Tarragona cathedral from the roof

What to do in Tarragona: tips for exploring the capital of the Costa Daurada in Catalonia


Tarragona is famous for its history. The city of Tarraco was established by the Romans over 2000 years ago. In the year 218 BC to be exact. From that moment on, each period of history has left its mark on the city. You can explore many different centuries from history just by crossing from one street to another.

The Roman Amphitheatre: built in the 2nd century AD and with a capacity for 14,000 spectators. It was used for battles between gladiators and beasts, as well as for executions. The majority of the arena and the steps are still conserved today.The Santa Tecla cathedral: you can find this in the highest part of the city, on the ruins of an old Roman temple dedicated to Emperor Augustus.From square to square: three squares with fragments of history. The Plaza del Fòrum was the location of the Roman Forum. Today you can still observe a large part of one of the walls. Plaça de la Font is an enormous plaza that used to be the centre of a Roman circus. Finally, Plaça del Rei is the home of the Pretoria Tower and the National Archaeological Museum.     

Top left: Santa Tecla cathedral. Top right: Street cafés in the Plaza del Rey © Joan Capdevila. Below: Roman amphitheatre in Tarragona

El Serrallo: this ancient fishing district is a perfect place to stroll through and to enjoy some fresh fish and tasty rice dishes.The Rambla Nova and the Balcón del Mediterráneo: this street is a real marvel. It contains more than 150 years of history and is brimming with shops, restaurants and bars. You will also find a number of picturesque sculptures, such as the Castellers monument and the mythical Font dels Elefants. Make sure to finish up your stroll at the Balcón del Mediterráneo, a viewpoint 40 metres above ground from where you can gaze at the Roman amphitheatre, the port and out to sea.Every step you take will feel like you're travelling back in time. And at the end of your visit, the beach will be waiting for you.   

View from the Balcón del Mediterráneo, Tarragona