Santa Caterina: a market built on top of an old convent

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Mercado de Santa Caterina en Barcelona

Santa Caterina market is located in the district of Ciutat Vella in Barcelona and receives its name from the convent of Santa Caterina, of the order of the Dominicans, who previously occupied its place. The original construction dates from 1847 but was recently remodeled by Enric Miralles and reopened in 2005.

The area in which it was built it has a long history that has left traces of its past. It is estimated that between the years 1800 and 1500 was used as cemetery and human remains are still conserved. Later it became a Roman pottery producing center, but at the beginning of the 4th century AD it returned to its use as a necropolis that lasted until the 6th century. During the medieval period a Romanesque church and a convent were built. 

Mercado de Santa Caterina en Barcelona

In the 19th century began the decline of the convent and finally in 1837 the church and the convent were collapsed.

Returning to the present the market enjoys a wide offer in typical and regional products, distributed in different specialized stands. In addition we can also enjoy good tapas and finger food, breakfast or a complete lunch prepared with fresh products by different indoor bars or by the market stands. To taste the delicious dishes nothing better than sitting on a terrace to appreciate the food and the architecture of the area at the same time.

Contests are organized periodically to not lose contact with the customers and the people of the neighborhood, the topics are different: sandwich, drawing,  omelette competitions, … is a fun way to keep the market alive.

Mercado de Santa Caterina en Barcelona

Don’t forget to visit this market if you are in Barcelona during Carnival, Halloween or the Three Magic Kings : the vendors disguise themselves and set the stands with different topics related to the festivity. It’s really fun to see how this place is transformed, or how a zombie full of blood puts your apples in a bag and makes bill quietly.

So if you feel in the mood, you have a bus stop (120 Gombau-Jaume Giralt) next to the market’s door or, if you prefer to take the metro, it’s the line L4 Jaume I.