After finding a great apartment rental in Barcelona, journalist Mara Hoberman, a mama of one, explored the Gràcia neighborhood in search of the best eats, sweet treats, and all things fun for the kiddos.
Francisco Giner 50
T. 34 93 237 50 98
This convivial tapas restaurant serves elegant home-style cooking. Reservations are essential, but leave the kids at home. This neighborhood favorite is perfect for a relaxed date night.
T. 34 93 237 89 94
Located right off the Placa Villa de Gràcia, the neighborhood’s best Japanese restaurant always has a lively scene out front. Reservations are only accepted for parties of eight or more, so expect to join the crowds and wait 30-45 minutes for a table for two. The makis are worth it!
T: 934 153 686
This cozy, vegetarian cafe on Gràcia’s main commercial drag is known for its delicious homemade muffins and daily specials.
Sant Domènec 19
T: 933 682 036
Open all day, this family-friendly restaurant behind the Placa Villa de Gràcia is great for fresh Mediterranean fare or even just a coffee break. The patio outback is a wonderful spot on a sunny afternoon.
T: 34 932 17 34 14
Enjoy authentic Mexican food in this brightly colored restaurant just behind the Placa de la Virreina. Weekend brunches are crowded, but the outdoor tables are great for people watching.
Intrepid de Gràcia
Torrent de l’Olla 176
T: 34 932 77 64 10
Drop by this casual bar for a glass or wine and a cheese plate and you’re sure to rub shoulders with local hipsters at the communal white-marble tables.
Francisco Giner, 47
T: 34 933 68 18 92
THE place in Barcelona for gin cocktails where things don't even get started around 11pm. If you’re up for a late night, try the Hendrick’s ginfonk, which is infused with rose tea and served with strawberries and lime.
Santa Domenec, 15
T: 34 695 92 50 12
As its name suggests, this small white-tiled bar specializes in the traditional Catalan aperitif, vermouth. Sip your drink while snacking on finger foods like salted almonds, olives, cured meats, and homemade chips.
Kakigori & Taiyaki
Placa de la Vila de la Gràcia 3
Splurge on beautiful (and delicious) Japanese shave ice and pastries from this jewel-box boutique facing Placa Villa de Gràcia.
Carrer Torrijos 37
This cheerful bakery sells delicious vegan cookies, brownies, muffins, and cakes.
Torrent de l'Olla, 130
Specializing in cupcakes, lemon tarts, and cheese cakes, this American bakery attracts locals and tourists alike with large windows displays of delectable baked goods.
Chocolateria La Nena
Ramón y Cajal, 36-38
Enjoy hot chocolate, churros, and other sugary goodies at this cozy traditional chocolateria. A favorite of local families, the restaurant draws big crowds for weekend brunch.
The Passeig de Gràcia is known for its luxury brand stores, but for small independent boutiques, Gràcia’s carrer Verdi and carrer Torrent de l’Olla offer some of the city’s best shopping. Start at either Placa Diamant or Placa Virreina and walk north. Don’t miss these gems:
Children: Mina Mina workshop (Placa Virreina, 7)
Antiques: Fultanitu I menganita (Verdi 25)
Clothes and accessories: D Lirio (Verdi 11)
Family Musts in Barcelona
Visit with gorillas, lions, and elephants in the middle of Barcelona’s beautiful Parc de la Ciutadella
Located in the harbor, L’Aquàrium boasts the world’s best collection of Mediteranean sea-life. A highlight of the under the sea experience is walking through a 260-foot long glass tunnel with sharks and rays swimming overhead.
The whole family will enjoy the Spanish artist’s colorful creations, especially terrace sculpture garden.
Explore the gardens, fountains, and architecture of Gaudi’s civic masterpiece.
Children will love climbing the stairs and turrets on the roof of this Gaudi-designed apartment building which features mosaic chimneys, skylights, and sweeping views over Barcelona.