Blending art, attitude and fabulous architecture, El Raval is one of Barcelona’s most eclectic neighbourhoods. Famously cosmopolitan, it once served up a notoriously seedy nightlife scene. However, over the past few years, its cabaret houses and shadowy bars have been transformed into trendy cafes, laid back tapas restaurants, independent galleries and avant-garde museums.
The neighbourhood is peppered with lush green spaces, which has led to a vibrant street culture. Locals love to soak up the sun at outdoor cafes, or simply relax under the shade of a tree. For those in search of a high energy atmosphere, the action is centred around La Rambla del Raval, the neighbourhood’s main thoroughfare.
El Raval sits on the cusp of the Gothic Quarter, stretching from the university down to the port. It’s 20 minutes by car from El Prat Airport, and 50 minutes by public transit. Iconic sights like Sagrada Família are just a 15-minute metro ride away, with landmarks like Placa de Catalunya within walking distance.
El Raval is wonderfully multicultural, with more than 20 languages spoken within its footprint. For foodies, this makes it a gastronomic paradise. It’s home to some of Spain’s best marketplaces, serving up a kaleidoscope of flavours. From local Spanish delicacies to exotic eats, El Raval’s markets are a mecca for culinary aficionados.