Barcelona’s Passeig de Gràcia (also known in Spanish as Paseo de Gracia) is seen as one of the main arteries of the city, as well as the site of many of the most expensive shops, and of course some of Barcelona’s most well-known buildings. It’s less than 1.5km long, and it links the heart of the city at Plaça de Catalunya with the Avinguda Diagonal, which marks the start of what was once known as the Vila de Gràcia (Town of Gràcia), and is now the district of Gràcia, one of the city’s ten districts.
All about the Passeig de Gràcia
It’s always a real pleasure to stroll along the Passeig de Gràcia, and the walk is a must for tourists visiting the city. It has a very similar feel to the Champs Élysées in Paris – a wide, open street, with magnificent buildings on both sides.
As you will be able to tell from the name, the Passeig de Gràcia was a road which linked the Vila de Gràcia with Barcelona itself. Over the years, the distance between Gràcia and Barcelona continued to diminish, because of the expansion of the city. In the middle of the 19th century this area of the city was developed, with space being made for parks and gardens, and attractions that encouraged the locals to spend time there, as it was still seen as being outside the city centre. In around 1860 development began on both sides of the Passeig de Gràcia, and several notable buildings were constructed and developed, some of which are now considered to be some of the greatest gems in the world of architecture.
Although the highlights of the Passeig de Gràcia have to be the Casa Batlló, the Casa Milà, the Casa Amatller, and the Casa Lleó i Morera you will find many other buildings of architectural interest on this beautiful street, and we’re sure that they will catch your attention during your walk.
What to look out for when walking along the Passeig de Gràcia?
Although we could say that on the Passeig de Gràcia you’ll find almost anything you want, it’s worth warning you that most establishments are catering for the more affluent clientele, whether it’s a restaurant, bar or retailer. You’ll therefore find a wealth of jewelry, fashion and accessories from all the well-known international designer labels, and can eat and drink at the more expensive bars and restaurants. However, there are also bars, local restaurants and high street shops that cater for everyone, so you’ll find affordable chain stores such as Zara, Bershka or Stradivarius, as well as a selection of bars and even a McDonalds!
Having said this, without doubt the main reason for visiting the Passeig de Gràcia should be to see the incredible buildings that we have already mentioned, some of which are open to the public but many are privately owned, so you may only be able to enjoy the view from outside.
Buildings of historical interest
Because of its importance in the city, as well as its size and the number of touristic and cultural places of interest along both sides of the Passeig de Gràcia, it’s very often used for celebrating various special events, activities and festivals, some of which even warrant closing the street to traffic so that the celebrations can continue safely.
We’d also like to point out that the Christmas illuminations can be seen at their best along the Passeig de Gràcia, so if you visit the city during the festive season you should make time for a stroll after 18:00, from which time the lights are turned on.
The best hotels in Passeig de Gràcia
As you might expect, with it being one of the most glamorous streets in the city, you will find some of Barcelona’s best hotels and apartments on the Passeig de Gràcia. As some of the city’s top businesses and headquarters of prestigious firms are on this street, and with it being so central and easily accessible by public transport, the price of renting and buying apartments here is the highest you’ll find in Barcelona. Therefore, you’ll also find that the rates in hotels and apartments rented for holidays, nearly all of which are fairly luxurious, are usually pretty high.
View Passeig de Gràcia in a larger map
Passeig de Gràcia, Barcelona.
How to get there?
Metro: Catalunya (lines 1 and 3), Passeig de Gràcia (lines 2, 3 and 4), Diagonal (lines 3 and 5) and Liceu (line 3).
Buses: lines 7, 22, 24, 39, 41, 42 54, 55, 56, 58, 67, 68, H12 and tourist bus.
Renfe: Passeig de Gràcia and Catalunya.
FGC: Catalunya and Provença.