Museu d’Història de Barcelona (MUHBA) Plaça del Rei

One of 10 sites under the MUHBA banner, arguably the Plaça del Rei is the star. What you don’t tend to realise as you’re admiring the historic architecture in Barcelona’s city centre  is that there’s a whole Roman walled settlement under your feet. Descend in the lift at MUHBA and go back a couple of centuries to see nearly an acre of it, from temples to laundries, and wineries, the tour imparts an amazing sense of what life was like in this ancient settlement. Recommended.

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Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC)

Italianate exterior of the MNAC, Barcelona

Housed in an elaborate Italianate structure built for the 1929 International Exposition, MNAC’s collection ranges from what is regarded as the world’s largest exhibition of Romanesque art, through to Gothic, baroque, Renaissance and modern. With its heavy focus on the first two categories, expect biblical scenes, though the mood lightens in the other halls.

no shortage of Romanesque at MNAC
Cocktail cabinets have evolved over the years

Its commanding position, with views over the impressive Font Màgica de Montjuïc to the hills in the distance, sees a regular number of visitors for the outlook alone.

Buy the Barcelona Museum Pass or Art Passport and gain priority entry to Fundació Joan Miró, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB),the Museu Picasso, Fundació Antoni Tàpies, and Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA), and avoid the queues.

Opening times:

October to April, Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 6pm; Sundays and public holidays, 10am to 3pm.

May to September, Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 8pm; Sundays and public holidays, 10am to 3pm.

Mondays closed, except public holidays. Closed January 1st, May 1st and December 25th.

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