The vast nineteenth-century street grid north of Plaça de Catalunya is the city’s main shopping and business district. It was designed as part of a revolutionary urban plan – the Eixample in Catalan (pronounced aye-sham-pla, the “Extension” or “Widening”) – that divided districts into regular blocks, whose characteristic wide streets and shaved corners survive today. It’s not a neighbourhood as such – and, in fact, is further split into two distinct sections, namely the Dreta de l’Eixample (ie, the right-hand side) and Esquerra de l’Eixample (left-hand side), which fall either side of the two central parallel avenues, Passeig de Gràcia and Rambla de Catalunya. It’s on and around Passeig de Gràcia, above all, that the bulk of the city’s show-stopping modernista (Catalan Art Nouveau) buildings are found, along with an array of classy galleries and some of the city’s most fashionable hotels, shops and boutiques.

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Slow travel: exploring Catalunya’s back roads

Slow travel: exploring Catalunya’s back roads

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04 Aug 2016 • Ros Walford insert_drive_file Article
Madrid or Barcelona: which should you visit first?

Madrid or Barcelona: which should you visit first?

Spain’s two biggest cities have long had a friendly rivalry – and it goes far beyond football. Madrid is, of course, Spain’s capital city and as well as b…

27 Apr 2016 • Helen Ochyra insert_drive_file Article
An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in Barcelona

An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in Barcelona

Barcelona – Spain’s second city – sets the template for urban style, hip design and sheer nonstop energy. Where others tinker at the edges, time and again…

22 Apr 2016 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
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