Not Sure What to See in Barcelona? Check Out Our Awesome Guide

Not Sure What to See in Barcelona? Check Out Our Awesome Guide

The eyes work tirelessly while exploring new places, constantly darting from side to side and up and down, trying to take in all the dazzling sights and scenery.  Maybe you’re a history buff who gazes in awe of ancient buildings or an art connoisseur who stares diligently at art displays to interpret their meaning.  Perhaps you’re an outdoors expert who is constantly gaping at the sight of breathtaking mountains… or you prefer to bask in the sun and watch the waves roll onto the beach.  Whatever you like to see, Barcelona has the perfect attraction for you!  Investigate sights that interest you or discover a new passion within the vast list of what to see in Barcelona!

Arts, Architecture, and History

As a region that can be traced back to the 2nd century, Barcelona has a rich history as well as spectacular art and architecture that developed throughout the years.  These are just a few highlights of Barcelona’s most famous museums and monuments.  (Also something to keep in mind: all city-run Barcelona museums are free on Sundays!)

Joan Miro´ Museum: Learn about the famous Joan Miro´ and observe rare paintings and exhibits in this unique museum.

Barcelona City History Museum (MUHBA): Study ancient artifacts as you discover more about Barcelona’s history and how it has developed since its founding.

Modernista Art and Architecture: Many modernista architects, such as Antoní Gaudi, have left their mark in Barcelona in the form of countless, breathtaking buildings all across the city for the public to admire.

Barcelona Ramblas: Once a rushing river, this significant part of Barcelona is now the most famous street in the city, filled with businesses, historical sites, restaurants, markets, and more!

Hiking

Since it is a city surrounded by hills, Barcelona is home to many beautiful hiking trails.  If you love the outdoors, lace up your hiking boots and investigate these magnificent scenes of nature.  

Montjuïc mountain: This towering hill, which historically served as a defense for the city, now contains gardens, parks, hiking trails, and even cable car rides to view the city from above!

Collserola Park: An ideal area for biking, this park has picturesque views of the city, the Mediterranean, and the countryside.

Montserrat: View the famous Montserrat monastery before hiking the peak of this mountain, which is known for possessing the best view of Catalonia.

Pyrenees & Montseny Mountains: You should reserve an entire day trip to fully appreciate what these mountains have to offer; you’ll find countless parks, trails, and views of the mountains as well as ancient towns and buildings.

Beaches

The beaches of Barcelona are truly a sight to behold.  Over four kilometers long, these beautiful beaches are spread along the Mediterranean and include multiple coastal towns and marketplaces to explore.  Many of these areas have a thriving nightlife as well, making these beaches a must on the list of what to see in Barcelona!

Sant Sebastià: The longest and arguably the most popular beach in Barcelona, Sant Sebastià stretches 1,100 meters long and possesses many sporting clubs for sea-related activities.

Nova Icària: Closeby to the Olympic Marina, this beach has a wide variety of restaurants in its adjoining town, offering some of the best Barcelona cuisine.

Mar Bella: This active and bustling beach is best known for its watersports.  Visitors and locals alike here can be seen windsurfing or kayaking; there’s also a perfect area for joggers and cyclists.

Barceloneta: The oldest beach in the area, Barceloneta is known as Barcelona’s classic neighborhood by the sea, where people from far and wide come to enjoy seafood in this traditional fishing district. 

Come and Stay with Us at bizFlats!

Now that you know all about what to see in Barcelona, check our availability and book a vacation with us today!  We offer a variety of different penthouses, studios, apartments, lofts, and villas, all designed for you to get more living space for less money than a hotel.

Photo by Rick Ligthelm / Flickr

 

Christmas in Barcelona is Like a Fantastic Dream

Christmas in Barcelona is Like a Fantastic Dream

If you’re looking for a Christmas celebration unlike any other you’ve ever experienced, Barcelona is the perfect place for you this holiday season! December is an ideal month in this exotic region; the Barcelona Christmas weather isn’t too chilly, holiday activities are in full swing, and the streets and buildings are lavishly decorated. Exciting festivities, traditional culture, and welcoming locals make Christmas in Barcelona a truly magical time of year.

An Overview of Christmas in Barcelona

The Christmas season in Barcelona officially begins on December 8th, which is known as the Feast of Immaculate Conception, a day centered on the belief that the Virgin Mary was conceived without sin.  The majority of families in Barcelona begin decorating for Christmas on this day.  Usually the most prominent Christmas decorations in the typical Barcelona home are the Nativity scenes (complete with the traditional caganer) displaying the stable of Bethlehem.  Christmas Eve (La Nochebuena) is observed with an extravagant dinner to celebrate the birth of Christ, and Christmas Day is celebrated December 25th with gifts and meals; most businesses are closed to honor this day.  The end of the Christmas season is marked by Three Kings’ Day on January 6th; this holiday, even more widely observed than Christmas Day, represents the day the Three Wise Men arrived to visit Jesus and is celebrated by a large parade the evening before.

Things to Do in Barcelona for Christmas

Barcelona Christmas Market:  Christmas fairs and markets are a must-see during Christmas in Barcelona! Some of the most popular markets are Fira de Santa Llúcia, which is filled with beautiful displays and performances, and the Fira de Reis, where you can find a wide selection of goods, candies, and toys (mostly handcrafted).  Many other fairs and Christmas markets are scattered amongst the villages during this season. There’s also the Festival de la Infancia, a fair with activities specifically for children, such as storytelling, games, and crafts.  

Skating:  Another popular activity during Christmas in Barcelona is ice skating; Catalunya Square, an iconic plaza surrounded by monumental buildings, is transformed into a temporary ice rink during the winter seasons and attracts visitors of all ages.   

Lights: Barcelona is well-known for their light exhibits during the holiday season!  Almost 300 streets are adorned with dazzling light displays and every district of the city presents its own towering Christmas tree.

Special Events: The Harbour Swim (Copa Nadal) is a swim across Barcelona’s freezing harbour on Christmas morning.  This tradition dates back to 1907 and has been a sight for spectators to enjoy every year since!  The Three Kings’ Parade is another famous Barcelona Christmas tradition that always occurs on January 5th.  This three-hour procession begins at 6:00pm and follows a 5 kilometer route.  Various artists, such as musicians, dancers, and circus performers, all participate to create this beautiful and traditional festivity.

Celebrate The Tradition of the Barcelona Christmas Log: One of the most unique aspects of Christmas in Barcelona is the tradition of the Caga Tió (the Spanish Christmas poo). A log with a cartoon face is placed by the hearth, and the children of the household present food to the log in exchange for gifts that it poops-out.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats!

If any of these sights or events have peaked your interest, Christmas in Barcelona is the perfect winter getaway for you!  bizFlats offers a wide assortment of different lofts, studios and penthouses, apartments and villas to rent in spectacular areas of Barcelona.  Come experience luxurious living in one of the most exhilarating places on earth.  New Years in Barcelona is an amazing experience, as well!

Photo: Núria / Flickr

 

What is Cava?

What is Cava?

Cava is a champagne style sparkling wine made in Spain, and is known for being a more affordable choice for your celebratory occasions like New Year’s Eve and weddings. If you’re a fan of bubbly but have always wondered what the difference is between all these varieties like Champagne, Prosecco and Cava, we’re here to give you a little more information.

Naturally, we will be highlighting our Spanish preference and trying to answer the pressing question, what is cava? Because, well, we’re biased. We can only do so, however, in light of the other varieties, so get ready for your annual wine lesson – something it’s good to study up on at least a little before visiting Catalonia.

What is Cava?

Cava is a simple aperitif made primarily from three Spanish grape varieties. It is neither as sweet as Italian Prosecco nor as nutty as Vintage Champagne, making it the perfect middle ground and crowd pleasing bubbly beverage to serve your guests. While it typically uses Spanish varieties of grapes rather than French varieties, Cava is produced in the traditional French Champagne method. What makes Cava different, essentially, is that it is made in Spain with Spanish Grapes.

How Is Cava Made?

What sets sparkling wines apart from their counterparts is all in the bottling process, which is when the bubbles are formed. After being bottled, cava wine continues to ferment for months or even years. The bottles are capped with crown caps (like those used for beer bottles), and slanted down to allow all the yeast to settle in the neck of the bottle where the pressure will build up the most. After fermentation the tip of the bottle is then submerged in a freezing solution and a few inches of it are turned to ice, at which point the cap is removed, and the pressure in the bottle will actually expel the ice plug that has formed. The vintner will then top the bottle off and cork it.

Types of Cava

Finally, you probably want to know what all the different types of Cava are in your quest, asking questions such as “what is cava brut?” There are three types of Cava, all of which are made with a blend of the three main grapes used in cava production, which are Macabeu, Parellada, and Xarel-lo, all of which are white varieties. Brut and Brut Nature Cava is a fruity style that has become popular because it is lower in calories than the other styles. It is fruitier also, making it the perfect aperitif. Cava Rosé is, of course, pink, meaning that vintners add other grapes into the mix to get this color, which is most likely the Spanish Garnacha and Monastrell varieties. Pinot Noir is also becoming a common addition. Finally Vintage and Aged Cava is more in line with the original French Champagnes and is known for having a more nutty and toasty flavor with zesty aromatics like apple and almond.   

Now you are ready for your cava drinking experience here in Barcelona, which you’re sure to find at any cocktail hour or included in many a sangria recipe. You can either be spared having to ask your bartender, “What is cava champagne?” or you can boldly ask away and learn even more!

 

Things to Do at Marina Port Vell

Things to Do at Marina Port Vell

If you’re heading to the Mediterranean coast while visiting Barcelona, or maybe to check out the 1992 Olympic Complex while there, you’ll certainly catch a glimpse of the stunning Marina Port Vell. Whether you’ve got a thing for boats or just want to take a stroll along the water, this little cove of luxury is a wonderful place to enjoy the ocean views, and perhaps even a fancy cocktail. Translated into English as Old Harbor, the Marina’s recent rebuilding is a reimagination of this once industrial port.

About Marina Port Vell

Barcelona is in an ideal location for sea merchants and has been a central hub on the Mediterranean since the Middle Ages. Until the early 90’s and the arrival of the Olympics, however, the waterfront area remained largely industrial, with the city putting little effort into the attraction the waterfront could provide. Marina Port Vell and the other waterfront attractions are part of the new Barcelona.  

This upscale marina was built for the 1992 Olympic Games and has now been renovated into a 148-berth luxury yacht facility, docking some of the most stunningly beautiful boats you may ever lay eyes one. Aside from docking boats, which offer a wonderful tourist attraction, Marina Port Vell is also a luxury yacht club where you can enjoy a wonderful gourmet meal on the water, and even start planning your chartered yacht trip.   

The Restaurant at Marina Port Vell

One of the most highly acclaimed restaurants in Barcelona, Marina Port Vell offers a dining experience that is as luxurious as the yachts they dock. Aside from an inventive, beautiful and locally sourced menu, this restaurant also offers one of the most unique views of both the city and the Ocean beyond. If you’re headed here for dinner in the evening you can look forward to a delicious dinner based on age old Catalan cuisine traditions, and a port lit up as if it were Christmas. You can also stop by for a drink on the patio!

Rambla Del Mar

If you are exploring Las Ramblas, the great pedestrian street stretching from La Rambla all the way to Marina Port Vell, take the extra leg down to the water to discover this urban revitalization of Barcelona’s waterfront. Port Vell is much more than a Marina, which you’ll discover along the boardwalk. You’ll see the Maremagnum, a shopping mall with bars, restaurants and a movie Theatre, as well as IMAX Port Vell alongside the famous Aquarium. The Swing Bridge that you’ll cross on your walk allows ships in and out of the harbor and is a beauty to behold all its own.

 

Whether you’re looking for a romantic night out, a place to snap some great photos on the waterfront, or even to hire a private yacht charter for a few days in the Mediterranean, Marina Port Vell is the place to go in Barcelona. If you’re looking to enjoy some luxury on your vacation, or just want to see where the social elite flock to, you’ll love this beautiful area of the city, and it makes for a great walk!

8 Important Catalan Traditions

8 Important Catalan Traditions

Many Catalan traditions have been born of these centuries of intriguing culture and are still practiced today. People visiting Barcelona are often in search of these traditions, whether around holidays, food, or are just looking for the unexpected experience. A city of friendly people, you can easily ask around and get a feel for where to find these wonderful flourishes of Catalan culture. Here are the ones that are most well known and frequented by visitors to the area.

8 Catalan Traditions

  1. Castellers – Meaning “towers” in English, the Catalan Castellers are certainly one of the most famous Catalan traditions around. If you are visiting Barcelona during any national holiday, head to a public square where you may catch a glimpse of these agile natives making human towers reaching as high as three stories in the air. There is also an annual competition on the first Sunday of October in Tarragona that is bound to be breathtaking.
  2. Correfocs – Another wondrous, though a little scary, of the Catalan traditions, is the Correfocs festivals during which there are huge street parades. People run around dressed as devils. Though they aren’t partaking in evil perse, it is certainly tomfoolery involving drums, firecrackers and other wonders you’ll enjoy.
  3. Els Segadors – The national anthem, Els Segadors was written in 1693 when Catalonia fought for its freedom against the Spanish King. You’re bound to hear it sung if you’re around for any holidays, and give it a listen beforehand if you want to be able to sing along.
  4. The Catalan Donkey – The symbol of Catalonia, the donkey became important to the people of this region after nearly going extinct. Two natives circulated donkey silhouette stickers in defense of these animals and saved the species.
  5. Pa amb Tomàquet – Meaning, literally, bread with tomato, this is traditional tapas treat that can be found virtually anywhere in Barcelona.
  6. Calçotada – There is a harvest party each year celebrated mainly this leek-like vegetable. The celebration consists mainly of eating these onions in the traditional manner of roasting them over an open fire and until charred, peeling back the burnt leaves and eating the soft, sweet inner layers.
  7. Tió de Nadal – This Christmas tradition is an odd way that Catalonian children are accustomed to getting gifts in the form of sweets and goodies leading up to the holiday. In every home, you’ll find a hollow tree stump that is filled with little presents and on Christmas eve they take a stick to it and beat all the goodies out.
  8. Caganer – If you are here during Christmas, be prepared to see an odd figure as part of their nativity scene. Caganer is a little boy you’ll see in the manger, with his pants down, taking a poop and so fertilizing the earth for the coming years.

These are a just a taste of the great Catalan traditions you’ll find while visiting the area. Any meal will reveal a number of habits of the region that date back farther than you would imagine. A walk through the Gothic Quarter will likewise bring you right back to Medieval times. It’s a treat to visit this region any time of year!

 

FC Barcelona Legendary Players

FC Barcelona Legendary Players

In 1899 a new modern culture of leisure was born by a group of largely non native men living in Barcelona who were interested in starting a sports club and playing what were then largely British sports like football. Thus, FC Barcelona was born, and its roots are strong in the club’s culture today, who loves to celebrate international talent, but has also built a extensive Catalonian culture. Founder, Joan Gamper, was undoubtedly one of the first FC Barcelona legendary players, and not just for his skill on the pitch, but for his devotion to the growth and legacy of the club. Without Gamper, there would be no further FC Barcelona legendary players to celebrate.

FC Barcelona Legendary Players

  • Carles Comamala – Another one of the club’s founding players, Comamala was a friend and teammate of Gamper. Born to a Basque mother and a father from the Canaries, Comamala was actually from Madrid and brought up in Catalonia, making him a perfect fit for Barcelona’s early days when it was mostly made up of expats. And of course, the fact that he was a prolific striker.
  • Emili Sagi-Barba – Born in Argentina to Catalan parents, Sagi-Barba is considered one of the best FC Barcelona legendary players from the pre-Civil War era. Playing left wing, he was one of the first players to ever rock this side of the field, and become an expert in penalty and corner kicks.
  • Àngel Arocha – Considered one of the leading goal scorers in the Club’s entire history, Arocha’s record was 215 goals in just 207 games. He started his career as one of the FC Barcelona legendary players in 1927 and, from Santa Cruz, was an undoubted first choice striker for the club.
  • César Rodríguez – Yet another of the FC Barcelona legendary players, Rodríguez was a  fantastic goal scorer during his career from 1944 – 1951, and was part of the all star forward line of the 1950s. His best season was 1947 -48 when he scored 27 goals in 24 games, and was known for his powerful headers.
  • Ramón Villaverde – One of the best known South American imports, hailing from Uruguay, among the FC Barcelona legendary players, Villaverde’s career with the club ran throughout the 1950s and 60s. Not only was he a man of astounding endurance, playing center midfield, he was also known for his great humility. Having been loaned out from FB Barcelona for his last year on contract, he reportedly said, “I’m not too old for football yet, but I am too old to play for Barça.”
  • Sergi Barjuan – A Barcelona native, Barjuan is a product of the club’s youth soccer program and made his debut with the pros in 1993 as a first choice starter. He went on to play in the 1994 World Cup in the USA in his prized fullback position.

These FC Barcelona legendary players are just a small selection of the many team members over the years that have given this club such a successful history and loyal following. These men, especially from the early years, are even responsible for creating the rich and lively culture around football in Barcelona, something it would be hard to imagine this city without. Be sure to catch a game at Camp Nou the next time you’re in town during the season!

 

Business Apartments in Barcelona

Business Apartments in Barcelona

Barcelona is a lovely place for a business trip, even if you are completely inundated with work for your entire stay. Part of what makes it such an enjoyable trip are the amazing business apartments in Barcelona that allow for your work trip to feel more like a luxurious vacation. Flats around the city are designed for the utmost comfort and productivity, mixing a charming homey feel with a professional atmosphere suitable for meetings or entertaining business partners. With all the business services you can imagine, bizFlats are the perfect place to stay on your trip, or even to relocate a team or department for an extended stay in the city.

Full-Service Business Apartments in Barcelona

All equipped with free WiFi, computer jacks, and other tech equipment set-ups, our business apartments in Barcelona are perfect for your next trip to the area. We offer a full range of housekeeping services, and can even help you with equipment rentals, restaurant recommendations, limo services, or set you up with massages and other spa specials. We love helping professionals settle into their business apartments in Barcelona, and to help them save 50 percent of what they would spend in a hotel! Here are some of the business apartments in Barcelona to check out.

  1. kissMe – With beautiful modern furniture and dramatic and funky decor, this 2 bedroom flat can sleep four people. A fully equipped kitchen is the perfect place to host a catered lunch or dinner, or unwind after a long day of hard work with a team building cooking activity. The kissMe balcony overlooks a charming street in l’Eixample.
  2. LaMimosa – You will feel truly pampered in this business apartment in Barcelona ready to sleep you and 5 of your colleagues in the convenient l’Eixample neighborhood. The modern kitchen and living room offer plenty of space for meetings and fun team gatherings, and the bedrooms are both charming and luxurious at LaMimosa.
  3. Ferran Batik – This penthouse apartment in Pedralbes is sure to make you and your coworkers feel like royalty. With a private terrace all to yourself on which to enjoy lunch breaks and evening cocktails, you’ll have no problem being cooped up in here for a day of hard work. Ferran Batik sleeps five people with plenty of space for entertaining associates, and all the amenities you will need in a business apartment in Barcelona.  
  4. Parsifal – This charming apartment not only has the perfect simplicity in its decor for both inspiration and a few distractions, but is also ideally located right on La Rambla, Barcelona’s most popular pedestrian street. Not only will you be enjoying the utmost comfort in this perfect business apartment in Barcelona, but you can pop out to La Rambla any time you like for a quick snack or a business meeting at one of the many terrace cafes. Parsifal is a great place to mix business and pleasure!

Visiting Barcelona on business is a huge treat, especially at one of these gorgeous corporate flats – and there are so many more to choose from! If you are looking for a number of business apartments in Barcelona, we can even accommodate larger groups in the same buildings and neighborhoods. Be sure to contact us when planning your next business trip to Barcelona!  

 

6 Reasons to Visit the Joan Miró Museum

6 Reasons to Visit the Joan Miró Museum

Barcelona has long had a celebrated community of the arts, from incredible design and architecture throughout the city, to painters and sculptors like the amazing Joan Mirò, a Barcelona native known for his rebellious surrealism. If you have yet to visit the Joan Mirò Museum in Parc to Montjuïc in the heart of the city, it is well worth the trip and is easy to reach by public transportation or even on foot depending where you are staying when you visit.

6 Reasons to Visit the Joan Mirò Museum

  1. The Intrigue of Joan Mirò Himself
    At the Joan Mirò Museum, you will have the chance to learn of this man’s intriguing life, and what inspired his famous life works. He lived from 1893 to 1983 and is known for being among a group of classically trained  and extremely talented artists who rebelled against the fundamentals of painting and sculpture. They believed art had long been confined to the bourgeois class and so moved into creating surreal pieces influenced largely by cubists. While he was born and raised in the Barri Gòtic, Mirò’s art was not only rebelling against society, but also against his working class roots, having been born into the families of a goldsmith and a watchmaker. In 1920 he began spending the majority of his time in Paris, where he was part of the artist community in Montparnasse, though he still summered in his home of Catalonia.
  2. Explore Contemporary Artists Who Have Won the Joan Mirò Prize
    The Fundaciò Joan Mirò, which runs the museum, has been awarding the Joan Mirò prize annually since 2007. They look for contemporary artists who display the exploration, innovation, commitment, and freedom that was central to Joan Mirò’s life and work. This year’s winner is Ignasi Aballí.
  3. It’s Easy to Get There!
    Located right in the famous Parc de Montjuïc, you can get to the Joan Mirò Museum completely by public transportation, and visit the numerous famous attractions at this amazing location while you’re there.
  4. Breathtaking Exhibits
    Aside from one of the largest exhibits of Joan Mirò’s paintings, drawings, and sculptures that are installed permanently at the museum, you can also look forward to various rotating exhibits. Showing through September, the Alfons Borrell exhibit “Work and Days” is a conglomeration of over 160 of his paintings created over 60 years of his career, forming a sort of essay of his work.
  5. Take a Guided Tour of the Joan Mirò Museum
    Guided tours are offered, and even in English! They last about one hour and cost only 12€ per person.
  6. Family Activities
    If you are traveling to the Joan Mirò Museum with your family, there are numerous activities that will keep your little ones busy and having fun! From workshops to shows and tours all related to the museum’s permanent exhibits, come let your kids be inspired by the creativity of the man Joan Mirò’s lifeworks!

Many visitors to Barcelona look forward to exploring the area’s wonderful museums of Catalan artists from Picasso to Joan Mirò. The Parc de Montjuïc is likewise full of stunning views and amazing cultural attractions, making it well worth the trip when you are in the city.

 

Experience Catalan Cuisine

Experience Catalan Cuisine

Catalunya has long been known for its cuisine, but until you’ve gone and eaten your way through Barcelona you won’t quite understand just how ingrained food is into this independent Spanish region’s daily life and priorities. There is much more to Catalan cuisine than giant paella pans full of fishy goodness, or tapas bars with a million bite-sized options to choose from – though both of these could probably keep you occupied for your entire stay.

Much more than just the unique tastes, smells, and textures, experiencing Catalan cuisine is as much about the ambiance of time, place, and form. There’s really no way to miss out on authentic Catalan cuisine moments while visiting as the locals take their food and dining seriously. Here are some ways to enjoy Catalan cuisine.

Tapas Bars

A Catalan cuisine all their own, tapas are as much a style of eating as they are a style of food. Offering two or three-bite snacks in different shapes, sizes and colors, any of Barcelona’s tapas restaurants promise an explosion of different flavors that there’s simply no way to prepare for. Another wonderful thing about tapas is that they are an inherently social food. Made for sharing, lingering over, and to accompany carafes of wine or bottles of beer, locals will typically spend hours at a restaurant chatting and nibbling late into the night.

Seafood Sampling

Being that Barcelona is right on the beautiful Mediterranean sea – yes it is actually a beach town within a metropolitan city! – there is very little chance that you’ll miss the opportunity to munch something fresh off the boat. If you’re not a huge fan of seafood, try a little nibble when out for tapas. If you love seafood then go to virtually any Catalan cuisine restaurant and sit down to order either paella or another local dish, esqueixada, which is salted cod with tomato and onion.

The Market

If you’ve traveled around Europe before, assuming you aren’t from there, you already have an understanding for the fact that they do food and shopping a little differently. If you’re staying in a flat in the city and need provisions for the week, there is no better place to go than one of the city’s famous markets. La Boqueria and Santa Caterina Market both offer photo worthy displays of everything fresh. The Mediterranean climate promises year-round fresh produce, so prepare to be spoiled, and don’t be afraid to make a trip to the market a daily habit while visiting the city. That’s how the locals do it!

Take a Tour

If you like to nerd out about food science, then you don’t want to miss the chance to tour one of the local wineries or dairies. Wine and cheese are staples in Catalan cuisine, and not only will tours afford you the opportunity to learn more about them culturally and historically, but you’ll certainly have a chance to taste some real rarities.

Catalan cuisine is one of the best parts of visiting Barcelona. Cooking classes, eating with the locals and visiting a famous restaurant are other wonderful ways to fill out your meal time here in the city. No matter how you choose to line up your foodie experience, you won’t be disappointed!

 

Barcelona Ramblas: Things to Do and See

Barcelona Ramblas: Things to Do and See

The Barcelona Ramblas is the most famous street in the whole city. Stretching for 1.2 kilometers through its midst, this street has been a central meeting place for residents since the 18th century. Originally situated outside the walls of the medieval city, Barcelona Ramblas was once the site of a flowing river. In fact, the word ramblas originates from the Arabic word ramla, meaning a sandy riverbed. When the walls came down and the river dried up, sometime around 1766, covenants, monasteries, and a university were built along this new city limit.

Barcelona Ramblas quickly became the ideal place in the city to stroll and congregate, as the rest of the streets were narrow and winding. As it gained in popularity as a meeting place and a crucial aspect of social life in the city, the original buildings were torn down and replaced with marketplace businesses typical of urban gathering places. Known most frequently as La Rambla or Las Ramblas, this busy promenade is actually home to six separate ramblas that were different streams and tributaries before being built up.

Rambla de Mar

From the name you may have inferred that this is the rambla closest to the ocean and is a boardwalk area with little seaside shops and movie theaters. This is the newest addition to Barcelona Ramblas, as for most of its existence the city did not embrace its seaside location. Rambla de Mar was a successful attempt to integrate the beach into the life of the city.

Rambla de Santa Monica

This rambla is named for its original covenant that is now a museum, Centre d’Art Santa Monica. Central to this rambla is the roundabout whose central focal point is the famous Columbus Monument representative to most visitors of the Barcelona Ramblas.  

Rambla dels Caputxins

Named for the demolished Capuchin monastery, this rambla is known for the famous Gran Teatre del Liceu, where visitors and residents alike go to see the classics like Swan Lake and also contemporary composers like Mozart Gerhaher. If you’re a fan of the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi you’ll love this portion of the promenade where you can see some of his most famous designs like Palau Güell and Plaça Reial.

Rambla Sant Josep

The vibrant marketplace, Mercat de la Boqueria is a favorite place to stop along the Barcelona Ramblas, which replaced yet another covenant in the mid 1900s. Central to this wonderful market is the gorgeous Joan Miró mosaic, an Art Deco masterpiece.

Ramblas dels Estudis

Named for the university that once stood here, there are several historic buildings still to see in this area, including one that houses the city’s first public clock!

Ramblas de Canaletes

Home to the famous Plaça de Catalunya, this rambla is named for the beautiful Canaleta fountain found at its center. The fountain has long been central to the city’s lore, as someone who “drinks water from Canaletes” is known to come from the Barcelona. It has also been said that those who have drunk from the fountain will keep returning to the beautiful Barcelona.

 

Walking Barcelona Ramblas is the perfect pastime when you visit the city, and is conveniently located at the center of the all the best hubbub. Whether you’re looking for shopping, cafes, or the chance to see some historic buildings, you’ll have no problem spending the better part of a day exploring this street.