50 things to do in Barcelona in 2014: sports
Highlights of Barcelona's sports events in 2014
Among the 50 great things to do in Barcelona in 2014 are major sports events on an international level: tennis, car racing, motorbike racing, football, the yachting world race, horse jumping, a marathon, and the basketball World Cup. Phew.
The celebration of the Basketball World Cup in Spain in 2014 will give Barcelona, one of the six host cities, alongside Bilbao, Granada, Gran Canaria, Madrid and Seville, another opportunity to demonstrate its ability to organise world-class sporting events. The main venue for the event, which will run from the 30th of August to the 14th of September, will be the Sant Jordi arena, with capacity for 17,960 spectators. Among the teams competing for the ultimate prize in world basketball will be Spain as host nation; the USA as gold medallist at the last Olympic Games; France, Lithuania, Croatia, Slovenia, Ukraine and Serbia representing Europe; Mexico, Puerto Rico, Argentina and the Dominican Republic representing the Americas; Angola, Egypt and Senegal representing African basketball; Iran, the Philippines and Korea as the top Asian teams; Australia and New Zealand from Oceania; and four wild cards.
Barcelona is set to become the capital of the equestrian world once again when it hosts the 103rd edition of the Furusiyaya FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final. This will be the second time that the city plays host to the most important event in show jumping’s yearly calendar, featuring the world’s best riders. The venue will, once again, be the grounds of the city’s Real Club de Polo.
This will be the third edition of this round-the-world yacht race – for two-person crews – that begins and ends in Barcelona on New Year’s Eve. It is the first ever two-handed, non-stop round-the-world regatta and is set to start on 31 December 2014 from opposite Hotel W in the Port of Barcelona. The competing boats are expected back in the port in March 2015 after sailing some 25,000 nautical miles (around 46,300 kilometres).
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Barcelona by area
The city boasts seven kilometres of golden sands, running from the bustling Port Vell to the upscale Port Olímpic and beyond to the Fòrum. Inevitably, this is also where you'll find some of the city's best seafood restaurants.
A stroll through the medieval alleyways and secluded squares of the Old City is the best possible introduction to Barcelona and the starting point for most visitors upon arrival in the city.
The pedestrianised Passeig del Born, the Born's main artery, is one of Barcelona's prettiest thoroughfares, bookended by a magnificent 19th-century market building and a glorious 14th-century church.
Once a no-go area for tourists, the Raval is being transformed. Some of its gems have been around for years - Gaudí's medievalist Palau Güell was an early attempt at gentrification - but others are newer.
It's often left off visitors' itineraries, but the hill of Montjuïc merits a wander. In summer, the hill is a few degrees cooler than the city below, and its many parks and gardens are excellent places for a shady picnic.
The Eixample is a Modernista showcase: its buildings include the Sagrada Família, La Pedrera and the Hospital de Sant Pau.
Gràcia was an independent town that was swallowed up as the city spread, but it retains its own identity and is one of the most popular and vibrant districts in the city.
Sarrià was its own independent town until 1921, when it was gobbled up by Barcelona and became the city's new uptown area, not only for its geographical location but also for its more posh homes, shops and restaurants.