Ever wondered what the most visited tourist destination in Barcelona is? If you were to take a guess, you probably might say Las Ramblas, the Sagrada Familia, the Picasso Museum or perhaps the Camp Nou, home of FC Barcelona.
All of these very sensible guesses would be wrong. In fact recent statistics from the Barcelona tourist board indicate that the most visited tourist attraction throughout the whole province of Barcelona (as opposed to just the city itself) is an out of town shopping centre!
La Roca Village shopping centre holds the title, after some 3.3 million people in 2013. La Roca is a factory outlet shopping mall located 30 minutes from both Barcelona and Girona by car or bus. La Roca Village offers big brands at prices reduced by up to 60%. It is near the village of Santa Agnès de Malanyanes, and actually located parallel to the motorway.
La Roca received more visitors than the Sagrada Família, which received a mere 3,176,970 people in comparison. The next most visited monument in the province of Barcelona was Montserrat Monastery, with nearly 2.4 million visits, followed by the Circuit de Catalunya (the veunue of the F1 racing) with just over 620,000 visits, followed by the Natural Park of Montseny which attracted 196,000 visitors.
Back in the capital, the top 5 attractions were headed by the Sagrada Família, followed by the Aquarium with 1,718,000 visitors, the Barça Museum with 1.5 million visitors, the Poble Espanyol with 1,258,000 visitors and the Montjuïc castle with 1,072,000 visitors.