Perhaps the biggest joy up on Montjüic is its parks and gardens. It's amazing to be able to escape on just a short ride on the Funicular from downtown Barcelona, and transport yourself so quickly to an oasis of colour and smells of the botanical gardens which lie below the famous cable car ride. This is a great place to relax and take a picnic, for example, exploring the Japanese bridge, spying tadpoles at the lazy cascades and playing in the central, man-made lake, which due to droughts in recent years have become an excellent children's playground! With the botanical gardens being a favourite for locals at weekends, if you happen to visit mid-week, you can almost have the park to yourself!
Moving across the road from the botanical gardens and towards the old Port is the Joan Brossa Park, which is great fun for kids and grown ups alike. This park winds around the middle of Montjüic towards the port, and includes children's play areas and ingenious musical toys made entirely from natural elements - for example musical spring cushions for you to jump on, tunnel telephones made from wood, and see-saw wind organs. You have to see it to believe it! There are also some great hidden children's play areas full of shade and a great place as an alternative to the busy beaches for families with young children in the summer.
Montjüic also houses the Ethnological museum, and another little-known park just behind, known as the Park del Font del Gat fountain park, which bears its name as a cat is said to have discovered the fountain. This park is on a gradient, like much of Montjüic, but is still very easily accessible as Montjüic is more like a big hill really, rather than a mountain as its name suggests. This little park has a little trickle of a stream running through its middle and down to the neighbourhood of Poble Sec, and is a great place to explore with a small restaurant in the middle, too. Take shade in the cypress trees and read a chapter from your book, or sketch the pools with lilies you can find here.
A final mention goes to the hotel Miramar next to the cable car which crosses the water to Barceloneta beach. There are plenty of little corners to explore in the garden in front of the hotel, which again rarely fills with people and can offer a great rest before moving along to another spot.