Eixample, Barcelona: Ultimate Guide to an Historic District

District of Eixample, Barcelona, Spain
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Barcelona’s Eixample district is a showcase of modernist architecture and wide, elegant avenues that contrast sharply with the winding streets of the old city. This area is home to some of the most iconic landmarks of Barcelona, including masterpieces by Antoni Gaudí.

Living in Spain and having spent a good amount of time in Barcelona, I’ve come to know Eixample as more than just a tourist destination – it’s a vibrant neighborhood with its own unique rhythm and style.

But what makes Eixample a can’t-miss part of your Barcelona experience? Let me show you how you can best explore its architectural wonders and hidden nooks.

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Best hotel overall in Eixample: H10 Casa Mimosa – If you’re looking for a place that perfectly captures the spirit of Barcelona, H10 Casa Mimosa is it. It’s right in the heart of Eixample, blending beautiful modern comforts with the area’s rich history. Plus, you’re just a stone’s throw away from some amazing sights.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Best luxury hotel in Eixample: ME Barcelona – Imagine waking up to breathtaking views of Barcelona, right from your room. That’s what ME Barcelona offers, along with some seriously stylish decor and top-notch service. It’s luxury with a cool, contemporary twist.

⭐⭐⭐ Best budget hotel in Eixample: Hotel Omnium – Traveling on a budget doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the Barcelona experience. Hotel Omnium is super cozy, has a friendly vibe, and puts you right in the mix of things without breaking the bank. It’s a great base for your city adventures.

History of Eixample

If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, you simply can’t miss the Eixample district. This iconic neighborhood is one of the city’s most popular areas and is home to some of its most famous landmarks. 

But did you know that Eixample (pronounced “eye-sham-pluh” and Catalan for “expansion”) has a fascinating history that dates back to the 19th century?

The Eixample was designed by Ildefons Cerdà, a visionary urban planner who wanted to create a more efficient and livable city as it grew away from Barcelona’s Old City. Cerdà’s plan was to create a grid-like system of streets and blocks, with each block featuring chamfered corners to allow for better traffic flow.

District of Eixample, Barcelona, Spain

He also wanted to ensure that each block had access to sunlight, so he oriented them northwest-southeast.

The construction of the Eixample began in the mid-19th century and continued for several decades. During this time, the district became a hub of activity and innovation.

Many of Barcelona’s most famous architects and designers, such as Antoni Gaudí and Lluís Domènech i Montaner, contributed to the district’s unique look and feel.

Today, the Eixample is a vibrant and bustling neighborhood in Barcelona that’s beloved by locals and visitors alike. Its wide streets, beautiful architecture, and lively atmosphere make it a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Barcelona.

Whether you’re interested in history, culture, or just want to soak up the city’s energy, the Eixample is the perfect place to do it.

a building in Barcelona Eixample
Source: Joan (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Architectural Marvels

Barcelona’s Eixample district is home to some of the most famous architecture of Barcelona, if not the world’s most stunning examples of modernist architecture. From the works of Antoni Gaudí to the buildings of other modernista architects, the district is a treasure trove of architectural marvels that are sure to leave you in awe.

Gaudí’s Works

Antoni Gaudí, a renowned modernist architect, left an indelible mark on Barcelona’s Eixample district with his iconic buildings. The most famous of these is the Sagrada Familia, a massive basilica that has been under construction since 1882. Its towering spires and intricate facades are a testament to Gaudí’s unique vision and creativity.

PRO TIP: The Sagrada Familia is easily the most visited tourist site in Barcelona and tickets frequently sell out weeks ahead of time.

To make sure you don’t miss out, you need to book your tickets for the Sagrada Familia well in advance of your visit. As once they’re gone, they’re gone – and seeing inside is a definite must while you’re here.

Another of Gaudí’s masterpieces is the Casa Batlló, a residential building that is famous for its undulating facade and colorful mosaics. The building is a true work of art, with every detail carefully crafted to create a harmonious whole.

La Pedrera, also known as Casa Milà, is another of Gaudí’s iconic buildings in Eixample. Its undulating facade and rooftop chimneys are a sight to behold, and the interior is just as impressive, with its sweeping staircases and intricate details.

Casa Batlló a place included in a Barcelona Gaudi tours

Other Modernist Buildings

While Gaudí’s works are certainly the most famous in Eixample, the district is also home to other stunning examples of modernist architecture. 

One of these is the Casa Amatller, a residential building designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch. Its ornate facade and intricate details make it a true gem of the district.

The Casa de les Punxes, also designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch, is another stunning example of modernist architecture in Eixample. Its pointed turrets and ornate details are a sight to behold, and the interior is just as impressive, with its intricate stained glass windows and ornate woodwork.

Finally, the Casa Lleó Morera and Casa Terrades, both designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, are two more examples of the district’s stunning modernist architecture. The former is known for its ornate facade and intricate details, while the latter is famous for its towering turret and ornate balconies.

Casa Amatller in Barcelona Eixample
Source: F Delvental (CC BY 2.0)

Exploring Eixample

If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, make sure to explore the Eixample neighborhood. This district is known for its impressive Modernista architecture, high-end shopping, and fantastic dining options. Here are some of the must-see areas of Eixample:

Passeig de Gràcia

Passeig de Gràcia is one of the most famous streets in Barcelona, and for good reason. This wide avenue is lined with high-end boutiques, luxury hotels, and some of the city’s most stunning architecture. 

As mentioned above, make sure to stop by Casa Batlló and Casa Milà, two of Antoni Gaudí’s most famous works (and if you have time, going inside one of them – I’d pick Casa Batlló personally, but make sure you buy tickets for it in advance as they frequently sell out) is definitely a good move).

And if you’re a fan of art, check out the Fundació Antoni Tàpies, which showcases the works of this famous Catalan artist.

Plaça Catalunya

Plaça Catalunya is the heart of Barcelona and the perfect starting point for exploring the city. 

This bustling square is surrounded by shops, restaurants, and cafes, and is also a major transportation hub. From here, you can easily access other areas of the city, such as the Gothic Quarter and the touristy yet still iconic La Rambla of Barcelona.

Sant Antoni

Sant Antoni is a trendy neighborhood that’s become increasingly popular in recent years. This area is known for its fantastic food scene, with plenty of trendy cafes and restaurants to choose from. 

Be sure to check out the Sant Antoni Market, which has recently been renovated and is now one of the best places to buy fresh produce in the city.

Other Neighborhoods

Eixample is a large neighborhood, and there are plenty of other areas within this part of the city to explore beyond the ones listed above. 

Some of the others worth checking out include Dreta de L’Eixample, Antiga Esquerra, and Nova Esquerra. Each of these areas has its own unique character and plenty of things to see and do.

Best Hotels in Eixample, Barcelona

If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona and looking for a place to stay in the Eixample district, you’re in luck. Eixample is home to some of the best hotels in the city. Here are my top picks.

H10 Casa Mimosa rooftop pool as a hotel where you can stay in Barcelona

H10 Casa Mimosa


Perfect location in the heart of Eixample, ideal for exploring Barcelona’s iconic sights

Combines modern luxury with a historical charm unique to Barcelona

✅ Stunning city views from the rooftop terrace and pool

Best luxury hotel in Eixample: ME Barcelona

ME Barcelona one of the luxury hotel in Barcelona Eixample

ME Barcelona stands as a beacon of luxury in Eixample, offering an experience that blends opulence with contemporary flair. The rooms particularly show off the hotel’s to modern luxury, providing a calm escape with stunning city views.

Its dining options are truly incredible, with a fusion of global and local cuisines. Basically, ME Barcelona is more than a hotel – it’s a symbol of style and sophistication in the heart of the city.

Best boutique hotel in Eixample: Alexandra Barcelona Hotel, Curio Collection

Located right in the city center, this 4-star hotel is a great option for those looking for luxury accommodations in Eixample. 

With 116 rooms and suites, the Alexandra Barcelona Hotel, Curio Collection offers a variety of amenities including a fitness center, rooftop terrace, and a restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine.

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Best mid-range hotel in Eixample: H10 Casa Mimosa

H10 Casa Mimosa one of the hotel in Barcelona Eixample

H10 Casa Mimosa offers a perfect balance of comfort and elegance in the vibrant Eixample district. The hotel’s design is a harmonious blend of modernity and warmth, creating a welcoming atmosphere for guests.

With its beautiful terrace and pool, it’s an oasis of relaxation in the bustling city. The hotel’s commitment to service and its central location make it an ideal choice for travelers seeking both quality and value.

Best budget hotel in Eixample: ​​Hotel Omnium

Hotel Omnium one of the hotel in Barcelona Eixample

Hotel Omnium is a gem in Eixample, providing an affordable yet comfortable stay in Barcelona’s bustling heart. Its minimalist design and essential amenities cater to the needs of modern travelers.

The hotel’s prime location makes it a convenient base for exploring the city’s architectural wonders and cultural hotspots. For those seeking a straightforward, budget-friendly hotel with a touch of style, Hotel Omnium is the perfect choice.

Restaurants in Eixample, Barcelona

You’re in for a treat when it comes to dining in Eixample, Barcelona. This area is home to some of the best restaurants in the city, and you’ll find everything from traditional Catalan cuisine to international flavors. 

Here are some of the top restaurants in Eixample that you won’t want to miss.

If you’re looking for a classic Spanish dining experience, head to El Nacional. This massive food hall features different areas dedicated to different types of cuisine, from seafood to charcuterie. You can also enjoy a drink at one of the bars or cafes in the space. 

Another great option for traditional Spanish food is Casa Calvet, which serves up dishes like paella and suckling pig in a beautiful modernist building.

For something a bit more upscale, check out Cinc Sentits. This Michelin-starred restaurant serves up creative Catalan cuisine using local and seasonal ingredients. The tasting menu is a great way to try a variety of dishes, and the wine list is top-notch. 

Another fine dining option is Disfrutar, which offers a playful take on traditional Spanish cuisine in a stylish setting.

If you’re in the mood for something international, there are plenty of options in Eixample. For Italian food, head to La Bella Napoli, which serves up delicious pizzas and pastas in a cozy atmosphere. 

If you’re in the mood for Asian flavors, check out Mosquito, which offers a variety of small plates from different regions of Asia. And for a taste of the Middle East, head to Sirvent, which serves up delicious Lebanese and Syrian dishes.

Getting Around Eixample

Navigating the Eixample district of Barcelona is a breeze, thanks to its wide streets and grid pattern. Whether you prefer to walk, bike, or take public transportation, getting around Eixample is easy and convenient.

Walking is a great way to explore the neighborhood and take in the stunning architecture. You can stroll down the famous Passeig de Gracia, which is lined with high-end shops and restaurants, or head over to the Arc de Triomf, a beautiful monument that was built for the 1888 Barcelona World Fair.

Arc de Triomf 
one of the famous landmark in Barcelona Eixample

If you prefer to bike, there are plenty of bike rental shops in the area. Biking is a fun and efficient way to get around, and you can cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time. Plus, you’ll get some exercise while you’re at it!

For those who prefer public transportation, Eixample has an extensive network of buses and metro lines. The metro is a fast and reliable way to get around, and it’s also very affordable. 


Is Eixample a good area?

Yes, Eixample is considered a good area of Barcelona. The neighborhood is known for its beautiful architecture, wide streets, and easy access to public transportation. Plus, it’s a safe area with plenty of restaurants, shops, and hotels to choose from.

One of the best things about Eixample is its central location. From here, you can easily walk or take public transportation to many of Barcelona’s top attractions, including the Sagrada Familia, Park Guell, and Casa Batllo. 

And if you’re looking to explore other areas of the city, the metro and bus systems are both very convenient.

Another great thing about Eixample is its dining scene. Every block in the neighborhood is 250 meters square with 5-10 restaurants per block, so there’s always something new to try. 

Whether you’re in the mood for traditional Spanish cuisine or international fare, you’re sure to find something that suits your taste buds.

Finally, Eixample is a great area for shopping. The neighborhood is home to some of the city’s best shopping streets, including Passeig de Gracia and Rambla de Catalunya. Here, you’ll find everything from high-end fashion boutiques to local artisan shops.

Is it good to stay in Eixample in Barcelona?

Yes, if you’re looking for a safe and convenient place to stay in Barcelona, Eixample is an excellent choice. This district is known for its beautiful architecture, wide streets, and upscale shops and restaurants. It’s also home to some of the city’s most famous landmarks, including Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló.

One of the biggest advantages of staying in Eixample is its central location. It’s within walking distance of many of Barcelona’s top attractions, including the Gothic Quarter, Las Ramblas, and the beach. 

It’s also well-connected by public transport, with several metro and bus lines running through the area.

Casa Mila one of the popular places in Barcelona Eixample

Another advantage of Eixample is its safety. It’s one of the safest districts in Barcelona, with a low crime rate and a strong police presence. It’s also well-lit and busy at all hours, so you can feel comfortable walking around at night.

In terms of accommodation, Eixample offers a range of options to suit every budget and taste. From luxury hotels to budget hostels, there’s something for everyone here. Many of the hotels in Eixample are housed in beautiful historic buildings, adding to the district’s charm and character.

What is Eixample known for?

If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, you’ve probably heard of Eixample. It’s one of the most iconic districts in the city, known for its grid-like layout and stunning architecture. 

Here’s what you need to know about what Eixample is known for:

Modernist Architecture

Eixample is home to some of the most famous modernist buildings in Barcelona, including the Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló. These buildings were designed by the famous architect Antoni Gaudí, and they’re a must-see for anyone interested in architecture or design. 

But it’s not just Gaudí’s buildings that make Eixample special – there are plenty of other modernist buildings in the district that are worth checking out.

Sagrada Familia one of the modern architecture in Barcelona Eixample

Shopping and Dining

Eixample is a great place to go shopping or grab a bite to eat. The district is home to a wide range of shops, from high-end boutiques to local markets. You’ll find everything from designer clothing to handmade crafts. 

And when it comes to dining, there are plenty of options to choose from. You can try traditional Spanish dishes like paella or tapas, or go for something more international.


Eixample is also known for its nightlife. There are plenty of bars and clubs in the district, so you can party all night long if you want to. 

Whether you’re looking for a quiet drink or a wild night out, you’ll find something to suit your tastes in Eixample. And if you’re not into clubbing, there are plenty of other things to do at night – like catching a movie or going to a concert.

group of women drinking wine in Barcelona Eixample

Is Eixample, Barcelona Safe at Night?

Yes, Eixample is generally considered to be one of the safest areas in the city, even at night. One of the reasons for this is that Eixample is a popular residential area, which means that there are plenty of people around at all hours of the day and night. 

Additionally, the neighborhood is well-lit, and there are plenty of police officers patrolling the area, so you can feel safe and secure while walking around.

Of course, it’s always important to take basic safety precautions when you’re out and about, no matter where you are in the world. For example, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your belongings, especially in crowded areas like restaurants and bars. 

You may also want to avoid walking alone late at night, especially in areas that are less well-lit.

Overall, though, Eixample is a safe and welcoming neighborhood that’s perfect for exploring at any time of day or night. Whether you’re looking for a cozy cafe, a trendy bar, or a delicious restaurant, you’re sure to find plenty of options in this vibrant part of Barcelona.

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