Saturday, 14 January 2017

Where to Visit in Barcelona: Gothic Quarter

Visiting Barcelona for the first time can be so over-whelming, as it is a very big city with so many things to do and see!
Visiting the Sagrada Familia and taking a wonder down La Rambla, is a must see! However, it is great to spend a day or half a day, exploring the charming districts of Barcelona.
I recommend you visit Barrio Gotico (Gothic Quarter) when you visit Barcelona! This characteristic and engaging area offers plenty of things to do in Barcelona!
It is located in Ciutat Vella, the Old Town just off to the left hand side of La Rambla right near Plaza Reial!
What makes this area so special and distinctive is it’s winding streets; in the Eixample area there are straight streets with blocks of buildings that are squares. The winding streets is a beautiful way from going to the new area of Barcelona into the old Roman Village, it gives you somewhere completely new to explore.
So read below to find out what to see, where to eat, drink and shop!

Places to Visit
I must say that, even though I was waddling around like a headless chicken when myself and Rikke went to Barrio Gotico (I was following Rikke – she has a great sense of direction!) I was in love with the places that we found!
They were so enchanting and full of history that you couldn’t help but just stare longingly at them!

Barcelona Cathedral is definitely one of the most, if not, the most beautiful gothic buildings in Barrio Gotico. It is located at Pla de la Seu where you will find café’s, street performers and the entrance to the Roman Village. At night, the cathedral is illuminated, making it look even more beautiful. Today, there were incredible street performers doing gymnastics, it was a great break during my hour walk around this area!
It was built in the 11 Century and stands at 25 metres high!

Placa Sant Jaume
Placa Sant Jaume is the political centre of Barcelona, and is now known at the open “lung” space of Barrio Gotico. Here you can find incredible and elegant buildings for you to embrace in the heart of the Quarter.
Built in 1823, the roads that lead off it you can find many traditional and Catalan shops to buy some souvenirs!

Placa Del Pi
This a very quaint and beautiful part of Barrio Gotico, it is very small but so characteristic. Surrounded by cute cafés, you can find local artists selling portraits. There are also some incredible tapas bars that you should try out!
The style is known as very bohemian, centred just off La Rambla, go to this place for an escape!

Placa Reial
Want to see some of Gaudi’s first works? Head to Plaza Reial and take a look at the street lamps, because this is some of Gaudi’s work. This is also a great place for some food and some incredible drinks! The bars and clubs around here are amazing and have an incredible atmosphere!
Appreciate the picture of me in my retro glasses… my aviators broke…. I bought 3 more pairs…

Where to Shop
Barcelona is GREAT for shopping! There is no better place to start off your tour around Barrio Gotic, without starting off at Portal d’Angel. It is located right at the top of La Rambla but just off to the side and there is a massive Pull and Bear shop to start you fashion lovers off! (Topshop material but at H&M prices! Most of my clothes are from there!
The shops are varied and you suddenly go from modern architecture to old gothic buildings!

Where to Eat
I have said this numerous amounts of times, but, Barcelona does the best food, especially if you know where to find it! Personally, I do not like to eat in the centre of Barcelona. It tends to be over-priced (respect to the owners you gotta make a profit especially during tourist season) and the food is not that authentic!
Going to Barrio Gotic, you will find traditional, authentic and great food. Every time I meet new people who have travelled here they always say the food is the best part!
Here are some restaurants that are popular with locals and travellers!

 Where to Drink
For those who would like some late night chilled drinks, there are plenty of places in Barcelona for that! In the Gothic Quarter you will find very tranquil, relaxed and cool places for you to rewind after a long day of exploring.
Here are a few to consider!

Where to Party
I hear so many people say New York is the city that never sleeps… well move over New York because Barcelona is going to show you how it is done!
You do not know how to party until you come here! In England you go out around 11pm and come back at 3am because that’s when the clubs shut. No no no, not here! The normal time to go out at its earliest is 12am and the “proper” time to go out is 1am… and stay out until 6am. Let me tell you that it is very very draining!
It is worth it, as it is a very social opportunity being in clubs here it is really refreshing to go out and meet new people!
You can do that in these clubs in the Gothic Quarter here!

Extra Information
The best way to travel around Barcelona is by the Metro. Admittedly, I was at first scared of the  metro. Yes, I know “what do you mean you were scared of the metro”. I moved to Cornwall from Southampton when I was 14, from a city to the country-side and I never went to London.
If anyone has lived in Cornwall, especially outside of Lelant you know that you either get a bus that comes every 30 minutes, a train that every 30 minutes or you drive.  I don’t drive as I have been at uni etc. I also have a fear of heights and enclosed spaces and I have never been a massive fan of escalators as I suffer from Vertigo on normal escalators.
In my first year of Uni we went to London for 3 nights for a trip and it was amazing, but we had to use the metro. The metro itself is fine, easy and simple to use and so busy at times! It was the escalators where I froze every time I was on them, I would stare at the floor, gripping onto the side. It was horrific and I worried that in Barcelona I would have to walk every where because of my fear. But no! The metro is super easy, no horrible escalators and its cheap and not too busy! I recommend getting a T10, it’s a card which allows you 10 trips all for 9.90 Euros I believe! The nearest metro is station is Liceu, which is right next to Plaz Reial or Catalunya which is right neat to Port D’Angel!
Click here for more metro info!

Walking Tour
If you are prone to getting lost, very much like how I was when I first moved here and don’t want to rely on yourself to get lost in Barcelona, I suggest a walking tour!
These are free walking tours around the Gothic Quarter and you will not get lost and will have plenty more information as you go!
Runner Beans Tours
Get Your Guide

If you do go to the Gothic Quarter please let me know and what you make of it! If you have already been leave a comment and tell me what you thought!
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Have a good weekend, Mol xo

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