Plaza Catalunya, Barcelona
Plaza Catalunya is a square located in the centre of Barcelona. It is generally considered to be both the city centre and the place where the old city and the 19th century-built Eixample meet. Designed by Ildefons Cerdà in 1859 to be the heart of the city, Plaza Catalunya has a little bit of everything: Modernist cafes, monuments, striking fountains, shops and bars. Plaza Catalunya is surrounded by monumental buildings, no doubt it is Barcelona’s busiest square.
Some of the city’s most important streets and avenues meet at Plaza Catalunya. It’s also the intersection between Las Ramblas, Portal del Àngel, Ronda de Sant Pere and Passeig de Gracia, linking the Barri Gotic with the Eixample district. The plaza occupies an area of about 50,000 square metres. Moreover, it is especially known for its fountains and statues, its proximity to some of Barcelona’s most popular attractions, and for the flocks of pigeons that gather in the centre.
Until the middle of the nineteenth century, the Plaza Catalunya was a rural area just outside the city walls. Subsequently, around 1858 the central government in Madrid finally allowed the defensive walls to be demolished. After that, construction was also approved outside the walls so a public competition was organised for the design of a new district.
In 1862 it was the City Council that asked for the area to be developed into a town square, but the official permit was not granted until 1889. Moreover, the first stage of urbanisation of the two large cross-shaped roads and a circular square at its intersection point, began in 1902. In 2008, some remodelling works were carried out on areas such as the pavement that surrounds the square; the mosaic that it houses in the center; and improved accesses by adding ramps.
Fountains and Monuments
The plaza is designed with park benches, impressive fountains, reflecting pools, and various neo-classical monuments and pieces of sculpture. In addition, is the ivory coloured, La Deessa, or the goddess statue by Josep Clarà, which depicts a nude woman bathing. This exquisite sculpture sits on the edge of a peaceful reflecting pool, attracting many visitors. Other sculptures by artists such as Josep Llimona and Pablo Gargallo adorn the square. The newest addition is a modern concrete monument dedicated to Francesc Macià, the former Catalan president designed by Josep Subirachs, the current Sagrada Familia architect. This futuristic monument was added in 1991.
On these streets you will find numerous different outlets ranging from designer boutiques to high street brands, for instance. But perhaps the most famous of all (El Corte Inglés) appears on the square itself. Above all, this enormous department store spreads over nine floors, with all types of Spanish made consumer goods. Certainly, you will find everything from a supermarket packed with gourmet produce, to clothes, home furnishings and electronics.
Where to eat
If you’re starting to get a bit hungry after a big day of shopping, there are plenty of restaurants to chose from on Plaza Catalunya. Take a seat outside at one of the restaurants for a wonderful view of the heart of Barcelona. One of our favourite places to watch the world go by and munch on something delicious.
# 1 Hard Rock Café
This well-known chain restaurant with it’s rock and roll music ambiance is right in the mist of the square. With a full American style menu, Hard Rock Café offers a unique experience and quality service all around the world. So don’t miss the opportunity to stop by, eat some great dishes, enjoy the cocktails and shop for a souvenir to remember your trip!
Opening hours: Every day from 11:30-23:00
Address: Plaça Catalunya 21, 08002 Barcelona España
# 2 Café Zurich
Usually crowded day and night by patrons, this café is the perfect place to enjoy a pastry or a glass of wine. In addition, it’s a great spot to watch the mass of people pass by the Plaza. If you want to enjoy a nice breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, this local offers you a wide variety of dishes and flavours to choose from!
Opening hours: Every day from 08:00-23:00, except Saturday from 09:00-24:00
Address: Plaça Catalunya 1, 08002 Barcelona España
# 3 Biocenter
If you are craving some vegan or vegetarian cuisine, stop by Biocenter! Most well known for their burgers; certainly this is one of the first restaurants with gastronomy made with only local produces. In short, come and enjoy a nutritional meal in a very welcoming environment, with great service.
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 13:00-16:00 & 19.30-23.30, & Sunday 13:00-16:00
Address: Carrer Pintor Fortuny, 25, 08001 Barcelona
Staying near the Plaza
When planning your trip to Barcelona, certainly staying near or around the Plaza Catalunya area is desirable for many visitors. Due to the plaza being so central to everything, it is extremely accessible. Above all, for instance if you are coming in a group, book your apartment in advance to secure a comfortable stay during your time here. But if you are planning to visit Barcelona as couples or in much smaller groups then view available rooms and book now!
Where to stay
We can help you find the most comfortable and best priced accommodation in Barcelona close to the Plaza Catalunya for you to enjoy your trip to the fullest.
This is a chic property that combines elegant interior with contemporary furnishing and not to mention great lighting. It can accommodate 4 people through the use of two double bedrooms. The kitchen and living room use the same space, offering style, leisure and convenience.
From 1590 €/month | 60m2 | Reference: BH-3292
This holiday apartment in Plaza Catalunya is available for a short- or long-term stay in the Eixample district of Barcelona. The interior of this lovely residence features a creative and tasteful combination of styles.
From 87 €/night | 75m2 | License: HUTB-001259 | Reference: BHM2-443
The interior of this penthouse in Barcelona city center is a unique mix of rustic and modern elements. The space is composed of a large living room; moreover, with a spectacular ceiling almost five meters high, a large mirror, a huge sofa bed facing the large TV.
From 633 €/night | 85m2 | License: HUTB-001245 | Reference: BHB-1953
Central Transportation Hub
Most importanly, Plaza Catalunya functions as a hub for the city’s public transportation. However, below the square are the main metro station and the city railway line. Many of the city’s buses, as well as airport express and tourist buses stop here at the square.
Address: Plaça de Catalunya 08002 Barcelona
- Metro – L1, L2, L3
- FGC (Ferrolcarriles) – S1, 2, 5, 55, L6 and 7
- Bus – 9, 14, 16, 17, 24, 28, 41, 42, 47, 55, 58, 62, 66, 67, 68, 141
- Shuttle Bus – (A1 and A2) to both terminals (T1 and T2) of the airport.
Tip: moreover, after arriving at the Plaza straight from the airport, as a result you can find The Barcelona Tourist Information center underneath the plaza.
In the same vein, are you planning a trip and looking for an accommodation for your stay in Barcelona? Check out these GREAT APARTMENTS in the city centre!