Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar, Barcelona

Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar, Barcelona (must see)

The Basilica of Santa Maria by the Sea is an imposing church, dominating Barcelona‘s Ribera district, a more authentic (and not so touristy) part of the city. The church was built between 1329 and 1383, during the heyday of Catalonia as a maritime and commercial power. It represents an outstanding example of Catalan Gothic architecture and is equally beautiful both outside (where it appears massive and severe) and inside (producing the impression of lightness and spaciousness). Inside, the basilica is a huge space literally filled with peace and tranquility, adorned with beautifully painted windows, stone carvings, statues of saints, and big organ. There are three aisles forming a single space with no transepts and architectural boundary between the nave and presbytery. The simple ribbed vault is supported on slender octagonal columns and abundant daylight streams in through the tall clerestory windows.

The most captivating thing about this church, perhaps, is just sitting here listening to the holly mass in Catalan. You don't even need to understand a word of it to feel divine. Even without touring the Basilica itself, it will be just as magnificent experience.

Why You Should Visit:
Very grand and very well preserved; offers a lift to the roof, small "art gallery", the crypt, beautiful stone carvings, choir gallery, and the most astoundingly peaceful courtyard with a large pond.
Lots of local cafes with outside tables so a lovely area to wander around.

Tip:
It is possible to take part in a guided tour up to the roof, which is actually very interesting and combined with some of the most exciting views over Barcelona.
Make sure you are properly dressed though, otherwise the guards at the entrance may turn you away.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9am–1pm / 5–8:30pm; Sun: 10am–2pm / 5–8pm

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Barcelona, Spain within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar on Map

Sight Name: Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar
Sight Location: Barcelona, Spain
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) containing this sight: City Orientation Walk I   La Ribera Walking Tour  

Walking Tours in Barcelona, Spain

Create Your Own Walk in Barcelona

Create Your Own Walk in Barcelona

Creating your own self-guided walk in Barcelona is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Barri Gotic Specialty Shops

Barri Gotic Specialty Shops

It would be a pity to leave Barcelona without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. The specialty shops are most popular with tourists. Take this two-hour tour to explore the Barri Gòtic (the Gothic quarter) best specialty shops!

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 km
Eixample Souvenir Shopping

Eixample Souvenir Shopping

It's a pity, if not a crime, to leave Barcelona without visiting the local specialty shops. Check out this Eixample souvenir shopping tour for some gifts and souvenirs unique to Barcelona that you may want to bring home to your loved ones from this wonderful city.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.5 km
Barri Gotic Walking Tour

Barri Gotic Walking Tour

The Gothic Quarter of Barcelona seems like a cut above the rest. It boasts a number of famous buildings, cathedrals and monuments. The area has many peaceful squares where you can relax and enjoy the surroundings. Take this tour to travel back in time and discover all the secrets of Barcelona's Gothic Quarter.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.2 km
Shopping Walk

Shopping Walk

Set among the world's prime cultural destinations, Barcelona is en route to becoming one of Europe's top shopping spots as well. Fashionable designer stores are filling the streets of Barcelona with each new day, from well known international brands to local start ups. Barcelona is also an excellent gourmet destination, offering plenty of goodies to try on the spot or take home with you....  view more

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 km
La Rambla Walking Tour

La Rambla Walking Tour

La Rambla is the street in central Barcelona, popular with tourists and locals alike. Seemingly endless, it is filled with cultural and historic landmarks, as well as shops and cafes. The Spanish poet Federico García Lorca once said about La Rambla, "The only street in the world which I wish never ended." Take this tour to explore the most famous sites on La Rambla, Barcelona.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.3 km
City Orientation Walk II

City Orientation Walk II

Barcelona is world renowned for its modernist architectures. On this part two of the two-part city orientation walks, you will visit some of the world famous architectures by Antoni Gaudi and his peers. The modernist architectures visited on this walk include: Casa Amatller, Casa Batllo, Casa Mila (La Pedrera), La Sagrada Familia, among others.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.2 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


Barcelona Souvenir Shopping: 17 Uniquely Spanish Things to Buy

Barcelona Souvenir Shopping: 17 Uniquely Spanish Things to Buy

Spain, in general, and Barcelona, in particular, are a treasure trove of all things exciting. Set your foot in Barcelona and you'll be spoiled for the choice of things worth trying and taking home. Before your head starts spinning, check this guide out to put yourself in the right...
Top 10 Spanish Foods and Drinks to Try in Barcelona

Top 10 Spanish Foods and Drinks to Try in Barcelona

In the countries like Spain, food is a national heritage and cultural attraction in its own right. The latter is even more true of Catalonia in general and Barcelona in particular. Presented here are the 10 staples of Catalan food tradition, missing which would be a gastronomical...