The colors and atmosphere are what bring life to the Market of the Boquería. Officially recognised as a market only in 1826, the area where the Market of Boquería stands has been used for trade since at least the early 13th century. If its history is not enough to encourage you to explore, the Mediterranean cuisine surely will. Offering an abundance of produce, from fresh fruit and vegetables to delicious seafood, the Market of the Boquería is where you will find the true flavors of Catalonia.
Mercat de la Boqueria, Calle Rambla, 89 -91, Barcelona, Spain, +34 933 04 00 27
La Maquinista is the most recent addition to Barcelona’s many shopping malls. Although it is not as central as other malls, La Maquinista certainly has its perks. Not only is it unique to Barcelona for being the only open-air mall – it is also one of the biggest of Catalonia. Strolling through La Maquinista on a warm, sunny day is the perfect way to spend a day shopping, so make sure that you do not miss this mall on your shopping spree!
Centro Comercial La Maquinista, Carrer de Potosí, Barcelona, Spain, +34 933 60 89 71
Diagonal Mar is a fashionable and unique addition to the famous Diagonal Avenue, which can be found in a neighborhood influenced by post-modernism. Conveniently located opposite the beach, Diagonal Mar offers many shops for daily needs and clothing, a range of restaurants and a multi-theater, so that everything necessary for a great day out in Barcelona is easily accessible. The building itself is very close to the Diagonal Park, where you can enjoy a stroll, looking at the metal sculptures within the park, before exploring the shops of the Diagonal Mar mall.
The Mercat de Sant Antoni is a traditional Spanish food market, attractive for those who want to experience local life. Found within an impressive steel-skeleton building designed by Antoni Rovira i Trias and built between 1872 and 1882, this market occupies the entire block of the streets, making it one of Barcelona’s largest market halls. On Sundays you can also find a book and coin market just outside of the Mercat de Sant Antoni, perfect for collectors of old books, comics, stamps, coins and postcards.
Mercat de Sant Antoni, Carrer Comte d’Urgell, Barcelona, Spain, +34 934 26 35 21
Passeig de Gràcia was planned to be the most elegant and most beautiful avenue in Barcelona and it still remains so today. It features La Casa Batlló and La Casa Milà, both designed by the hugely celebrated Gaudi, as well as other impressive modernist buildings. The road itself can be traced back to the Roman era, but nowadays it is an extremely popular shopping street, with prestigious designer shops as well as more accessible brands. The beauty of Passeig de Gràcia is that you are able to see the cultural side of the city at the same time as enjoying the shopping opportunities which Barcelona has to offer.
Deep in the Barri Gòtic, a beautiful and historic neighborhood of Barcelona, is the Square of Saint Josep Oriol. This is a typical Catalan artist’s square, where many musicians, painters and fortune-tellers settle to share and sell their work. The bright colors and constant activity in the pretty square are part of its attraction and charm, not to mention its many boutiques and cafés. Here you will find individual handicraft shops standing alongside designer shops, but all of which are very appealing and tempting to shoppers.
Previously considered an area which tourists should best avoid, El Raval has become a rather exciting area of Barcelona after almost 30 years of regeneration and a original gastronomic offer. Despite its reputation for being a darker and less safe area of Barcelona, a bohemian and artistic scene has recently exploded in El Raval, thanks to the opening of the Museum of Contemporary Art in the area. However, the creativity does not stop here – scattered around El Raval are individual and vibrant one-off boutiques which draw in those who are seeking to purchase some of the more creative items and clothes of Catalonia.
By Paula Zamorano Osorio