Many consider this plaza the beating heart of Barcelona.
A central part of Barcelona, Plaça de Catalunya is a social gathering place for locals and tourists, plus it divides the districts of Ciutat Vella and the Eixample. The plaza began to take shape during the 1920s, when medieval city walls were removed to create more public spaces. Architects Pere Falqués, Puig i Cadafalch and Francesc de Paula Nebot collaborated on the structure of the Plaça de Catalunya. The area was officially opened in 1927 by King Alfonso XIII.
The sculptures here are one of the major highlights and include works by artists Clarà and Llimona. There are six groups of sculptures located throughout the plaza that represent the four Catalan cities. There are also shops, cafés and restaurants.
Explore the gigantic El Corte Inglés department store (a ninth floor terrace offers a great view of the city). With the department store on your left, old Barcelona-Ramblas, Bari Gòtic and the port of Barcelona lie in front of you. New Barcelona — built in a modern grid pattern when Barcelona absorbed the outlying towns in the 1800s — expands behind you to the mountains, which contain Antoni Gaudí's Park Güell.