Forgotten neighbourhoods

HORTA Y EL CARMEL

Know the centre of Barcelona? Want to see something new? Then check out our tour of the Horta and Carmel districts, each of which provides a different contrast.

We kick off in Horta, which used to be “Barcelona’s laundry”: it was where the clothes of the wealthy were taken to be washed, due to the abundant local water supply. It was also a place chosen for many people’s second residences (some in amazing modernista style), and some of these old mansions can still be seen today alongside other, more modest but beautifully coloured houses with their old stone washbasins in front of them, giving the area more a village-like atmosphere, including some characterful old bodegas (which we will be sure to visit!).

Horta provides a fascinating contrast with the poorer district of el Carmel, a once-forgotten neighbourhood that lies hidden from the centre of the city behind a hill. The barrio’s setting is, to put it mildly, unusual. The extremely steep terrain meant that the authorities never considered the land suitable for building or housing. However, the immigrants to the city arriving during Spain’s industrial boom of the 1960s and 70s took advantage of this empty land to build their own residences, most little better than shacks. When the powers that be attempted to improve the local transport infrastructure, they unfortunately caused more problems: the digging of road and metro tunnels caused huge subsidence and the collapse of a number of buildings, leading to the evacuation of hundreds of local inhabitants. However, the resulting media coverage, combined with the strong neighbourhood association, has meant that more attention is now paid to the district, which has recently become home to a second wave of immigration from outside of Spain. We will show you around and let you see for yourself the amazing transformation it has undergone in recent years!

We end up at Carmel’s bunkers (which are actually the site of anti-aircraft batteries from the Spanish Civil War) from where you will be able to enjoy the most amazing view over Barcelona, accompanied with a glass of cava.


Practical info: by metro, 15 - 20 minutes from the city centre
From The bunkers (end point) we take bus to Plaza Catalunya (with stops on the way!) in around 20- 25 min

time

Every day except Sunday from 10 to 2 or from 4 to 8

price

€ 26 per person for groups of 4 and more. For groups of less then four: €104. On request a private tour is possible; for prices, contact us! Whenever possible we combine separate smaller groups to form groups or 4.

booking

 Please phone during office hours or e-mail us as soon as possible- tours need to be booked in advance ; last  minute bookings are not always possible. The groups are limited to a maximum of ten. The tour can be given in English, Dutch , Spanish, French, German, Italian.