Barcelona is the vibrant Catalan capital, a city with a rich Mediterranean culture and history and dynamic industrial tradition.
Located to the south of the Pyrenees Mountains, on the North East coast of the Iberian peninsula, Barcelona, is the second largest city in Spain.
Established by Hamilcar Barca as Barcino in the 3rd Century B.C., Barcino soon became part of the Byzantine empire. Barcelona was conquered in turn by the Visgoths and Moors, then reclaimed for Spain in the 9th Century by Charlemagne’s son, Louis.
Catalonia has a strong national spirit that has been tested throughout history. During the War of Spanish Succession in 1714, King Philip V of Spain demolished La Ribera (the merchant quarter) and forbade the use of Catalan. Just over two hundred years later, the Spanish Civil War ushered in another era of political repression as Francisco Franco ruled until his death in 1975.
Barcelona has become a destination for leisure travellers as well as the traditional business activity with a historic city centre and noteworthy cultural and architectural attractions.