Spain Barcelona Cathedral 23229783 Hero

Barcelona, Spain is a city of contradictions: old and new intertwined, beautiful and industrial, traditional and avant-garde. Bordered by France to the north and the Mediterranean Sea to the east, Barcelona is one of the most ‘European’ of Spanish cities. Stroll Las Ramblas, one of the city’s most famous and busy boulevards and weave through the medieval streets of the Gothic Quarter (Barri Gòtic). Enjoy the unique and colorful architecture of Barcelona’s most famed architect, Antoni Gaudí. Barcelona is a very cosmopolitan city that combines the latest trends with the most typical Spanish traditions. Barcelona offers museums, cinemas, restaurants, clubs, bars, the beach and the mountains, and people from all over the world.

Although Spaniards from Barcelona speak both Spanish and Catalán, the mixture of local residents and international visitors makes it an easy city to understand and make yourself understood. Barcelona exposes students to several cultures, languages, and worldviews; but then, what else could be expected from the marvelously complex city of Barcelona?

Students who choose to study abroad in Barcelona can take courses at one of several top schools and universities:

The Universitat de Barcelona was established in 1450 and is the oldest and largest university in Barcelona. Students complete Spanish language and culture courses alongside other American, Erasmus (European) and international students in the university’s Department of Hispanic Studies.

The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona was founded in 1968 and is well known for its international profile. API students complete classes in English and in Spanish with mostly American students at two different campuses. The Sant Pau campus is located in a renovated UNESCO World Heritage building near the famous Sagrada Familia church in the Eixample neighborhood of Barcelona. The Eixample campus is located within a 30 minute walk or 15 minute metro ride of the Sant Pau campus, and a 5 minute walk from the Plaza Catalunya.

The Universitat Pompeu Fabra was established by the Catalonian Parliament in 1990 and has quickly become one of the city’s most respected universities. From its beginnings, this academic institution has emphasized two main objectives: to train professionals and citizens who are responsible and committed to civic values, and to contribute towards the development of research. Programs are available at a variety of levels in intensive language, and Hispanic and European studies (available in English and Spanish). Advanced level students have the opportunity to complete at least one class with local students.

Elisava – Escola Universitària de Barcelona | Disseny i Enginyeria was founded in 1961 as the first school of design in Spain, and it is also a college of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Throughout its history, ELISAVA has been instrumental in shaping the culture of design in Catalonia and Spain, and it continues to build on its history of pioneering design and engineering instruction.

ESADE is an independent nonprofit university institution, founded in 1958 in Barcelona when a group of entrepreneurs and Jesuit Society members joined forces. Since 1995 it has formed part of the Ramon Llull University. ESADE has a strong academic reputation, and is one of a select group of institutions worldwide to achieve the triple crown of business accreditation which includes American accreditation through the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), British accreditation by the Association of MBAs (AMBA) and European accreditation by the European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS).

“I really enjoyed API and will be recommending it to others. Everyone that works for API is so genuinely nice and made my adjustment to Barcelona that much better because I felt like I had a family here."

Morgan F. College of Charleston
  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona Api Gives Back

    Cultural Activities

    • Walking tour of Barcelona
    • Tapas workshop
    • Cooking lessons
    • Flamenco show/workshop
  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona Reviews

    API Gives Back

    API students in Barcelona have the opportunity to give back to their local community through various volunteer projects, including working with children and adults with special needs.

  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona To Do

    Things to Do

    Enjoy the beach and waterfront

    Wander Park Guell and other Gaudi creations

    Learn how to make a human tower (Castellers)

  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona Food


    Tapas (bar snacks)

    Croquetas (fried snacks)

    Bacalao (cod)

  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona Festival

    Festivals & Holidays

    Gràcia Festival (August)

    Festival Sant Joan (June)

    St. George's Day (April)

  • Discover More Small Spain Barcelona University

    University Highlights

    The ESADE Business School is one of the top business schools in Spain and Europe and carries the prestigious triple crown of business school accreditation (AACSB, AMBA, and EQUIS).

    The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona is one of the most popular schools in Spain, and its main campus is housed in a UNESCO World Heritage Building.

    The Universitat Pompeu Fabra was ranked the top university in Spain in 2018 by the Times Higher Education publication (#140 worldwide and #60 in Europe).

    The Universitat de Barcelona was established in 1450 and is the oldest and largest university in Barcelona.

U.S. Staff

On-Site Staff

Alicia Castillo

Alicia Castillo

Alicia Castillo will be your Resident Director and a resource for you on-site in Spain.


Mireia Pujol

Mireia Pujol

Mireia Pujol will be your Student Services Director in Barcelona and will assist you in adjusting to the Spanish culture!


Arnau Roma Sansa headshot

Arnau Roma

Arnau Roma will be your Resident Director and a resource for you on-site in Spain.