Exploring Plaça de Catalunya

Plaça de Catalunya is one of Barcelona’s most beautiful and stunning plazas, located within an easy reach of many popular sights and attractions. Large, airy, and open, there’s a true metropolitan feel here, and there is plenty for visitors to see and do in and around the square.

Old Meets New 

Perhaps one of the most fascinating aspects of Plaça de Catalunya is that it acts as the meeting place of the two different sides of the city: Old Barcelona and New Barcelona. To the south of the plaza, you’ll find the historic district of El Gotico (the Gothic Quarter), while to the north you’ll find the more modern, 19th-century neighbourhood of L’Eixample. Ultimately, Plaça de Catalunya is a great place for seeing just how diverse Barcelona really is.

Things to Do

From shopping for souvenirs to admiring some of the best in Catalan art, there’s lots do at the Plaza:

Shopping

If you want to bring home some souvenirs from your holiday in Spain, then Plaça de Catalunya’s main shopping centre, El Corte Ingles, is the place to go. This massive department store offers everything from toys and fashion to electronics and home decor from some of the world’s biggest and best brands.

Art

In addition to a whole host of intricate mosaics, there’s a great deal of jaw-dropping Catalan art dotted around the plaza. By simply strolling around the square, you’ll find statues by famed Catalan sculptor Josep Clarà i Ayats, and renowned Spanish painter Pablo Emilio Gargallo.

Atmosphere

Perhaps one of the best things to do at Plaça de Catalunya is simply soak up the atmosphere. This is considered to be the main meeting point in the city; a place for socialising and celebrating. Its central location means it’s easy to get to on foot or by bus or train, no matter where your Barcelona holiday rental is.


Costa Brava’s most beautiful museums

If you found your vacation rental in Costa Brava, the next step is to decide how you want to spend your time in this gorgeous, peaceful region of Catalonia. When planning your stay, here are four of the area’s top museums to give you something to ponder, plus a bit of information about each to help you make an informed decision.

Ruins of Empuries

This unique experience is called the Ruins of Empuries, which was part of both the Greek and Roman civilizations. It has more than 2,500 years of history to explore in this ancient once-city. You’ll find ruins of homes, factories, streets, an amphitheatre, a forum, a basilica, and plenty of statues, mosaics, and artwork. You can check out the Greek god of medicine statue, Asclepios, the Greek wharf, and the Archaeology Museum. Plus, this amazing historical site is surrounded by picturesque beaches with gorgeous views of the Mediterranean Sea.

Museu d’Historia de la Joguina

If you’re interested in historical toys, and especially if you have children, you are certain to love the Museu d’Historia de la Joguina. But this museum isn’t just for kids! It is located in a beautiful 19th-century home with gorgeous stained glass windows, amazing architecture, antique furniture, wrought ironwork, and a special glimpse into the life and times of 19th-century living.

Museo del Far de Tossa

There is so much to see in the seaside town of Tossa de Mar, and the Museo del Far de Tossa is no exception. It is located in the lighthouse at the top of the hill and offers not only the history of the lighthouse, sea travel, and Tossa de Mar, but also a gorgeous view of the sea and the surrounding town and beaches. You can also walk the beach, check out some of the shops, grab some delicious food, or just explore the area and take amazing pictures to help you remember your trip.

Tossa de Mar

The Municipal Museum

The Municipal Museum is one of the best art museums in Costa Brava. Not only will you enjoy the art, but you’ll love the gorgeous views. Head there for sunset and grab some amazing photos!

Now that you’re more informed about the historic region that is Costa Brava, you can plan educational and scenic day trips from your gorgeous rental villa in Costa Brava and leave with a new appreciation for Catalonia.


‘Game of Thrones’ filming spots in Barcelona and around

Are you a die-hard Game of Thrones fan? You’ll probably already know that the cast have been filming in Barcelona and in other areas of Catalonia, especially throughout Girona. Barcelona’s cobbled old town and Girona’s medieval streets make for excellent backdrops for this popular fantasy series.

If you’re keen to see these filming locations with your own eyes, here’s a DIY walking tour for you:

Begin your tour at the Tourist Information Centre in Girona. If you’re staying in a villa in Barcelona, you can catch the train directly from Barcelona Sants Station to Girona, which takes around 40 minutes. Cross the Sant Feliu Bridge, pass by the River Cafe, and head down Carrer del Bellaire. Take the steps down at Carrer del Riu Galligant, and you’ll be in the GoT ‘Old town’.

The large, imposing monastery you see before you is actually called Sant Pere de Galligants, and it’s home to the city’s archaeology museum. However, to GoT fans it’s none other than the Maesters’ citadel. Stroll around the garden, then cross the bridge and climb the stairs to Plaza del Jurats. You’ll recognise this plaza as being the theatre backdrop for some of Arya’s scenes.

By taking the stairs from the plaza, you’ll find yourself in the Arabic Baths, which is where the Braavos market scenes with Arya were filmed. Walk down Carrer de Ferran el Catolic (it eventually becomes Via Augusta) until you reach the beautiful Girona Cathedral which is, of course, the Great Sept of Baelor. The church played a huge role in the series 6 finale!

After exploring the cathedral, you’re in a great spot for strolling around the main city centre before heading back to the station to catch a train to your Barcelona accommodation. Alternatively, rent a villa on the Costa Brava, in towns such as Blanes and Lloret de Mar, which offer easy access to Girona.

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