I have chosen some places I think, as a local, are the best for you to get a sense of the local atmosphere. All of these are places you should visit while in Barcelona, as they will show you different pieces of the beauty in the city.
1. Plaça de Sant Felip Neri
Is a square where you will find the most town-like space in the Gothic Quarter, It’s not unusual to see kids playing around in this calm atmosphere as there is actually a school there. It has a beautiful fountain in the middle that makes this place even more relaxing. The square is far from cars and busy streets. You can think of it as an oasis in the center of the busy city that is Barcelona.
It is also important to remember the history of Barcelona which at some times has been tragic. During the Spanish Civil War, a bomb exploded near Plaça de Sant Felip Neri and many people were killed. Presently, you can see the holes that the bomb made that day. This plaza in Barcelona deserves to be honored and respected.
Here you will find peace, use it to observe locals and rest for a while.
2. Parc Güell: el turó de les tres creus
Parc Güell is enormous. It has a lot of paths to walk by and some monuments that integrate with the nature around them (you have to pay in order to visit some of these monuments). Although a visit there is always enjoyable you can top it all with a visit to the “Turó de les Tres Creus”.
I’ve visited almost all of Parc Güell several times and still this would be my favorite spot of all. All you have to do is look for the cross signs. Then, you will have to walk up a series of ramps. After walking for 5-10 minutes you will get to another spiral ramp that goes to the top of the “Turó”. As you can see in the photos, this is the peak of Parc Güell. Here you will find the most breathtaking views of Barcelona and you can usually find locals.
3. Plaça Reial
This is one of the least featured places of Barcelona and is why I have to mention it as a Hidden Gem. It is really the perfect place to have a break after a busy day visiting the city. A cold drink is advised to sit and relax watching the plaça come alive.
It has a special architectonic atmosphere and you can find great coloring during the day as well as at night. You can think of it as the place you want to be after spending most of the day walking around “Las Ramblas”. It’s important to keep in mind some of the lampposts in the plaça were some of the first works of Gaudí (architect of the Sagrada Família).
To have a more local experience, you should eat some tapas in the surrounding bars while you have fun people watching.
4. Laberint d’Horta
This is truly a hidden gem of Barcelona. All of the locals have fun in this park and labyrinth. It’s a rather difficult place to get to via public transportation, but it is totally worth it. It’s easy to loose track of time in this majestic place.
The entrance fee is minimal and it is very recommended for families visiting Barcelona with kids.
My Twitter and Instagram profiles have more information and photos. Through these platforms, my intent is to assist you in your Barcelona trip planning. I also do walking tours through Gràcia neighborhood, another hidden gem of Barcelona for the huge majority of visitors, so follow me and I’ll keep you updated!
Twitter & Instagram @youlovebcn