Barcelona squares and plazas are at the heart of the city. Locals and travelers alike meet and bond at these establishments to socialize, relax, and enjoy a drink or meal.
Hundreds of squares of all sizes are strewn around the city, ranging from big intimidating plazas surrounded by exquisite buildings to little squares where children may run and play.
In this post, we will help you discover some of the best plazas and squares in the Catalan capital.
Top 9 Barcelona Squares & Plazas
1. Plaza Catalunya
Considered the city center, Plaza Catalunya is where Barcelona’s major tourist attractions are located, including the Gothic Quarter, Raval, and Eixample.
This 50,000-square-meter public area is well-known for its finely crafted and strategically placed neo-classical and avant-garde sculptures. This is the ideal location to begin a tour of Barcelona since, in addition to being in the city’s heart, the Tourism Office is just a short trip down.
The Passeig de Gràcia and La Rambla meet at Plaza Catalunya; this is the perfect spot to be at any time of the day, as it’s usually bustling with activity. At lunchtime, it’s full of local workers consuming their quick trays of pa amb tomàquet before heading back to work.
Plaza Catalunya is for leisurely breakfast or a quick coffee early in the morning. It gets trendy in the evening, where you’ll find most shops open late and packed with people.
2. Plaça Prim
The charming Plaça Prim is beside the seaside in the oldest portion of Barcelona’s neighborhood, Poblenou. Two-story whitewashed fishermen’s cottages surround the square, so they call it the Plaça dels Pescadors (Fishermen’s plaza), similar to those seen in coastal villages on the Costa Brava the Balearic Islands.
A cast-iron fountain supplies water to visitors who seek the shade of the squares of three gnarly Ombu trees. Scattered around the park is a huge evergreen shrub native to Argentina called Ombu (Latin: Phytolacca dioica)
Just a few meters from the lovely Rambla del Poblenou, Plaça Prim, is home to Els Pescadors, one of Barcelona’s greatest fish and seafood restaurants.
3. Plaça de la Sagrada Família
The most popular location in Barcelona is Plaça de la Sagrada Família, which is not a square but rather an architectural complex designed by Antoni Gaudi. It is one of the most remarkable works of the Modernisme (Catalan Art Nouveau) architect. Sagrada Familia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, attracts thousands of visitors every day.
From the terraces of the buildings, you can see a magnificent view of Barcelona and its landmark buildings such as Casa Milà, La Pedrera, and Torre Agbar.
Two squares on either side of the church offer a good view of Gaudi’s masterwork. To the northeast, there’s Plaça de Gaudi, a tiny garden with a lake in the center, which is a favorite location for photographing the church.
And located at the southwest is Plaça de la Sagrada Família, a beautiful park with winding gravel paths and beautiful trees. You’ll find lots of places to rest and cool off from the midday sun on the park’s benches.
4. Plaça de Sant Agustí Vell
Hundreds of people who flock to Barcelona often miss out on the Plaça de Sant Agustí Vell. Yet, this little patch of urban paradise tucked in the middle of the busy city deserves a visit.
This Barcelona Plaza got its name after the church Sant Agustí Vell (Saint Augustine) that was built in 1630 by Pere Pau Ripollés. The church was renovated in 1683 to make it pointy and baroque-ish, typical of that time.
This plaza is unique because it is within the Eixample district, one of Barcelona’s most popular locations with superb architecture.
5. Plaça de la Vila de Gràcia
Vila de Gràcia has initially been an independent town outside of Barcelona. Despite being annexed in the twentieth century, the neighborhood has retained its identity.
Gràcia is well-known for its alternative stores, creative boutiques, and vibrant nightlife. You’ll discover lovely plazas everywhere you walk. The neighborhood hosts its annual Fest Major every August, so expect parades, live entertainment, and food stalls if you’re traveling this month.
In addition to being incredibly scenic, the Plaça de la Vila de Gràcia is one of the neighborhood’s liveliest plazas, guarded by a thirty-three-meter-tall clock tower. Cafés, pubs, and restaurants favored by locals and visitors alike dot the area.
6. Plaça de Santa Maria
The Barcelona Plaza de Santa Maria, with its ornate statues and swirly fountain, is the quintessential heart of Barcelona. This square has long been a bustling neighborhood plaza in central Barcelona.
Strolling down the alleys, you’ll discover many shops and cafes with outdoor terraces perfect for grabbing a snack and tasting artisanal products.
One of the most favored spots in the area is Casa Batlló by Antoni Gaudí. He built it around 1905 – 1926 and is one of his masterpieces.
7. Plaça de la Concordia
Barcelona Plaza de La Concordia, not far from the city center but off the main tourist path, offers a picture of what life in Barcelona would have been like at the turn of the twentieth century.
Plaça de La Concordia, not far from the city center but off the main tourist path, offers a picture of what life in Barcelona would have been like at the turn of the twentieth century.
Along with the majestic Santa Maria del Remei parish church, a collection of Modernista (Catalan Art Nouveau) style structures surrounds the square.
This Barcelona Plaza is home to several buildings that once housed the neighborhood’s main industries, including printing and cigarette making. Today, these find new life as trendy pubs and cafes.
8. Plaza Sant Jaume
Barcelona Plaza Sant Jaume is a public square where Catalan politicians come and go daily. The beautifully crafted Generalitat and the City Hall serve as landmarks on both sides of the city.
During the La Mercè festival, which takes place in this square in September, Castellers construct human towers. Every year on the feast of Sant Jordi, book and rose vendors crowd the marble-tiled square to sell their wares.
Aside from hosting celebrations, this plaza has acted as a site for political demonstrations that have helped shape Catalonia’s future and its people.
9. Plaza Reial
The Barcelona Plaza Real is a bustling square in the center of Barcelona’s medieval district, situated off the pedestrian-only La Rambla. It’s an ideal spot for breakfast in the morning, as well as an afternoon snack or pre-dinner drink. The plaza has an incredible vibe, and beneath the arches are some of the city’s best pubs, clubs, and tapas restaurants.
One of its trademarks is a styled fountain in the center where many people meet and enjoy the ambiance. It is referred to as the “Fountain of Three Graces” because of the three ladies statue. The women are thought to be Zeus’s daughters, Euphrosyne, Aglaea, and Thalia, signifying beauty, charm, and pleasure, which perfectly describes this lovely plaza.
Many Barcelona Plazas have beautiful architecture and great places to eat, but some of the best plazas have more local flavor. You must find a plaza with the vibe you like and visit it often. Plazas in Barcelona have a lot of character. Many are favorite gathering places for locals and visitors alike. They offer a great place to eat, catch up with friends over coffee(or drink) while they do some people-watching (if you’re into that), or relax in the shade of a tree or enjoy the view of nearby buildings.
We hope you enjoy our guide on Barcelona Squares and Plazas, and we would love it if you shared your photos of some of the best plazas and squares in the comments!