Discovering Archaeological

Many school trips to Barcelona focus on the modernist designs of Gaudi and his contemporaries, however there is much more to the rich history of this wonderful city. Archaeological treasures from earlier centuries are abundant, with recent discoveries now being revealed for all visitors to see.

The Roman Legacy

The Romans left their mark on all the regions of the world that they inhabited and Barcelona is no exception. Barcelona was part of the Roman Empire for around four hundred years and the remnants of their occupation can still be visited today. Many of the main sites are centred on the Gothic area of the city, and parts of the Roman city walls can be seen on PlaÒ«a Ramon de Berenguer Gran, near to La Seu Cathedral. Near to the top of Las Ramblas on PlaÒ«a Villa de Madrid lie the remains of a Roman necropolis. Today, a small park is contained within a circle of fashion stores and cafes and within this park you can visit the second and third century tombs, which have recently been excavated.

Some of Barcelona’s Roman treasures are hidden within the Gothic structures that followed them, and students visiting on school trips would be well advised to seek these out. Close to the government buildings on Plaça Saint Jaume is the narrow street of Carrer de Paradis, which houses the Centre de Excursionista of Barcelona. Venturing into this building and the inner courtyard that lies within it will take you to the site of the Temple of Augustus. Sadly, all that remains today of the first century temple are four impressive Corinthian columns, which are incongruously contained within the environs of this Gothic building. It is an atmospheric place to sit and ponder how this area would have looked in Roman times. For anyone interested in Roman history, a visit to the Barcelona City History Museum is a must. Overlooking the Plaça del Rei it is built on the site of a Roman garum factory and fabric-dying workshop and houses many of the artefacts that have been discovered in the city.

18th Century Treasures

If you have visited the Born district of Barcelona you will have walked through one of the most historically significant sites in the city. The siege of Barcelona in 1714 is commemorated by the Fossar de la Moreres, which is next to the church of Santa Maria del Mar. Venturing further into the heart of El Born will take you to the old market, which has recently re-opened after having been closed for many years. The huge open space has revealed many streets of Barcelona that have been hidden for countless years.

The streets in the area around the site of the Ciutadella Park were demolished on the orders of Philip V to make room for his new Citadel. The people and the businesses that were situated there were forced out to find new homes, and the layout of the city was changed forever. The detail of the research and excavation that has taken place in recent years is so refined it includes the names of the families who lived in the individual houses and the businesses that were run there. This incredible exhibition is open to all and El Born Market has now become a cultural centre with music performances, film lectures, a restaurant and a bookshop. It is a wonderful place for students on school trips to visit, and it literally lays the history of this part of Barcelona at your feet.

From the ancient treasures of Roman Barcelona to the revelation of the history of the city in El Born, there is something to interest any lover of history visiting this delightful city.