Among all the places I visited in my Europe trip last April, Barcelona was my favourite. I fell in love with the city almost instantly. I stayed at La Rambla which is right opposite Guell Palace. La Rambla is a very popular street in Barcelona, buzzing with activity and people, locals and tourists alike. It is a tree lined pedestrian mall with kiosks selling souvenirs, outdoor pubs, street performances and enough quirky characters to keep you occupied all day. It is alive all night. You can buy beer on the street at 4 AM when all the shops are shut. Also a cultural hub, it houses the opera, which is the oldest theater of Barcelona, a museum of contemporary art and a baroque palace.
THE HISTORIC MARKET OF LA BOQUERIA
The Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria, simply known as La Boqueria is a market at La Rambla. It dates back centuries. The first mention of it is from 1217 when it was just some tables selling meat at the gates of the old city. It was a pig market known as Mercat Bornet from December 1740. Until 1794 it was known as the Mercat de la Palla or the straw market. It was not enclosed and lacked official recognition. The authorities later decided to construct a separate market on La Rambla for butchers and fish mongers. It was legally recognised in 1826 and an official structure was proposed in 1835. Construction began in 1840 under architect Mas Vila. It officially opened then but was modified many times after that. A new fish market opened in 1911, and the metal roof that still exists today was constructed in 1914.
The market is so lively and full of activity, it is really easy to get lost in it for a good number of hours. Which is exactly what I did. It is also a photographer’s paradise.