Top Things to Do in Montjuïc, Barcelona

Places to See on That Great Big Hill Overlooking the City

Montjuïc is a large hill (some call it a mountain) in Barcelona, Spain, immediately south of Parallel (the street) and Plaça Espanya. It is southwest of Las Ramblas and El Raval.

Montjuïc is home to some of Barcelona's most exciting museums, including the Miró Foundation and Poble Espanyol, a full-size Spanish model village. It's also the home of the Olympic Stadium and Montjuïc Palace. Read on for the top things to do in Montjuïc in Barcelona.

How to Get to Montjuïc

There are three main ways to get to Montjuïc:

  • Walk from Plaça Espanya up to the Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya.
  • Take the cable car from Barceloneta.
  • Take the funicular railway from Parallel.

Once you get to Montjuïc, there is a second cable car that goes to the castle at the top of this 755-foot hill. This is a leisurely 20-minute ride to the top with nice views along the way.

  • 01 of 08
    MNAC museum on Montjuïc, Barcelona
    ••• Diego Zingano/Creative Commons

    The Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya has astounding collections covering everything from Romanesque frescoes saved from deteriorating Pyrenean churches to works by masters such as Velázquez and Rubens right up to the 20th century and the Catalan modernists and impressionists.

  • 02 of 08
    Miró Foundation, Barcelona
    ••• Phillip Capper/Creative Commons

    One of Spain's finest collections of contemporary art is stored in Josep Lluís Sert's beautiful minimalist building. Highlights are a mercury fountain and the hundreds of paintings, sculptures, and ceramics by the iconic Joan Miró.

  • 03 of 08
    Poble Espanyol on Montjuic
    ••• Lin Padgham/Creative Commons

    Created for an international exposition in 1929, this is a village showing different architectural aspects of Spain. You enter through the fortified gate modeled on Avila before exploring places such as a Galician townhouse and a Jerez wine cellar.

  • 04 of 08

    Magic Fountain of Montjuïc

    Fountains on Montjuïc
    ••• Oh Barcelona/Creative Commons

    Something spectacular happens to the plaza fountains in Plaça Espanya in the evening. Thanks to a thrilling light show, they begin changing colors. The show, set to music, lasts about half an hour.

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08
    Barcelona's Olympic Stadium
    ••• Sean MacEntee/Wikimedia Commons

    The Olympic Stadium stands next to the Olympic Gallery, which tells the story of the 1992 Olympics with interesting artifacts. Next to the gallery is the amazing Palau Sant Jordi, Japanese architect Arata Isozaki's futuristic indoor exhibition hall, which has big concerts year-round.

  • 06 of 08
    Montjuïc Castle
    ••• Alexander Johmann/Creative Commons

    The much-battered and sieged 17th-century castle has seen more than its fair share of action. It was where Catalan patriots were tortured and shot by Fascists after the Civil War. Its gardens are a joy, with beautiful views over the Mediterranean and there's an interesting museum with military artifacts and dungeons were prisoners were held.

  • 07 of 08
    Caixa Forum on Montjuic, Barcelona
    ••• ScMarin/Creative Commons

    With its portal by Japanese architect Arata Isozaki, Art Nouveau design, and excellent art exhibitions, this one-time textile factory is a winning way to spend a couple of hours of your time.

  • 08 of 08
    Barcelona National Museum of the Art of Catalonia (Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya)
    ••• Barcelona (c) Linda Garrison

    The Museu d'Arqueologia de Catalunya is a portal into Catalonia's distant past, with a fascinating glimpse into Megalithic Spain and important remains of Greek Civilization on the Catalan coast from the ruins at the Greco-Roman city of Empúries. This museum is in the former Palace of Graphic Arts, an Art Deco building constructed for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition.