Old port / Waterfront

Port Vell

It is hard to imagine but until the 1980s Barcelona, being a city with a major sea port since the Middle ages, practically did not have any free access to the seaside. There were no good beach or wharf – warehouses, factories and a railroad separated the city from the sea. The main driver to change the situation happened to be the 1992 Olympic Games. The city authorities spared no expense and converted a grim looking industrial area into another tourist attraction. Industrial port and a quay for cruise liners and Balearic Islands regular ships were relocated closer to Montjuic hill. The cleaned territory along Port Vell (Old port) district allowed the construction of the Moll de la Fusta, a wharf starting from Las Ramblas to Laietana street, where there are plenty of benches, a bicycle way and La Gamba de Mariscal, a giant shrimp sculpture by Javier Mariscal.

Port Vell turned into an attraction area with everything one might need: a shopping mall (Maremagnum), outlets, cafes, restaurants, cinema (IMAX Port Vell), the Aquarium and a nice walking area with wooden walkway named Rambla del Mar starting from the Columbus Monument. There are even some office buildings with great views (Barcelona World Trade Center). A new beacon was also built at the port, the W Barcelona, a hotel standing on its very end and simultaneously located at Barceloneta's first beach, Platja De Sant Sebastia.

Port Vell has also become home for the numerous yachts, Pailebot de Santa Eulàlia, an 1918 schooner, as well as for the fleet of Las Golondrinas ("Swallows"), different types of boats that take tourists on cruises along the coast line and the Olympic Village to the city's third port, Port Forum. Among other features that will leave no place for boredom are cable car to Montjuic, a lovely antiques street market (Port Antique) located at Plaça del Portal de la Pau (on weekends), the Maritime Museum and the Museum of Catalan History overlooking the waters of the Mediterranean.

Address: Ronda Litoral
How to reach: metro Barceloneta, Drassanes
Coordinates: 41.377813, 2.180114