About Gothic Quarter
For many, the gothic quarter of Barcelona is the living heart of this beautiful city, representing the ancient splendor of the Roman and medieval city. The delimitation of this district is Plaza Catalunya on the upper side, the famous “La Rambla”, Via Laietana avenue and the Port of Barcelona on the bottom. Comparing the Gothic quarter to the other quarters in the old city district of Barcelona, this area is distinguished by its nicely renovated and very well preserved medieval alleys and buildings, the small streets, packed with stylish shops, bars and restaurants, accommodating large number of locals as well as visitors from all around the world. It is a crowded maze of streets and “Plazas”, especially in summer, when thousands of tourists wander its narrow pedestrian streets, contributing to its the unmistakable “vibe”, which has become the trade mark of Barcelona.
Things to do in the Gothic Quarter
There is plenty to keep you occupied in this district, including small thematic museums, national monuments, architecture sites, historical sites, unique shops, famous restaurants, impressive bars and wild night clubs… You can read about many of these places in our Barcelona guide – a section of the Apartime.com web that was composed by our team especially for our holiday apartment’s guests.
If you are interested in visiting museums, the Gothic quarter has not only the History Museum of Barcelona, it also offers the Diocesà Museum, Federic Marès Museum, Cathedral Museum and Calçat Museum. The Diocesà Museum exhibits around 3,000 art works of the Visigoth age. Pre-roman sculptures and a collection of daily used materials in the XIX century can be found in the Federic Marès Museum. In the Cathedral Museum, they present a religious art collection focusing on the guilds and monarchs that ruled the city for centuries.
If you are a fan of shopping, then the Gothic quarter is the place where you should spend most of your time. You will probably start by visiting the big brand establishments in Portal del Angel street, where most of the international fashion trademarks are present, with their huge flagship shops, especially the Spanish mode leading brands such as Zara, Mango, Pull and Bear, Massimo Dutti, el Corte Ingles, Bershka… along side with Benetton, Intimissimi, H&M, Shana, Aw Lab, Desigual and many others. Once you have visited the big names it is time to explore the small, winding streets and discover the real magic of shopping in Barcelona. A plethora of small shops that offers all kind of goods, fashion, souvenirs, sportwear, art and decoration, furniture and some unique especially designed products you won’t find anywhere else.
The Gothic quarter from the vacation accommodation perspective: The Barrio Gotico as it is named in Spanish, together with the Raval neighborhood and the El Borne neighborhood, is the most vibrant area of the city of Barcelona and is considered the most in-demand area for tourist’s accommodation. Just like the El Borne quarter, the Gothic Quarter is especially attractive for short term accommodation because of its unique combination between clean and well preserved medieval residential streets and highly vibrant and dynamic shopping and leisure district. Furthermore, many of the most astonishing tourist’s attractions of the city are within minutes walk. Renting a holiday apartment in the Gothic quarter is a privilege these days as local normative limits the offer of hotels and holiday rentals which leads to relatively high prices per night.
However, if you are the kind of person who likes to avoid crowded streets and high commercial density, perhaps it would be wise to consider another area for your apartment rental, such as the Eixample, Poblesec, the Port, Gracia… further information you should have in mind before you book your apartment in the Gothic quarter is that many of the streets of this area are completely pedestrian streets, with limited car or taxi access, which means that you might need to walk with your suitcase short distance until you get to the building entrance.
The history of the Gothic Quarter
The Gothic Quarter was constructed over the ancient Roman “Barcino”, where Roman style can still be admired until today in its architecture. For those who are interested in the Roman city’s ruins, we recommend to visit the History Museum of Barcelona at El Rei square (Plaza del Rey). From this square, you can behold one of the best enclaves of the Gothic quarter. Between all numerous medieval roman sights in the Gothic, you can also find El Call, the medieval Jewish quarter, which was an important cultural center between the XI and XIV centuries. In the Center of Interpretation of El Call, in the old house of the “Alchemist”, you can discover the Sephardic heritage...
For more information about sites and tourists attractions in the old city of Barcelona, about shopping, nightlife, culture and leisure activities in Barcelona, we recommend you to visit our Barcelona tourist guide a guide that was written by our team of locals and that is aimed to provide some real inside information about the city that will not find in the typical commercial tourist guide.