Chic and chill, the bohemian neighbourhood of Gracia in Barcelona is the perfect place to stay in the Catalan capital.
Gracia, Barcelona, Catalonia
Upon your visit to Barcelona, experiencing the chill, eclectic neighbourhood of Gracia is a must. It’s the best way to get away from the hustle-bustle of the main city centre while experiencing the local way of life in this bohemian hotspot.
Gracia oozes cool. It’s filled with chic cocktail bars, delicious brunch spots, designer boutiques, and hipster hangouts. After spending a hectic day hitting the main sights of the Sagrada Familia and Parc Guell, spending the day strolling in this cool area is like a breath of fresh air.
It’s hard not to fall in love with this neighbourhood. Let’s look at why Gracia is the trendy hipster hub of Barcelona:
A neighbourhood with a village feel, Gracia is full of narrow streets. Interestingly, it used to be an independent town until it was included in the city in the late 1800s.
Locals and tourists alike love to come here to stroll for a quiet break from the craziness of the centre without having to go too far, as Gracia is about a 20-minute walk from the Sagrada Familia.
City buses and tour buses don’t make it up here, as the streets are too narrow and it’s set out on a hill. The local population is made up of trendy hipsters, young families as well as the elderly.
Carrer Verdi, Gracia
It’s Full of Delightful Squares
Gracia’s squares were built as the focus of social and recreational life for the locals and visitors pf Barcelona. In total, the neighbourhood is dotted with about 15 of them, which have become colourful and vibrant spaces to meet, chat and have a drink or some tapas.
They can appear by surprise as you meander through Gracia’s narrow streets. Placa del Sol is considered by many as the main square, where youngsters meet to enjoy the buzzing bars and delicious restaurants. We recommend in particular that you head to Sol Soler, which offers a delicious range of traditional Catalan tapas.
Sol Soler, Placa de Sol, Gracia
The squares of Gracia carry both historic and literary landmarks. For example, the Placa del Diamant gave its name to the novel by the celebrated Catalan author Mercè Rodoreda. The Placa Rius i Taulet is where the town hall is found, with its majestic clock tower in the centre. You can also head to more peaceful squares such as Plaça del Nord and the Plaça de Rovira i Tries.
Placa Rius i Taulet
The Quaint, Independent Stores to Be Explored
You won’t find chain stores in Gracia. Here, it’s all about the local, independent businesses made up of delicious bakeries, organic grocery stores, designer boutiques, and cosy bookstores and vinyl shops.
In Gracia, you can find the Mercat de l’Abaceria which is an indoor produce market. Here they have available a wide variety of fruit, vegetables, olives, cheese, nuts, dried fruit, and cooked and dried beans and lentils.
Plus, there’s a great selection of bulk-buy stores, where you can go and buy as much or as little as you like, choosing from spices, nuts, seeds, rice, beans, granola, and other health food items.
Gracia is renowned for its vintage shops. You can find great thrifted deals on unique items. We recommend that you make a visit to Retro City, filled with rails of treasured items from over the last century.
It’s Close to the Illustrious Sites of Gaudi
When checking the map of Gracia, you’ll notice that it’s right next to Park Guell, Gaudi’s fairytale park which calls Gracia its home. For many, it’s a highlighted stop on the Barcelona itinerary.
Getting to explore Gaudi’s magnificent modernist buildings is the main focus for many visitors, and Gracia provides the ideal location for it.
By choosing to stay in Gracia, you’ll easily be within walking distance of Casa Mila, Casa Batllo, the Sagrada Familia, and Park Guell. Now that’s both economical and convenient!
Park Guell, Barcelona
Accommodation in Gracia
As this hidden gem of a neighbourhood becomes increasingly well-known, there’s also been a rise in demand amongst savvy travellers for accommodation in this part of the city.
As a result, you can now find available a wide and decent range of hotels, hostels, as well as Airbnbs if you’re planning to stay here.
A new budge option that is very popular here is the vast and modern Generator Hostel chain, found about a five-minute walk from Placa del Sol. Another place we recommend is Aparthotel Sibel, which is a boutique located near the Fontana metro station.