Sants & Poble Sec: cheap areas off the tourist track

Published by in the category Accommodation, Neighbourhoods. Article updated 8 June, 2017. 0 comments

If you're fleeing from the hordes of tourists, and you're looking for an authentic quarter, then you will be happy to find yourself in Sants or Poble Sec.

MNAC poble sec, sants, montjuïc

Sants is home to innumerable little boutiques and Poble Sec has the the record for the most authentic tapas bars in Barcelona. What they have in common is their proximity to Montjuïc, a hill that brings together a great number of museums in a green oasis. However, these two areas have very different sides, that are in both cases well worth a look.


poble-sec sants neighbourhood street

Sants is a lively area, bursting with reasonably-priced boutiques. It is also very well connected to the rest of the city, the airport  and a whole range of regional and national destinations.

Camp Nou is located right by Sants, so it is also a good base from which to visit the FC Barcelona museum or see a match.

Sants in a few words…

Inexpensive, shopping, well-connected, near the station and Camp Nou.

  • To do: visit the boutiques, and experience authentic neighbourhood life
  • Nearest park: Parc de l’Espanya industrial

Little itinerary for Sants

Poble Sec

poble sec bar terrace el surtidor

Poble Sec does not feature in many tourist itineraries, which helps it retain some of its authenticity and its precious calm. In Poble Sec, people chat with their neighbours, sit on the terrace and watch people go by… in short, it’s a great place to live.

As it is very close to Montjuïc, one of Barcelona’s great green areas, Poble Sec is also known for its theatres and its low prices. For that matter,cheap tapas bar tours are often organised in this area, where you can get 1 tapa and 1 drink for 2 euros. Hard to resist!

Poble Sec in a few words…

Authentic, quiet during the day, lively at night, inexpensive.

  • To do: sunbathe on a bench or enjoy a huge variety of tapas
  • Nearest park: parc del mirador del Poble Sec

A little walk through Poble Sec

Montjuïc Hill

poblec sec montjuic view

Montjuïc is literally a breath of fresh air in Barcelona: it is a gigantic green space where museums, parks, and sports areas dating from the 1992 Olympic Games, all exist together. There are no apartment buildings or houses there, which makes it a great place to come and get away from the busy city.

In Summer a big open air cinema is organised on the castle lawns.

A little walk in Montjuïc

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About the author


Pauline loves books, food and new discoveries. For her articles, she loves finding original and authentic places which are a treat for both the eyes and the tastebuds. Her favourite thing to do in Barcelona? Getting lost in the Old Town and soaking up its unique atmosphere... whilst enjoying the appetising smells emerging from restaurant kitchens! Is there anything better than that?