The best way to enjoy Barcelona is by foot, walking through its meandering streets and discovering what hides in the city’s tucked away corners. Experience the city the same way the locals do, passing by the many shops, browsing the markets, and taking in the world famous modernista architecture.
There is so much to see and do in this historic city, but there are three streets you really don’t want to miss on your visit.
La Rambla de Barcelona
Lined with restaurants and gift shops, La Rambla is Barcelona’s most famous street, attracting as many as 150,000 people every day. La Rambla is often believed to be a street of its own, when in fact it is made up of five separate avenues:
Rambla de Canaletes – the site of the famous fountain, Font de Canaletes
Rambla dels Estudis – an avenue lined in gift shops
Rambla de Sant Josep – a stretch of open-air flower markets
Rambla dels Caputxins – home to the Liceu Opera House
Rambla de Santa Mònica – a hub for Spanish art museums
The street got its name from the Arabic word “Ramla”, meaning “sandy river bed.” The world famous La Rambla had humble beginnings as a dry, sewage-filled streambed.
Passeig de Gràcia
Another major avenue of Barcelona is Passeig de Gràcia, located in the central part of Eixample and stretching from Plaça Catalunya to Carrer Gran de Gràcia. The street was originally a carters‘ path, surrounded by gardens, which connected the center of Barcelona with the former village of Gràcia, which was a separate town then.
The street features many important landmarks from Barcelona’s most famous modernista architects, including Casa Batlló and Casa Milà by Antoni Gaudí, Casa Amatller by Josep Puig i Cadafalch, and Casa Lleó Morera by Lluís Domènech i Montaner.
Rambla de Catalunya
Running parallel to the Passeig de Gràcia is Rambla de Catalunya, a gorgeous street lined with lime trees. This trendy street has long been home to many of the city’s art galleries, theaters, and cinemas. High-end designer brand stores are slowly replacing these.
Like La Rambla, the Rambla de Catalunya has a wide central area that is closed to traffic to allow people to safely walk around.