The squares of the Barrio Gótico

An event on our social program, our photowalking tour in May took us on a two-hour walk round Barcelona's Gothic Quarter, through the streets of the old city into a dozen different squares, some of which have existed since Roman times...

  • La Plaça Nova, the start of our walk. Nati explains what we can see in front of us... [photo, Tom].

  • ... Across the square, we've got the remains of the Roman and medieval walls. On the right, the Gothic cathedral [photo, Tom].

  • The narrow streets of the Barrio Gótico (the Gothic Quarter) we enter were once one-way streets for horses-and-carts, the signs for them still visible [photo, Brigitte].

  • Our walk takes us to a dozen different squares, but it's not just the squares, it's the backstreets too that give the Barrio Gótico its atmosphere [photo, Christina].

  • Brigitte's photo captures the impression that the Barrio's walls seem living things, alive, scrawled upon... [photo, Brigitte].

  • The plaque on the pavement outside many of the shops in the old city is the town's recognition of years of service to the city. The symbols are those of the old guilds of craftsmen [photo, Christina]..

  • The Plaça Cucurulla: the black marks on the pavement are discarded chewing gum, at a density of over 115 per square meter here (!), outside a sweet shop, according to a newspaper report [photo, Tom].

  • The Plaza del Pí, where a farm produce market is to be found the first and third weekend of every month [photo, Tom, not taken on the day of our walk]

  • The church of Santa María del Pí reflected in mirrors in a shop window on the opposite side of the square [photo, Christina].

  • The Plaça Sant Josep Oriol is just round the corner...

  • The Plaça Sant Josep Oriol is the scene of an artist's street market every weekend [photo, Tom, not taken on the day of our walk]

  • And we're then got a third almost continuous square, the Placeta del Pí, on the far side of the church [photo, Tom].

  • The Plaça Reial, with lampposts designed by a young man called Antoni Gaudí, dating back to 1878-1879 [photo, Christina].

  • Close up of the Gaudí lamp. In the late 1870s, of course, we were still talking gaslight, not electricity [photo, Brigitte].

  • As we come out of the Plaça Real, a window. It looks rundown, it could do with a coat of paint, with panes replacing, but that's the Barrio Gótico... [photo, Christina].

  • The Plaça George Orwell, celebrating the writer's Homage to Catalonia [photo, Tom].

  • Bikes in the Plaça George Orwell. Much of the Barrio Gótico is closed to motor traffic, making it ideal for cyclists -- but watch out for those tourists [photo, Tom]!

  • More bikes in our next square, the Plaça de la Verònica [photo, Tom].

  • Our next stop, the Plaça dels Traginers [photo, Tom].

  • The Plaça dels Traginers is one of the places in the Barrio Gótico where you can still see vestiges of the Roman walls [photo, Tom].

  • Bar on the corner in the Plaça dels Traginers: away from the tourists, the Barrio is still lived in by real people [photo, Brigitte].

  • We're now in the Plaça Sant Just, hidden away behind the Town Hall [photo, Tom].

  • Plaça Sant Just. The graffiti is one of the features of the Barrio Gótico [photo, Tom].

  • We've now come to the Plaça Sant Jaume, the seat of government since the square was the Roman forum [photo, Tom].

  • Streetlamps in the Plaça Sant Jaume [photo, Tom].

  • The Catalan flag flies over the Palau de la Generalitat, home of the autonomous government of Catalonia [photo, Brigitte].

  • The fountain in the Plaça de Sant Felip Neri, currently completely dry, as Spain suffers from its worst drought in years [photo, Tom].

  • Normally, the Plaça Felip Neri is deserted, the running water in the fountain the only sound... Until school comes out, that is! [photo, Brigitte].

  • Coming out of the Plaça Felip Neri: there are corners of the old city that still feel medieval [photo, Tom].

  • The ghostly figures are from the fountains in the Plaça Sant Just, the buildings superimposed from another photo [photo, Christina].

  • A cheap hotel... Parts of the Barrio Gótico seem like they've sprung from a film or a novel, perhaps a crime story [photo, Christina].

  • The Plaça del Rei: the Palace of the King of Aragon when (in the 14th and 15th centuries), Aragon had an Empire spreading across the Mediterranean as far as Sicily and Greece [photo, Tom].

  • Busker in the Plaça del Rei [photo, Tom].

  • Nearing the end of our walk now. Note the phototricyclists (who weren't actually with us!) [photo, Tom].

  • The Plaça de l'Angel [photo, Tom].

  • A cake shop window in the Plaça de l'Angel: now that would be a good place to end a walking tour! [photo, Tom].

  • And our walk ends in the Plaça Ramon Berenguer El Gran, dominated by the statue of Ramon Berenguer, one of the great Aragonese empire builders [photo, Tom].

  • Photowalking Barcelona: postcards in a picture postcard city.

Images by Brigitte Schaefer, Christina Milinusic and Tom Walton.

No, sorry, you do not have permission to copy them and use them on other websites.

Other Barcelona photowalking trips

Barcelona's amazing Modernista houses

Squares of the Barrio Gótico

The districts of Sant Pere and La Ribera

Lo pegado y pintado en las paredes del Gótico: Graffiti in Barcelona


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