Gràcia district of Barcelona - District 6

Gràcia district of Barcelona - District 6

Gràcia is a district of the city of Barcelona. Inside Gràcia are the neighbouds called Vila de Gràcia, Vallcarca i els Penitents, El Coll, La Salut and Camp d'en Grassot i Gràcia Nova.

Gràcia is located above the district Eixample to the south and sandwiched between the districts of Sarrià-Sant Gervasi to the west and Horta-Guinardó to the east. Around 120,000 people live in the entire Gràcia district and around 55,000 of those in the neighbourhood Vila de Gràcia.

The name Gràcia originates from a Carmelite convent dating back to 17th January 1626 called 'Nostra Senyora de Gràcia' (Our Lady of Grace). Until 1897 Vila de Gràcia was a separate village and municipality from Barcelona city. To get through the fields from Barcelona to Gràcia one took the road called Passeig de Gràcia which means the road to Gràcia.

This road still has the same name to this day but now it is no longer a country lane but is Barcelona's most exclusive shopping street and hotel street.

In 1897 Gràcia village was annexed to Barcelona and as the city expanded Gràcia was surrounded by the city expansion. But the village structure remained largely intact, which explains why the oldest barrio of Gràcia called 'Vila de Gràcia' still has plenty of old world charm despite being in the middle of a modern city like Barcelona.

It’s this special 'village' atmosphere of Gràcia that makes it a popular residential area for locals and foreigners. Nowadays the Gràcia atmosphere is a vibrant mix of bohemian charm mixed with a dose of anti-estabilishment defiance. About 55.000 people live in the densely populated narrow streets of Vila de Gràcia. 

Gràcia has an strong feeling of local identity and local charm. There are no major tourist attractions in Gràcia, which means that tourist buses, street artists and fast food chains have not be able to claim the shops and the streets of Gràcia. This has left space for the residents to weave a neighbourhood tapestry of hipster bars, bohemian craft shops, cafes and restaurants.  

The most popular street in Gràcia to is Carrer de Verdi, which is sort of the 'rambla' of Gràcia with many charming small shops and restaurants. The only time when tourists visit Gràcia in large numbers is during the annual Festa de Gràcia street festival which is centered in the Vila de Gràcia area.

During the Gràcia festival week over half a million visitors drop into the Vila de Gràcia neighbourhood for a drink and a stroll around the festive decorated streets. The  Festa Major de Gràcia has grown to be the most popular and largest neighbourhood festival in Barcelona, only surpassed in size and visitor numbers by the Barcelona Merce festival, which is in September every year.

Other districts Barcelona

Ciutat Vella - district 1
Sant Marti district - District 10
Where to stay in Barcelona
Top 10 attractions Barcelona
Festa de Gràcia English guide

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 November 2018 14:14