It is very common among the people visiting Barcelona, tourists, travellers, etc. To visit the city, its museums, famous buildings, its streets, bars, restaurants, clubs, etc. But they tend to show zero interest on the other cities an sites outside Barcelona (oh! Except for the Dali museum in Figueres of course…).
I’d like to list some of the “must sees” around Barcelona:
1- Girona: This small city one hour north from Barcelona, has become famous lately for having one of the 2 airports Ryanair uses to fly to Barcelona. However what few people know is that it has one of the most beautiful “old towns” in Europe. Specially the jewish quarter is particulary amazing. Narrow streets with stairs, chick restaurants and bars and as a “university city” very young atmosphere.
From the 26th of october until the 3rd of November you can enjoy the Town Party, with lots of concerts, and people partying on the street.
2- Tarragona: It’s the Girona equivalent on the south. At the times of the Roman empire was know as Tarraco (Imperial Tarraco) and was the main city in the Spanish Peninsula. The ruins of that time are amazing.
Tarragona province is also well know as a wine and “cava” (the catalan champagne) region. And for being the most important region for the “castellers” the tipical human towers made by 50-60 people at the same time.
3- For those with an appeal for nature, you have to take a tour around Vic and the Guilleries, an impressive group of low mountains an hills full of dramatic cliffs with small villages and churches standing on its limits. Incredible views, great trecking and even greater food.
4- Also for the mountain lovers, go to la Vall d’Aran or la Cerdanya, pyrenees region with sky stations, great trecking and peaceful villages to relax and have good meals.