La Rambla is a must walk street, it is 1.2 kilometres long and it is one of the most famous streets in the city along with the high-end street Passeig de Gràcia. La Rambla, was the first and only space in the city after the medieval narrow streets, where the citizens could stroll and spend their leisure time. Barcelona broke her fortress on XIX century and la Rambla was the one and only space at the time that was wide enough to have a volume of people walking on it.
Rambla means stream, a little torrent or flow of water that went through there when it rained, the original Catalan name for this stream was areny but with the influence of the arabs it the name that was established was Rambla.
Because of its centric location it was not only a place for the nobles and bourgeois, but for everyone in the city due to its easy access, became a place of gathering for all social classes.
La Rambla started having leisure related establishments such as theatres, The Liceu, the Palau de la Virreina, the Boqueria market etc... The street became a place of gathering and flower stands, animal shops and street artists and painters started filling in La Rambla from top to bottom. the Boqueria market etc... The street became a place of gathering and flower stands, animal shops and street artists and painters started filling in La Rambla from top to bottom.
The street goes from Plaça Catalunya the upper part until the Columbus monument in front of the harbour, la Rambla is split into 5 names, first of all Rambla de Canaletes, a very popular part due to the Canaletes fountain and it is said that if you drink water from the fountain you will sure be back to Barcelona.
The next piece of la Rambla is la Rambla dels estudis, literally of studies because there used to be a university in that part of the street but it was demolished in mid-XIX century. We go now to the next piece called Rambla de les flors, the Rambla of the flowers, you can see why, as there are plenty of flower and plants stalls that sell their product in the main street. The Flower Rambla was very important during XIX century as it was the only place in town where you could buy flowers and it is the only street like this in the world on its genre.
The last two parts of la Rambla are called la Rambla dels caputxins due to a convent of capuchins that was located in that part and the last piece of last Ramblas is called Rambla de Santa Mònica.
Nowadays, locals we do not enjoy la Rambla that much, it is too crowded for us to stroll around it, if you can, visit it in the early morning where you will be almost alone walking but from midday to late afternoon there are too many people to walk. As in every crowded place, watch out for pickpockets, Barcelona we like it or not is a paradise for these thieves, follow my tips to avoid getting robbed in Barcelona.
Disclaimer: Picture of Las Ramblas by Kasia Trapszo