Gothic Quarter: is this Barcelona's best barrio?
Posted on 13/03/2017


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As one of the most enchanting cities that Europe has to offer, Barcelona offers its visitors rich culture, quirky art, fascinating history and delicious food, all combined with the sand, salt and sun of the Mediterranean. But squirreled away in the heart of the city lies the best neighbourhood: "El Gotico".

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  • Catedral de Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia
    Catedral de Santa Cruz y Santa Eulalia

    One of the most famous cathedrals in Barcelona and an architectural beauty in the true gothic style. Explore the enthralling Basilica and take a stroll around the cloisters with its beautiful blue fountain in the middle.


Located right in the heart of the city, the windy streets and small squares of the Gothic Quarter are a favourite for visitors and locals alike. The allure of the neighbourhood is the higgledy-piggledy way in which the streets form a labyrinth, allowing you to lose yourselves for hours on end. It is one of the most interesting places to visit in the Catalonian capital.

Being just off the busy hub of La Rambla, it is an easily accessed area of the city, and a must-see to truly absorb the real Barcelona. The winding alleyways and narrow streets are free of cars, which makes it pleasant to discover on foot and allows you to stroll through and stumble across hidden treasures such as bars, cafés, shops, squares and old churches.

The characterful architecture dates back to the Middle Ages, creating an authentic ambience from hundreds of years ago. The borders of the neighbourhood follow the old medieval city walls which can still be seen in places today.

Spend some time shopping throughout the Gothic Quarter and particularly on Calle Avinyo, with its many unique boutiques. From shopping to sitting outside tapas bars in a hidden square, getting lost down endless alleyways, to listening to street musicians playing classical Spanish guitar or discovering beautiful churches, the Gothic Quarter is a hot contender for the best "barrio" in Barcelona.

The best bars and restaurants in the Gothic Quarter

Merkat Princesa A place full of surprises. Located in an old palace it now hosts a selection of 17 delicious and authentic tapas style eateries.

Tapeo An exciting tapas bar which mixes traditional and experimental flavours, and combines classic Catalonian cuisine with more elaborate and modern ideas.

Can Culleretes The oldest restaurant in Barcelona, and holds a fantastic reputation for a reason. The food offered is traditional but with distinct products which define their unique and famous cuisine.

El Bosc de las Fades A fairy-tale restaurant which offers a magical dining experience. Inspired by a fairy forest with trickling waterfalls and twinkling lights, this is a mysterious and incomparable place to eat.

El Quatre Gats This bar, located in a tiny side street, has been around for around around 150 years and was even a favourite for both Picasso and Gaudi who used it as exhibition spaces.

Le Quinze Nits Located on the elegant Plaça Reial, there is always a queue outside this formal restaurant with a traditional Mediterranean focus which produces old favourites which are said to be some of the Gothic Quarter's tastiest.

Bar Ocaña Also located on the lively Plaça Reial is this beautiful, multipurpose venue of a restaurant and cocktail bar which turns into a nightclub in the later hours combining live music and burlesque dancing.

Pla Found on the historic Plaça Sant Jaume in the heart of the quarter. It has earned its name as one of Barcelona's best restaurants - and also one of its best-kept secrets.

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