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Barcelona Information

The city now known as Barcelona traces its origin to the 3rdcentury BC. According to historians, Barcelona was named to commemorate Hamilcar Barca, the Carthaginian general who founded the city. Barcelona rose to become a focal point of trade during the Middle Ages. Today, the city is a hub of biomedical research, high-tech industries and a center for groundbreaking art, style and design. Barcelona is a leading European and world center for tourism, commerce, entertainment, fashion, media, science, and education. Once the crossroads of major civilizations, Barcelona continues to play a major role on the world stage.

Known as the "City of Counts", Barcelona is the avant-garde capital of Spain's Catalonia region. The city is a vibrant mix of outdoor markets, museums, nightlife and old world architecture. Located along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona is one of the most captivating cities in the world. The second largest metropolitan area in Spain, Barcelona was the host for the 1992 Summer Olympics. It is also one of the most visited cities in the world.

Visitors will discover traditional Catalan culture, language, and history. Known as Ciutat Vella, the city's old town section is the backdrop for the medieval neighborhood Barri Gotic. The neighborhood is transected by narrow, winding streets that lead to the largest concentration of medieval architecture in Europe. A tram ride to the top of Tibidabo provides a remarkable panoramic view of the city below. The fashionable La Ribera district is also home to the Picasso Museum. There are numerous fine examples of Art Nouveau architecture in Eixample, the city's modernist quarter. Several of the buildings are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The city has the distinction of receiving the RIBA Royal Gold Medal in 1999 for its stunning architectural composition. Port Vell is the city's centuries-old port district and the location of award-winning beaches. Several cultural, historical and sports museums are located in the Sants-Montjuic district. Barcelona has over sixty municipal parks that include urban green spaces, botanical gardens, forested acres, and recreational areas.

Situated on a plain between the sea and wooded hills, Barcelona enjoys a climate of warm, dry summers and mild winters. The busiest travel month is August. Moderate temperatures, low humidity, and smaller crowds make spring and fall the best times to visit the city. Visitors can easily explore Barcelona on foot or by using public transportation.

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