"Capital of a stateless nation, Mediterranean port city, the place where anarchism triumphed, the site of the rebirth of the Olympic movement in an orgy of spectacle and urban potential… Barcelona is all of these things at once." — Robert Davidson, A Companion to Catalan Culture, 2011 (p. 112)

Cities > Barcelona > 7 Things Tourists Don't Do in Barcelona, but You Should...

3) March Mistral

Sant Antoni: Avinguda de Mistral, Carrer del Parlament & More


2023 Travel Update: As of 2023, Spain essentially is open for tourism by both vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers without Covid-specific documentation or testing. However, be sure to double check the official government site for up-to-the minute details.

Sant Antoni is a small triangular-shaped neighborhood tucked in the lower left corner of Barcelona's L'Eixample district — just behind El Raval — or from the local perspective from El Raval, toward Llobregat and the mountains.

Tourists do go to the Mercat de Sant Antoni, which traces its origin to 1882 and has skyrocketed in popularity after its multi-year renovation concluded in 2018. Even so, this market is the third most popular with tourists after La Boqueria on La Rambla and Santa Caterina in Ciutat Vella; it had yet to reach even the top 75 attractions on the big tourist advisory sites at the time that first published this piece.

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The most outstanding part of the neighborhood, in our opinion, is the beautiful walking street Avinguda de Mistral. Although it has been well known by locals since it first was built by ancient Rome, it didn't have a single mention on the big tourist advisory sites or a review on the world's search engine at the time of this publication. Accordingly, we think Sant Antoni is an excellent addition to our 7 Things Tourists Don't Do in Barcelona, but You Should.

Sant Antoni mostly is inhabited by local middle class families and students; energized by its proximity to the University of Barcelona. The area has a hip, young vibe and because of its convenient, central location — well-served by quick walks from three different metro lines — it is an especially good neighborhood to duck into for a meal or drink. It is at its most lively in the early evenings, so this is the best time to visit.

Our Top 7 Restaurants & Bars in Sant Antoni

The two most popular streets among locals in the area are Avinguda de Mistral and Carrer del Parlament. We prefer Mistral for its environment, but Parlament is best known for its bars and nightlife.

Seven locally well-regarded restaurants and bars on these two streets are organized in order on our map below:

  1. Sortidors del Parlament - A reasonably priced wine bar also known for its creative tapas.
  2. Bar Calders - Commonly praised for their homemade vermouth, but they also have a diverse menu and an inexpensive set lunch (fórmula migdia).
  3. Cafe Cometa - A cute coffee shop with fresh juices, salads, and sandwiches, too.
  4. Bitter Cocktail Bar - A highly regarded cocktail bar with an extensive drinks menu and live music.
  5. Casa Dorita - Classic Catalan cooking with seasonal ingredients, a set lunch option, and a lovely ambiance. Our favorite in the neighborhood. Closed Mondays.
  6. Cuba de Janeiro - Modestly upscale interpretations of Latin American dishes; we enjoyed their nachos and the ideal view of the walking street.
  7. Gelatomania - Wonderful gelato made with fresh fruit. They have dairy-free options and gluten-free cones, as well. The perfect complement for your stroll.

Sant Antoni's Expanding Superblock

With Sant Antoni's "Superblock" street improvements, the area keeps getting better and better. If you're not familiar with the term "Superblock" — Superilles in Catalan — it originally referred to a nine-block, three-by-three section of a street grid — like a tic-tac-toe board — with the interior streets limited to people and bikes or to people, bikes, and low speed vehicles when first implemented in Poblenou.

In Sant Antoni, considered the city's second major implementation of Superblocks, the street improvements were higher quality and more permanent, but covered a smaller area. Instead of starting with nine blocks at once, the San Antoni implementation started with only two blocks next to the Sant Antoni market in 2018 and gradually has expanded a couple blocks at a time to improve the walk from the market to both Avinguda de Mistral and Carrer del Parlament. Because these street improvements stitch the neighborhood together more completely, it is a safe bet that the entire area will become better and better known going forward.

Below, we have mapped out the best routes from Rocafort, San Antoni, and Poble Sec stations to Avinguda de Mistral and Carrer del Parlament in addition to the location of the restaurants and bars.

How to Get Here: There are three metro lines that provide convenient transportation to San Antoni — Line 1 (Red), Line 2 (Purple), and Line 3 (Green). To arrive closest to the market, take Line 2 (Purple) to Sant Antoni Station and use the Urgell Exit. It also is a block to Carrer del Parlament and about two blocks to Avinguda de Mistral (duck through the Sant Antoni Market itself for the most direct route). From Line 3 (Green), go to Poble Sec Station and use the Parlament Exit for Carrer del Parlament or the Manso Exit for Aviguda de Mistral. From Line 1 (Red), go to Rocafort Station and use the Rocafort / Sepúlveda Exit to be closest to Avinguda de Mistral. Depending on your next destination, starting and ending at any one of these stations likely will be convenient.'s Sant Antoni & Avinguda de Mistral Map (Full Screen)

Cities > Barcelona > Barcelona Overlooked 7 > Next: (4) Stroll Sarria... >>

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All 7 Things Tourists Don't Do in Barcelona, but You Should:

  • 3) Sant Antoni
  • 4) Sarria
  • 5) Parc del Turo del Putxet
  • 6) Sant Andreu
  • 7) La Guineueta-Verdum
  • 1) Modernisme Beyond Gaudí
  • 2) Rambla del Poblenou

Be sure to see our Top 7 Things to Do in Barcelona, too.

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Live in Barcelona? What's your favorite "local" thing to do? Spotted anything out-of-date or inaccurately translated? Please tell Gràcies! Thanks!

  • Writing & Photos By Brock Kyle. All Rights Reserved. Verification Published 6 January 2023. Feedback.