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Video presentation of the Raval neighbourhood in Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
Raval is located right by Las Ramblas, so if you're looking for a centric location it's ideal. The neighbourhood is full of life and there's always something to do.
You'll find people from all walks of life here; students, immigrants, middle class families... It's a strong multicultural medley that sounds through these streets, giving it an authentic feel. Another great advantage is that although it has a central location, it's not very expensive at all. You can find monthly rentals here for a very good price. For this reason, it's very popular amongst younger travellers.
Raval has lots to see. To start, one cannot miss out on visiting two of its museums; MACBA (The Museum of Contemporary Art Barcelona) that exhibits works from the second half of the twentieth century, and the CCCB (Centre of Contemporary Culture Barcelona) that organizes exhibitions, debates, festivals, and concerts.
The Hospital of Santa Creu is worth a visit, as it is a good example of modern architecture in Barcelona. However, one attraction that's truly unmissable is Palau Güell, one of Gaudí's not so visited oriental style masterpieces.
Information for students
If you're going to search in this area for a student apartment then you will be interested to know where to find the best quiet places to study such as libraries and green spaces, as well as where to stay active and practise sports.
In Raval there are five faculties from various universities:
- Public: Anna Ravell School, History and Geography faculty and Philosophy faculty.
- Private: Menéndez Pelayo International University – Campus and Faculty of Communication
In this area there are also the most historic libraries like Sant Pau - Santa Creu Library and the National Library of Catalonia. That's in addition to the more modern establishments such as the University of Barcelona's library for the Faculty of History and Philosophy. Another good calm place to study is the romanesque Sant Pau del Camp Monastery's garden.
Hidden away amongst Raval's narrow streets are municipal courts and pitches where one can practise basketball and football, like the Pista Poliesportiva Municipal Drassanes, Pista Poliesportiva Municipal Aurora and Valldonzella basketball court. The most iconic sport in this area is skateboarding that you can find practised around the square in front of MACBA.
Where to Eat
There are a number of different places to eat in Raval. For example along Rambla del Raval there are lots of places to stop for a rest with terraces. One great locale is the Maharaja Restaurant, which specializes in Hindu cuisine. There is a large range of dishes to choose from with very good prices and the menu of the day (a set 3-course meal and a drink each day) is only €8 per person. A fast service and friendly waiting staff.
For the vegetarians, on the Carrer Pintor Fortuny, there is Biocenter. With natural and biological cuisine at a good price. A mid-day buffet is only €6 per person! That is in addition to many other vegan/vegetarian restaurants in Barcelona. Read more in our article about vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Barcelona.
Then there's Nasia, a typical Barcelonian locale. The tapas are delicious and you should definitely try out the 'Patatas al Chorizo', which are totally yummy!
Raval is home to a number of bars to grab some drinks. It's an all-round great place to spend the night at some of the many locales in the zone. You can visit nightclubs to hear live music, but if you're looking for a place with class, then you'll love Rita Rouge, whether it's to dine out or just to relax with a drink.
The Marmalade Cocktail Bar. It's ideal for enjoying all kinds of cocktails as well as a good old-fashioned whiskey.
There is definitely something for everyone. If you like a more rocking environment, then Nevermind is where it's at. The beers are going for just €1 before 8PM, and there's even a skate park inside. Gnarly.
In this neighborhood, there are all kinds of shops, especially informatics and technology. But the place is also great for finding cheap stuff in thrift stores.
If you're looking for fashion, the type of fashion that people will ask you "Where did you get that?!" and you can reply "In a small and trendy shop in the backstreets of Barcelona ;)" then you can find that here in Raval.
There's a ton of bookshops too, as many in Catalan and Spanish as there are in International books. Comic stores are also popular. Examples of both are the Librería Casa del libro Árabe and Arkham Comics.
Are you into Vinyl records and collectible music? Raval is paradise. There are many shops that specialize in this, but be sure to look out for Cd-Drome and Emporium.
To get to Raval is simple, you have the following Metro stations nearby:
L1 - Red Line at Universitat will take you to Plaça d'Espanya (Espanya) in under 10 minutes, from here you can catch the Aerobus straight to the airport.
L2 - Purple Line at Sant Antoni will take you to the Sagrada Familia in about 10 minutes
L3 - Green Line at Drassanes, Liceu, or Paral·lel will take you to the stop for Park Güell (Lesseps) in under 15 minutes
Raval also makes good use of Bicing, a city bike rental scheme, with stations all over the area.
Video presentation of the Gothic Quarter
Why Stay Here?
The neighborhood is located to the right of Las Ramblas, which runs through the old town and down to the sea. It is a maze of narrow streets that take you on a journey through history. Always be on the look out here for something new because there are surprises around every corner! If this neighborhood seduces you, don't hesitate to check our selection of monthly rental appartments.
If you're looking for a young and international atmosphere and you want to be located in the heart of the city, the Gothic Quarter is for you. The nightlife and the crowded streets make it slightly less family friendly than other neighbourhoods, but you'll be right in the city centre and just a few minutes away from... well... practically anything worth seeing!
El Portal de l'Angel is a popular shopping and pedestrian street that leads to the spacious Cathedral Square , dominated by the remains of the Roman walls that protected the city at one point. If you're interested in roman history, then you can see plenty of remains in Barcelona, simply follow this Roman tour route through the old city.
One of the best attractions, located right in the heart of the neighborhood is the magnificent Cathedral, which has a beautiful courtyard full of greenery and 13 geese that live there. From the top of the neo-Gothic facade you can see many of the spooky gargoyles.
Behind the Cathedral you will find Plaça del Rei with its impressive Gothic buildings that show what an important cultural and economic role Barcelona played in the Middle Ages.
On Plaça Sant Jaume there is the City Hall and the Parliament of the Catalan Government. It's also the home of The Museum of History where you can see some roman ruins preserved in its basement.
Not far from there is Plaça Reial (Royal Plaza), a large square that's lined with palm trees, giving a strong Cuban feel. There are many bars and restaurants with terraces here, making it a relaxing place to stop and rest. It's also where you'll find one of Gaudí's first public projects; some lamp-posts he made for the city council just before graduating.
If you are looking for student flat you could be interested about where you can practice sport, go to a library or a public space for studying.
The Gothic is the oldest area of Barcelona and attracts people from all corners of the world to visit, work and also study. You can find the UPEC , Universitat Progressista d'Estiu de Catalunya and the UPF , Pompeu Fabra University. In the Barri Gòtic you will also find a good number of libraries in historical buildings to study like the mythical Gòtic-Andreu Nin library.
Being part of the old city of Barcelona, everything is narrow streets and buildings glued together, which leaves little room for large parks. Even so, we recommend you to look for the hidden places that you can study calmly, such as Frederic Marès or Antonio López Square on the Paseo del Puerto. It is also advisable to spend an afternoon at George Orwell Square where you can study and sunbathe but quickly fill up with a bar terrace, ideal for sharing a beer with your friends.
The Barri Gotic is not the best place to find clues or municipal fields as there is only one, the Esportiu Municipal Colom Center, but going out in the streets allows you to discover secrets of this neighborhood Historic city of Barcelona.
Where to Eat
You're absolutely spoilt for choice thanks to the large quantity of bars and restaurants in the city centre, especially close to Plaça Reial that's always buzzing day and night. Carrer Ferran is right next to this plaza and is a great place to stop by to grab a bite. There are also a ton of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in and around this area, one that we recommend is Vegetalia.
Can Culleretes Restaurant is a highly recommendable place. It's the oldest of its kind in Barcelona, going strong since 1786. Anyone looking for Catalan cuisine will want to stop by here, but not without reserving beforehand. One of "the usuals" are the canelones, which are delicious rolls of pasta filled with mince meat.
If you're looking for something more along the lines of tapas then Bilbao Berria is more up your alley. Here, they serve the Basque version of tapas called Pinxos. It's all tasty though, so get in there.
Nightlife in the Gothic Quarter is lively and there's always somewhere to have a drink or dance. Warm up at Ryan's Irish Pub Paradise, with a good drink at good prices... Now that the engine has started up, you can get going.
One popular option is the Sidecar Factory Club, a place where some of the best live concerts can be found followed by fantastic after-parties. It's one of the oldest clubs in Barcelona with good vibes on every corner.
Another legendary option in the Gothic Quarter is Jamboree. Just like Sidecar, it has music, live performances, and after-parties with a dance-floor that's full of non-stop action.
Commercial activity is also bustling in the Gothic Quarter, with Portal de L'Angel being one of the most popular high streets of the city, with well known stores like Zara and El Corte Inglés, to all the little boutiques along Carrer Avinyó.
There are Metro stations accessible on both sides of the Gothic Quarter
L3 - Green Line at Liceu and Drassanes will take you to the station for Park Güell in around 10 minutes
L4 - Yellow Line at Jaume I and Urquinaona will take you to the beach in about 10 minutes, if you're in the north part of the district. You can easily walk there from the south part.
To the north, the Gothic Quarter extends to Plaça de Catalunya, the official city centre, and the most well-connected point of the entire city in regards to the transport with metro and train station, bus stops, taxis, and Aerobus.
Video presentation of the Born neighbourhood in Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
In recent years, housing prices in Born have soared because the neighbourhood has became a very popular place indeed. The area attracts residents of all nationalities. It's really no wonder that Born is a very attractive area to stay for several reasons, such as its central location, fabulous atmosphere of its streets, sultry places to eat, amazing nightlife, and the sheer overwhelming number of attractions located nearby!
Born is a hotbed of attractions, but one of the most impressive in its collection is without a doubt the church Santa María de Mar, an extraordinary construction of beauty and one of the most true examples of the Catalan Gothic movement. From the outside it may look like a small and modest church, but those who enter will uncover an interior that is absolutely stunning. Medieval architectural styles feature predominantly through this neighbourhood.
For fans of modernism, a prime example can be found in the north of Born. The Palau de la Música Catalana is a gem and well worth booking a concert to experience the breathtaking concert hall the way it was meant to be experienced. The building has been declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. Take a look from the outside, but again; you really must enjoy it from within.
Then there's Parc de la Ciutadella. It's always full of people going for a stroll, walking the dog, or playing some sport. If you're on holiday with your kids it's nice to take a day as a family and have a picnic in this sunny paradise. Once you're done, you can head to Barcelona zoo and watch a dolphin show, as it's located in the very same park.
Their are also preserved ruins in Born that allow visitors to discover the life of Barcelonians of the 17th and 18th centuries. The Cultural Centre of Born was originally a marketplace, but ruins were discovered when they decided to renovate the market, this prompted the permanent conservation effort that you can tour today.
And if you want culture, but on a more global scale, then there is always the World Cultural Museum in the same area.
Mmmm, chocolate. A guilty pleasure that's not worth hiding... So experience the delightful world of this succulent treat at the Museu de la Xocolata. It's certainly one of the more unique museums in the city of Barcelona.
The biggest collection of Picasso pieces in the world, is right here in the Picasso Museum. With over 3500 works of art, this museum is indispensable for those with the quest of unravelling the talent of Picasso, a man who can easily be considered the world's most famous artist. Fitting for a man who spent a good portion of his life in the city.
Information for students
El Born is a very sought after neighbourhood for students and young people in general. This is due to its great cultural offering and alternative environment. It's also located next to the Ciutadella Park, where you can go jogging, to stroll, visit Barcelona Zoo, or study quietly under a palm tree. Either way, if you want to convince your parents to rent you a student flat in the Born neighrbourhood, we recommend that you cite the universities and schools in the area like Hofmann School of Hospitality, UPF School of International Trade, Institut d'Estudis Territorials and two Business school — Toulouse and ESERP.
You can also tell them all about the selection of libraries such as Francesca Bonnemaison Library, the Judicial Library of Barcelona and the library of the Picasso Museum. There is even a library inside Ciutadella park!
If you're still not sure, you can even tell them that you will learn a language in one of the language schools, including Escola d'Idiomes Natives Language Consultants, Escola International House Barcelona and Espai Francesca Bonnemaison - Escola Professional de la Dona
To nip it in the bud, you can show you'll lead a healthy lifestyle with one of the many activities available in the area, from running around Ciutadella Park, to playing basketball at Institut Pau Claris. There is also a municipal sports centre with a gym and other installations called Centre Esportiu Municipal Parc de la Ciutadella.
Where to Eat
The Born neighbourhood is the perfect place to eat out and enjoy the ambiance of the lively streets. El Set del Born is a curious locale that seamlessly fuses a deli with a bar. The spicy 'Chorizo del Bierzo' will play games with your taste buds, and the sharp yet creamy 'Oven baked chips with All i Oli sauce' will leave you craving for more. All accompanied with the Catalan staple 'Pà amb Tomàquet', a delicious toast that's scraped with tomatoes. Lovely!
La Paradeta is also highly recommended, where seafood is on the menu. Choose what you want as well as how you want it prepared. Careful now... There's always a queue. A testament to the quality of food served here.
Born is surrounded by a healthy mix of modern bars and sophisticated locales that attract an interesting mix of clientele, both local and foreign. To sample how the modern locales of Mexico are though, don't go jumping on a plane across the Atlantic, instead, go to the Bar Rosa Negra. The two Mexicans in charge have filled it with colors and cultural elements from their homeland, and will give you all a taste of the world-famous generous Mexican hospitality.
Just in front of Santa Maria del Mar is a small bar called La Vinya del Senyor. Here you will find a selection of magnificent wines, as well as cheeses and Iberic cured sausages and hams.
If class or a relaxed pace just isn't your thing, and a party is where you want to be, then there's no better place than Màgic, a legendary nightclub in Barcelona. This fiesta-filled building has excellent music and an unforgettable atmosphere. For live music performances, it's a classic amongst locals looking for amazing underground acts each Thursday. For the rest of the week however, it's party party party with 100% dance-floor inducing records.
Passeig del Born is a pedestrianized street where you can find a number of stores and places to get some unique souvenirs for your trip.
You can always take a hike down Carrer Comerç that has a number of shops. It's also where you'll bump into the old Born Market, an interesting behemoth iron structure built in 1874 and renovated between 2002 - 2013. During the renovation, they found ruins from the 18th century that were conserved exceptionally. Rather than open it back up as a market again, people are invited to come check out the ruins themselves.
If you are actually look for a market though, then the colourful Santa Caterina Market will not leave you disappointed. It's a lively and distinct place that sits below a magnificent curvy and multi-hue roof.
It's very easy to get lost among the narrow streets of Born, which don't have the structure from the newer districts. Just relax and enjoy the ride though, because while the streets may seem intimidating, they're actually in one of the safe parts of the city
L1 - Red Line at Arc de Triomf will take you to Plaça d'Espanya in just over 10 minutes, from there you can catch a bus directly to the airport.
L4 - Yellow Line at Jaume I, or Barceloneta will take you along the coastline, giving you a choice of Barcelona's beaches.
You don't need to catch the Metro to go to the beach though, because Barceloneta is only a short walk away. You can also be at the famous Las Ramblas in around 10-15 minutes.
Video presentation of the Barceloneta neighbourhood
Why Stay Here?
The 1992 Olympic Games caused a transformation of the city's seafront, and Barceloneta was one area that was part of that process.
If you want to enjoy the classical elements of a sun, sea and sand destination, then Barceloneta is the part of Barcelona that you'll want to stay in. It has a number of bars and restaurants in addition to one of the first beaches of the city, making it one of the most popular areas of Barcelona. This zone features residents of all kinds: retired folks, families, immigrants and of course, tourists during the summer months. If you're convinced that this is the area for you, then take a look through our monthly rentals and enjoy life in Barceloneta.
Obviously the main unmissable feature of the neighbourhood is Barceloneta's beach. During the summer months, it can feel very overcrowded, but during the low-season it's the perfect place to take a stroll, where along the way you'll encounter various modern sculptures. If you visit during the early hours, you'll even be treated to a beautiful sunrise over the Mediterranean. Just be sure that whatever you do on the beach, you follow one rule; don't leave your belongings out-of-sight. The large crowds attract lots of potential for thieves.
The district also has four main squares. On Carrer Maquinista there is Plaça Pompeu Gener, close to Barceloneta Market is Font del Mercat and another little further down is the Plaça del Poeta Boscà. The most emblematic plaza though, is still Plaça de la Barceloneta close to Passeig Joan de Borbó. It's here that you can admire the marvellous Parish of Sant Miquel del Port that was built way back in 1755.
If you want to see some remnants of the fishing village that once was, then head on down to Carrer Almirall Cervera and look for the Casa dels Pescadors, which has fascinatingly been adjourned with ceramics. There is also Barcelona Aquarium, which, while not the biggest aquarium in Europe, does have the largest number of Mediterranean species on the continent.
Information for students
Barceloneta is one of the districts in Barcelona that's in demand by students. Who doesn't want to live 5 minutes away from the beach by foot? All in a central location. Luckily for you, you can use this argument and more to convince your parents to help you want private student accommodation in this neighbourhood.
There are a few universities around here, among them are Pompeu Fabra University's Nursing School (Escola Universitària d'Infermeria del Mar) and Health and Life Sciences (Facultat de Ciències de la Salut i de la Vida), as well as the Nautical Faculty of the Polytechnic University of Catalonia.
If you're not going to one of those universities, don't worry because there are also a number of local libraries where you can study quietly, like Barceloneta Library - La Fraternitat, the Nautical Faculty Library and the Campus Universitari Mar Library. It's also acceptable — weather permitting — to study at Barceloneta Beach or Parc de la Barceloneta, where you can enjoy the fresh maritime air.
Obviously another attractive aspect for living here as a student is that you can also keep in shape between classes by practising sports. There are places to skate, cycle or simple walk along the coastal pedestrian path. You can participate in sailing classes, surfing, standup paddle-boarding and basically any maritime activity. There's also the Sant Sebastià Municipal Sports Centre where you can join the gym and other activities.
Where to Eat
There's no shortage of restaurants, cafés and bars in Barceloneta. There's a wide selection from all kinds of cuisine, but there are three types of dishes that you'll likely find in a majority of establishments in this neighbourhood, they are Paella, seafood and fideuá (a noodle type dish). The first recommendation is a restaurant that's simply called Barceloneta that serves these three dishes, among others. The quality of the product is undeniable; they always serve up great food
If you want to eat on the beach then try Wok to Walk, a delicious wok takeaway. Plant your bottom down on the sand and take in the sun's rays while you admire the warm tides slowly lapping at your feet.
Everyone loves a good hamburger... Or a veggieburger if you're that way inclined. One thing is for sure, you'll love MakaMaka Beach Burger Café on Passeig de Joan de Borbó. They have burger and non-burger dishes of all kinds, and the ambiance is really trendy.
Barceloneta is one of the most lively areas at night. If you're here during the summer and getting flustered with all that hot weather, then make a note to visit IceBarcelona. The concept is rather simple; it's a bar... Made of ice. You'll have 45 minutes and all the winter clothing is provided. It certainly makes for an original and fun experience.
Shôko is a very elegant club lounge by the seafront, where you can first dine out and then afterwards go dancing.
Club Catwalk is a nightclub where you can dance till the early morning. There are 3 styles to choose from; House music in the 'Main Room', R&B, and funk. The rooftop terrace gives you a chance to chill out for a bit or chat more peacefully with someone you've just met. It has some lovely views over the sea.
If you like locally sourced products on offer at marketplaces, then don't miss the Mercat de la Barceloneta where you can get all the fresh produce you need.
For some retail therapy, there's Maremagnum. This shopping centre has a wide variety of stores, but its strong point is fashion, featuring H&M, Zara, Mango and more. There is also an official FC Barcelona store where you can get authentic team merchandise. It also has well-equipped facilities like WiFi, parking and a chill-out spot. The perfect place for an evening of shopping!
Getting to and from Barceloneta is simple, and because the area is so small it's hard to get lost.
The neighbourhood is served by one Metro station, Barceloneta on L4.
There are also buses that pass through the neighbourhood, and it's common to find taxis passing by around the north border of the area.
Video presentation of Eixample Dret
Why Stay Here?
Staying in Eixample Dret is an option with many advantages, but perhaps the most obvious is its ideal and central location. The type of accommodation in this zone are classy high-ceiling flats in buildings that feature grandiose entry halls and hints of modernism. There is no better place to discover Barcelona's modernist architecture and you can even stay in a modernist building here. It has long been the home of Catalonia's middle-high class who enjoy a good standard of living with many bars and restaurants on every corner. It's also the perfect location for families visiting Barcelona.
If you want to stay in a zone with good public transport, that's quite peaceful, and is safe at night, well then you might just want to stay in Eixample Dret.
Eixample Dret is a neighborhood bursting with artistic modernism represented by such prominent buildings such as La Pedrera, Casa Batllo, and Casa Ametller.
Strolling through the zone will put you face to face with many points of interest; like the central Plaça Catalunya, the Sagrada Familia, and Passeig de Gràcia, which is considered one of the most beautiful avenues in Europe.
Eixample Dret is home to various UNESCO World Heritage declarations made in 1984: The first is La Pedrera by Antoni Gaudí . Another is Hospital de Sant Pau,, which is located close to yet another World Heritage Site called the Sagrada Familia. This basilica is one of the most famous in the world, and more than 3,000,000 cross through its doors every year, this makes it the most visited tourist building in Spain.
One attraction that's usually overlooked in the area is the Monumental Arena. This was where the last ever bullfight was performed in Catalonia before the long-overdue ban. There are also other hidden gems, like the Egyptian Museum that features artifacts from ancient Egypt.
Where to Eat
There are a lot of restaurants in this area that offer cuisine from around the world. We recommend visiting Garriga, which is a place that specializes in artesian Catalan produce. You can also always try Cerveceria Catalana, a popular tapas restaurant. Just make a reservation first because it's almost always full.
If you like pizza, then El Racó has plenty of Mediterranean offerings that will appeal to all tastes. The quality-price ratio is surprising for these simple and healthy dishes.
You can always try something a little different by visiting Café Laie, a library with a café and terrace on the upper floor. Healthy food with a Mediterranean spin.
If you love high-street shopping then you're going to fall head over heels in love with Passeig de Gràcia, where you can find all sorts of designer brands, including Chanel, Tiffany, Burberry, Vinçon, Adolfo Dominguez, and Loewe. There are also more affordable options, like Zara and Mango.
If you're looking for food, then there are various Mercadona supermarkets around. You can find a wide range of products, for example if you have food intolerances, there are many gluten-free and lactose-free products.
There are many specialist shops in the area too, from butchers to sweetshops. For that extra special something, visit a gourmet shop like Colmado Múrria with its beautiful Modernist style.
Eixample Dret is easy to access on foot or by public transport, there are options to take you to practically any point in the city.
- L1 red line at Catalunya, Urquinaona, Arc de Triomf, or Marina will take you to Plaça d'Espanya close to Montjuïc.
- L2 purple line at Passeig de Gràcia, Tetuan, Monumental, or Sagrada Familia can take you between the Sagrada Familia and the city centre.
- L3 green line at Catalunya, Passeig de Gracia, or Diagonal will take you up to Park Guell or down to the sea.
- L4 yellow line at Urquinaona, Passeig de Gracia, Girona, or Verdaguer will take you to the beach.
- L5 blue line at Diagonal, Verdaguer, Sagrada Familia, and Sant Pau/Dos de Maig will take you to Sants Train station.
Eixample Dret is especially recommended for those who choose to arrive by from Girona airport, the bus that connects the airport to Barcelona departs and arrives at Estació del Nord, which is right next to the Arc de Triomf.
Video presentation of Sant Martí
In this video you'll discover the different neighbourhoods of the Sant Martí district including Vila Olímpica, Poblenou, Sant Martí and Diagonal Mar.
Why Stay Here?
Low prices of the homes in this area have been attracting residents from all over the world. Sant Martí has many outdoor areas, gyms, and courts for basketball and football, making the area ideal for anyone who practices sports.
If you're into getting to know the locals, be close to one of the largest shopping centres in Barcelona, or want to stay away from the noisy city centre, you'll find this district perfect.
One of the places worth visiting thanks to the sheer history is the picturesque Sant Martí Church. It is located in the beautiful 'Sant Martí de la Verneda Park'.
You can also go to see something more modern, like this unique building in the Sant Martí district that has become a symbol of the city; Torre Abgar. At 145 metres high with 38 floors, it is easily one of the most famous buildings in Barcelona, especially at night.
La Rambla Prim is another tourist attraction, a pleasant pedestrian street with trees and benches. Stroll by and go people-watching as the neighbours take the opportunity to walk the dog or play some sports.
Where to Eat
There are a few decent places to eat in Sant Martí and one that stands out is Restaurante Sant Martí, a small and traditional locale. They specialize in seasonal food and only source fresh Spanish produce.
Ramblero, a tapas bar that serves the dishes you have come to expect, like Patatas bravas and croquettes, but also with creative additions like diced foie with praline and white chocolate.
If you're ever stuck for a place to go though, don't threat because there are many bars you can stop by in to grab a bite to eat.
Sant Martí is ideal for shopping. It is home to the Glories Shopping Mall, with 166 stores in 3 different levels, a cinema with 8 screens, and a huge selection of restaurants and bars.
Like in other Barcelona districts, you'll also find a market in Sant Martí, giving the perfect chance to try the fresh local produce. It can be found on Carrer de Puigcerdà and has been serving the zone since 1966.
Sant Martí has competent public transport options
L2 - Purple Line at Bac de Roda or St Martí will take you to the Sagrada Familia in 10 minutes or the city centre in 17 minutes.
L4 - Yellow Line at El Maresme/Fòrum or La Pau will take you to the city centre in 20 minutes.
The Tram network (Lines T4, T5 and T6) are a convenient option to traverse the eastern block of the city.
Why Stay Here?
Poble Sec is only a 10 - 20 minute's walk from Las Ramblas. It's an ideal location if you're looking for somewhere that's close to the city centre, but not as noisy. You'll also be avoiding the stampede of tourists because this part of Barcelona is still unknown amongst outsiders. You can always check our selection of monthly rental apartments.
It has great public transport links and plenty of things to see and do nearby. The nearby Montjuïc has many attractions like the Joan Miró Foundation, National Museum of Art Catalonia, and many more. There's also, the Raval area nearby which is known for its multi-culture and nightlife.
As mentioned, there is the wonderful Montjuïc hill right beside Poble Sec, so it's easy to access from here. Discover the Magic Fountain, Poble Espanyol, CaixaForum, MNAC, Greek Theatre, Joan Miró Foundation, the Olympic zone, and the Castle of Montjuïc... And that's just the attractions on Montjuïc!
If you like to swim then there are the large Olympic swimming pools that are open for use.
There are also lots of theatres around Poble Sec. Many locals will tell you about El Molino, which was Barcelona's equivalent of the Moulin Rouge in Paris. The Greek Theatre isn't just a beautiful place to look at either, every year there are open-air performances there. For shows and performances in Barcelona, Poble Sec is the place to go.
Poble Sec has an ideal location for students as it is not located in the most central area of Barcelona (most expensive area) but it is located between the Ciutat Vella and Eixample , suitable for related activities With party and drink, and Sants-Montjuïc , perfect to have public and municipal places to study , which is what interests us here.
If you are renting in this area your student flat you will be interested in knowing where the best places to do sports, libraries or green spaces to study:
- 3 language schools : The Institut Obert de Catalunya, Chino Vidal Language School and Center d'Estudis Aites
- 1 School of Music : The Room
- 1 municipal library : Francesc Boix Library
- Montjuïc Park : Climbing the hills of Poble Sec a bit you will find green spaces where you can throw your notes or play sports in the facilities under the sun.
- 2 municipal courts : Les Xemeneies multi-sports court and the Satalia Municipal Football Camp.
Where to Eat
As small as it is, Poble Sec is full of shops, supermarkets, restaurants, bars, and cafés with terraces. You might be overwhelmed with the amount of options you have when it comes to grabbing a bite to eat. The Plaça del Sortidor and the pedestrianized Carrer de Blai are two of the most popular zones amongst locals to go to eat Pinxtos with a beer for about €2 on the terraces.
If you fancy a paella, then why not try El Elche on 'Carrer Vila i Vila, 71' (Metro stop Paral.lel). For Mediterranean cuisine visit Las Rías de Galicia that features a menu with fresh fish dishes on 'Carrer Lleida, 7' (Metro stop Poble Sec or Espanya). If what you want is some tapas though, make a stop at Cañota whose menu was created by the brother of famous chef Ferran Adriá; delicious tapas with a creative design.
For the more prudent with money among us, La Bella Napoli is one of the best options, but just as good is Quimet i Quimet, with its cosy and rustic atmosphere. The tapas and wine are sublime.
Poble Sec is home to one of the most famous nightclubs in the city; the Apolo club (which also hosts concerts from time to time). It is home to Nasty Mondays where the dance-floor becomes packed with both locals and tourists alike.
Life is a cabaret, old chum, and so is El Molino. To catch some live music, there is the Barts venue, with music ranging from jazz to electronic, you'll find something on to please you.
L3 - Green Line at Poble Sec or Paral·lel will take you to Plaça de Catalunya in 5 minutes or the stop for Park Güell in under 15 minutes.
L2 - Purple Line at Paral·lel will take you to the Sagrada Familia in under 15 minutes.
At Paral·lel Metro station, you can also get the Funicular train that will take you halfway up Montjuïc. You can also catch the bus directly to the airport, the Aerobus, which stops nearby in Plaça d'Espanya.
Video presentation of the Sants district
Why Stay Here?
In general, Sants is not a touristic area, with the exception of the Sants-Montjuïc area, where there are usually large conventions and expositions at the local Fira de Montjuïc building. If you're staying here, you're in for a fine sampling of the Barcelonian lifestyle and a family friendly zone.
From the city centre, you will reach most parts of Sants in a 10 minute journey, but the contrast between the two big parts of Sants (Les Corts and Montjuïc) is remarkable. The area is ideal for not that young people, as well as for families and couples looking to be in a relaxed part of the city.
If this sounds like the kind of area you prefer to stay in, then take a look through our list of apartments in the Sants district of Barcelona.
Sants is a typically residential district, so away from the Montjuïc area you will not find many attractions. One hidden gem away from this zone though, is the Parc de l'Espanya Industrial. It features stone steps and an elegant artificial lake in the centre of the park. It's the ideal place to have a picnic and take the kids to play.
The Montjuïc area though, is crammed with attractions. Many of the things to do here pertain to art and culture, with a high density of museums. There is the National Art Museum of Catalonia, CaixaForum, Joan Miró Foundation and many more. There are also beautiful gardens to discover and a Castle at the top that overlooks the city.
In the Plaça d'Espanya area, there you can see the whimsical fountain called the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc with shows almost every night. It's also home to the 'Las Arenas' Shopping Centre, which was once a bullfighting ring and offers 360º views of the city from its roof. As mentioned before, the Fira de Barcelona tends to attract large crowds for events like the Comic Con, Magic Con, and over interesting conventions.
In the summer, in Sants there is also a festival called Festa Major de Sants, in which the locals decorate their street, just like in Gràcia. During this time there are many open air events including gourmet activities, concerts, and dances.
Information for students
Sants has various universities like Institut Nacional d'Educació Física de Catalunya, Centre d'Estudis d'Art Contemporani next to the Joan Miró foundation, University of Barcelona's LIS faculty (Librarianship and Information Sciences) and Centre of Metaphoric studies where they teach contemporary art and art-therapy. In addition it's located by the Les Corts neighbourhood where there's Barcelona's university zone (Zona Universitaria).
If you're going to rent a flat for students in this area then you'll be interested to know the best locations to find sports facilities, libraries and quiet green areas to study in.
- Five language schools: Mac Daid, L’aula Sants formació, Master school of English *Sants, Escola Oficial d'Idiomes Barcelona V and Barcelona Esperanto Centro.
- Ten libraries: Vapor Vell, Francesc Candel, Jacques Dupin, Joaquim Folch i Torres, Rubió i Tuduri, Francesc Boix and the libraries of the aforementioned universities.
- Four council sports facilities: Montjuïc Public Swimming Pools, l’Espanya Industrial Sports Centre, La Bordeta Sports Centre and Bernat Picornell Sports Centre
- Parks all around Montjuïc to study under the sun or to go running.
Where to Eat
There are lots of nice restaurants to dine out in the area, including some cosy bars with terraces. The majority of the locales serve Catalan cuisine, but you can also find some good Italian, Mexican, Chinese, and Japanese places.
Do you want to sample traditional Catalan food during your trip to Barcelona? Well Can Manel is a good choice. This pleasant restaurant specializes in grilled meats, snails, and Calçots (a unique type of spring onion that's only found in Catalonia!)
To sample food from another region of Spain, the Basque region, then consider Txalaparta.
If you love dance, then Pata Negra offers a place to dine while enjoying some Flamenco and the Catalan Rumba.
Carrer Galileu is where you'll find Àtica, whose menu is both delicious and affordable. From outside it doesn't look like much at all... But within... Within there are some amazing dishes, with surprises and creativity bursting out from every seam.
Nightlife in Sants-Montjuïc
Sants has amongst the best nightclubs and bars in Barcelona. The most known include D9, which hosts various concerts and events during the and becomes a nightclub at night. There's also the nightclub Agapito Nit. Bars with good ambience are Undead Dark Club, Koitton Club and Bar Musical Tribal. Close to Gran Via you'll find Bodeguita del Poble Espanyol andSala Instinto. At all of these places, you can meet up with your friends and rock it all night long.
In this neighbourhood you can find a large variety of shops along Carrer de Sants. This avenue is the main artery of the area and is a commercial hub that's both active and dynamic. Four whole kilometres of more than 300 shops and locales along both sides of the street make this to one of thelongest high-street in Europe.
For fresh products visit the Hostafrancs Market, which is a great way to feel like a local.
For serious retail therapy though, the place to be is the Las Arenas shopping centre on Plaça d'Espanya.
L1 - Red Line at Espanya, Hostafrancs, Mercat Nou, or Plaça de Sant will take you to the city centre and Las Ramblas in about 10 minutes
L3 - Green Line at Espanya, Plaça del Centre, Sants Estació, or Tarragona will take you to the city centre and Las Ramblas in about 10 minutes. The stop for Parc Güell (Lesseps) takes less than 20 minutes.
L5 - Blue Line at Badal or Sants Estació, will take you to the Sagrada Familia in under 15 minutes
At the north of this district you will find the Barcelona-Sants Train Station that offers standard and high velocity trains to local areas, neighbouring regions, and even different countries. There's also a train that goes to the airport.
Video presentation of Gracia, Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
Gràcia is a district with an authentic and alternative vibrance and is home to many beautiful modernist buildings. If you're looking for an artistic atmosphere, then this charming neighbourhood is for you. The streets are full of workshops and studios where creative Catalans and foreigners come to work. If you like how this neighbourhood sounds, you can have a look at our monthly rentals in Barcelona and stay here too.
One of the defining features of Gràcia is the abundance of beautiful plazas. To name a few there is Plaça del Diamant (Diamond Plaza), Plaça de la Virreina, Plaça de la Revolució, etc. They're all ideal locations to get something to eat or drink, meet with friends, or watch some community events organized throughout the year. But the most known by visitors is Plaza del Sol, which comes to life at night and is the meeting spot for starting a long night out.
Usually, tourists don't enter this part of the city, so it's the perfect place if you seek to live the Barcelona's life.
If you only visit Gràcia for one thing, it will probably be to see Park Güell by modernist architect Antoni Gaudí. In fact if you love Gaudi you can also visit Casa Vicens, on Carrer de les Carolines.
If you're coming in August, come to see one of the most famous events in the city, the "Festa Major de Gràcia". Neighbours compete to decorate their street and turn it into the most beautifully themed in the district. It's an unbelievable week of spectacles with music, parades, dances, and fireworks.
Information for Students
Gràcia is a neighbourhood with a great atmosphere for students, with bars, restaurants and alternative clubs, not to mention the libraries and other facilities available in the neighbourhood to enjoy a complete student life. If you like this area, then you can have a look at our selection of student accommodation in Gràcia.
You can find two of the best libraries in Barcelona here — Vila de Gracia Library and Jaume Fuster Library. In addition, if you want to learn or strengthen another language, there are several language schools, such as the Instituto Escola Europa de Idiomas, Gran de Gracia; Escola Centro Humboldt and Novalingua. For sports lovers, there are large green areas for outdoor activities such as Creueta del Coll Park and Menedez Pelayo Gardens, as well as municipal sports centres with football or basketball fields, such as Esportiu Municipal Can Toda, Centro Esportiu Municipal Claror and Centro Esportiu Municipal Perill.
Where to Eat
Gràcia has a large selection of restaurants, boasting the most diverse selection of international cuisine in Barcelona, but if you just want to stick to good old authentic tapas, then any of the bars will be more than happy to oblige!
If you're looking for a restaurant to celebrate a special event, don't miss Fernández located in Gran de Gràcia, which has a more expensive but incredible menu.
Café del sol on Plaça del sol has tapas as well as drinks and wine, all for a very good price.
El Ferru is a restaurant where you will enjoy good food with pleasant waiters listening to your wishes.
Also recommended is O'Gràcia on Plaça de la Revolució. A modest restaurant run by a French couple. The offer typical dishes and menus for all kinds of budgets. There's even a tasting menu, which is perfect for treating your partner or socializing with friends.
When in Gràcia, the best night outs can be found on the numerous terraces relaxing with a drink with some friends. There are many bars and cafés. For one of the most authentic bars, take a look at Bar Canigó.
For something more lively, go to club el Alfa, where apart from the great atmosphere you'll find some great music. It's ideal for all crowds, young and old, and has very reasonable prices.
If you want live music, then there's Soda Acústic Bar, a meeting point for new musical tendencies. It's found on Carrer de les Guilleries, 6 and is frequented by artists from all over the world, bringing together cultures and musical styles from Jazz to Swing, Rock to Latina, and beyond...
Along the main high-street of the district, you will find Gran de Gràcia, the place with the most shops. It's always a good idea to shop around this road, but it also helps to detour into a side street from time to time to find some truly hidden gems of shops. Another great shopping street is Carrer de Verdi.
As we already said, Gràcia is the artistic district, so there is an abundance of bookstores, art galleries, craft shops and much more ...
For basic shopping needs, there are supermarkets all over this residential district. However the most charming way to shop for your goods is at one of the local marketplaces, like Mercat del Abaceria on Travessera de Gràcia or Mercat de la Llibertat on Plaça de la Llibertad. Markets in Barcelona open every day except Sundays.
You can take several lines to go to Gràcia
Stations Diagonal, Fontana, Lesseps
Stations Joanic, Alfonso X, Verdaguer
Railway (L7/L6) stop to Gràcia
The main street of Gràcia (Gran de Gràcia) is extended by Passeig de Gràcia, after crossing Diagonal Avenue. To go to the beach you have to take line 4 at the Joanic stop.
Why Stay Here?
One of the biggest advantages of staying in the Horta-Guinardó is that in this part of town, the accommodation is cheaper. That's without mentioning also that it features some of the most peaceful parts of the city, yet still has good public transport connections.
Despite the passing of time, the area has retained its village atmosphere and if you want to experience real life in Barcelona, Horta is perfect. Life here is calm, as most of the people living in the area are families.
Does the idea of staying here call to you? Well if that's so, then take a look at our list of apartments in the Horta-Guinardó district of Barcelona.
While in Horta-Guinardó, don't miss a visit to Parc Laberint d'Horta, which will take you on a journey back to the innocent days of childhood when you could stroll through the park without a care in the world. The park has the oldest set of gardens in the city and there is beauty around every corner. Remember to bring a bottle of water if you're visiting on a hot summer day though, this way you'll have no reason not to enjoy this gorgeous part of the city
The Barcelona Palau d'Esports and the Olympic Velodrome are also found in this zone, both of which deserve a visit.
The Turó de la Rovera viewpoint offers an incredible360º view of the entire city. A fantastic panorama of Barcelona and even more when the sun rises and sets. Whatever you do, don't leave your camera back at your apartment!
Where to Eat
In this district Los Noveles is always worth your time, tucked away on Calle d el Pájaro in the Carmel neighbourhood. Their anchovies are delicious and the frequents (a majority are locals) are simply charming as they put the world to rights whilst sipping on a glass of wine or brandy.
El Quimet d'Horta on Plaça d'Eivissa is the perfect place to savor in the juiciest sandwiches and the tastiest Patatas Bravas along with a nice glass of wine.
But if all you really want is something quick and cheap then visit Louise Se Va. The atmosphere; good. The food; fast.
If you want to try the famous Spanish "Iberian Ham" then there's a perfect place in Horta. Pass by "Es Bandoler" and give it a try. A word of warning though your mouth will be left watering for more.
Horta-Guinardó isn't the district for big nightclubs and pounding soundtracks. Leave that ruckus to the southern part of the city. No, Horta is home to some top-notch bars, like El Desig, where you can grab a mojito and get to know the locals who'll be sure to take good care of you. For some cool bars with terraces take a look at this article about the nicest terraces in Barcelona.
If you do want to dance a bit, then there is Samba Brasil. It's a small venue with a pleasant atmosphere and a good vibe. You can forget your troubles and bounce around to some Brazilian music.
You can get to Horta via the Green Line, exiting at Vall d'Hebron, Montbau, Mundet or Valldaura, all in the north section of the city. You can get to Vallcarca or Lesseps, the Metro station for Park Güell in 10 minutes or the city centre in around 20 minutes.
From the Metro station Horta you can get to the Sagrada Familia in 15 minutes.
You can get to Barceloneta Beach in around 20 minutes by getting the Metro from Maragall to Barceloneta.
The district is also well served by buses. /p>
Video presentation of Eixample Esquerre, Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
If you seek a central location with a very active nightlife, you'll be pleased with Eixample Esquerre! This neighborhood is very close to Plaza Catalunya and has very good access to public transport. If a central, yet residential neighbourhood sounds like the place that you want to stay in, then hop on over and check out our list of monthly apartments in Eixample Esquerre
In this neighborhood there is a great mix of people coming from all walks; the elderly bourgeois, middle class families, the young, and the not so young. It's also known for being the gay district of Barcelona, for which some have dubbed it Gayxample.
The Antoni Tàpies Foundation is an interesting place. It was built to promote understanding of contemporary art. You'll love the library devoted to literature and documentation on modern art and artists of our century. To take advantage of the sun and good weather, we recommend strolling along the Rambla de Catalunya or Joan Miró park.
Information for Students
The Eixample Esquerre neighbourhood has a very welcoming atmosphere for students. You'll find historical buildings here from the Universitat de Barcelona, like the Faculties of Philology and Mathematics, in addition to the Faculty of Medicine at Hospital Clinic. In addition, you'll also find two Business Schools — EADA and IEBS. The fact that so many universities are in this neighbourhood has created a very diverse student environment. If you feel like coming to study in Barcelona and you're interested in one of these universities, take a look at our selection of student accommodation in Eixample Esquerre.
Obviously, each faculty at the Univesity of Barcelona has its own library, as do the business schools. However, there are other municipal libraries that are recommended in this neighbourhood, like the Joan Miró library near Plaza Espanya and the Augustí Centelles library. In addition, there are many student-oriented businesses such as print shops, laundromats and language schools, some of which are accredited by the Cervantes Institute like Don Quijote Language School, Camino and Enforex — just some of the most recognized.
It also has everything for practising sports, whether its the municipal facilities within parks to play football or the basketball courts where you can play with your friends in Joan Miró Park, Jardins d'Emma Barcelona or Jardines de Cèsar Martinell.
Where to Eat?
In this neighborhood there is a wide selection of restaurants. Everyone can find something, but Bodegueta is one of those places worth visiting for everyone. It can be found on Rambla de Catalunya, with very few tourists, so you'll have an authentic place at a good price. You can choose to eat outside on the terrace or inside.
For fans of Spanish ham, you have Mesón Cinco Jotas, also on the Rambla Catalunya. They specialize in Iberian cured ham, which is easily the best ham in the world! For those celebrating a special event in life, Cinc Sentits has a Michelín star and boasts a contemporary cuisine inspired by traditional Catalan dishes.
Eixample Esquerre is one of the most popular parts of the city for locals in the know to go. It's full of bars and clubs around the Universitat area of the city. So for a great experience head to the famous Hotel Axel that organize terrace parties open to the public each night.
Those who like to start their nights with some shots will love Espit Chupitos that offers more than 500 types of shots.
To have a more chilled night, there's a lounge bar called Opium Cinema, a laid back and elegant bar with some good music.
When it comes to nightlife, Eixample Esquerre has something for everyone. You won't have to look too hard.
Many of the best shops can be found around Plaça de Catalunya, on the border between Eixample Dret and Esquerre. Like the massive Apple Store, the "El Corte Inglés" department store, and more.
There are shopping centres too, like El Triangle just outside of Esquerre by Plaça de Catalunya, or Las Arenas on Plaça d'Espanya, where you can head up to the roof for full 360º views of Barcelona to discover the city like you've never seen it before or sit on a terrace and enjoy a refreshing drink.
The Mercat del Ninot is a typical local market, with lots of fresh produce on offer. It's the perfect place to get some good quality food during your stay in Barcelona.
Getting around the district is easy, you have 4 metro lines to choose from:
- L1 - Red Line at Universitat, Urgell, or Rocafort.
- L2 - Purple Line at Paral·lel, Sant Antoni, or Universitat
- L3 - Green Line at Tarragona.
- L5 - Blue Line at Entença or Hospital Clínic.
There are also many taxis and buses at your disposition in this zone.
Granollers is located 20km from Barcelona, next to the Formula 1 Circuit of Catalunya. There is a good train connection to the city center in 30 minutes.
It's the capital of Vallès Oriental region and in it you can find remains of buildings of up to 4000 years old. The most important archaeological finding is the Can Trullàs necropolis, dating back to the times of the height of the Roman Empire.
La Porxada is the most emblematic monument of the city, built between 1586 and 1587, it consists of a lot of Tuscan columns which hold up a four-pronged roof.
The steeple of the Parish Church of Sant Esteve has a 34-meter tower that was built during the fifteenth century.
El Masnou is a town in the Maresme coastline, in the province of Barcelona, between the towns of Montgat and Premià de Mar. It is a long, coastal town with more than two miles of beach. It is very well connected to the city of Barcelona (via train) and is only 18km away. The trains from Barcelona that you can take include a commuter train to Mataró, Blanes, or Maçanet, with a journey time of around 25 minutes. In Masnou there are two train stops: Masnou and Ocata.El Masnou is definitely a destination that you will want to visit if you're look for sun, sea, and sand, but not overcrowding from tourism. It's great to visit throughout the whole year, particularly in the summer.
Video presentation of Diagonal Mar
In this video you'll discover the different neighbourhoods of the Sant Martí district, including the Diagonal Mar neighbourhood.
Why Stay Here?
The type of people who live in the Diagonal Mar area are generally upper and middle class. Many of the homes in the zone are spacious and luxurious with stunning views over the mediterranean and the local park.
It's a neighbourhood that's right beside its very own beach and is well-connected via public transport with the city centre. People are attracted by its wide streets, Llevant beach (relatively calm compared to the beaches of the city centre), and Diagonal Mar Park.
The Fórum Building is a triangular structure that remains in the area after being built for an international symposium. In 2011, it was used as the headquarters for the Barcelona Museum of Natural Sciences. Today it hosts a number of exhibitions all year around as well as some of the most famous music festivals in the world, like Primavera Sound.
Another point of interest is Plaça Fotovoltaica, a huge structure with solar panels, which now forms part of the city skyline
And let's not forget El Parc Diagonal Mar, where a majority of visitors will head to. It is a work of art that combines nature with architecture and is a great place to sunbathe, read a book, or let your children play.
If you're looking for a place to swim, but want to avoid the crowds of the beaches and pools, there's always the Banys del Forum, which is a sort of hybrid between a beach and a pool without being either...
Where to Eat
Diagonal Mar isn't for dining out and sampling traditional Catalan food, but it is the area where you will find the most modern bars and restaurants, especially in the shopping centre. The majority of locales here are franchises, but there is still no shortage of choice for classier establishments like Sagardi, La Casa del Pesacado, e@t22, to name a few.
If you're searching for a romantic place, then try L'Escola, where the culinary students demonstrate their talents.
The Shopping Centre Diagonal Mar is the largest in Barcelona and 10th in Spain. It is a unique space where you will find everything, from "day to day" products to the latest in fashion and design (Zara, H&M, Miss Sixty, and Desigual). There are plenty of places to eat at and you can catch the latest films at the cinema (but only in Spanish). All right beside the sea!
Most of the centre is closed on Sundays, but the restaurants and entertainment areas are open every day.
Although Diagonal Mar is quite away from the centre of the city, it's a zone that's well-connected thanks to public transport. To get around, you can use:
Metro Stations - Selva de Mar, Maresme/Forum and Besòs Mar. Any of these will take you to the city centre.
Buses - 7, 36, 41 and 141 (among others) will take you around the district and neighbouring areas.
The Tram line T4 will take you all the way to the end of Avinguda Diagonal.
There is also no shortage of taxis in the vicinity thanks to the shopping centre. The whole of Diagonal Mar can easily be discovered on foot. The planning of the streets is just like that of Eixample, so it's practically impossible to get lost.There are plenty of pleasant walks and cycling paths at the park, which will allow you to appreciate the tranquility and laid back atmosphere of Diagonal Mar.
In this video we show you the different neighbourhoods of Sant Martí: Vila Olímpica, Poble Nou, Sant Marti and Diagonal Mar.
Why Stay Here?
Vila Olimpica largely consists of a younger population and thanks to the 1992 Olympics it has become one of the favourite places to live in Barcelona. Why is it so popular? Well that's mainly owed to the the number of parks and the local beach in the zone, as well as the designer apartments and port. Pretty much everything needed to live a life of high standing!
It was also the first official maritime district of Barcelona, built up of the port, marina, large seaside promenade and a selection of restaurants and bars. In contrast to the much more known area of Barceloneta amongst tourists, the apartments here are modern and spacious. Don't hesitate to take a look at our monthly apartments in this area to get an idea of what they are like.
The neighbourhood was designed by Josep Martorell, Oriol Bohigas, David Mackay and Albert Puigdomènech. Many of the buildings that make up the area are the work of FAD-award-winning architects.
For this fact along you can find a large number of touristic attractions, such as: The Olympic Port, built specifically for the marine and navigational sports during the 1992 Games; Twin Towers (One a Hotel, the other offices); the Ecumenical Centre; the Sports Centre and the Meteorological Centre.
The streets, avenues and green zones have been populated with sculptures and peculiar structures like "Fish", the massive 35m design that was commissioned to none other than the world famous architect Frank Gehry and the pergolas (imitations of trees of iron and wood) that proposed Enric Miralles and Carme Pinos in the Icaria avenue.
Information for Students
The neighbourhood of Vila Olimpica is being reformed. Many are the artists who decide to make these old factory warehouses their new workshops, lofts and shops. As a result, it's possible to appreciate an alternative environment with very diverse streets. If you're interested in living in this neighbourhood you can already take a look at our selection of student accommodation in Barcelona.
In this neighbourhood, you can have a complete student life. Apart from the large Ciutadella park and other green spaces, you have the sea nearby and municipal sports facilities like the centre Esportiu Municipal Nova Icària and the maritime club. You won't have any excuse to avoid staying active. You can also go to study in one of the most beautiful and emblematic libraries in Barcelona, UPF LIbrary, which was a former water deposit for Barcelona.
Where to Eat
Beside the Olympic Village you can find a large variety of bars with terraces and open-air restaurants, mainly specialising in seafood, tapas and Catalan cuisine. You can enjoy the wonderful views of the sea while sipping on a coffee on the small terraces... But for something completely different; visit Ice Bar Barcelona.
The nightlife of the area is super-popular amongst the international community, with visitors flocking to the large number of famous restaurants and nightclubs. There's Shoko, Opium Mar and Baja Beach, all of which sit beside the beach. Those that feel like trying their luck will enjoy risking it all at the Gran Casino of Barcelona that can be found right by the twin towers, more specifically the Hotel Arts.
Vila Olimpica also has its very own shopping complex with the same name. The Vila Olimpica Centre consists of restaurants, shops, boutiques, a supermarket and a Cinema with 15 theatres and 2D/3D screenings in English (subtitled in Spanish).
Metro Station Ciutadella-Vila Olímpica. This will take you to the city centre in around 10-15 minutes.
Tram stations Ciutadella-Vila Olímpica and Wellington.
The area also has many Bicing Stations, where you can rent bikes. If you are in the mood for walking though, you can walk to Las Ramblas or the city centre in about 30 minutes. There's always the option of catching a taxi, which regularly can be found driving through the zone as it's close to the city centre.
Video presentation of the Sarria - Sant Gervasi neighborhood in Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
If you love Barcelona, but also want to enjoy a stay away from the bustle of the city center, then Sarria - Sant gervasi is the perfect place. The main residents are wealthy citizens and those who opt to quietly enjoy retirement upon the heights of Barcelona.
It is a place to enjoy the city at your own pace, and heavily features FGC stations (public trains that go to the city centre).
Sarrià-Sant Gervasi is full of things to do if you enjoy parks and a relaxed pace. For example, the area features the CosmoCaixa Science Museum that was renovated by Robert y Esteve Terradas. The museum boasts 9 different floors with permanent and temporary exhibits in addition to educational programs aimed towards all types of audiences. Without a doubt, it's more than worth a visit.
The district is also home to one of Gaudí's hidden gems; Torre Bellesguard, a beautiful building that is the only complete example in Barcelona of the famous architect's Neo-Gothic phase, which opened to the public September 2013.
The view from 550 metres high at the beautiful Iglesia del Sagrat Cor is unmissable. While you're there you can live a little and experience the strong sensations available at the Tibidabo amusement park, where you can have a blast on the various rides.
The district is ideal for taking in the sun and going for a walk, especially around Sarrià- Sant Gervasi Park. If you've got a car on hand, then drive up to the Vallvidrera viewpoint. When you look around the stunning landscape from here, you won't question why it has been the setting for various movies.
Finally, one place you shouldn't forget to visit are the Can Sentmenat Gardens, which lay at the foot of the mountain.
Where to Eat
In the area you can find several bars and restaurants. If you are looking tapas bars, you will like the Mirablau, which also has an amazing view over the entire city. It's enough to seduce anyone, especially at night, when the panoramic vistas become even more magical...
For lovers of traditional Spanish cuisine, don't miss Casa Tomás. An absolutely non-pretentious locale which is famous for its Patatas Bravas and Croquettes.
The Jacaranda del Dos Torres restaurant is worthy with its own garden. For a little more than you would usually pay in the zone, this restaurant specializes in creative and delicious tapas. Ideal for celebrations and special events... Or simply just to try something new. Perfect.
As an area of high-standing, you'd think that Sarria-Sant Gervasi would have a bland nightlife, but that's completely untrue. There are some famous clubs that are frequented by residents, like Sutton, with its elegant and large dance floor. All for a satisfying night out. As you might expect in a classy zone like Sant Gervasi, you'll need to confirm with a dress code. Girls should go 'made-up' and appropriately dressed, whereas guys should groom themselves and put on some smart-casual attire.
If you're more into Dance and Hip-Hop, then Otto Zutz will be more up your alley. Otherwise there's El Twist, a great place to start the night or take it slowly till the morn', with a selection of cocktails, friendly waiting staff, and a pleasant environment.
The streets of Madrazo and Balmes are full of specialized, local boutiques like Lu Ink - a shop dedicated to interior design, or Savan - an elegant clothing shop with pure style.
There's also a market on Passeig Reina Elisenda de Montcada, which while smaller than the famous Boqueria Market, still offers lots of fresh local produce. Fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, it's all good.
If you're looking for a gift, then check out the Foix de Sarrià, where you can buy a mouthwatering cake for someone lucky enough to have you as a friend!
Getting around Sant-Gervasi is simple. There are two train lines that frequently pass through, originating from the city centre.
Line 6 has ten stops that go to down to Plaza Catalunya and you can use a Metro ticket.
Line 7 is the choice many tourists use to get from the centre to the Tibidabo area, because you can catch a tram from there up to the park.
We show you in this video the different neighbourhood of Sant Marti: Vila Olimpica, Poble Nou, Sant Marti and Diagonal Mar.
Why Stay Here?
Poblenou's factories of old have been converted into lofts and galleries where artists and designers live and work, giving an air of creativity and productivity to the zone.
Not only is this zone part of Barcelona's coastline, it's located a few minutes (or 5 metro stops on the yellow line) from the centre of Barcelona. Staying in Poblenou is a great option, because you can enjoy all the benefits of a quiet neighborhood when you need a break, visit the beach, and still benefit from being close to the city centre.
Although initially called Passeig de Triomf, everyone knows the main street of the neighbourhood as Rambla del Poblenou, so that's what stuck. It's a classic Catalan rambla and it takes you from 'Parc del Clot' right down to Bogatell beach. Ideal for a pleasant stroll.
You can also visit the neoclassic cemetery of Poblenou, where you can find the particularly poignant sculpture; 'The Kiss of Death'.
There are two wonderful beaches that line the shores of Poblenou, they are Bogatell (popular amongst the older crowd) and Mar Bella (popular amongst the younger crowd). They are top quality beaches and many of the locals appreciate them more so than the famous and touristic Barceloneta.
The zone has two of its own parks; the original 'Poblenou Park' beside the coast and 'Poblenou Central Park'.
Where to Eat
The restaurants of the area offer succulent fish and seafood dishes, in fact, it's home to one of the best in the city; Els Pescadors. There is also the rather lengthily named 'Cervecita Nuestra de Cada Día', that's a local close to the Rambla and where you can find some refreshing craft beers made locally in Catalonia.
Can Recasens is a typical cellar of the neighbourhood that's perfect for a glass of wine complemented with a palette of rich cheeses and freshly cut meats. It's one of the most enjoyable and affordable places in the city.
In the heard of Poblenou you can find the most famous nightclub in the city; Razzmatazz. It. Is. Massive. There are 5 different zones that can fit around 4,000 - 5,000 visitors. It's certainly one of the most wild clubs in the city and a great place to catch a live concert.
Just around the corner from Razzmatazz is Loft, which specializes in Techno and Electronic music. If you prefer live music though, there's always BeGood close to the Metro station Marina. La Ovella Negra is the perfect spot to go with your friends before a big night out... Order the infamous 5 Litre Sangria to get things started!
Les Glòries is a large outdoor shopping center where you can find over 150 stores, seven movie theaters, and numerous cafes and restaurants.
The Mercat dels Encants is one of the oldest in Europe, noted for its large selection of thrift goods.
Located by the Rambla is a supermarket called Mercadona, where you can buy all the food for your meals, including a wide selection of goods if you're sensitive to gluten or lactose.
Poblenou Metro station, with the Yellow Line (L4), will take you through the city centre in just 15 minutes.
There are two tram stations; Pere IV and Fluvía, which will take you up Diagonal Avenue.
There are also 7 Bicing stations (the city shared bike scheme)and many bus routes passing through. For more information on accessing the Bicing scheme, read our article.
Look How the Area has Transformed!
Video presentation of Barcelona's Sagrada Familia neighbourhood
Why Stay Here?
The residential streets are very peaceful, and more than half of the residents there were born in Barcelona. This typical Eixample style neighbourhood has a highly structured grid layout. The area has an aging population without many students, nor is there much ethnic and international influence here when compared to the rest of the city. It's full of wonderful architecture.
If you're looking for a relatively central area with great artistic and commercial attractions, as well as brilliant public transport options for navigating the city, the Sagrada Familia neighbourhood is ideal. It's without a doubt one of the most pleasant residential zones in the city. If you like this neighbourhood, you can have a look at our monthly rental apartments in Barcelona.
Of course, the neighbourhood gets its name from the world famous Basilica, the Sagrada Familia from Gaudí. It is one of the most important architectural works in the world and a prime example of the Catalan Modernisme artistic movement. 3 million people visit the Sagrada Familia each year, making it the building that attracts the most tourists in Spain. Construction began in 1882 by the architect Francesc de Paula Villar, and it wasn't until 1884 that Gaudí took over. It's still unfinished, but those in charge of its construction say it should be done within 20 years.... Probably!
Avinguda Gaudí(or Gaudí Avenue) is one of the roads linking the Sagrada Familia to another modernist masterpiece; Hospital de Sant Pau. Both buildings have earned the title of UNESCO World Heritage Site and the walk between them is where many locals dine out and go shopping. One point in particular along the avenue to pay attention to are the modernist lamps that line the path.
The Hospital de Sant Pau is a modernist structure designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner. It is notable for its impressive halls and the towers adjourned with sculpture, mosaics, stained glass, and wrought iron. Currently in restoration, however, you can still get to know their facilities.
The Sagrada Familia neighbourhood is part of the Eixample district. It's residential, very quiet and has parks to practise sports or read quietly, such as Gaudí Park, Jardins de la Industria and Jardins d'Antoni Puigvert. If you like sports, there are several municipal sports centres such as the Sagrada Familia Municipal Sports Center and the Jardins de la Industria Municipal Sports Hall. If this neighbourhood has already seduced you for its student life, you can take a look at our selection of student accommodation in Barcelona, near the Sagrada Familia.
There's also a large municipal library — one of the best libraries in Barcelona — called Sagrada Família - Josep M. Ainaud de Lasarte Library. You can also learn a new language in one of the local language schools including Bcn Languages Sagrada Família, Liberty School and Acadèmia Pylmon Barcelona.
Where to Eat
The Avinguda de Gaudí is the perfect place to grab a bite to eat. Visit one of these lovely restaurants tapas; Tapas Gaudí, la Llesca, or the pizzeria La Piazzenza. Another restaurant near La Sagrada Familia is La Paradeta, a unique seafood restaurant. You get decide how much seafood you eat, how it's prepared (grilled or breaded), and make any combinations that you prefer.
If you prefer something fancy while you're on holiday, then don't miss Alkimia. Chef Jordi Vilà has certainly earned his Michelin Star, preparing extraordinary and adventurous dishes for guests. The price is around €100 per person and its necessary to book well in advance.
This neighbourhood isn't particularly known for its nightlife, but is close to many party areas. You can find some bars and rooms with fun atmospheres and good cocktails like Baroke, Samba Brasil Bar or Casablanca Cocktail.
The Sagrada Familia neighbourhood isn't home many fashion shops, souvenir trinkets, or typical downtown stores. Instead, you will find a wide selection of stores specializing in delicatessen, from sweet shops to butchers. One sweet shop is called Bombonería, attracting visitors through its doors with a delicious smell and colourful shop displays. You can also go to "Catanias" to purchase delights like toast and caramelized chocolate covered almonds, they all make for brilliant and unique souvenirs.
If you want to get to know an authentic Barcelona market then visit the Mercado de la Sagrada Familia, where you'll find a large variety of fresh produce like fruit, fish and seafood, meat, cheeses, deli, and more.
This neighbourhood boasts a variety of bus and Metro options.
Stations; Sagrada Família, Hospital Sant Pau, Encants and Glòries. You can reach the city centre in around 10 minutes with this line getting off at Universitat.
This line will take you across the lateral length of the city.
You can also discover the neighbourhood on foot, which isn't a problem. The layout of the streets means it's practically impossible to get lost!
Video presentation of the Les Corts neighbourhood in Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
The district of Les Corts obtains its borders from the most central and oldest part of the town that was there before it, which became part of Barcelona in 1897. During the day there are many people, but in the evening most of the people who are here leave after their work shifts, so the neighborhood is very peaceful. It's a middle class neighborhood in the upper and middle part of the city, so has many advantages when it comes to location.
If you're looking for a safe and residential part of the city to stay in, with public transport connections, or if you love football and want to be near the famous Camp Nou stadium, then choose Les Corts.
In the district of Les Corts you will find the stadium of FC Barcelona's Camp Nou, which is ideal if you want to attend one of Barça's heated matches, or if you want to get to know the stadium and the museum. It is one of the most famous stadiums in the world and many tourists will come to see it, even just from the outside.
La Plaça de Concordia along with the Church of Maria de Déu del Remei and its 40 metre tall bell is a peaceful retreat. This location also serves a meeting point for local, because it's often host to special events such as concerts, markets, and other community activities.
What's more, if you like the works of Gaudí, you'll find many of them around the Palau Reial de Pedralbes, including the Finca Güell that feature's Gaudí's Dragon Gate, as well as one of his earliest works; The Fountain of Hercules.
Where to Eat
Les Corts has a wide variety of restaurants. You can sample Catalan cuisine in the famous restaurant 'La Tertulia'. A cozy, rustic restaurant that offers a very healthy cuisine with Catalan roots. In summer you can enjoy lunch and dinner in the square where its located, which is always a real delight. On Friday and Saturday nights there are performances of live music.
Another restaurant worth visiting is Negro-Rojo, which combines international and Japanese cuisine across two distinct floors noted for their stunning design. In addition, morning breakfasts and dinners can be extended in length by relaxing with a soothing cup of tea. Reservations can only be made at Black.
Entertainment in Les Corts stands out due to some unique options on offer. If you want to find one of the best places in Barcelona to have a drink and watch a match with your mates, then the Red Lion Pub is the place to go. As the oldest Irish pub in Barcelona, it has a variety of beers and lagers, as well as big screens for watching the footy.
If you're more of a clubber, then head on down to Bikini with its two distinct club floors, one with Latin-American music and the other with commercial/electronic anthems. They also have concerts and shows there.
If neither of those sounds appealing to you, then you're most likely to enjoy a relaxing time at Kahala, a Hawaiian bar with some exotic cocktails.
Les Corts is a location that's great if you're a shopper. Though if you look hard enough you can find some small boutiques, this zone is paradise if you're into massive shopping centres, because Les Corts has three; L'illa, Pedrables Centre, and El Corte Ingles. In these centres you can find the most recognizable brand names in Spain, like Tous, Armani, Zara, Mango, and more. There are restaurants for all tastes, and shops for all departments, like groceries, clothes, shoes, accessories, perfumes, and home decór.
The public transport connections from Les Corts to the rest of the city are very good.
Take the Green Line (L3) of the Metro and you can reach the city centre around 15 minutes.
Apart from the Metro, you can take the tram that runs along the Avinguda Diagonal and reaches the outskirts of the city.
It´s also easy to discover the district on foot, after all, it's the third smallest in the city and there are green areas scattered all over, especially in the northern Pedralbes section.
Video presentation of Sant Antoni, Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
Sant Antoni is perfect for anyone who wants to stay around the city centre but without the restless nights that usually entails. If you're looking for a lively time though, you don't have to look far, because you can simply walk to a neighbouring area, like Raval or the northern part of Eixample, where you'll find lots of exciting places to spend the night. The zone is full of life, yet at the same time rather simple. If you're already thinking about staying here then you can start by taking a look at our selection of monthly rentals.
What to see
The most famous attraction in the area is Sant Antoní Market, which was created by Antoni Rivera i Trias in 1882. It has been undergoing renovations for a number of years but it's still possible to admire its architecture from the outside. The stalls from the market are still in the area too. Many sell clothes and accessories, but there are also groceries with fresh local produce. Basically everything you need at a good quality with a good price.
As mentioned earlier, the Sant Antoni market is a great place to shop, but not only that, because on the sundays there is also organized a Traditional market of books and stamps where fans can exchange or sell their collections with other collectors.
Information for students
The Sant Antoni neighbourhood welcomes many students to its location between Plaça de Catalunya and Plaça Espanya, two central points in Barcelona. If you're interested in this neighbourhood, then you can consult our list of student flats and stay in the epicentre of Barcelona's activity.
You'll be interested to know that Sant Antoni is one of the neighbourhoods with a high quantity of language schools as a large number of foreign students are looking for apartments in the area. Among them, you'll find the Institut Europeu d'Idiomes Sepúlveda, Eldar Exam Center, Scandinau Club, Cultural Center Nòrdi, Center d'Estudis Aites and Tandem School.
If your exams are approaching or you simply want to read quietly, you should visit one of the local libraries such as Joan Oliver library or 'BIB de Sant Antoni'. There's even a special library for the blind by ONCE, the Spanish National Organization of the Blind. If it suits you, you could even take your books and notes and go to one of the parks. They are quiet and small; ideal for when you are looking for calm and to get a tan. The parks are Jardins de Tete Montoliu, Jardins dels Tres Tombs and Jardins Maria Manonelias.
Apart from relaxing or studying in these parks, you can also find basketball, football and other facilities for sports. Although, you can always go to the Aiguajoc Borrell Municipal Sports Centre.
Where to Eat
The district is also characterized by the presence of many small bars, some of tapas, from the most traditional to the most alternative. Here's a selection of the ones we think are the best:
The Adrià brother's Bar Tickets is ideal for a drink with friends. With a modern style, it offers four different sections where you can try seafood, grilled dishes, desserts and appetizers. The restaurant is very pretty with a good atmosphere. The tapas are very elaborate. The price is a bit higher than average, but you won't be disappointed.
This is the ideal place for those who want to sample healthy and creative tapas, there are all kinds for all tastes and at a good price with excellent music.
If you want to try something different, Cafè Federal is definitely a great choice. Created by two Australians, the menu includes a wide variety of proposals to eat at any time of the day. The waiters are very friendly, food is delicious and its atmosphere is particularly welcoming.
Babelia Books & Coffee
Though, if we talk about places to spend an afternoon in the company of a good book, we cannot fail to mention Babelia Books & Coffee where you can choose from an infinite number of books and a wide variety of teas and coffees. It's a colourful and relaxing environment in which to spend a few hours immersed in reading or chatting with friends.
Florida has a restaurant with a refined relaxed atmosphere. Perfect for a lunch or dinner between colleagues thanks to its extensive menu and a large selection of international and Spanish dishes. The staff is friendly... And the tiramisu is really something wonderful!
This place is full of the "alternative" vibe that practically defines the neighbourhood of Sant Antoni. It's a cozy corner to have a coffee with friends and enjoy the typical products of the season, or perhaps drink a good wine. If only a little bit "hipster".
Sirvent is not just one of the most famous horchaterias in the city (a horchateria is where you can grab a local drink called "Horchata"), recently it has also lent its name to a large and bright restaurant that's right in the heart of the neighbourhood. The restaurant is the ideal meeting place to have a good lunch with business colleagues thanks to its large selection of sweet and savoury products. We warn you though, their stuffed croissants could become an addiction...
One of the most historical places in Barcelona, without a doubt. In the evening you'll see it become animated with lots of people who have come to enjoy a snack with a good ole vermouth on the outdoor tables.
Last but not least, the king of the neighbourhood is the renowned Moritz brewery. Not only is it a great place to enjoy modern tapas along with a wide selection of beers, but it also has a museum inside with a small merchandising store. Parties and events can be arranged here too. It's a good place to have a lunch and eat great food.
If you are looking for furniture shops, you'll love Vanolt, where you can find very elegant objects and antique furniture. There are also many clothing, accessories and shoes shops scattered throughout the area. Among other things, the neighbourhood is also known for its large selection of technology and I.T. stores that offer better prices than many of the big stores.
In addition to the presence of almost all supermarket chains, the area also offers a very large quantity of colour through its fruit and vegetable stores that stock high quality seasonal produce at very competitive prices. A treat for both the eyes and the tastebuds.
There's not only fruits and vegetables in local bio shops like Monônes. You'lll also find many natural and environmentally sustainable products including grains, milk, meats, breads and more.
It's very easy to get around the city from Sant Antoni. In this area alone you have a choice of Metro lines 1, 2 and 3.
Depending on which part of the neighbourhood you're staying in, it will only take 10 - 15 minutes to reach Plaza Catalunya or Las Ramblas on foot.
Why Stay Here?
Nou Barris is a quaint and not widely known district at the most north-western part of the city, close to the district of Sant Andreu. It's ideal for families or couples that want to spend some peaceful and romantic moments together. With lots of parks it's ideal for those demographics, and as an added bonus the accommodation is much less expensive than the city centre.
The biggest attraction of the district is the large number of green spaces, like the very modern 17 hectare park around Plaça de ca N'Enseya, opened in 1999 and renovated in 2003. It's the second largest park in the city and has a range of significant buildings such as the Santa Creu Mental Instition (now a Library) and the Nou Barris Council Headquarters. The park is unique in that it is divided up into triangular sections and layouts, right down to the triangle fountains.
Also in the zone is the park of Turó de la Peira which gives an alternative panorama of the city. Or check out Guineueta Park where locals go to relax during the summer. If you like sculptures and Spanish history, then on Plaça Llucmajor there is a monument dedicated to the short-lived Spanish Republic and the president at the time Francesc Pi i Margall.
La Esquinica is a cool little place to eat out at. There is a wide menu selection with all kinds of tapas at a good price. The Patatas Bravas are brilliant, with a friendly and attentive staff. It's a good sample of Spanish cuisine and culture.
If you can get over then name of El Freak & Do, you'll find an original and fun locale that serves up tasty Mediterranean cuisine.
To step away from the tapas bars, step into All i Oli, a restaurant with top quality food at an even better value.
For your shopping needs, take a trip down Passeig Valldaura or Vía Júlia, zones with a diverse selection of stores. Supermarkets, banks, fashion boutiques, technology, home-wares, and more.
If you're looking for a bit of a fun and local shopping experience, stop off at the Mercat de la Mercè on Pg. Fabra i Puig. Established in 1961, this market has since offered the locals all kinds of fresh produce, like meat, fish, cereals, dairy, fruit, and much more.
Though it may be in the most northern part of the city, the Nou Barris has a massive selection of Metro stations
Canyelles, Trinitat Nova, Roquetes.
Llucmajor, Maragall, Trinitat Nova, Via Júlia.
Maragall, Vilapicina, Virrei Amat.
Casa de l'Aigua
There are also a variety of buses that pass through the district, like lines 80, 81, 82, and 83 at Plaça Llucmajor.
Why Stay Here?
If you want to live the real Barcelona lifestyle in a quiet area, this is the perfect neighborhood. Many of the residents know each other by name and consist mostly of families and retirees. The atmosphere is family-friendly and is very distinct from central Barcelona.
This district is ideal for families looking for some peace and the large density of parks and secure play areas for children.
Take a walk through the district. There are plenty of gems to catch, like around Plaça de Orfila, Plaça del Mercadel, or Carrer de Sant Andreu. At Plaça de Orfila, you will find the Sant Andreu del Palomar Church. The first record of a church here goes all the way back to 966, but historic wars meant it probably got destroyed and rebuilt from time to time. It was renovated in the neo-gothic style around the turn of the 20th century. It's a treasured reminder of the history that the zone has.
The Mercat de Sant Andreu is small, but charming. The vendors are very kind and welcoming. It's the perfect place to people watch, as you see the clients and vendors chatting "T'has assabentat ...?" or "Have you heard ...?" is a common phrase in a zone like this.
The bridge of Bac de Roda connects Sant Andreu with it's neighbouring district; Sant Martí. Barcelona doesn't have many interesting bridges, so it's a very modern addition to the city that you should definitely traverse if you have the chance. In fact, the architect Calatrava was inspired by the forms of the human body when he realized this project.
Where to Eat
Go forth and eat at Pibe on Avenida Meridiana where there are some brilliant Frankfurters and Hamburgers to savor with a beer from their huge beer menu.
Those who are more into seafood should make a stop at Paradeta, a franchise that's famous for providing fresh fish and seafood dishes made to your specifications. You'll be given a number and they'll call you when your dish is ready. Delicious, fresh, and at a good price to boot!
The bar-restaurant Versalles is a classic of the area and offers tasty food from the market in the form of tapas, combined dishes, or sandwiches.
As a family-friendly and residential zone, it's not nightclubs that you'll find as the preferred nightly diversion, but rather local bars and cocktail lounges like Torre Rosa. A charming place with a great atmosphere and professional waiting staff.
If you're not into that, well then there's the Món de la Cervesa, with a name like 'World of Beer' you can expect a menu with a wide selection if beers from all over the world. Make beer, not war!
If you're looking forward to going shopping in Barcelona, then you'll be please to know that in Sant Andreu there is a large shopping centre called La Maquinista that has over 230 stores. From fashion shops to restaurants, it's all there.
You could always walk down Carrer Gran de Sant Andreu for a more local shopping experience, with its large choice of small boutiques and stores.
L1 - Red Line at Baró de Viver, Fabra i Puig, Navas, Sant Andreu, Torras i Bages, or Trinitat Vella will take you to the city centre in about 20 minutes
L5 - Blue Line at Congrés and La Sagrera will take you to the Sagrada Familia in under 15 minutes
Sant Andreu also has a train station which will take you to Passeig de Gràcia in 11 minutes. (One train every 15 minutes).
Why Stay Here?
Esplugues, although once a key area in the industrial revolution of Barcelona, is now one of the most green cities in the region. There are around 20 different parks in addition to a number of gardens. Esplugues has also been developing its cultural, sports, and entertainment industries for years.
The city is very well connected with Barcelona, so if you're looking to enjoy life in Catalonia but want to stay around from the crowds and property prices of Barcelona, then Esplugues is a perfect alternative as it's very easy to commute.
There are several buildings of historical and architectural value. One is the Monastery of Montsió. At first, the nuns were staying on the Rambla de Catalunya within Barcelona, but wanted to change and choose a more suitable locatio. In the end they came to live in Esplugues.
Another great place to visit isCan Vidalet Park. It is of course suitable located in the Can Vidalet neighbourhood and is a historical park where you can spend lots of time. For example, you can take a stroll and admire the old and beautiful ponds in addition to the gorgeous plantlife. If you fancy a game of table tennis there's a table you can play on and there are also play areas for children.
Don't miss the marvelous ceramics collection at Espai Baronda where there are also lots of activities.
Finally, Santa Magdalena Church is a beautiful building with a history that dates back to 1103, but was renovated in 1955 after being burnt down in the civil war. There is a wonderful classical music concert there each year
Where to Eat
There is a good choice of bars and restaurants for all tastes. Above all though is the Mirador de Sant Just. It has incredible views that span over Barcelona and the dishes are tasty, which always helps. Typical Catalan cuisine is what you can expect to find here. They pay special attention to all of their products, which means it's a little more expensive than your everyday restaurant... But sometimes you've just got to indulge ;)
El Diván de los Sentidos is found in Cornellà de Llobregat and has been open since 2007. If you're looking for healthy food that's good for your well-being without being at the expense of flavour, then it's one of the best places in the region
Esplugues de Llobregat has various shopping options but if you like to have everything under one rood then there are two shopping centres that you can visit. One is Llobretacentre, which is full of fashion, restaurants, services, and more. The other is Splau, which features probably one of the best cinemas in Catalonia with high definition and 3D films as well as a huge selection of shops and restaurants.
Thanks to the Tram, Bus, and Metro connections - getting to Barcelona from Esplugues is a breeze.
L5 - Blue Line at Can Vidalet will take you to Diagonal in Barcelona's centre or the Sagrada Familia in more or less 20 minutes.
The Tram at Ca n'Oliveres, Can Clota, Pont d'Esplugues, La Sardana, or Montesa will take you into the city in about 10 minutes. You can catch the L3 line to the city centre from there or go shopping in the Maria Cristina area.
Buses L10, L50, L51, L56, L57, L61 and many more can be caught here.
Why Stay Here?
This city has its very own historical side. There is evidence of human activity that suggest the origins of this area date as far back as the Paleolithic and Noelithic eras. Similarly many roman remains can be found in the Hospitalet Museum of History. Anyone who loves their history will love this city.
Another great advantage of the city is that if you are looking for accommodation near the airport of Barcelona, staying in Hospilalet de Llobregat is one of the best solutions.
The city is full of migrants from other parts of Spain that came during the 60s and 70s in search for better things during the dictatorship of Franco.
As it is an entire city with 6 districts (each named District I, II, III, IV...) , there are many things to see in each. n District I you can visit the La Farga Centre, the Museum of History, Can Sumarro Library, and the Centro Cultural.
District II is home to the Central Plaza, which is always full of life and activities.
If you want to get a taste for the urban transformation of the city, a stroll through District III is all you need.
The "La Florida" neighbourhood in District IV is a hotbed of commercial activity and is a well known zone to get some tapas. It's the perfect place to go shopping or to the market; you'll find everything you need.
District V is for sports lovers, with the huge Sports Complex - L'Hospitalet Nord. Also worth a visit in the area is Can Serra which is a modernist construction by famous Catalan architect Josep Puig i Cadalfach.
For parks and green spaces District VI is the place to be. This district is also home to the Bellvitge neighbourhood where you can visit the Hermitage of Santa María de Bellvitge, a temple built in the 9th century in a Romanesque style.
Where to eat
In the city of Hospitalet de Llobregat, there is no shortage of wineries where you can go for lunch or dinner. But most advisable is the bar called L'hospirineos, which offers an extensive menu with all kinds of cuisines, from Chinese cuisine to burgers and sandwiches... So there's certainly something for everyone!
For a taste of Southern Spain and Andalusia, you'll just love the Córdoba bar, which specializes in Andalusian tapas. The quality to price ration is unbeatable. Wherever you go though, don't hesitate to get lost amongst the neighbourhoods because you'll surely end up finding a great place to taste some Spanish cuisine.
One of the primary places to go in Hospitalet is the Salamandra 2 hall, with a very rocking environment. Various concerts are organized here and there are 2 halls. Entry to the club starts at 1AM, so you'll have plenty of time to warm up.
In fact, if you like to go to concerts, then take a look at the concerts held at Mood Factory. For a drink, the 'Deposito Legal' Bar is perfect!
To go shopping, you'll be spoilt for choice in Hospitalet because there are places all over the city. However, the best place to shop in the city is definitely Gran Vía, not only is there a massive IKEA here, there's also the Gran Vía 2 Shopping Centre where you'll find absolutely everything. Fashion, restaurants, fast-food, interior design stores, and much more!
L1 - Red Line at Hospital de Bellvitge, Bellvitge, Avd. Carrilet, Rambla Just Oliveras, Can Serra, Florida, Torrassa, or Santa Eulàlia will take you to Barcelona's the city centre in 12 - 23 minutes depending on your starting station in the city.
L5 - Blue Line at Can Boixeres, Pubilla Cases, or Collblanc will take you to the Sagrada Familia in 15 - 23 minutes depending on your starting station in the city.
Local Trains run along the south of the city. You can catch one at Sant Josep, Gornal, Europa | Fira, or Illdefons Cerdà, they will take you into Barcelona (Plaça d'Espanya) within 5 - 10 minutes
To get to Hospitalet de Llobregat from the airport you can simply catch the number 46 bus, which also stops off at Gran Via 2 shopping centre, as well as Plaça d'Espanya in Barcelona city.
Why Stay Here?
Badalona features low property prices due to "not quite" being Barcelona, and it has a young and sporty atmosphere.
It's categorized by a close-knit community of citizens that are always looking to make it a better place to live. Also keep in mind that Badalona is one of the industrial centres of Catalonia and has almost 220,000 registered citizens.
If you want a deeper insight into the type of city that Badalona is, you can read one of our guest writer's travel stories about Badalona. Of course you can always stay there yourself! Take a look at our list of holiday apartments in Badalona.
The city has several pleasant areas to stroll, but those that stand out are La Rambla, Carrer del Mar, Millenium Park, and Montigalà Park as well as places of history like Can Solei and Ca l'Arnús, both located in the district of Casagemes.
Another place that attracts people, especially athletes, is the Parc Fluvial de Besós, a nice place to spend the day and unwind. This park has 9 km just for walking, biking, or having a picnic.
Badalona Beach is one of the main attractions of the city with over 5 km of beautiful sandy and rocky plains to relax under the Mediterranean sun, which are a lot less crowded compared to the beaches of Barcelona.
The symbol of the city is Pont del Petroli or "Petroli Bridge", an old construction that has a length of 250 metres of which 210 are over the sea. It offers a wonderful panoramic view of the city and Barcelona.
Even though Badalona is technically a metropolitan city it's full of interesting places like the old town, where the Roman city baths can be found, the Roman house on Carrer Lladó, The San Jerónimo de la Murtra Monastery , and the Church of Santa Maria, which is home to sacred artworks, like those of Antoni Viladomat and an image of Saint George which dates back to the 15th Century.
Where to Eat
The Volcànic restaurant lives up to its name by giving away volcanic and tasty meat dishes that promise to satisfy carnivores. Caruso has lighter dishes where you can try 100% authentic Italian cooking, with a fresh pasta menu that includes dishes made by hand, and dishes like Caprese Salad. The desserts are delicious and the staff simply make the overall experience all the more pleasant.
Another place work visiting is El café de les Antípodes. Upon entering you will find an impeccably decorated local, in a rustic and cosy style with strong earthy colours with hints of red and stones... New with old... You won't help but fall in love as you walk in.
To get the party started you should visit El bar 4 Pedres. It's a tavern where you're going to taste some good beers accompanied by tasty montaditos (sort of like sandwich tapas). All wrapped up and packaged with soft music and a friendly atmosphere.
If you want to spend all night dancing, go to Keloké Disco Club. There are rounds of tropical shots just waiting for you!
Badalona has various commercial zones. But perhaps the most important is El Centro Comercial Calle del Mar or "High-street del Mar". This commercial street is the most traditional of the city and you can find all sorts.
Màgic is another new shopping center in Badalona. It is built next to the highway and is distinguished by a huge basketball that you see from far away. This is a sports and entertainment center. It has many shops, especially fashion, with big brands like Zara, Bershka, and many more.
Badalona borders with Barcelona so has lots of transport options into its neighbouring city as well as the airport.
L2 - Purple Line at Sant Roc, Gorg, Pep Ventura, or Badalona Pompeu Fabra will take you to Barcelona's city centre in about 20 minutes
L10 - Light Blue Line at Llefià, La Salut, or Gorg will take you to the Sant Andreu district of Barcelona in about 15 minutes
The T5 - Tram at Sant Roc or Gorg will take you into Barcelona in about 20 minutes. You can then catch the T4 to reach the city centre in 10 minutes.
There is a RENFE train station in the city too which can take you to other regions or into Barcelona
Why Stay Here?
If you're going to look for accommodation in Sitges it would be because it's a small city steeped in history and close to Barcelona , making it an ideal place to live. With more than 28,000 inhabitants, Sitges attracts more and more people thanks to its tranquil winters and lively summers.
If you are a beach lover then you will certainly like Sitges thanks to its kilometres of sandy beaches where you can enjoy sunbathing. You can also pass time walking the promenade by the sea with a beautiful view... And who doesn't like a romantic sunset?
In a small coastal town like this you can also enjoy its rich cultural and historical heritage. Don't miss the beauty of Sant Bartomeu Church, an ideal place to take pictures with an unbeatable view of the Mediterranean sea.
There are also beautiful natural landscapes such as the Garraf Natural Park and Terramar Park where you can admire the magic of nature and have a pleasant day out with a picnic.
If you want to end the day partying, during the summer Sitges is the ideal place as there are many bars and restaurants that are always on trend with some of the most important clubs in the region, including the world-known nightlife brand "Pacha" which first opened here in 1967, long before the Ibiza one.
Where to Eat
There's no shortage of Restaurants in Sitges, however here are small restaurants that we recommend:
- Le Queenz Dinner Show: Decorated in a modern style, you can taste Spanish flavours and enjoy the cabaret show. You will receive a particularly great welcome with a glass of champagne. Something you won't regret!
- El Trull: A great local for more traditional Spanish food with a wide variety of tapas. An all-round great restaurant that's ideal to visit with friends, family, or a partner.
A tip if you want to eat something local: From winter until spring you can order a Xató Penedes. This dish is a salad of endive, tuna, and local cod that usually is accompanied by an omelette and is very typical of Sitges.
Sitges is a welcoming city that's very lively in the summer, offering activities for all tastes. Our favorite place is El Donostiarra, a bar located in the city centre. This is a nice place to start the evening with a wide selection of tapas displayed on the counter, transforming it into a colorful delight to see. Another locale to visit is Cafe de la Plat with an ever-stylish modern decór. Oh and remember to stop by Pacha!
But Sitges is not just summer. Throughout the year you can attend major events such as the International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia, its iconic carnivals that leave other regions jealous, musical events like the Antic Jazz Festival or the International Vintage Cars Rally from Barcelona - Sitges, and there are many more activities throughout the year.
There are many supermarkets around the city, like Mercadona, Carrefour, Lid, and Aldi. There is also a shopping center called OASIS with shops of all kinds. Also, just a 10 minute drive is a shopping and leisure centre called Vila Lauren where you'll find everything you need.
- By car (38 km, 45 min) departing from Barcelona via motorway C-32 Pau Casals (with toll) towards Sitges-Tarragona, exit number 30. You can also go via the C-31 motorway that passes by Castelldefels. Note: If you prefer not to pay tolls then the journey will be 18km longer across the Garraf coast)
- In just 30 minutes by train you can reach Sitges. Catch a train departing from Clot, Passeig de Gracia, or Sants station. A return trip costs only €10 and there are trains every half hour between 5:30AM and 10:30PM.
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