Though I prefer "hostal" to "Barcelona cheap hotel" because, well, it's a little classier, right? Hostals (hostels in English) aren't just for the uber-young and flea-bitten, people! Your very own Gringa stayed in an awesome hostel in BCN with my pal Saucy, and we loved it. Looky here at the sign.
We scoured the internet for options, and there are some great ones. But we had certain criteria: One, we wanted to be in a cool neighborhood. Two, we wanted a only-in-Barcelona experience. Three, we wanted good aesthetics. Check, check, check. Visit Gat Raval's site here.
Readers, the same thing happened with Puerto Viejo . Some haters said "it's too scruffy, it's not where the landmarks are," blah blah blah. Bullhonky. The Raval is where people LIVE and it's awesome. It's got the old Gothic architecture, narrow alleys, secret cafes tucked away where you can never find them again. We stayed in the area near the MACBA, the modern museum in Barcelona. At night the plaza outside is filled with cafe-goers and skateboarders. They have a dee-liious museum restaurant and ART too. The University of Barcelona is right there, too, and the streets are full of students and artists and wine-drinkers.
There are, of course, other great parts of Barcelona. (I'm not at all sure there are any bad parts, actually.) But the Raval is awesome. Lots of immigrants from other parts of Europe and North Africa live there, so it's Barcelona with an international twist.
OK, one small word of caution: the southern part of the Raval can be a little sketchy. Just don't go there by yourself at night, OK? Otherwise you'll be fine.
Here's a pub near the Gat Raval, where were known to enjoy a nightcap after our tapas-eating, wine-drinking evening on the MACBA plaza.
Just to give you the atmo, here's a cool place on the corner, too.
Share your piece of the endless awesomeness that is BCN. Now. :)
Link from Barcelona cheap hotel back to La Gringa's home page, baby!
Gay good times and quasi-embarrassing photos in Barcelona and Sitges.
All done with Europe? Check out my trip to Costa Rica with my fiancee, Foxy.
Get thee back to my page on Spanish travel.
Find the best deal, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say about hotels in Barcelona