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Madrid or Barcelona, which city is the best?

It’s not only football that plays an important part when it comes to the question of honor between Barcelona and Madrid, but as well there are a lot of more significant aspects in relation to the tourism sector. Millions of tourists who visit both cities regularly are the best critics and they are able to decide which city deserves the title of being the best city in Spain. Madrid v Barcelona: who will bring home the bacon?


Before comparing both cities with each other, first we should talk about the things they have in common. Both cities are capitals, Barcelona of Catalonia and Madrid of Spain. The population of both cities is big, although in Madrid live more than 3.200.000 citizens, meanwhile in Barcelona the number comes only to 1.700.000 inhabitants. Furthermore, the Spanish economy makes its benefits due to both cities. Those aspects can be very interesting, but they are completely irrelevant when it comes to the decision where to spend your holidays. Let’s talk about more important categories:

What about the creative world of culture and art in both cosmopolitan cities? Barcelona offers you important museums, like the Dalí, Picasso or National Art Museum of Catalonia and a lot of more impressive expositions of the alternative art, but Madrid wins the match with one of the most important museums in Europe: the Prado. But that’s not the only emblematic museum of international art which Madrid offers you. As well the Reina Sofía, the Thyssen-Bornemisza museum and a lot of more treasures of the world of art and culture are waiting for you in Spain’s capital. Point for Madrid!

What is the most sensational thing during a pleasant walk through the city? Sure, the architecture! Wandering along the many little streets, alleys and then suddenly running into a spectacular building from a fairytale…that’s only possible in Barcelona. The centre of the most creative of creations of the famous architect Antoni Gaudí gives the Catalan capital a very special and enchanting atmosphere. Just incredible! Point for Barcelona!

What about the character of the citizens of both cities? Are the Spaniards really so relaxed, happy and calm as we suppose? As it occurs in each country and city, in Barcelona and Madrid exist as well some specific prejudices. So they say about the barceloneses to be mean and Catalan extremists, and about the madrileños to be arrogant and snobby. Well, we English people as well are said to be always drunk, so we shouldn’t overvalue those statements. For this reason: It’s a tie!

We could talk for hours and hours about more and more comparative aspects: which park is the best, the Parque de Retiro in Madrid or the Parque Güell in Barcelona? Which dish is more delicious, cocido madrileño (chickpea-based stew) or pa amb tomàquet (bread with tomato)? What about the geography, do you prefer mountains or beach?

As you can see, not only football decides which is the best Spanish city. Find it out for yourself! Why don’t you start with a visit of Madrid and discover all the hidden treasures of Spain’s capital?