Discover one of Barcelona’s up-and-coming neighborhoods, a rejuvenated area by the sea with an urban park, a big mall and swimming beaches.
After seeing all the main sights in Barcelona, head to Diagonal Mar i El Front Marítim del Poblenou, a rebranded neighborhood in Barcelona’s Sant Martí district. In the past decade or so, this urbanized seafront hub has become a desirable area to live and play in.
Diagonal Mar i el Front Marítim del Poblenou is bordered by the Besòs River, the seafront and Sant Adrià de Besòs. Most of the rejuvenation was completed by 2004, just in time for the Cultural Forum that was held here. The area used to be the notorious slum of La Mina.
“Diagonal Mar” refers to the district at the seaside end of Barcelona’s Avinguda Diagonal. “El Poblenou” refers to a loosely defined new development area of Barcelona. The residential area of “el Front Marítim del Poblenou” is, like its name suggests, the part of Poblenou that borders on the main coastal road out of Barcelona, the Ronda del Litoral.
Cross this road and make your way through the coastal parklands to sink your toes into the sandy beaches of Platja de la Mar Bella and Nova Mar Bella. Splash around in the cool waters and walk along the seafront. Nova Mar Bella is one of the city’s less busy beaches even in summer, while part of Platja de la Mar Bella is a nudist beach with a popular gay club.
Explore Parc de Diagonal Mar, one of Barcelona's largest parks, designed by Enric Miralles. Relax by the lake and mingle with the locals on the tree-lined plaza.
To escape the heat of the day, head into the Centro Comercial de Diagonal Mar, one of the biggest shopping malls in Catalonia. Opened in 2001, it is a modern mall selling all the latest in fashion, technology and home decor.
While a little out of the way from Barcelona’s main tourist sites, Diagonal Mar i El Front Marítim del Poblenou can be reached by metro, buses and trams from the heart of Barcelona. The district is close to Parc del Fòrum and Barcelona's international conference centre (CCIB), on the Maresme side of the Centro Comercial, which means there is no shortage of hotels.