Visiting the Sagrada Familia can be hungry work. The spellbinding, spiritual architecture of this enchanting cathedral is arguably Barcelona’s most essential cultural experience. There’s so much spectacular art and architecture on show here that exploring it all properly, inside and out, takes quite a bit of time.
Thousands of people flock to the Sagrada every day for a taste of Gaudí’s masterpiece. And a lot of tourists means lots of hungry mouths, so it’s not surprising that there’s a myriad of great places to eat nearby. You just need to know where the good ones are. So after you’ve let your jaw drop in awe-struck wonder, clamp it closed around some Catalan cuisine, or some of the other mouthwatering options in the vicinity.
From breakfast to dinner – we lined up the best restaurants near the Sagrada Familia, so you don’t get hangry before checking out some of Gaudí’s other magnificent architecture.
As the old saying goes, the early bird gets the freshly baked pastry… So if you’re up at the crack of dawn to beat the crowds at Sagrada, and fancy a continental breakfast, Puiggròs is your friend. This family-run bakery is great for brunch (or breakfast). One of the most renowned bakeries in Barcelona, Puiggròs claims to make the best chocolate croissant in Barcelona since the 1900s. Challenge them to a croissant-off at your peril! Their quiches, baguettes, and coffee are also pretty epic.
The newly renovated bakery has a large seating area and a kid’s play corner, so you can take some time to really enjoy that coffee and pastry, while you relax and wake up properly, while being just a stone’s throw away from the Sagrada Familia. Needless to say, please do not throw stones at the Sagrada Familia!
Address: Puiggròs Cafeteria-forn De Pa, Avinguda de Gaudí 77, Barcelona.
Opening Hours: 08:00 – 20:45, closed on Sundays.
2. Buenas Migas Sagrada Familia
Another solid breakfast option is Buenas Migas, a café chain with a location right outside the Sagrada. Don’t tell Puiggròs, but you can find a decent croissant at Buenas Migas too. But the real draw of this place is its homemade Focaccia bread. Light, fluffy, and oh so moreish, this stuff is to-die-for.
Offering a range of of delicious sweet and savoury options, it’s the perfect place for breakfast or brunch, and the coffee in this chic cafe is worth getting out of bed for. It’s also worth mentioning that there’s an emphasis on healthy options, the restaurant caters to vegans and vegetarians, and coeliacs will find plenty of gluten-free gluttony, too.
Address: Plaça Sagrada Familia, 17. 08013 Barcelona
Opening Hours: From Sunday to Friday and holidays from 08:00 – 23:00. Saturdays from 08:00 – 00:00.
3. Camelia Art Café
Pushing the boundaries of café cuteness is Argentinian-owned Camelia Art Café. Located a sunny, 5-minute stroll from the facade of the Sagrada, this is the place to come and nestle into a book with a big mug of speciality coffee complete with delicate latte art, dainty afternoon tea-style baked goods, or a rustic open sandwich served on a wooden board. If your mouth is watering right now, your test results are in – it looks like you are at least part-hipster!
However, Camelia Art Café is anything but pretentious. The patrons of this cosy little spot are among the friendliest and inviting in Barcelona. This is one for solo wanderers and anybody who admires a little bit of presentation in their food. Their Instagram says it all.
Carrer de Padilla, 264, 08025 Barcelona, Spain
Monday – Friday 09:00 – 20:00
Saturday & Sunday 10:00 – 14:00, 16:00 – 20:00
Lunch – Tapas and more near Sagrada Familia
4. Tossa – for the purist
You don’t come to Barcelona and not have tapas. You just don’t. There are plenty of places around, but the best ones are always the ones where the locals go – they’re often the cheapest too. Tossa offers top quality dishes for a reasonable price, and it’s handily located just a 7-minute walk from the Sagrada. With plenty of room and a terrace with heaters (presumably for lizard people), the place has a relaxed family atmosphere and a tantalizing menu of tapas classics.
The restaurant has been serving delicious traditional tapas and hearty seasonal cuisine for over 40 years – their croquetas (filled with mushroom and foie gras) and salpicón de marisco (seafood salad) have never gone out of fashion! Enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner here. Or enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner here!
Address: Restaurante Tossa, Carrer de Nàpols 291, Barcelona.
Opening hours: 07:00 – 23:00, closed on Sundays.
5. Bardeni – tapas for carnivores
Vegans and vegetarians look away now! Another hidden gem full of locals is Bardeni, this restaurant caters to the carnivorous type. Combining an award-winning chef and high-quality cuts of meat, the results are finger-licking good. With an attractive interior and an even more attractive meaty menu, this is a restaurant you can’t miss. The price range of this unusual tapas bar is slightly higher than regular tapas bars, but worth it when you’re looking for delicious prime cuts.
Chef Danu Lechuga’s Angus steak tartares and filet mignon tacos deserve a special mention, but it’s his burgers that are the talk of the the town. We advise you not to leave Bardeni without having tried the Angus burger.
Address: Bardeni El Meatbar, Carrer de València 454, Barcelona
Opening hours: 13:30 – 15:15 and 20:30 – 22:30, closed on Sundays and Mondays.
6. Vaho – dim sum, and then some!
Ok, so strictly speaking, this isn’t tapas, but it does come in small bite-size portions that are perfect for sharing. Vaho is one of the most authentic dim sum restaurants in Barcelona, with heavenly dumplings, gyozas galore, oodles of noodles, soups, and delicious dishes. This place is so close to the Sagrada that if one of the spires somehow fell off, it would probably land close enough to knock that dumpling right out of your chopsticks. But that won’t happen!
Small and unassuming, this cosy restaurant is hiding in plain sight, and is often peacefully quiet, even during a busy afternoon at the Sagrada, with many people milling by, still starstruck from their encounter with Gaudi’s glorious handiwork. There’s a small terrace where if you are lucky enough, you can sit under a large parasol with clear views of the Sagrada, and have multiple dishes of hot Asian-style tapas and a tall cold beverage delivered to your table, as sulky people shuffle by with scornful side-eye wishing they’d swooped in first. Now that’s what you call shade!
Address: Plaza sagrada familia, 21, Barcelona, Spain
Monday – Thursday 11:30 – 00:00
Friday 11:30 – 00:30
Saturday 11:30 – 00:30
Sunday: 11:30 – 00:00
7. Catalan home cooking at Sant Joan
Only a bit further out at a 10-minute walk from the Sagrada. Sant Joan is authentic Catalan home cooking without airs or graces but packed with flavours that are hard to come by for the non-local. More a diner than a restaurant, the simple interior shows the no-nonsense mentality that gives the place and food their character. Perfect for a tasty lunch near the Sagrada Familia.
Traditional Catalan dishes dictate the menu here. Rabbit with garlic, fried anchovies, or lentil soup with chorizo – you are right in the heart of Catalunya! The family-owned Sant Joan serves lunch only and you will find lots of locals eager for a great value meal. Turn up on time to get a taste of the action! Beware that you’ll have to decipher the Spanish or Catalan menu, as this is a real local restaurant near Sagrada Familia.
Address: Restaurant Sant Joan, Passeig de Sant Joan 65, Barcelona.
Opening hours: daily 08.30 – 17:00
8. Fresh catch at La Paradeta
Quality seafood is hard to come by. You either pay a premium price or you get served yesterday’s catch. Not here. This restaurant is more than fairly priced – but muy delicioso! And it’s just around the corner from the Sagrada Familia.
La Paradeta translates to market stall: pick your selection of seafood at the counter, where today’s catch is chilled on a bed of ice. Think lobster, crab, tiger prawn, squid, octopus, sea bream, monkfish, and much more. Your pick is then weighed and prepared (have yours grilled or fried) to perfection. Beware that you won’t be the only one lining up for this sea banquet (but lines move pretty fast).
Address: La Paradeta, Carrer Comercial 7, Barcelona.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Thursday between 13:00 – 16:00 and 20:00 – 23:30, Friday to Sunday between 13:00 – 16:00 and 20:00 – 00:00.
9. Funky beats and big burgers at Chill Bar
Capitalising on the number of people Googling “chill bar near me”, Chill Bar is as the name suggests, pretty chilled out. A welcome departure from the many revolving door tourist traps around the Sagrada, Chill Bar and Grill takes pride in providing a friendly atmosphere in which to relax with good food, funky music, and a shabby-chic aesthetic.
Serving up a blend of Spanish and American classics, and a fusion of other cuisines, you can order patatas bravas alongside tacos with peanut satay chicken if you so please, or nachos, grilled sandwiches, and goat’s cheese salads. But discerning burger or Pulp Fiction fans will not be able to resist the the tower of temptation that is the Big Kohuna Burger. It is a tasty burger.
Address: Carrer de Provença, 424, 08025 Barcelona, Spain
Opening hours: Sunday – Wednesday: 11:00 – 01:00; Thursday: 11:00 – 01:00, Friday – Saturday: 11:00 – 03:00.
10. Veg out at Arc Iris
Vegetarians have the last laugh, as the last restaurant on this list is a meat-free affair. Arc Iris, is one of the best vegetarian restaurants in Barcelona, and it’s just a few blocks away from the Sagrada Familia. This is veggie heaven. A clean, bright and elegant decor is paired with exquisite, healthy dishes using fresh, locally grown produce and tied up with a bow of impeccable service.
A daily set menu of seasonal green goodness means you don’t have to decide what to have, you just have to decide how many plates you’re feeling up to. Specialities include moussaka and rice with mushrooms and Parmesan cheese or creamy vegetable soups with fresh, crusty bread. Hearty, wholesome, and wholesale delicious, this is the place for hungry vegetarians or anyone who’s already had their fill of burgers. Bear in mind, it closes at 4 pm every day, so it’s a good spot for a late lunch after exploring the Sagrada in the afternoon. You can always grab some pintxos later!
Address: Carrer de Roger de Flor, 216, 08013 Barcelona, Spain
Opening hours: 13:00 – 16:00 Monday – Saturday
Visiting the Sagrada Familia
With food all figured out, the only thing you need to do before you visit the Sagrada Familia, is figure out your actual visit to the Sagrada Familia! Luckily, that’s the easy part. But it’s not something you want to leave until the last minute, as the queues for tickets outside the cathedral can often take several hours.
By far the most convenient way to see the Sagrada, is to book a fast-track ticket before you visit. That way, you can waltz right past the sunburned hordes of ill-prepared visitors, and head straight for the entrance. There is a mandatory security line that everyone is required to go through before entering, however, it tends to move pretty quickly and soon enough you’ll be inside marvelling at Gaudí’s masterpiece while the ticket line outside has moved a few disgruntled inches.
With the fast-track ticket, you’ll receive a handy multi-lingual audio guide which will narrate the majestic architecture in real-time before your eyes as you explore, revealing the incredible history and secrets of the Sagrada. If you are more easily engaged by real-life storytelling, you can also avail of a skip-the-line ticket and a guided tour. An expert Gaudí nerd will spirit you around the spiritual architecture and give you a more personal experience. Gawping at it all without any kind of guide is also an option. The visual feast is stimulation enough for many!
How to get to the Sagrada Familia
Being the major cultural attraction in Barcelona, the Sagrada is well-served by public transport, and it’s easily accessed from pretty much anywhere in the city, with Metro L2 and L5 both having stops at the Sagrada Família. Bus 19, 33, 34, 43, 44, 50, 51, B20 and B24 all take you to the door, or close by.
But if you’re planning a full day of culture and activities, the easiest thing to do is buy a ticket for the Hop-on Hop-off sightseeing bus. Not only does this bus stop at pretty much all of the city’s main attractions and cultural highlights, it also gives you a pretty epic open-top road trip around the city. The bus has three different routes around the city, so be sure to take the Blue Route, as this is the one that serves the Sagrada Familia.
Sagrada Familia Opening Times
The opening times for the Sagrada vary throughout the year. Here’s a quick overview:
November through February: 9:00 – 18:00.
March and October: 9:00 – 19:00.
April through September: 9:00 – 20:00.
25 and 26 December, 1 and 6 January: 9:00 – 14:00.
Note: Tickets are time-slotted, so be sure to be there with 15 minutes to spare, so you can find the correct queue for security.
Looking for more activities for your Barcelona trip? We’ve got loads of options for you.
This post was updated by Oscar O’Connor on 18/02/2020.