The 10 best apps for Barcelona life

16 May 2017 Maria Di Mario no responses

Barcelona was the first Spanish city named a “Smart City”, hosts the Mobile World Congress every year and is home to dozens of tech companies, more of which start up every year. Given its profile as a tech-friendly city, it’s no surprise that there are hundreds of Barcelona apps out there. We’ve picked our ten favourite apps which we’ve found the most useful in navigating Barcelona life. Let us know if you have a favourite!


Transport

TMB app

The TMB app is incredibly thorough and will cover all your public transport questions. There are service alerts, metro maps, bus lines, route planners, information about ticket prices and an option to personalise the app to feature your most travelled lines. Great for anyone relatively new to Barcelona who’s still trying to find their way around!

Free, available in English, Spanish and Catalan

Bicing

Download the Bicing app and say goodbye to the days of circling the city futilely searching for somewhere to park your bike. The app uses your location and displays the Bicing stands nearby, with a little graphic showing how many bikes are at the stand. You can also map your cycle route and find out the distance and altitude.

Free, available in Spanish and Catalan 


Going out

The Fork

A fantastic guide to Barcelona’s bewildering array of restaurants and cafes, The Fork is a location-based app which gives you the details of nearby restaurants, with ratings, approximate pricing and menu details. You can filter your searches by cuisine and vibe. They also have offers linked to the app, which will give you 30% and even sometimes 40% off your final bill.

Free, available in English 

Resident Advisor

This app has a comprehensive list of all gigs and events on around Barcelona. It provides you with an inbuilt diary to keep tracks of the events that you want to attend, details of the venues and a rough estimate of the numbers attending so you know when to buy tickets. It’s a must-have for anyone who wants to explore Barcelona’s thriving music scene.

Free, available in English 


Free time

iBeach

This is the perfect app for Barcelona based beach lovers. It gives you information about beaches all over Spain, so before heading off for a day at Sant Pol de Mar you can check on the temperature and see pictures of the beaches. Within Barcelona the app is a lot more detailed, giving information about water quality, jellyfish presence and swimming safety, while also highlighting nearby first aid points and bathrooms.

Free, available in English 

Meetup

Great for people who are new to the city, the Meetup app is a way for people to connect with others who have similar interests. There are an enormous range activities in the app, which cover everything from book clubs to macrame classes to five-a-side football games. No matter how niche your interest, Meetup is a good way to find like-minded people. There’s also a calendar feature showing you all the groups happening near you for inspiration – after all, moving to a new city is a great way to learn new skills!

Free, available in English but with a lot of Spanish content in the group descriptions


Architecture

Medieval Barcelona

This app provides a series of audio guides for famous spots around the city such as the Basílica of Santa Maria del Mar, Plaça Sant Jaume I and the Museo Marítimo. Each spot has a few little podcasts giving you the architectural and historical background of the building. If your Spanish isn’t as strong as you’d like, it also has the text of each podcast so you can read along! Perfect for practising your Spanish and learning about the city’s main monuments so you can play tour guide when you’re showing around visitors from home!

Free, available in Spanish and Catalan

BCN Paisatge

This app shares the small historical details of the city that might otherwise pass you by, with pinpoints on a map of the city that, when you tap on them, give you the history of the locale. For example, did you know that the enormous thermometer  at the top of Avinguda del Portal de l’Àngel was put up by an optician called Roland Cottet in 1956, weighs two tonnes and is 22m long, with a scale from -5ºC to 40ºC? We didn’t! It also has lots of detail about the oldest shops in Barcelona, so you’ll see a wealth of architectural detail in a space you might otherwise never have entered! A great companion for city walks.

Free, available in English, Catalan, Spanish, German, French and Chinese


Apartments

Idealista

If you’re looking for an apartment then this app is your best friend. You can set your search parameters based on area, price, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, minimum and maximum square metres, and which floor you want to live on, as well as a whole host of smaller details like air conditioning, garage space, terrace space etc. You can save your searches and set the app to send you an alert when the kind of property that fits your specifications comes on the market.

Free, available in English, Catalan, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German and French

Wallapop

Like Ebay, but without the bidding, Wallapop is an online, location-based, secondhand marketplace. You can filter your searches by object, price and distance and prices are low. Given the lack of charity shops in Barcelona selling furniture and crockery, it’s a great way to furnish a rented flat without spending a small fortune at IKEA.

Free, available in English but with lots of Spanish content

If we’ve missed out any great apps, let us know in the comments!


Maria Di Mario

Maria did a TEFL Iberia course in summer 2013 and has been working as an English teacher and blogger ever since. She lives in Raval with three flatmates and two kittens and she likes exploring Barcelona, taking photographs and having dinner with her pals.

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