickets online to avoid long lines like this one!
Lines at the ticket office can be long, so buy online if possible! Photo credit: Ted & Dani Percival

How to get there

The next step in visiting the Sagrada Familia: navigating your way through Barcelona in order to arrive! The famous church is tucked away in a corner of the Eixample district not far from Gracia. If you don’t want to walk, you can easily get there on public transportation. Metro lines 2 and 5 both stop at the Sagrada Familia station. There are also quite a few local buses that pass by on their routes.

Once you arrive, you can access the general entrance along Carrer de la Marina. If you still need to buy tickets, you can do so at the ticket office on the opposite side of the building (along Carrer de Sardenya).

Visiting the Sagrada Familia is a must when in Barcelona!
The inside of Sagrada Familia will blow you away! Photo credit: Iwao Kobayashi

Important highlights

Just about everywhere you look inside the Sagrada Familia is impressive! However, knowing exactly what you’re looking at can make the experience much more fulfilling.

First of all, you’ve probably noticed that the church is still under construction (and has been for more than 130 years)! This obviously creates quite a bit of difference in the colors and styles used throughout the church. The contrasted coloring of the stone used in the front and the back of the building is quite noticeable. Try to spot differences in the architecture between the old and new parts, too!

For truly breathtaking views of the city, climb up one of the four towers via a combination of elevators and winding staircases. The hike up is quite steep and narrow, but once you’re there, you’ll be rewarded with spectacular views that look like something off of a postcard.

Go below ground and check out the Gaudi Museum in the basement of the Sagrada Familia. This unique and fascinating museum gives more context and a closer look into the iconic architect’s life and work.

After visiting the Sagrada Familia, be sure to check out the Gaudi museum in the basement.
Step inside the mind of a genius at the Gaudi museum below the Sagrada Familia! Photo credit: Shannon

Before or after visiting the Sagrada Familia, be sure to join us for a food tour! Our Gracia Neighborhood Food Tour takes you through the lovely, authentic barrio of Gracia, a pleasant and short walk from the famous church. Get off the beaten path and step into some of the neighborhood’s best-loved cafes and bars. Taste their best bites and learn why locals have loved these places for generations!

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.

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