Exploring Barcelona: Walking Poblenou

Headshot of Curtis Kline.
Curtis Kline
April 27, 2023

Poblenou is a rapidly changing neighborhood, from previously being an industrial and working class community to one that has attracted big tech companies, large luxury hotels, and the young millennials of Spain who are attracted to its lower priced housing. It is in a great part of the city, close to Parc de la Ciutadella, Glories, and the beach.

There is a beautiful high street, the Rambla de Poblenou, which has great restaurants and cafes, and is a great place to people-watch. There are many beautiful old buildings on its many side streets mixed in with factory spaces or newer luxury housing. Because Barcelona has transitioned away from an industrial economy to a post-industrial one, many of the old factories are being replaced by beautiful, but expensive, new housing, especially the closer you get to Glories (towards the mountains). As an “up and coming neighborhood” (meaning gentrification is happening rapidly), new young residents of mostly Spain’s millennial generation are moving in, arts and music scenes are popping up, and industrial spaces renovated for more current uses. While there is still some industry in the area, it is not particularly disruptive, and the neighborhood can be quite quiet on the side streets. I would highly recommend it to someone who has seen the Old City and Gracia already or if you like the beach. Bogatell Beach is one of the best in Barcelona, with much more locals than the area around the beach clubs. I’ve seen a lot of surfers with their boards strapped on to the side of their bikes going from Poblenou towards the beach.

Poblenou is similar to Gracia in many ways, as the two are both gentrifying, hipster hotspots in formerly industrial areas; yet Poblenou’s location close to the beach and downtown as well as its larger street grid give it a very different vibe. I highly recommend checking out both while you are studying in Barcelona, and to try to get away as much as possible from the highly touristy neighborhoods (there’s only so many times you can go to the Gothic District before it gets boring!) The poor quality pictures below were some I took on a walk through the neighborhood on a colder winter day, but during the rest of the year it looks completely different with leaves on its trees.

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Headshot of Curtis Kline.

Curtis Kline

Hi All! My name is Curtis Kline, I'm from New York City, and I am abroad in Barcelona this spring. I am interested in food, culture, and urban studies. In my free time I will be exploring Barcelona and Europe and am excited to share my experiences with you!

2023 Spring
Home University:
Haverford College
Urban Studies
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