Barcelona by neighbourhoods: the Born and the Medieval Barcelona

Barcelona by neighbourhoods: the Born and the Medieval Barcelona

The origin of the Born district goes back to Roman times, but the history of the district itself, as part of the city, goes back to the Medieval Age when Barcelona was growing and grewing beyond the walls that used to go through the present Via Laietana.

During the Medieval Age, Barcelona became Condal City, gained political relevance, and it began an intense commercial activity that made it grow and expand, getting filled with wonderful buildings of gothic architecture.

El Born is an area that will captivate you at first sight with its charm, between narrow streets that once belonged to the old district of merchants, artisans and different professions in the city. A network of passages dedicated today to fashion and design, between contemporary bars and medieval palaces.

These Born streets recall old professions next to an incredible basilica and a market that has risen from its ashes. But let’s take it one step at a time.

Calle Montcada

Walking along this street, which has been declared a Historic-Artistic Monument, is like travelling through time. So, it is a must to walk through its streets and let yourself be led by the medieval atmosphere.

In 1153 it was born as the axis of the commercial life of the district. Nobles, bourgeois and feudal lords chose this street as their place of residence and for this reason it became the street with the most palaces per square metre. It is full of medieval, Renaissance and even Baroque buildings with beautiful courtyards and staircases.

In this street you can find medieval palaces such as the Palacio Aguilar, Mecca or the Baró de Castellet (Picasso Museum).

Santa Maria del Mar

Montcada Street takes us to the Plaza de Santa María del Mar, the heart of the former village of sailors and craftsmen and one of the centres of medieval Barcelona.

Thanks to its neighbours, it was built the Basilica of Santa María del Mar, the cathedral of the poor and the sailors. This basilica has a harmony in its proportions and the serenity and sobriety as a whole make it the only church of pure Catalan Gothic style: wide, high, light and sublime.

Mercado del Born

Between Santa María del Mar and Calle Montcada begins the Paseo del Born, a place now peaceful, where once held tournaments, excommunications and public executions.

The promenade leads to one of the most beautiful buildings dedicated to commerce, today turned into a cultural centre and exhibition hall: the Born Market.

But this market keeps an archaeological secret inside: the largest urban site in Europe (8,000 m2) that houses remains of the old neighborhood destroyed during the War of Succession (1714) along with remains of the Roman era.

El Born, a bustling neighbourhood, cosmopolitan, modern, full of contrasts and with history stuck to its walls that will make you fall in love with it.

Fortunately, Hotel Arc la Rambla is located in the heart of the city, in La Rambla. Just 5 minutes walk from the famous Born district, it is the perfect place for you to enjoy Barcelona 100%.

Ask our reception staff and they will be happy to advise you.

So, if you come to Barcelona… come to Hotel Arc la Rambla!