Sights to See in Barcelona - Las Ramblas
Once just a flower market, the bustling Las Ramblas area of Barcelona
is the perfect place for those two tourist favorites - shopping and people watching. Once lined with convents and churches, the streets are
now thronged with performers, magazine vendors and a hundred other interesting and amusing sights.
Sadly, the convents and monasteries were all closed by 1830. But I guess that is a good thing for visitors to Barcelona
Now a walking mall, there are no cars allowed in the central sections.
They are constrained to two small one-way streets on either side of the
pedestrian areas. So, you can walk at your leisure among the many
things to see and do.
Meander along from the Placa
Catalunya, past the famed statue of Columbus, to the
water's edge. There are many paths to choose from. The Rambla dels
Ocells (Avenue of the birds) is aptly named for the once
popular bird market in this old part of this Spanish city. The Rambla de les Flors
once held the only flower shops in the city. Along the Rambla dels Caputxins
there are old buildings, kiosks full of books and interesting people
You'll pass by the opera house of Liceu
Theatre situated at the midpoint of the Ramblas. Along the
way, stop and see the Miró
Mosaic. This circular tile created by the Spanish artist
attracts thousands to the area every year. You'll also pass the outside
of the famed produce market, Mercat de la Boqueria.
Rest a while at the Cafe
de la Opera and enjoy an invigorating cup of coffee...Barcelona style.
Although at one time many DID want to go there, there's no longer any need for
families to avoid the Barri
del Raval, once the red-light
district of the city. If you choose to visit the area in the evening,
you'll find dozens of small restaurants and bars to choose from that
will delight any tourist...almost as much as the ladies of the evening once did.
Art lovers should be sure to walk along Carrer de Montalegre where the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona is located. It houses the restored Museu d'Art Contemporani, which holds many permanent and roving exhibitions.
The Barri Gotic,
the Gothic section, contains many architectural wonders to explore,
including the famed cathedral, La Seu. It
stands in the center of the original city and is an important part of
Barcelona's two thousand year history. Nearby is the church of Santa Maria
del Mar, which offers a representative example of Catalonian Gothic architecture.
Music lovers will want to catch one of the many afternoon concerts at Sant Josep Oriol.
They're a little more organized than the random street performers. But
the latter are often just as professional, so sample both.
Now head for shopping at nearby Portal
de l'Àngel and Portaferrissa. Along
the central boulevard are hundreds of clothing shops, antique stores
and more. Most everyone will want to head for the El
Cortes Ingles in Placa Catalunya
Square at the northern end. This seven-story department
store is the rival of Harrod's
in London, Macy's in New York and the other great shopping meccas of
You could spend your entire vacation, not to mention your entire bank
account, in the Las Ramblas of Barcelona. And that would be a great
More Sights to See in Barcelona