Poble Espanyol history

Poble Espanyol was originally built for the World Expo of 1929. The idea behind Poble Espanyol was very much the same as today; to give visitors an easy and unique overview of the way of life from all the different region of Spain.


The village was designed by two prominent Spanish architectures and two artists. When walking around in the village, one will soon discover that the buildings are not highly decorative or extraordinary in any way. This is a conscious choice made by the creators, as their intention was not to bring together a collection of the masterpieces of Spanish architecture, but rather a way of having Spain in Catalonia.


In order to achieve this, the architects and artists travelled all over the country, from the region of Andalusia in the south to the Asturias in the north, in order to collect material they needed.

Along the way, they took hundreds of photographs, notes and drawings that made it possible to choose the elements best suited for creating the Poble Espanyol. In total, they visited more than 1,600 towns and villages in order to get it just right.

World Expo success

The original plan was to build the village as a temporary exhibition and demolish it after the world expo. However, the village become such a success during the world expo and proved so popular amongst the people that the village was allowed to remain.

Interment center

During the following Spanish Civil War of the 1930ies, the village ceased to receive visitors and instead faced the cruel reality of the war. Unknown to many is that the village war used as an interment center for the nearby Castell de Montjuïc, which at the time was used as a prison.


Later, the village was renovated and opened up to the public once again. In 1988, during the run for the 1992 Olympics, the focus of the village was changed to traditional arts and several dining places and workshops were added. This renovation led to the village you can see today.

Why visit Poble Espanyol ?

Poble Espanyol, also known as “The Spanish Village”, is beautifully located on mount Montjuïc. The small village functions as an oasis in the heart of Barcelona. When entering, visitors will be moving from the modern city landscape to a unique and diverse village made of Spanish history.

This site contains representations of all different architecture, culture, lifestyle and craftsmanship from the regions of Spain, mixed together in harmony to look as if it was a real town. If one wants to learn a lot about Spain in a period of short time then this is definitely the right place.

Today, the Poble Espanyol is a beautiful cluster of workshops and restaurants. In total, the village consists of over 100 traditional buildings. Many say that this is the place to go in order to find a special gift or souvenir from Barcelona.

Poble Espanyol location

Poble Espanyol is located in Barcelona, in eastern Spain. The village can be found on top of Montjuic in central parts of the city, close to the Olympic area and Palau Nacional.  For the exact location of Poble Espanyol, check out the location map to the right.

Poble Espanyol Video Guide

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