Once a forgotten corner of the city in the shadow of Montjuïc, the neighbourhood of Poble Sec is now a thriving cosmopolitan hub with a uniquely local charm. Like every Barrio in Barcelona, Poble Sec has its own unique quirks and is quickly becoming one of the most popular hangouts in the city. The neighbourhood is characterised by its sloping tree lined streets and clusters of independent restaurants and bars. Although just a stone’s throw from all the key sights like La Rambla and the Olympic port, this barrio has managed to maintain its authenticity. For those who want to experience the true essence of the Catalan capital then look no further…
Carrer de Blai
Carrer de Blai is quickly becoming known as the pincho capital of the city. Pinchos, are local to Catalunya and are usually small bites served on baguette bread. These tasty snacks will normally set you back no more than a euro each! Make the most of the great grub and warm evenings in one of this street’s many bustling terraces. If Pinchos alone aren’t enough, there are plenty of other restaurants around to take your fancy. From Moroccan to Argentinean cuisine, this street is teaming with gastronomic delights.
Bars & Clubs
It’s not just Pinchos that are attracting new visitors but also some excellent bars and clubs as well. For great cocktails, good vibes and a place to catch the all important football match its time to visit Mau Mau. This cosy bar with its spacious loungers and big screen is the perfect place to start off your night in Barcelona. Another bar is La Federika, although technically a gay bar, it’s open to all and it’s incredible retro interior and collection of stylish drinks makes it a must visit. If you’re looking to dance the night away, the area’s largest and hugely popular club has to be Apolo. Situated on the busy Avinguda del Paral-lel, the former theatre will not disappoint. From techno to indie to pop, there is always something happening…also watch out for some great concerts.
Poble Sec is a gastronomic destination in its own right and should not be overlooked. Off the old tourist trail you’ll certainly get more bang for you buck here. Situated on Avinguda de Paral-lel is the scrumptious Basilico restaurant. Serving up a great selection of local wines and a modern seasonal menu that features market produce and mains inspired by the sea and the mountains this is a restaurant that stretches way beyond tapas. The heart of Poble Sec is Plaça del Sortidor featuring the 100 year old establishment, El Sortidor. This restaurant is one of the finest examples of Catalan cuisine you can come across in the city. With its excellent location, stained glass windows and of course, delicious food, make sure you don’t miss it. Finally, for those who love true stone-oven pizzas and an authentic taste of Italy, you must try La Pizza del Sortidor…trust us!
A step away from the block formation of areas such as Sant Antoni and Eixample, the streets of Poble Sec are more village like and contain some beautiful examples of great Catalan architecture. Wander along its narrow treelined streets and discover some of Barcelona’s most authentic looking areas. Carrer de Tapioles is one of the neighbourhood’s best examples of unique architecture.
You can’t talk about Poble Sec without mentioning Montjuïc. Hugging the foothill of the city’s most famous mountain, Poble Sec is surrounded by its beautiful parks and gardens. For the more adventurous, walk from Poble Sec right up to the top of the mountain, enjoying the views of the city as you ascend. Or, if you’re feeling a little weary, take the funicular from Paral-lel metro stop. Due to its central location Montjuïc boasts incredible views over Barcelona. There’s no better place to experience this than from the Piscina Municipal de Montjuïc which open for bathing between the months of July and August. Discover other attractions such as museums, parks and music events here.
Avinguda del Paral-lel
Avinguda del Paral-lel is Barcelona’s equivalent to the West End and is where you’ll find some of the greatest theatres in the city. The most famous is the Teatre Apolo which has its own resident cabaret. Further up the street you will find El Molino which re-opened in 2010. Both a concert hall and café, the site holds significant historical importance as one of the few burlesque houses of Europe. Finally Teatre Condal is the final performance house you will find on this big avenue and has been located on this road since 1903. Expect to catch big performances such as The Lion King and The Wizard of Oz!
If you like the sound of Poble Sec, why not also check out El Raval here.