Sometimes in a city so full, you need to find tranquility. Locals Pepe and Laura share with us some of their favorite parks.
“Pepe and I love living in a city like Barcelona, there is always something to do, new hidden gems to uncover, people everywhere – it’s truly bustling with life. But sometimes we need a break from all of this and that is when we find the best parks to spend an afternoon. Some of the places we will tell you about are well known, while others are truly secret gardens that we only discovered accidentally. Let us guide as you wander the greens of the secret gardens of Barcelona.”
Jardins de Mossen Costa I Llober
This garden is mostly known as the cactus garden, and it is located on the hillside of Montjuic. With a spectacular view of the sea and port, the garden boasts an incredible array of cacti from all over the world. It is actually one of the most important cactus and succulent gardens in the world, and also our absolute favorite secret garden. Come here to read, take pictures, or just simply to relax.
Located in the heart of the gothic quarter this little oasis is truly a hidden gem. Found inside the Savassona Palace, this garden, aside from being beautiful, is situated in a building that boasts the most important private civil library in Catalonia. Slip away to this spot if you ́re feeling overwhelmed by the crowded streets and need a quick cool off.
This is one of the oldest gardens of the city and part of the Martí-Codolar farmhouse which dates back to the 15thcentury. The estate actually includes a farmhouse, monastery and mansion. The gardens are among the oldest public gardens, open since the 19thcentury.
Instituto Confuci Courtyard
Have you ever been swept off your feet by pure tranquility? Well, get ready. This small courtyard belongs to the Chinese Culture institution, located right around the corner from MACBA. Filled with orange trees, this courtyard could also double as an orchard. Catch a breath of fresh air here from the Raval’s overwhelming atmosphere.
Jardins de la Tamarita
Sant Gervasi is home to the burgiouse of Barcelona, since the turn of the 20thcentury. This garden was once a part of a private estate of a family, later falling into the talented landscaping hands of Nicolau Maria Rubió i Tudurí who began to introduce his concept of the “Mediterranean landscape”. The same landscaper created the Santa Clotilde Gardens just outside Lloret del Mar.
Jardi Botanic de Barcelona
The botanic gardens of Barcelona are located at the top of Montjuic, hidden behind the Olympic stadiums built for the 1992 Summer Olympics. The garden is home to plants and trees from places with Mediterranean-like climates including Australia, Chile, California, South Africa, and the Canary Islands. Take a walk across a magical bridge in this secret garden.
Jardins del Palacio de Pedralbes
Although this garden may not be such a big secret, they are just as beautiful, housed in the wonderful Pedralbes Palace, the former local residence of Spain’s royal family. The gardens opened to the public in 1931, and today they house contemporary music events. These gardens give home to a sculpture by Gaudi, and several other beautiful sculptures.
Jardins de Joan Margall
Another secret garden located on the Montjuic hill. These gardens were made for the 1929 International Exposition. They are built around the Royal Pavilion, and were expanded in 1970, which is when they were named after the Catalan poet Joan Margall.
Jardins de la Universitat
Inside of the University of Barcelona, you can uncover a hidden garden. Some of the plants inside are almost 200 years old and were transported here from other botanical gardens when the university was being built. There are over 250 plant species spread across the close to 10,000 square meter space.
Home to one of the most famous monthly events in the city, this old abandoned leather factory has turned into an artist’s haven. The walls enclose almost two dozen different artist and architectural studios, photographers, and communication specialists. These four stories high, green-covered walls are worth a visit even when the market is not happening (first weekend of each month).
Parque del Labirinto de la Horta
This park is truly unique in Barcelona, it is definitely one of the most memorable places you can set foot in the city, and that says a lot in a city like this one. The labyrinth is the perfect spot to get lost in, and find beauty around every corner.
Parc de l´Estacio Nord
Located next to the Northern Train Station, this dreamy park is one that locals enjoy on a daily basis. An eye-catching sculpture rises from the middle, in the abstract form of a whale made from blue mosaic, by American artist Beverly Pepper. This is a beautiful gem of art and nature right in the heart of the city. This place is truly a pleasure for the senses.