bentoninn Destination 16 Bucket-List Museums In Barcelona, Spain

16 Bucket-List Museums In Barcelona, Spain

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Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an art lover, or a sports fan, Barcelona has a treasure trove of world-class museums offering legendary permanent exhibitions.

You’ll find renowned gems such as the Picasso Museum, Miró Foundation, and MACBA, where masterpieces and avant-garde creations await. 

Delve into the intriguing world of architect Antoni Gaudí at the Gaudí House Museum, in Park Güell, or explore the city’s naval history at the Maritime Museum of Barcelona.

Families will gravitate towards the kid-friendly Big Fun Museum of Illusions, while football lovers will have the best time while visiting the FC Barcelona Museum, in the Camp Nou Stadium.

This comprehensive guide unveils the top 16 most famous museums in Barcelona.

While browsing through this carefully curated list, you’ll find many remarkable institutions, showcasing art exhibitions, century-old relics, fascinating Roman ruins, and more. 

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The 16 Best Museums in Barcelona, Spain

Picasso Museum

Photo Credit: csp/Shutterstock

Museo Picasso is one of the most celebrated art museums in Barcelona.

The museum is located in the history-filled Gothic Quarter (Barri Gotic), within five palaces beautifully decorated wit Gothic archways, and lavish rooms with epic-painted ceilings.

Opened in 1963, it was the first museum dedicated to the work of legendary Spanish painter Pablo Picasso.

Inside, you’ll come across a dazzling collection of over 4,000 works, making it one of the world’s largest art collections by Picasso.

The permanent collection mainly shows off young Pablo’s formative years in art school, showing how he transitioned from a classically trained painter to a pioneer of the Cubist movement in art.

This art museum also encompasses lesser-known works by the artist, including sculptures and ceramics, a gallery of mature Cubist paintings, and temporary exhibitions

Address: C/ de Montcada, 15-23, 08003 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 8 pm

Recommended Read: The Best Hotels in Barcelona, Spain

Miró Foundation (Fundació Joan Miró)

Fundació Joan Miró, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: Werner Spremberg/Shutterstock

The Fundació Joan Miró is a prestigious museum dedicated to showcasing the life and artistic work of the renowned Catalan painter Joan Miró.

Founded in 1975, the museum was designed by the architect Josep Lluís Sert to provide a space where Miró’s works could be beautifully displayed, and appreciated by visitors from around the world.

The museum’s broad permanent collection features over 10,000 artworks by Miró such as paintings, sculptures, ceramics, textiles, and drawings.

Miró’s unique style, characterized by bold colors, abstract forms, and whimsical imagery, will certainly leave you standing in awe.

As you browse through the galleries of Fundació Joan Miró, you will see iconic masterpieces such as “The Morning Star,” “The Farm,” and “Woman and Birds at Sunrise.”

These artworks showcase Miró’s innovative approach to art, which challenged traditional artistic conventions and explored new realms of imagination and symbolism.

In addition to the permanent collection, the museum features an outdoor sculpture gallery dotted with colorful works by the painter.

Address: Parc de Montjuïc, s/n, 08038 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10 am – 8 pm | Sunday 10 am to 6 pm

Barcelona History Museum

Roman Ruins of the Barcelona History Museum, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: gurb101088/Shutterstock

Museu d’Història de Barcelona (MUHBA), provides history buffs with a fascinating look into the rich past of the Catalan capital —  from its ancient Roman origins to its modern-day achievements.

MUHBA is located in several venues throughout the city. Its headquarters and most notable location is Plaça del Rei, in the Gothic Quarter.

Here, you’ll see an underground archaeological site that reveals the remnants of the Roman city of Barcino, which existed from the 1st century BC to the start of the Middle Ages.

Visitors can explore the well-preserved Roman ruins, including streets, houses, and a temple, which provide a glimpse into daily life during the Roman era.

Recognized as one of the best history museums in Spain, MUHBA also showcases artifacts, artworks, and interactive displays covering a wide range of historical periods and topics, from medieval times to the Spanish Civil War.

Address: Pl. del Rei, s/n, 08002 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10 am to 7 pm | Sunday 10 am to 8 pm

Recommended Read: Barcelona Travel Tips: Things You Must Know Before Your Trip

Gaudí House Museum

The Gaudi House Museum in Park Güell, Barcelona, Spain.

The Gaudí House Museum is home to a treasured collection of furniture and objects designed by the Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí, the most prominent figure of Catalan Modernism (Catalan Art Nouveau).

It’s located in Park Güell, one of the most famous cultural attractions in Barcelona, in a building where Gaudí lived for almost 20 years.

The museum provides an interesting glimpse into info Gaudí’s life. Visitors will get the chance to see the architect’s bedroom and studio, which are left as it was when Gaudi lived here.

A visit to the Gaudí House Museum is combined with a tour of Park Güell.  Listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the park itself can be considered an open-air museum that showcases Gaudí’s brilliance and talent.

The park’s vibrant colors, organic shapes, and imaginative details have become hallmarks of the architect’s style. 

Make sure to read this guide to Park Güell to learn all about what you’ll see when visiting the park, how to get there, how to buy tickets, and more.

Address: 08024 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Daily from 10 am to 6 pm

Recommended Read: 10 Must-See Buildings by Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona

Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA)

Façade of the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: Toniflap/Shutterstock

The Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA) is the city’s biggest contemporary art museum.

This renowned institution is located within an architectural masterpiece, which was designed by Richard Meier and is a work of art in itself.

Its gleaming white facade and geometric lines create a visually captivating structure that harmoniously blends with its surroundings.

The building’s interior features spacious galleries, allowing for the display of a diverse range of contemporary artworks.

MACBA exhibits fantastic works by Catalan and Spanish artists including Antoni Tàpies and Paul Klee, as well as pieces by world-famous artists such as Keith Haring, Basquiat, and Andy Warhol.

Address: Plaça dels Àngels, 1, 08001 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Monday to Friday from 11 am to 7:30 pm | Saturday from 10 am to 20 pm | Sundays and Holidays from 10 am to 3 pm

Recommended Read: Amazing Day Trips From Barcelona, Spain

Maritime Museum of Barcelona

Maritime Museum of Barcelona, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: BearFotos/Shutterstock

The Maritime Museum of Barcelona is Beautifully located in the Drassanes Reials de Barcelona, a Gothic-style architectural complex spanning over 7 centuries of history.

The museum’s collection displays a wide array of precious artifacts, models, and interactive exhibits that depict Barcelona’s rich maritime history.

While browsing through the museum’s fascinating galleries, visitors will learn about how trade and shipbuilding helped the modernization of Catalunya, and how the history of Barcelona’s Royal shipyards is linked to the evolution of the city.

You’ll also get the chance to see a magnificent collection of historic vessels housed in the shipyards.

These include life-size replicas of medieval and early modern ships, giving visitors a sense of the impressive craftsmanship and scale of these vessels.

Address: Av. de les Drassanes, 1, 08001 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10 am to 8 pm | Sundays after 3 pm, free entry

MNAC: Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

MNAC: Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: The Escape of Malee/Shutterstock

Gloriously perched atop Montjüic hill, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), is a prestigious institution dedicated to Catalan art spanning from the 12th to the 20th centuries.

The museum is housed in the majestic Palau Nacional, and offers visitors a comprehensive journey through Catalunya’s rich artistic heritage, from Romanesque and Gothic art to Renaissance, Baroque, and Modernist works.

One of the highlights of the MNAC is its exceptional collection of Romanesque art, considered one of the most important in the world. 

Visitors can marvel at the intricate frescoes, sculptures, and illuminated manuscripts, many of which originally adorned rural churches in the Pyrenees and other sites in Old Catalonia.

The museum’s collection also includes an impressive selection of Renaissance and Baroque art, showcasing works by creative geniuses like El Greco, Velázquez, Rubens, Rubens, and Tintoretto.

Address: Palau Nacional, Parc de Montjuïc, s/n, 08038 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Winter (October to April): Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm | Sundays and public holidays from 10 am to 3 pm

Summer (May to September): Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 8 pm | Sundays and public holidays from 10 am to 3 pm

Fundació Antoni Tàpies

Fundació Antoni Tàpies in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: The Escape of Malee/Shutterstock

Named after Catalan artist Antoni Tàpies, Fundació Antoni Tàpies is dedicated to promoting the study and appreciation of contemporary art in Barcelona.

This Barcelona museum is located in an iconic building designed by the architects Roser Amadó and Lluís Domènech i Montaner.

The structure itself is considered a work of art, as it flaunts an eye-catching façade adorned with metallic mesh and a spectacular rooftop sculpture.

Inside, visitors can explore a vast collection of Antoni Tàpies’ works, which span his career from the 1940s to the present.

Tàpies was known for his experimental and innovative approach to art, incorporating elements of abstraction, symbolism, and materials such as sand, marble dust, and everyday objects.

In addition to Tàpies’ collection, the foundation hosts temporary exhibits, providing a dynamic and diverse program on various creative trends and perspectives.

Address: C/ d’Aragó, 255, 08007 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm | Sunday from 10 am to 3 pm

FC Barcelona Museum

Camp Nou Stadium, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: BearFotos/Shutterstock

If you’re going on a tour of the Camp Nou Stadium, home of the FC Barcelona team, make sure to stop by the FC Barcelona Museum.

The museum offers sports enthusiasts a fascinating look into a world-class collection of photos, and memorabilia related to the almost 120-year history of FC Barcelona.

Museum’s highlights include the collection of La Liga, Copa del Rey, and Champions League trophies, and the area dedicated to Argentine footballer Lionel Messi.

Address: C. d’Arístides Maillol, 12, 08028 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Daily from 9h30 am to 7:30 pm

CaixaForum Barcelona

CaixaForum Barcelona, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: frantic00/Shutterstock

CaixaForum Barcelona is a unique cultural center located in the heart of Barcelona. 

Operated by the “La Caixa” Foundation, the museum is located in a striking modernist building, originally an old textile factory redesigned by renowned architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch.

CaixaForum offers a dynamic space where art, culture, and society converge. The museum displays a permanent contemporary art collection, regarded as one of the most important in Europe.

You’ll see works by present-day artists like Roni Horn, Steve McQueen, Pierre Huyghe, Juan Uslé, Cornelia Parker, and Olafur Eliasson, to name a few.

The museum also has three impressive spaces for temporary exhibitions, covering a wide spectrum of artistic disciplines including visual arts, photography, sculpture, and multimedia installations.

Address: Av. de Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia, 6-8, 08038 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10 am to 8 pm

Big Fun Museum & Museum of Illusions

A boy and a girl in a maze of mirrors.

Visiting Barcelona with the kids? Then, make sure to take them to the Big Fun Museum & the Museum of Illusions.

Centrally located in La Rambla, they consist of 8 different themed areas spread over two buildings

Here, little ones will get the chance to immerse themselves in a wide array of optical illusions, 3D artworks, and interactive exhibits that challenge perception and ignite the imagination.

The Big Fun Museum has a fascinating mirror labyrinth, a madhouse from the last century, and an upside-down house where everything hangs from the ceiling.

A five-minute walk away, on a side street off the La Rambla, you’ll find the Museum of Illusions, which is filled with massive 3D paintings.

Visitors are encouraged to touch, explore, and engage with the exhibits, which adds an interactive element to the experience.

Address: Big Fun Museum, Rambla de Sant Josep, 88-94, 08002 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Daily from 11 am to 7 pm | Saturdays from 11 am to 9 pm

Recommended Read: Things To Do In Barcelona With Kids

Sagrada Familia Church Museum

Barcelona's Sagrada Familia surrounded by blooming trees during spring.
Photo Credit: Mistervlad/Shutterstock

Considered the most famous of all of Barcelona’s attractions, La Sagrada Familia is a true gem.

The basilica was designed by architect Antoni Gaudí and features an achingly beautiful 

façade with 18 majestic spires, as well as dreamy interiors filled with colorful stained glass windows.

On the ground floor of the basilica, you’ll find the Sagrada Familia Museum, which provides insight into the rich history, design, and construction of Antoni Gaudí’s masterpiece.

The museum showcases a wide range of exhibits that take you on a journey through the evolution of the Sagrada Familia through models, drawings, photographs, and audiovisual displays.

Make sure to check out this ultimate La Sagrada Familia guide with all the essential information you need to know before visiting this Gaudí masterpiece.

Address: Carrer Mallorca, 401 08013, Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 8 pm | Sundays from 10 am to 8 pm

Poble Espanyol & Fran Daurel Museum

Poble Espanyol Museum, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: frantic00/Shutterstock

The Poble Espanyol is an open-air architectural museum located close to the Fountains of Montjuïc, in Barcelona.

This family-friendly museum is home to a range of architectural gems. While strolling through Poble Espanyol, visitors will see 117 real-life scale buildings recreating constructions from every part of Spain — from Catalunya to Galicia and Andalucia.

Located within Poble Espanyol, the Fran Daurel Museum (Fundació Fran Daurel) is a must-visit for art lovers.

The foundation harbors a private collection filled with works by renowned artists. It focuses mainly on Catalan art and comprises works by major artists like Dalí, Guinovart, Ràfols-Casamada, Cuixart, Tàpies, Barceló, Plensa, Millares, and Picasso.

Address: Av. de Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia, 13, 08038 Barcelona, Spain

Hours Poble Espanyol Museum: Monday from 9 am to 8 pm | Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday from 9 am to 12 pm | Friday from 9 am to 3 am | Saturday from 9 am to 4 am

Hours Fran Daurel Museum:

Summer (June to September): Monday to Sunday from 11 am to 8 pm

Rest of the year: Monday from 10 am to 6:30 pm |Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 7 pm

Museu Frederic Marès

Museu Frederic Marès, in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: Debbie Ann Powell/Shutterstock

The Museu Frederic Marès is one of the most important sculpture museums in Spain.

This museum houses a diverse range of art and historical artifacts amassed by sculptor Frederic Marès throughout his lifetime.

The museum is housed in the beautiful Palau Reial Major, a complex of historic buildings that served as the royal palace during the medieval period.

Spanning from ancient times to the 19th century, the collection itself is a remarkable assortment of over 300,000 items, providing a comprehensive overview of art and culture from different eras.

You’ll see a wide variety of objects, including sculptures, paintings, textiles, furniture, ceramics, and jewelry.

Address: Plaça Sant Iu, 5, 08002 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm | Sundays and public holidays from 11 am to 8 pm

MUHBA Refugi 307

Underground bomb shelters.
Photo Credit: Grachev Alexey/Shutterstock

Shelter 307 ( Refugi 307) is one of the most impressive museums in Barcelona. 

This was one of the more than 1,000 shelters built in Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War, to protect the population from the bombing to which the city was subjected.

Excavated by the population of the Poble Sec district, the shelter has nearly 0.24860 miles of tunnels and comprises facilities like a toilet, a water fountain, an infirmary, a children’s room, and a fireplace.

The shelter is now part of the Barcelona History Museum (MUHBA) and offers a heart-touching glimpse into how the people of Barcelona struggled to survive during the conflict.

Address: C/ Nou de la Rambla, 175, 08004 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: From Monday to Saturday, only groups with a reservation.

Chocolate Museum

Museu de la Xocolata in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo Credit: The Escape of Malee/Shutterstock

Barcelona has plenty of unusual museums that offbeat travelers will love discovering.

One of the best is Museu de la Xocolata, which is also considered one of the top Barcelona hidden gems.

Located in the El Born neighborhood, not far from the Picasso Museum, this family-friendly museum offers an immersive journey through the history and culture of chocolate.

Visitors can dive deep into chocolate’s evolution from ancient Mayan and Aztec civilizations to the modern-day confectionery we know and love.

There are also fun interactive exhibits, displays, and multimedia presentations that delve into the fascinating world of chocolate-making.

One of the highlights of the Museu de la Xocolata is its collection of intricate chocolate sculptures crafted by skilled chocolatiers.

The Chocolate Museum also offers workshops and tastings, allowing visitors to engage all their senses in the chocolate experience.

Address: C/ del Comerç, 36, 08003 Barcelona, Spain

Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm

Recommended Read: The Best Time to Visit Barcelona: The Complete Guide

FAQ

What is the most visited museum in Barcelona?

The most famous and most visited museum in Barcelona is the Museu Picasso.

Which museum is free in Barcelona?

The best free museums in Barcelona are:

  • Picasso Museum
  • Science Museum Barcelona
  • Center of Contemporary Culture Barcelona (CCCB)
  • Museum of Catalan Archaeology (MAC)
  • Museum of World Cultures
  • National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC)
  • Barcelona’s Maritime Museum

Is it worth visiting Picasso Museum in Barcelona?

Yes. The museum houses one of the most comprehensive collections of Picasso’s artworks, spanning different periods and artistic styles, making it a must-visit museum in Barcelona.

What are the most unique museums in Barcelona?

The most unusual museums in Barcelona are:

  • El Rei de la Màgia Museum;
  • Hash, Marijuana & Hemp Museum;
  • Erotic Museum of Barcelona;
  • Chocolate Museum;
  • Wax Museum.

Does Barcelona have good museums?

Yes, Barcelona is renowned for its exceptional museums. The city has a diverse range of great museums that cater to various interests and passions. Whether you like art, history, science, or culture, Barcelona has something to offer.

What are the top museums in Barcelona?

The best museums in Barcelona are:

  • Picasso Museum;
  • Miró Foundation (Fundació Joan Miró);
  • Barcelona History Museum;
  • Gaudí House Museum;
  • Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA);
  • Maritime Museum of Barcelona;
  • MNAC: Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya;
  • Fundació Antoni Tàpies;
  • FC Barcelona Museum;
  • CaixaForum Barcelona;
  • Big Fun Museum & Museum of Illusions;
  • Sagrada Familia Church Museum;
  • Poble Espanyol & Fran Daurel Museum;
  • Museu Frederic Marès;
  • MUHBA Refugi 307;
  • Chocolate Museum.

What are the best art museums in Barcelona?

The top art museums in Barcelona are:

  • MNAC: Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya;
  • Fundació Antoni Tàpies;
  • Museu Picasso;
  • CaixaForum Barcelona;
  • Museu Frederic Marès;
  • Joan Miró Foundation.

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