Explore Barcelona’s 4 Most Famous Cathedrals

Exploring Barcelona’s cathedrals is one of the best ways for visitors to learn about the city’s history and architecture. With deep Catholic roots, there is much to learn about Barcelona’s long heritage reaching back to medieval times by exploring the city’s many cathedrals and other holy places. Music is central to the experience, which you’ll discover as you tour the cathedrals in Barcelona and see or hear their enormous organs and perhaps even their majestic choirs. Another key characteristic to a cathedral is that they are the seat of a bishop, making it the central church of the diocese.

There are many to choose from and explore, but to make your life easier, we’ve selected our four favorites – giving you a place to start. But, as you get to know the city better, you’ll create a list of your own favorites. 

1. La Sagrada Familia Basilica

La Sagrada Familia Basilica is one of Barcelona’s famous architect, Antoni Gaudi’s, most celebrated masterpieces. Part of what makes this extravagant cathedral so remarkable is that it has been under construction since 1882 and isn’t expected to be finished until at least 2026, over 100 years after Gaudi’s death. This gothic style cathedral, when completed, will have eighteen spires and three epic facades featuring different Catholic scenes. It is a mix of Spanish Late Gothic, Catalan Modernism, and Art Nouveau styles and is one of the most astounding things to see in all of Barcelona.

Check out our article with 6 curious facts about La Sagrada Família’s history to learn more about this majestic cathedral. 

2. Santa Maria Del Mar Basilica

To walk through medieval times, visit Santa Maria Del Mar, located in the Ribera district of Barcelona. Built between 1329 and 1383 during Barcelona’s prominence as a maritime merchant city, this imposing cathedral is designed in the pure Catalan Gothic style that is unique to the area. The exterior is a looming contrast to the open interior flooded with natural light through stained glass windows.

Before you plan your visit, check out our article with what you need to know before you visit the Basilica Santa Maria del Mar.

3. The Barcelona Cathedral

The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia, also known as the Barcelona Cathedral, was built between the 13th and 15th centuries. Originally it had a nondescript exterior that was typical of Catalan churches at the time, and in the late 19th century the neogothic facade, which you will see there today, was constructed. The Barcelona Cathedral is the seat of the Archbishop of Barcelona and is well known for its roof that is home to statues of gargoyles and other mythic creatures.

4. Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus 

The Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor, which in English is the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, was completed in 1961. It was designed by the famous Catalan architect Enric Sagnier and was completed by his son, Josep Maria Sagnier i Vidal. Located on the summit of Mount Tibidabo its construction was motivated by the Protestant-Catholic divide when there was talk of the site being purchased to build a protestant church. The cathedral displays gorgeous architecture and beautiful views of the surrounding countryside and city below. 

If you’re planning to visit Barcelona’s cathedrals during your next visit, we recommend staying in the Gothic Quarter, where you’ll be closer to the old medieval city of Barcelona. Take a look at some of our articles on things to do in the Gothic Quarter so you can plan ahead. 

For more information about Barcelona’s other neighborhoods, read our guide or simply get in touch. 

Find Your Perfect Property in Barcelona

Are you ready to explore the city like a local? Now that you know a little more about Barcelona’s beautiful cathedrals , there’s so much more that this city has to offer. All you need is the perfect property. Check out the properties to rent on our website, or simply get in touch to tell us more about your requests. We can’t wait to show you around!


Discover Our Exclusive Properties

A front row seat to Barcelona, Modern Charming



Elegant and spacious with views of the sea, quiet mountain location



Luxury high floor & Terrace close to L'illa - Gatsby



Colonial style with the perfect touch of romantic