Plaça de Sant Jaume
Plaça de Sant Jaume
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The area

Address
Neighborhood: Barrio Gòtico (Barri Gòtic)
With its iconic, old-Europe streets and alleys, this picturesque neighborhood is the very heart of Barcelona. It blends historic artifacts from its days under Roman dominion up through the Spanish Civil War with a vibrant modern-day culture of artisan shops and authentic culinary experiences. Avid explorers will be thrilled to discover quaint terraces and plazas brought to life by the many small bars and local musicians lasting late into the night. Fashionistas will be drawn to Portal de L’Angel, which is lined with well-known brand names and smaller boutique stands.
How to get there
  • Jaume I • 3 min walk
  • Liceu • 5 min walk

See what travelers are saying

  • Thomas V
    Oakland, California17,068 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Crossroads and the Metro
    It's a practical crossroads. We arrive on the Metro and emerged into lots of cross streets and lots of traffic, plus some construction. This is a good launching spot for the Born or Barri Gothic. Narrow streets full of food options on all sides. Busy and noisy.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written October 7, 2023
  • Vadim
    Murmansk, Russia34,359 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A place that keeps the government awake in Madrid.
    It is logical to start exploring the old city of Barcelona from this square. The square is named after Jaume I, who founded the Barcelona City Council in the XIII century - the Council of Hundreds, which launched the city's self-government. Now the City Hall and the building of the Government of Catalonia (Generalitat) are located on the square. And where is it located if already in Roman times there was a Forum here. In the Middle Ages, the church of San Jaume with an indispensable cemetery was located on the square. The City Hall was built in the XIV century. However, you can't tell this from it, because in the first third of the XIX century, its facade was replaced with a neoclassical one. At the entrance in the niches there are statues of the aforementioned Jaume I and J.Fivelier, who forced the city nobility to pay taxes in the XVI century. What the French Bourbons failed to do, which is why Louis XVI, among others, ended up on the guillotine. Opposite the City Hall is the Palace of the Government of Catalonia, built a century later. Like the City Hall, it has not retained its Gothic appearance, but at the same time it looks older, because it was rebuilt earlier and shows its Renaissance facade to the public. There are no sculptures on it, but on the balcony in front of the main entrance there is an image of St. George (Jordi), the symbol of Catalonia. The only Gothic building of the XI century preserved on the square is the canon's house. Originally it was an almshouse for beggars at the aforementioned church. In 1450, the building was handed over to the canon of this church. It is impossible to enter here, because the residence of the President of Catalonia is located here. It is here and in the neighboring government building that the main supporters of Catalan independence are sitting, not allowing the government in Madrid to sleep peacefully.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written March 31, 2024
  • Thomas V
    Oakland, California17,068 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Open to the Sun
    In the very crowded older part of town, near lots of monuments and religious buildings, you will find this pretty square that opens up to reveal the sun and fresh air. You'll find a metro station here and a major street. It's quite pretty.
    Visited April 2024
    Traveled as a couple
    Written April 14, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles284 reviews
Excellent
72
Very good
146
Average
61
Poor
3
Terrible
2

Thomas V
Oakland, CA17,068 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2023 • Couples
It's a practical crossroads. We arrive on the Metro and emerged into lots of cross streets and lots of traffic, plus some construction. This is a good launching spot for the Born or Barri Gothic. Narrow streets full of food options on all sides. Busy and noisy.
Written October 7, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JRMADA
United States3,331 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022
This is a nice square with beautiful architecture. City Hall is here and they set up some holiday decorations i this square. Not much to see here, but you will most likely walk by it on your way to a city attraction. There is a Starbucks here for some refreshment and a toilet stop perhaps.
Written December 7, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

macedonboy
Glasgow, UK185,717 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Solo
The Plaça de Sant Jaume is a public square at the centre of the Old City of Barcelona . The Palau De La Generalitat De Catalunya and City Hall are both located here. This is a very busy square. Although there are plenty of shops, it's not one of those typical Spanish squares lined with cafe where you can sit outside and people watch. Go for the history significance.
Written July 17, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

J Teo
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia2,457 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2015 • Family
Just the next square down Placa de Sant Jaume is Placa de Sant Miquel, just behind the Ajuntament de Barcelona stands an odd monument, depicting Catalunya’s national sport: Castelles. It’s the art of building human castles which today can go up as high as 10 levels of humans with absolutely zero support. This culture is so unique that it is even included in UNESCO's Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. This particular art installation showcase the highest Castelles ever attempted. This have my brain going in circles trying to imagine the human feat of going up that high with just human beings.
Written April 17, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

nudeood
Greater Manchester, UK195 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019 • Couples
We visited the square during La Merce festival (around 24 Sep) to see the light projection show but we're also able to see live dancers performing here. It was not too crowded and everyone very friendly coming together to sit down and watch. However without these events on the square has little to offer as the buildings do not stand out in the city filled with great architecture
Written September 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

KrisCini
Mosta, Malta281 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2019 • Family
It was remarkable to stop by in this square as part of our Barri Gothic walk coming from Placa dei Rei. The architecture is very elegant to start with and the Placa hosts the town hall & the Palau de la Generalitat with ongoing political Catalnian protests ongoing having also press reporting live during the time of our visit. This is indeed the political heart and a place of gathering, recommended to stop by!
Written June 16, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SignorMaRcOpOlO
London, UK143 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2019 • Couples
The most enviably attractive aspect is the shared (yet perhaps underlying and, most pleasantly understated, competitive) attitude of the participating groups from many if not all of the districts of the city. The parade of the giants (= towering figures carried by a single person, swapped regularly) is entertaining with the accompaniment of musical instruments of, no doubt, proud Catalan heritage and their interaction with (usually) a partner is absorbing; for such is the atmosphere on the streets from the spectators and from those processing.
A very special time is in Placa Sant Jaume when the various districts process into the square and embark upon their building of the human towers to "worrisome" heights with a youngster or two climbing bravely to the very top - to the acclaim of the crowd.
Yet, the thing is that these towers are being built at slightly staggered intervals at around three at a time. Thus, the nerve-jingling for the youngsters who top-out continues without a break.
More sedately, at a different time in Placa Sant Jaume is the giants' dance. An entertaining visual and audio experience.
The festival obviously centres on the Saturday and Sunday, but even being able to see and experience some of the Catalan culture and exuberance for just a part of the festival will live with you (plus your digital pictures a-plenty) for an enduringly long time and for you to commend it to others.
By the way, for your information, Barcelona has several festivals during the year.
Be lucky when choosing your time of visiting. We were just a couple of weeks ago; we spent some time down at the beach, as it was so warm.
Written March 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cricketdad
Wigan, UK777 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2018 • Couples
Nice plaza located in the middle of a lovely neighbourhood. Recent history is interesting. Another good stop on our walking tour of the city
Written October 28, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Neil K
Liverpool, UK830,104 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2018 • Friends
This is a beautiful plaza located in the wonderful and magnificent Gothic Quarter ( Barri Gótic ) .
The square is home to City Hall and Palau De La Generalitat and the architecture in this square is absolutely amazing, we were here in September and there were several demonstrations taking place by Catalonian separatists so on all are visits this square was busy and bustling, a big police presence also ,this plaza is flanked by some amazing architecture and all the streets leading into the plaza are packed with pubs,bars and restaurants.
A beautiful plaza and most definitely well worth seeking out if your in the area.
Written October 13, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Oldjack
Greater Melbourne, Australia28,987 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Couples
It is interesting and there are some very interesting and historic buildings around the square and worth a short visit.
Written May 30, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Plaça de Sant Jaume - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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