Gracia is a quaint hipster neighborhood at the top end of Passeig de Gracia that used to be a village outside Barcelona before the city’s expansion. This authentic Barcelona neighborhood, characterized by small cobblestone streets, independent grocery stores, boutiques and local restaurants, is where to get the real Barcelona local experience. Here we uncover the top 15 things to do in Gracia that will allow you to enjoy this Barcelona district as a truly local.
GET TO PARK GÜELL
Nestled at the top of the Gracia neighborhood Park Güell is one of Barcelona’s top visitor attractions in all of Barcelona. Escape from the heat of the city to this awe-inspiring park designed by Gaudi with incredible views of Barcelona, a breath-taking architectural gem.
WATCH INDEPENDENT MOVIES AT CINE VERDI
In the need of an English language movie theater? Gracia’s Cine Verdi is not only home to tons of international year-round film festivals but it also offers movies in original language.
GATHER WITH A FRIEND AT THE PLAZAS
Nearly 15 plazas can be found in the Gracia neighborhood, a local meet-up place to have a drink with friends and to get some sun in the narrow streets of Gracia. We recommend the truly local experience: grab a beer and sit in the Plaza del Sol or eat tapas in one of the many tapas restaurants that can be found in the different squares throughout the neighborhood.
SHOP ORGANIC, ONLY IN GRACIA DISTRICT
The organic Mecca of Barcelona, visit one of the dozens of eco-friendly, organic product stores or buy sustainable fashion at one of the responsible fashion boutiques that can be found throughout Gracia.
ENJOY THE BEAUTINESS OF PLAZA DE LA VIRREINA
La Virreina is arguably one of the most beautiful plazas in Gracia, featuring the Sant Joan church; this pedestrian plaza is ideal for having a drink in one of the terraces.
NIGHT OUT AT EL COL-LECCIONISTA
A local hotspot for listening to live music and having a drink with friends, don’t miss El Col-leccionista music bar in Gracia for a real Barcelona nightlife experience
SHOP AT CARRER VERDI
No place in Gracia is there such a high concentration of cute boutique shops as on Verdi Street. Stroll around Carrer Verdi and buy some fashionable clothes from hip Barcelona designers.
ADMIRE CASA VICENS
This hidden Gaudi building is off the tourist radar and considered to be one of the first Art Nouveau buildings in addition to being the first house designed by Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona.
(photo source: Casa Vicens)
SHOP LOCAL AT L’ABACERIA MARKET
One of the most happening places in Gracia, this Barcelona market not only has great food products, but it’s also affordable. The market was built on the grounds of one of the most important factories at the time and still maintains its working-class atmosphere today.
UNCOVER PLACA VILA DE GRACIA
The quintessential Gracia plaza is home the Gracia district city hall and in the center lies the 19th-century clock tower designed by Antoni Rovira i Trias, as well as tons of restaurants and café with terraces to enjoy an open-air coffee pit stop.
(photo source: Ara.cat)
TEATRE LLIURE PLAYS
Gracia is one of the cultural centers of Barcelona. You can enjoy a play at Teatre Lliure, but check first what language it’s offered in as Gracia is one of the most Catalan speaking neighborhoods in all of Barcelona. And even if you ddon’tunderstand the language, get to experience it!
HAVE REAL COFFEE
Some of the top coffee shops in Barcelona can be found in Gracia: Syra, Nabucco, and Onna, offering up micro-roast coffee and yummy bites to accompany a gourmet coffee.
JOIN THE GRACIA CELEBRATIONS
One of the most emblematic celebrations in Barcelona is the Fiestas de Gracia, a week-long celebration taking place in August. The streets of Gracia become alive with decorations done by the neighborhood associations with recycled materials and there is a competition for which street is best decorated as well as music stages set up around the neighborhood. The festivities go throughout the day and night.
TRY OUT ECLECTIC CUISINE AT KUAI MOMOS
Barcelona is the “it” place to try eclectic cuisine and Kuai Momos in Gracia is the perfect place to do so. Owned by Jordi Brau, Catalan-Italian chef who lived for seven years in South-East Asia, this restaurant pays homage to his passion for travel and for Asia.
DRINK VERMUT AT LA VERMU
La Vermu is the local spot to enjoy a vermouth and tasty bites to eat. It’s always packed so get there early.
(photo source: La Vermu)
Liked these suggestions for discovering the Gracia district in Barcelona? Just for you to know, there is more!
Voted as one of the best walking tours in Barcelona, Barcelona Eat Local offers culinary walks in iconic districts of the City of Counts, where we partner with local restaurateurs who offer the best of local gastronomy. You can join us for our tapas and brews walk at La Barceloneta where we uncover other gems and pair delicious tapas with craft beer, or at the Sant Antoni and El Poble-sec districts.
Author: Jessica Freedman is a travel blogger, Instagrammer and devoted foodie who dedicates her time to find the best foods while traveling. You can follow her adventures at Fanatical Foodies.