Your comprehensive guide to Barcelona's neighborhoods


Updated on Sep 14 • 4 minute read

Heading to Barcelona? You’re probably jumping between relief, excitement and overwhelming desire to learn everything that you can about this beautiful. The north-eastern city offers some of the best neighborhoods in Spain, if not all of Southern Europe.

With so many questions to be answered and even more choices to be made, let’s take an in-depth look at Barcelona’s neighborhoods.

A little bit about Barcelona

Barcelona's just teeming with things for young people to do. A vibrant nightlife, trendy art museums and an affordable cost of living make this city a popular choice for students, young professionals and families ready to start something new.

Barcelona’s Best Neighborhoods

It’s easy to see why moving to Barcelona is the dream of many. Its jaw-dropping architecture and proximity to a number of beaches is enough to encourage people to make it their permanent home after a single visit. After all, can six to 12 months in Barcelona ever be enough?

Of course, it’s important to understand as much as you possibly can about Barcelona's neighbourhoods. Each has its own personality, so once you begin to dig in, you can take your budget into consideration and see which suits Barcelona neighbourhood suits you best.

1. Gràcia

If you're a bohemian, then this is the perfect place for you! Gràcia's one of the busiest and liveliest neighborhoods of Barcelona, mostly due to its high population. However, it also welcomes internationals like family, so everyone has a sense of belonging, no matter where they’re from.

It can be popular amongst tourists, but it still retains its free-spirited vibe. There're heaps of hip cafés and restaurants, along with vintage, second-hand shops and food markets at its center. You’ll find a fun mix of artists, students, young professionals and elderly residents living there. Don't be surprised to see locals and visitors alike people-watching from the terraces of the well-known Plaça del Sol on sunny days.

Thanks to its communal feel, Gràcia is also one of our favourite family neighbourhoods in Bercelona.

2. El Born

If the historical side of the city is what attracted you in the first place, it’s good to know that this is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Barcelona. You’ll find narrow streets that are just waiting to be explored, as well as beautiful squares and museums, such as the popular Picasso Museum.

You’ll also be a short stroll away from both the Ciutadella Park and Arc de Triomf, as well as a thriving nightlife scene, ranging from high-end bars to comfortable, cozy pubs. Plus, El Born has excellent connections to the rest of Barcelona, making it easy to spend a day at Barceloneta beach or explore any of the other nearby locales.

3. El Raval

Appealing to those attracted to the underground scene in Barcelona, you’ll definitely still be able to rub elbows with the tourists at the MACBA (Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona). Skateboarding's also quite popular in this area, with several spots just perfect for the sport.

If international dining is right up your alley, then you can have lunch at an authentic Mexican café or settle down for dinner at a Pakistani restaurant (a real draw for expats living throughout the city). Joaquin Costa Street is also a great place to explore numerous dining options. Though this area can get a bit crowded and noisy (and it may not be as residential as some other neighborhoods) it does attract younger residents.

4. L’Eixample

Be ready for some gorgeous architecture in this Barcelona neighborhood! As the most popular residential area of the city, it has long straight streets that are arranged in a grid-like pattern, with squared blocks dating back to the 19th century.

This area is actually split in two by Passeig de Gràcia, which leads to Plaça Catalunya and the high-end shopping mecca of Barcelona. As you may have guessed, this can be an expensive neighborhood, but it has great appeal and is conveniently located.

5. Barceloneta

When you want to throw yourself into Barcelona’s nightlife or if you crave a traditional Spanish meal, this's the neighborhood for you. Seafood dishes are sold along the seafront at a variety of eateries, fresh from the sea.

Barceloneta beach a wonderful place to relax and soak up the sun, it’s just minutes away! The beach has been known to fill up with tourists by day, but by night, it tends to turn into a locals’ party hangout.

6. Poblenou

After the gentrification of this mostly industrial space in Barcelona, the converted warehouses are now serving as some of the roomiest, trendiest locales for housing.

They're perfect for sharing with a few new friends, students or co-workers. Plus, its residents are mere steps from the city’s nicest beaches,Marbella and Bogatell. The famous Razzmatazz nightclub is a big attraction, and nightlife and dining options are plentiful.

Discover our pick of student neighbourhoods in Barcelona.

7. El Clot

This neighborhood is home to the Polytechnic University of Barcelona and has more affordable rent than most of the central neighborhoods. A stone’s throw from the Sagrada Família, you can also find plenty of green spaces, eateries and nightlife choices in El Clot.

It is considered one of the safest areas of Barcelona, and is conveniently connected by several lines of public transportation.

8. Sants

Merging with Barcelona in 1889, Sants was once an independent city. However, today it's famous for the Festa Major, a large gathering comprised of food, music and lots of fun.

Sants may be a bit away from the center of the city, but it’s quiet and affordable. Furthermore, it boasts the bustling Sants station, which is one of the largest in Barcelona with connections deeper into Spain and even neighbouring countries.

9. Les Corts

This Barcelona neighborhood has become quite popular with international students, nestled just southwest of the city. You’ll find a unique mix of the old and the modern, with blocks of apartments and shopping districts. A little further out, and you’ll run into older buildings that surround historic squares. So, there really is something for every taste.

10. Sant Antoni

Sant Antoni's known as a hipster’s paradise, filled with coffeehouses and some of the best brunch spots in all of Barcelona.

If you love shopping at markets, one of the best is also located here, offering everything from fresh foods and fruits to inexpensive clothing and books. Plus, you can easily walk to the nearby nightlife just a bit over in El Raval.

Now that you know Barcelona’s best neighborhoods and what each is known for, you can start to find houses for rent in Barcelona for your preference right away! Rooms and apartments in this sunny city can be in high demand, so begin your search at least four months before moving, to ensure you have plenty of options. Opt for a safe platform like HousingAnywhere, that has been selected by as the best company for short term rentals in Barcelona!

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