Is the Park Güell Tour Worth It? Here’s My Take

As soon as I knew I was visiting Barcelona I knew I would go to the Sagrada Familia. Second on my wishlist was Park Güell. I didn’t know much about it, so I decided to do a Park Güell tour. But was it worth it?

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About Park Güell

If, like me, you don’t know a lot about Park Güell, you might be surprised to discover you would probably recognise the photos, even if you don’t know the name.

There’s a classic shot from the terrace, looking over the city, with the sparkling mosaics and towers in the foreground that can be found all over Instagram.

The view across Barcelona from the panoramic terrace of Park Güell. In the foreground is a curved wall with colourful mosaics on it

While I was there on a particularly dull and rainy day, you can imagine the above photo on a bright day with beautiful blue skies.

Park Güell is a bit out of the city centre, up on a ridge, and it’s famous for showcasing the artwork of Antoni Gaudi – yes, the same person responsible for the Sagrada Familia.

Originally it started out as an idea for a housing area in the early 1900s. Eusebi Güell, a rich businessman and a supporter of the famous architect Antoni Gaudí was behind the concept.

They wanted to build a special place for homes, but not enough people were interested in buying them. So, in 1926, they turned the land into a public park instead.

A stone wall is adorned with a checkered pattern of square tiles in various colors and designs, with hanging stone elements and creeping greenery. The foreground features a curved, mosaic-decorated pathway.

The park shows off Gaudí’s creative style, mixing nature with amazing architecture. Since 1984, it’s been recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its unique design.

I learnt all this because instead of just visiting to admire the mosaics, I took a tour booked through The Tour Guys.

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Park Güell Tour

Being a park, there are multiple entrances into Park Güell, but only one of them allows groups, so make sure you are very clear on which entrance you need to be at.

There’s not a huge amount of signage at the entrance, but you will easily know it when you see it. Look out for the crowds of people milling around.

An area with trees and a lot of people standing around waiting

We were a little unsure how to find our guide, but as it worked out, we didn’t need to worry. About fifteen minutes before the tour times, the guides all wander around holding up a sign, collecting their participants as they go along.

We had Lili as our guide, and she was on time and well-organised, gathering our group of 30 (the maximum) together. We entered the park almost exactly at 11 am, our tour start time.

On the day of our tour, it was holiday time in Europe. Many Spanish children on school holidays, and it was just days before Easter, so it was a busy time. And it did show in the crowds in the park.

The first section of the tour explored the upper areas, and it was here that Lili talked to us a lot about the history of the park as well as about some of the architectural features we were seeing.

As we continued down through the park we came to the house where Gaudi lived for the last twenty years of his life. Today it is the Gaudi House Museum, which showcases some of Gaudi’s furniture and information about him and his life.

An ornate house amongst trees. The house is covered in scaffolding and a false front as it is being renovated.

(During my visit in March 2024, the building was covered in scaffolding and was not open. It has been closed since January 2024 for renovations. I could not find when it was expected to be open again.)

Soon we came to the Plaça de la Natura, the panoramic terrace where all those Instagram photos are taken from. Its curvy edges are covered in the colourful mosaics that are so popular.

Looking across a park to an elevated terrace with lots of people on it

The terrace was very popular, and there were many people on it at any time, so we had a few minutes of free time to wait for people to dissapate and get the photos that we wanted.

Looking from a terrace across a park. In the foreground is a concrete bench forming a wall decorated with colourful mosaics

We noticed a commotion to one side and saw people watching (and unfortunately hand feeding – don’t do that!) some beautiful green parrots.

Two green parrots sitting on branches

We strolled along another colonnaded walkway and past some more of the unique architectural features.

A Gaudi designed lookout

This area is home to the large house that the Güell family lived in. Today this house is a school and has a very distinctive fence.

A metal fence with a spiky leaf design repeating over and over

Our tour continued to the area underneath the Plaça de la Natura – the Hipòstila Room. Supporting the terrace are 86 doric columns, which lead up to a domed ceiling dotted with more colourful mosaics.

As we left this area we came across El Drac, or the Park Güell Lizard as he is often called. This iconic sculpture has become the symbol of Barcelona.

A colourful mosaic sculpture of a lizard

There was quite a lineup to get a selfie with El Drac (meaning “dragon”), but I was able to snap a quick shot in between children lovingly hugging him and adults standing proudly nearby.

The final part of the tour took us to the two gingerbread houses near the exit.

Looking down across crowds of people to gingerbread-style houses beyonf

These two houses were originally the Porter’s House, now a gift shop, and the Guard’s House, which now houses a small museum where visitors can watch some short films about the history of Park Güell.

Entry into Casa del Guarda is included with the tour, but it was so crowded when we tried to enter, we gave up.

Overall our tour lasted a bit over an hour. After that, we were free to continue exploring the park at our own pace. We went back to a few of the areas we had already been to spend some more time taking photos and looking around.

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So is it Worth it?

One of the things I have learnt during my travels is that if it fits into your budget then a guided tour of an attraction is always worth it.

I always find I get more out of a location if I hear the stories that don’t often get told. For example, did you know Gaudi died after being hit by a tram? I had no idea. But even more intriguing, he almost died as a John Doe.

He lay in hospital for days without anyone knowing who he was before he just happened to be recognised by a staff member. He died shortly afterwards.

Remember this was the guy building the incredible cathedral down the road, so I would have thought he would have been recognised or at least have been reported missing.

Crowds of people in a small plaza in front of a staircase between two mosaic walls leading to an ornate columned structure beyond

This, and more details of his life and work, have made me more curious about Gaudi and what he achieved. I am doing a stopover in Barcelona next month and I’m planning to see Casa Battló, one of his other buildings.

So yes, I do think the guided tour of Park Güell was worth it.

Our tour guide through The Tour Guy was organised, knowledgable and spoke great English.

The tour, at €25, is not a whole lot more than entry to the park alone, and there are a range of times available each day so you can book the one that suits your itinerary.

To see more details of the tour, click on the image below, or click this link.

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Getting to Park Güell

I mentioned earlier that Park Güell was a little further out of the city centre than many of the other attractions.

I also mentioned that there is more than one entrance, and tours can only enter at one of them – and of course, it’s the furthest entrance from the city, and it’s at the top of the park.

If you really wanted to walk, you could, the group entrance is only a little over 2km from the Sagrada Familia, but it is also uphill.

We were coming from our accommodation which was further away, so we chose to catch public transport, and the best option is a bus that stops just a few metres up the road.

We caught bus number 24 from the stop on the north side of Plaça Catalunya. The bus comes every ten minutes or so and takes around 20 minutes to get to Park Güell.

The buses are really simple. As you get on you can tap with your credit card to pay, or you can pay cash (exact money). A single trip is €2.50

(Tip: I use Google Maps to see where I am while on the bus to make sure I get off at the right stop)

When we left Park Güell, we left via the lower gate rather than walk back up to the top again. From here, we decided to take the Metro back to the city centre.

It’s about a 15-minute walk to the nearest Metro station of Lesseps, but at least the first part of the walk takes you past several cute cafes and fun souvenir shops so you might enjoy some shopping along the way.

At the Metro station, you will find ticket machines near the entrance, and they are some of the easiest machines I’ve ever had to navigate anywhere. Choose the ticket you want (a single ticket is the easiest), pay with your credit card and you’re good to go.

We caught the Metro back into the Las Ramblas area so that we could go to the Mercado de La Boqueria, so we got off at Liceu.

Park Güell Tickets

Park Güell is mostly a large public park, and much of it is free to enter. To see the Gaudi designs though, you will need a paid ticket.

If you choose to enter without a tour, I absolutely recommend buying your tickets well in advance, because there are a limit on the number of people allowed in the paid zone and it does regularly sell out.

The tickets are also timed, so not only will you need a ticket for the right day, but also for the time you want to visit.

Get your Park Güell admission tickets here.

After your Park Güell Tour, there are many more things to do in Barcelona.
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I was sponsored on this tour by The Tour Guy. As always, my opinions above are as I saw it on the day I visited Park Güell.

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