Barcelona Photoblog: barcelona streets
Showing posts with label barcelona streets. Show all posts
Showing posts with label barcelona streets. Show all posts

March 11, 2013

Barri Gotic: Narrow Streets of Barcelona

Looking up at Barri Gotic
Alley in Barri Gotic, Barcelona

It is easy to walk down the streets of Barri Gotic and get lost in time.

Discovering narrow alleys along the way and contemplating how the perspective drawn by the lines of buildings lead your eyes into small figures that come and go, is certainly one of the most pleasing experiences for travelers that want to avoid the obvious touristic routes in Casc Antic (old city), Barcelona.

September 17, 2012

Barri Gotic, Barcelona: Carrer Avinyo near El Call

Two nuns, carrer Avinyo, Gothic quarter, Barcelona

Here's Carrer d'Avinyó between Carrer Ferran and Carrer de la Lleona in Barri Gotic, Barcelona. Wandering down the streets of El Gotic, blindly meandering through the alleys, while being permeated by the mood, the charm of this historical part of the city, you get so detached that it is not really difficult to imagine how Barcelona used to be inside walls, and particular in this part of casc antic (old town) near the Jewish quarter. In fact, in XIII century the king allowed to open doors and windows in the Roman wall and the old perimeter of El Call (the Jewish quarter) expanded to include Carrers Avinyó and Banys Nous. In El Call de Barcelona lived about 4.000 people, approximately 15 per cent of the city population. Of course, there are the shops and many other anachronisms now but you get the idea. These two nuns in front of the Rent Shop at Avinyó 12 may be of help to reminisce.

December 28, 2010

Pedestrian Crossing, Barcelona

Pedestrian Crosswalk, Barcelona [enlarge]

Pedestrian crossing, downtown Barcelona. Sign on pavement warning about traffic accidents in the city. Take care on the street and step with the right foot into 2011. Best wishes and good luck for all.

December 23, 2010

Romanian Gipsy Woman Scrutinized

Romanian Gipsy Woman, Passeig de Gracia, Barcelona [enlarge]

Romanian gypsy woman begging for money on Passeig de Gracia, Barcelona. Two guys on modernist bench scrutinize her with wary look, murmuring something as she goes. Black guy wearing suit in the back seems like a body guard, waiting for someone. People on the left coming out of the shadows in their daily routine during lunch break. Different stories that connect for an instant. All in all, a quite common Barcelona scene.

November 09, 2010

Carrer Bonsuccés and Ramblas dels Estudis Corner, Barcelona

Carrer Bonsuccés and Rambla dels Estudis Corner, Barcelona  [enlarge]

Capturing the mood of Barcelona streets is one of the main goals of this blog. I forget more than often where the city true essence lies, in the narrow alleys and the multicultural crowd, in the bars and the artists, in the markets and the food, in the noise and the light, in the canopies and the promenades. Here is Carrer de Bonsuccés as seen from Las Ramblas. To be more precise next to Nadal pharmacy at Rambla, 121, a chemist's dating from 1850. As you can see it is a long busy street. It extends until Carrer de les Ramelleres and Plaça del Bonsuccés, from there it turns even narrower and becomes Carrer d'Elisabets till it gets to Carrer del Ángels near MACBA, the contemporary art museum of Barcelona. In the foreground, the ever present police. But why don't you walk this route on the map?

June 03, 2010

Down El Born Streets

El Born, Barcelona, Spain [enlarge]

Walking down El Born streets in Barcelona. Early in the morning. The smell of night and terraces still fading away, diluting in the puddles left by cleaning city services. Sidewalks populated little by little. Lamp post bulbs still warm. Artists setting up their painting boards. Curious cameras stalking behind corners.

May 31, 2010

Building at Carrer del Triangle and Carrer del Rec, El Born, Barcelona

Building at Carrer del Triangle and Carrer del Rec, El Born, Barcelona

Here in Barcelona, we could say we have our own Flatiron building in El Born at the intersection of Carrer del Triangle and Carrer del Rec figuratively speaking of course. Here you can appreciate this triangular building in Earth view at Google maps.

May 28, 2010

Gracia Quarter Streets

Gracia Quarter Streets [enlarge]

Some Barcelona quarters have a certain aura, some kind of mood. That atmosphere can be perceived even in individual streets taken out of context, with no extra reference, just by taking a quick look, if you have been in that neighborhood before of course. The combination of architecture, people clothes or even the way light falls upon its streets due to their orientation towards the Sun, the amount of trees, or how high its buildings are, may be relevant to determine what part of Barcelona we are talking about in just a wink. And this one is...Gràcia, of course.

November 04, 2009

Placeta de Sant Francesc, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

Placeta de Sant Francesc, Barri Gotic, Barcelona [enlarge]

This is a tiny square, in fact it does not have width enough to be called so, along Carrer d'Aglà in Barri Gotic, Barcelona. Check the map below. There are some interesting bars on the area like Pilé 43 near Carrer dels Escudellers where you can have some mojitos and enjoy the retro decoration which is on sale by the way. But I digress. Most of all I wanted to include another front door street art sample in the neighborhood and perhaps highlight the beauty of the upper part of the image.

Placeta de Sant Francesc on Google Maps

September 14, 2009

Carrer Petritxol Street Sign, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

Historical tiled sign on Petritxol street Barcelona
Historic tiled sign at Petritxol street - Barcelona

Carrer Petritxol, is one of the most representative streets in Barri Gotic, Barcelona.

This famous 'carrer' stretches from Portaferrisa street (mentioned in the sign as the only exit for vehicles at the other end of the alley) and Plaça del Pi. It goes almost parallel to Las Ramblas (two blocks away) and it is definitely one of my favorites.

I showed a picture of Petritxol street here once and also referred to famous xocolata amb xurros (churros consist of dough which is later fried and powdered with sugar, preferably to be dipped in hot chocolate) served at La Pallaresa or at Dulcinea, Petritxol 2.

But this road is not only about the pleasant smell of chocolate, it is also about art and both modern and old boutiques:

The renown Sala Pares founded in 1840 and the center of Barcelona's artistic life by the end of XIX is the main art gallery at Petritxol 5. It is said that it was due to the presence of such galleries that the churro houses were established in the first place. The whole bohemian atmosphere is sustained by the presence of painters selling their work in the square nearby next to Santa Maria del Pi church.

Petritxol is more or less 2 meters wide on the Plaça del Pi side. The name probably comes from portitxol (Cat.) (small door) and its origin is connected perhaps to a negotiated access from Portaferrisa to the only Christian church that was left in Saracen times in the area.

Christians lived outside the wall in El Raval and had to walk a long way to a very early Mass that wouldn't interfere with Muslim morning prayers. A short and thus faster way would facilitate their attendance on time. It is said that an old priest found a hidden treasure left behind by the Christians and convinced the Emir into building the passageway. Believe it or not there was some sort of peaceful coexistence between Muslims, Christians and Jews at the times although all of this was about to change. The story behind the street is part of a legend so don't take my word on it.

Here is Calle de Petritxol on a map.

September 11, 2009

Archway Exit, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

Barri Gotic Carrer Tres Llits Barcelona
Carrer dels Tres Llits in the Gothic Quarter aka Barri Gotic in Barcelona

Given the recent success of Barri Gotic streets featured in Barcelona Photoblog I resume today this topic with a beautiful alley streaming into the arcades in the square back there.

I wandered through the whimsical labyrinth once woven by medieval architects and fascinated as I was I did not take down notes about the place.

After some patient analysis on google maps, I jump to the conclusion that this must be Carrer Tres Llits and that that square in the background is Plaça Reial. But then again, I am more interested in the architecture and the view.

It is always a pleasure to get lost in Barri Gotic during the day. If you are not familiar with the area watch out where you go at night although it is quite safe except for the usual pickpockets.

August 06, 2009

Passatge Bacardi: Passageway Detail, Placa Reial, Barcelona

Passatge Bacardi: Passageway

Back in May I showed you this image of Passatge Bacardi, a narrow street next to Placa Reial. This time I want to give you the opportunity to enjoy the view from the other side, that is, from the square and making emphasis on the passageway or corridor. Tomorrow is my last day of work and I'll be on holidays till September. I will have the opportunity to take more pictures of Barcelona, at least till August 19th.

May 26, 2009

Passatge de Bacardi, Placa Reial, Barcelona

Passatge de Bacardi, Placa Reial, Barcelona [enlarge]

Plaça Reial is one of the must-see squares in Barcelona by many reasons. Because of the restaurants and bars, the night life, the music, the shade offered by the wonderful archways, the magnificent architecture, the palm trees. But one of the most interesting features to enjoy is the nearby hidden passages. This one is called Passatge de Bacardi and you can find it upon entering the square turning right. It has an exit to La Rambla so it is possible to enter the passage in direction to the square instead of using the main access to Plaza Real. When you see the map you will have a better idea. The image has some noise. I did all my best to rescue it. I was worried about capturing the nuns and I couldn't control that strong light coming through the glass ceiling so the walls went too dark.
View Passatge Bacardi in a map

November 20, 2008

Man and Dog on Alley, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

Man and Dog on Alley, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

What's in an alley? They are just spaces surrounded by walls. I mean, if the buildings were not that close they would be plain ordinary streets. There's something in the atmosphere of an alley that is determined by its narrowness, an almost tangible sensation triggered by all kinds of stimuli. There's the bad smell of sewers, of damp walls, of mossy surfaces, the good smell of food or clean laundry coming from very close balconies. Your eyes are bombarded with rounds of large wooden doors and whimsical knockers, exuberant plants entangled in forest-like canopies, old lamps with elaborate ironwork, dark impossible staircases, eclectic windows with cat add-on included. And there's the sound, the sound of too friendly neighbors, their laughter, their cries, their TVs and door bells. The sound of the guys delivering butane gas shouting and clacking on the orange flask, the scissor and knife sharpener blowing his peculiar flute to make people come down. The noise of kids playing in the street like in the good old days. Such is the atmosphere of an alley, any Barcelona alley, like the one where this man is walking his dog.

November 10, 2008

Carrer de Boltres, A Short and Narrow Street in Barcelona

Carrer de Boltres in Barcelona

This is Carrer de Boltres, a very short and narrow street in Barcelona, near Plaça de la Mercé. An elderly couple walks towards the church by the square. In the background, Passeig de Colom (Columbus' Walk). I happened to mention the place before, so here is the old post with a map of La Mercé church and square.

October 16, 2008

Jogging in La Rambla, Barcelona

Jogging in La Rambla, Barcelona
Jogging in Las Ramblas de Barcelona is so difficult that instead of that we should call it dribbling or slalom. In spite of that, stubborn athletes you can find all year long in any part of the world. I don't know, you are in the middle of a safari in Africa and suddenly you see a jogger waving at you right behind the lions.

Joggers do take it very seriously sometimes. An old man may be mugged in a dark suburban street while a person in a hooded sweater passes by swiftly as a ghost in a Japanese horror movie, unaware of the crime and lost in that podcast on the benefits of sports, so lost that may even end up in the most transited and smoggy street of the city.

In our case here, there was some kind of cosmic impasse and for some milliseconds there was no one near the jogger, probably due to the use of a special force field or protective shield invisible to the human eye. Come to think of it, she was just a lucky tourist on the wrong street.

October 15, 2008

Coming and Going, Carrer Petritxol, Barri Gotic, Barcelona

Carrer Petritxol at Barri Gotic, Barcelona
Petritxol street at Barcelona gothic quarter, the hot chocolate and churros street

Resuming Barcelona as a topic, here I leave you with a view of carrer Petritxol at Barri Gotic.

Some people come and some other go for time immemorial. Streets remain but they will also disappear some day and Barcelona will not be the same.

History is caged in this part of town and without it we will be dehydrated, decaffeinated or whatever "de" something you may think of. So let's protect our history and restore the Gothic quarter!

By the way, remember it is traditional to have churros at carrer Petritxol!

October 10, 2008

Crossroads Signs, The Nature of Symbols

A Crossroad sign in Barcelona

Crossroads signs are one of those hallmarks of civilization, they are part of a universal symbolic language. We take them for granted but basically wouldn't live without them unless we carry a gps of course. To talk about signs we should first understand their nature, that is, what they are and how they signify. Greek philosophers defined significance as a relationship between two things, signs and the things they signify. One of the terms in the relationship causes another to come to mind. There are things which are not signs, things which are signs of other things and finally there are things that are always signs. Some act as signs whether we want it or not, like natural signs. Some others have to acquire the signification as is the case of signboards. Almost everyone would identify this post as a crossroad sign, almost every mentally healthy individual would understand which direction to follow. Many would notice that there is a color code combined with the size of the letters. Latin derived language speakers would interpret many of the words. And you can even imply that these are pedestrian only roads and that there is a subway station nearby. Did you see how easily do we communicate each other? Here is another idea to think about, one of the synonyms of crossroads is...crisis! But that is part of a different story.

October 06, 2008

Las Ramblas: The Most Frequented Street in Barcelona

Crowded Las Ramblas in Barcelona on Sunday morning

Las Ramblas, a small scale Catalan version of the Champs Elysées, is perhaps Barcelona's most frequented street and not precisely by the locals. Hordes of tourists wander up and down around the clock under the plataneros (hybrid plane trees) of the famous walk. This is how it looked on a Saturday morning last month. Recently, authorities met the local guild of stall owners to listen to their complaints and they have started cleaning Las Ramblas from pickpockets, trileros (a sort of shell game swindlers) and other petty criminals. In return the stalls will be replaced more than a meter backwards so they are not another obstacle in the way. Workers alleged that the living statues are also responsible for jamming the area as each of them gathers their own circle of admirers. Besides, there is the ever growing number of visitors. Did you know that according to a recent report by Saffron Brand Consultants, Barcelona is the third most attractive city for tourism, business and foreign investment after Paris and London from a list of 72 European cities. The data was obtained after interviewing 2000 people and considering different factors such as location, culture, history, food, business potential and residents attitude towards visitors.

Now for you to rejoice here are some breathtaking shots: The Earth From Above via The Boston Globe

August 25, 2008

Via Laietana in Barcelona, Spain

Woman in white crossing Via Layetana street in BArcelona
Crossing Via Laietana Street in Barcelona

Via Laietana, is normally a very busy street in Barcelona but not much if you go early on weekends.

Via Laietana was first projected in 1879 and started in 1907, with the aim of communicating Eixample with the waterfront, amid much controversy. The demolition of a large number of houses and the removal of the streets in the area was required to do so. As some of the traditional guilds of the city, some dating back to the Middle Ages, were located there, they had to be relocated in different parts of Barri Gòtic, notably Plaça de Sant Felip Neri.

The first section to be built was named Carrer de Bilbao, which nowadays is a separate, shorter street that stems from the larger Via Laietana. The avenue was finished in 1926.

Francesc Cambó, a prominent politician of the time, built his personal residence in the avenue. During the years of the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) it was renamed Via Durruti.

Check this interesting movie walk related to Via Laietana where they also show a map of Erasmus students in Barcelona in the vicinity of the famous street.
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