Where to Stay in Barcelona on a Budget: 6 Best areas

In this post, I will help you to find Where to stay in Barcelona on a budget, the best areas to stay in Barcelona on a budget and the best cheap hotels in Barcelona for all travelers.

Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia and second largest city in Spain. It is a popular tourist destination, attracting millions of visitors who come to visit each year. It is known for the Sagrada Família, Gothic Quarter, and Park Güell, as well as outstanding football teams, fabulous beaches, and delicious tapas.

The cost of accommodation in Barcelona can vary depending on several factors such as the location, type of accommodation, season, and amenities provided. In Barcelona, you can find a range of accommodation options including hotels, hostels, apartments, and guesthouses.

On average, a budget hotel can cost from €100 per night during peak season. Dormitory-style beds in hostels can cost from €30 per night, while private rooms with shared bathrooms can start from €70 per night.

Renting an apartment can be a cost-effective option, especially for longer stays or if you’re traveling with a group. On average, a one-bedroom apartment in the city center can cost around €800-€1,500 per month.

During the peak tourist season, which is usually from May to September, prices tend to be higher. However, you may find lower rates during the offseason or by booking in advance.

Many people who visit Barcelona choose to stay in the Gothic Quarter, La Rambla, Plaça de Catalunya, El Born, and Eixample, because they’re right in the heart of the action. But, it can be expensive.

Luckily, Barcelona is easy to explore on foot or using public transport, so staying in other neighborhoods is a great option. 

Where to Stay in Barcelona on a Budget?

The best areas to stay in Barcelona on a budget are Gracia, El Raval, Poble Sec, Poblenou, Sant Antoni, and Sants. These neighborhoods offer a wide range of budget-friendly accommodations and are well-connected to the popular attractions in the city center.

Remember that while budget accommodations can save you money, it’s also important to prioritize safety and comfort. Read reviews, check the location’s proximity to public transport and attractions, and make sure the place meets your basic needs before booking.

Overviews of best areas to stay in Barcelona on a budget

Here is an overview of recommended areas in Barcelona on a budget: 

Best areas in Barcelona on a budgetWhy should you stay in this area?
Gràciaa vibrant area offers a local atmosphere with narrow streets, cozy squares, and affordable accommodation options. It’s well-connected to the city center by public transportation, making it the best overall area to stay in Barcelona on a budget.
El Ravala multicultural and trendy area, close to the iconic La Rambla, with budget-friendly hostels and guesthouses. It has a lively nightlife scene and is known for its diverse dining options.
Poble Seca residential neighborhood, located at the foot of Montjuïc hill, with affordable guesthouses and apartments. It’s within walking distance of many attractions and has excellent access to public transportation.
Sant Antonithe up-and-coming area that is known for its local markets, trendy bars, and affordable accommodation options. It’s just a short walk from the city center and offers a more authentic Barcelona experience.
Santsa residential area, located near Barcelona’s main train station, with reasonably priced hotels and apartments. It has good transport connections and is slightly removed from the tourist crowds.
Poblenoua former industrial area that has undergone significant redevelopment in recent years. Poblenou is located near the beach and offers a more relaxed and less touristy environment with affordable accommodation, budget-friendly restaurants and bars.

Map of best areas and neighborhoods in Barcelona:

Map of Best Areas & Neighborhoods in Barcelona for tourists
Map of Best Areas & Neighborhoods in Barcelona for tourists

6 Best areas to Stay in Barcelona on a Budget are:

1. Gracia

Gracia is generally considered a more affordable area to stay in Barcelona compared to other popular neighborhoods like Eixample or the Gothic Quarter. It is also a great base to experience the local atmosphere of Barcelona while keeping expenses relatively low.

Gràcia is known for its bohemian atmosphere, charming squares, and narrow streets lined with shops, bars, and restaurants. It offers a mix of traditional and modern architecture, and it is well-connected to the rest of the city by public transportation.

The area’s most popular squares are the Plaça de la Vila de Gracia, Plaça de la Virreina, and the Plaça del Sol, which serve as gathering places for locals and visitors alike. These squares are surrounded by cafes, restaurants, and shops, creating a bustling and lively atmosphere.

In the area, you can visit the beautiful park called Park Güell, one of Gaudí’s most famous modernist works. The park has architectural significance, wildlife, and stunning views over the city from the top. 

Other landmarks well-worth a visit are the Casa Vicens, which is the first independent work of Gaudí; and the Casa Fuster, which is the work of Lluís Domènech i Montaner.

Gràcia was originally an independent town but was eventually incorporated into Barcelona in the late 19th century. Despite its integration, Gràcia has managed to maintain its small village character and charm.

Gràcia is also well-known for its annual festival, Festa Major de Gràcia, a week-long festival in August in the Vila de Gracia area. It features colorful decorated streets, live music, traditional dances, parades, and a variety of cultural activities, attracting people from all over Barcelona.

Gràcia is home to a variety of affordable eateries, cafés, and bars. You can find traditional tapas bars, inexpensive local restaurants, and budget-friendly options for dining out. This allows you to enjoy the local gastronomy without breaking the bank.

If you visit Gràcia, don’t miss the opportunity to explore the streets and get lost in its charming labyrinth of narrow alleys. You’ll find independent boutiques, artsy shops, small plazas, and local markets that showcase the neighborhood’s authentic character.

Gràcia is served by several metro stations, such as Metro Fontana green L3, Metro Joanic yellow L4, or Metro Diagonal green L3 or blue L5, or you can enjoy a pleasant walk from the city center. 

It’s worth noting that Gràcia is adjacent to the famous Passeig de Gràcia, a renowned avenue known for its luxury shops and Gaudí’s architectural masterpieces like Casa Batlló and La Pedrera.

Gràcia has a variety of accommodation options, including hotels, hostels, and apartments. Prices can vary depending on the specific location within the neighborhood, the type of accommodation, and the time of year. Generally, Gràcia tends to be slightly more affordable compared to areas like the city center or the beachfront.

Best places to stay in Barcelona in Gracia on budget:


2. El Raval

El Raval is a multicultural neighborhood located on the left side of the famous La Rambla boulevard and is known for its diverse population and vibrant atmosphere. It offers a mix of historical charm, cultural attractions, and a lively nightlife. 

While El Raval has a rich history and has undergone significant transformations over the years, it is still considered a relatively affordable area compared to some other neighborhoods in Barcelona.

Historically, El Raval was a working-class neighborhood with a reputation for poverty and crime. However, in recent years, it has experienced a process of gentrification, leading to changes in the neighborhood’s dynamics and demographics.

El Raval is now a culturally diverse area, home to various communities, including immigrants from different parts of the world. The area is home to various dining options, including inexpensive local eateries, cafes, bars, and affordable international cuisine.

While it offers a vibrant atmosphere, proximity to major attractions, and good public transportation connections, it is also known for its mixed reputation regarding safety.

El Raval has a reputation for being a bit rough around the edges, and it can have some issues with petty crime and a vibrant street life. While the area has improved in terms of safety over the years, it’s always advisable to take standard precautions and stay aware of your surroundings.

Some of the notable attractions in El Raval are:

  • the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA),  a contemporary art museum that showcases an impressive collection of modern and contemporary artworks. 
  • the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona, a cultural center that hosts exhibitions, concerts, and events related to contemporary culture.
  • The Gran Teatre del Liceu
  • the Maritime Museum
  • The Mercat de la Boqueria, popular food market
  • The La Boqueria Market, located in Las Ramblas
  • The Palau Güell (Güell Palace)

El Raval is also home to many small art galleries, boutiques, and independent shops. The area has a bohemian and alternative vibe, attracting artists, creatives, and young professionals. There are often street performances and live music events taking place in the area.

The area is well-served on the L2 (purple) at Universitat Station, Sant-Antoni Station, Paral-lel Station, as well as L3 (green) at Liceu Station and Drassanes Station.

You can find a range of accommodations, including budget hotels, hostels, and guesthouses, at more affordable prices compared to areas like the Gothic Quarter or Eixample. 

Best places to stay in Barcelona in El Raval on budget:


3. Poble Sec

Poble Sec is a budget-friendly area to stay in Barcelona that offers a mix of local charm and convenient access to the city’s attractions. Located just south of the city center, it offers a more local and residential atmosphere compared to some of the more touristy areas.

It is situated on the slope of Montjuïc hill, and has a vibrant and diverse atmosphere, known for its lively streets, cultural venues, and traditional taverns. 

One of the main thoroughfares in Poble Sec is Avinguda del Paral·lel, which has a long history as Barcelona’s entertainment hub. In the past, it was lined with theaters, cabarets, and music halls. While the entertainment scene has changed over the years, Avinguda del Paral·lel remains a lively street with numerous bars, restaurants, and nightlife options.

While in Poble Sec, you can explore the Montjuïc hill, which offers stunning views of the city and the Mediterranean Sea. At the top of the hill, you’ll find attractions like Montjuïc Castle, Magic Fountain, a historic fortress, and the Montjuïc Olympic Park, which hosted the 1992 Summer Olympics. The park includes stadiums, sports facilities, and beautiful gardens.

Poble Sec is also home to several cultural venues. The El Molino theater is a famous cabaret venue, while the Mercat de les Flors is a contemporary dance venue, and the Joan Miró Foundation is dedicated to the renowned Catalan painter.

The neighborhood is known for its tapas bars and traditional Catalan cuisine. Carrer Blai, a pedestrian street in Poble Sec, is particularly popular for its wide range of pintxos bars, where you can indulge in delicious bite-sized snacks.

Poble-Sec is served by several metro stations such as the Paraŀlel, Poble Sec, and Espanya. They are on the L3 – Green Line and L2 – Purple Line.

In Poble Sec, you can find a range of budget-friendly accommodation options, including hostels, guesthouses, and budget hotels. Additionally, the neighborhood has numerous local eateries and bars that tend to be more affordable than those in the city center.

Best places to stay in Barcelona in Poble Sec on budget:


4. Poblenou

Poblenou is a neighborhood located in the Sant Martí district. Compared to neighborhoods like the Gothic Quarter or Eixample, Poblenou may offer relatively more affordable accommodations while still providing a pleasant atmosphere and convenient access to the city center. 

Additionally, Poblenou has a vibrant local community, numerous restaurants, bars, and shops, as well as proximity to the beach and green spaces.

Historically an industrial area, Poblenou has undergone significant transformation in recent years and has become a thriving hub for innovation, technology, and creativity.

Poblenou is known for its mix of old and new, combining its industrial heritage with modern developments. The neighborhood is home to numerous renovated factory buildings that have been converted into cultural spaces, art galleries, offices, and apartments. 

It is home to the 22@ technological district (Innovation District), which is home to many technology companies, startups, and research institutions, making it a thriving center for entrepreneurship and creativity.

Poblenou is also known for its beautiful beaches, including Playa de Bogatell Beach, Nova Icaria beach, and Platja de la Mar Bella, which are popular among locals and tourists alike.

You can enjoy a leisurely stroll along the Rambla del Poblenou, a tree-lined street with shops, restaurants, and cafes. It is also home to the Poblenou Cemetery, which is an interesting place to visit for its historical and architectural significance.

There are several parks and green areas to relax and enjoy nature. Parc de Poblenou is a large park with playgrounds, sports facilities, and picnic areas, providing a tranquil retreat from the city’s hustle and bustle.

You can visit the Els Encants Vells flea market Els Encants Vells flea market, where you can browse through antiques, second-hand items, and unique treasures. There is also the Palo Alto Market, held monthly, showcases local artisans, designers, and gourmet food vendors.

Accommodation prices in Poblenou can vary depending on factors such as the type of accommodation, its proximity to the beach or public transportation, and the time of year you plan to visit. Generally, you can find a range of budget-friendly options such as hostels, guesthouses, and apartments in Poblenou.

Best places to stay in Barcelona in Poblenou on budget:


5. Sant Antoni

Sant Antoni is known for its vibrant atmosphere, local markets, and historical buildings. It is conveniently located to the west of the famous La Rambla boulevard and is bordered by the neighborhoods of Raval, Poble-sec, and Eixample. 

The neighborhood has a local and authentic feel. It is known for its lively market, Mercat de Sant Antoni, where visitors can find fresh produce, local products, and a variety of affordable food options. 

The presence of local businesses, cafes, and affordable dining options in the area contributes to its budget-friendly reputation.

Sant Antoni has wide avenues and beautiful architecture. The streets are lined with modernist buildings, including the notable Casa Golferichs, designed by Josep Vilaseca i Casanova.

Sant Antoni is well-connected to the rest of the city through public transportation networks, including buses and metro lines 1, 2 and 3 at Sant Antoni, Universitat, and Paral·lel stations.

Sant Antoni offers a range of affordable accommodation options, including budget hotels, guesthouses, and hostels. This variety allows travelers with different budgets to find suitable and reasonably priced places to stay.

Best places to stay in Barcelona in Sant Antoni on budget:


6. Sants

Sants is generally considered a budget-friendly area to stay. Sants is located just southwest of the city center and is well-connected to other parts of Barcelona through its own train station, Barcelona Sants station (Estació de Sants), which is one of the main transportation hubs in the city.

In Sants, you can find a range of affordable accommodation options such as budget hotels, hostels, and apartments. Additionally, there are plenty of local shops, supermarkets, and markets where you can find reasonably priced goods and groceries.

Sants also offers a good selection of restaurants, bars, and cafes, often with lower prices compared to more touristy areas. Exploring the neighborhood can provide you with a more authentic local experience, away from the crowds of the city center.

Sants is also home to the Fira de Barcelona, one of the largest exhibition centers in Europe. This venue hosts numerous trade fairs, congresses, and events throughout the year, attracting both national and international visitors.

It is known for its lively streets and a vibrant commercial area, especially around Carrer de Sants, one of the longest shopping streets in Europe.

There is also the Parc de l’Espanya Industrial, a large park with open spaces, gardens, and playgrounds. It provides a green oasis for residents and visitors to relax and enjoy outdoor activities.

Overall, Sants can be a great choice for budget-conscious travelers who still want to enjoy easy access to Barcelona’s attractions and amenities.

Best places to stay in Barcelona in Sants on budget:


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Summary – Where is the best place to stay in Barcelona on a budget?

In conclusion, Gracia, El Raval, Poble Sec, Poblenou, Sant Antoni, and Sants are some of the best places to stay in Barcelona on a budget. They offer a wide range of budget-friendly accommodations and restaurants compared to other central areas of Barcelona.

Overall, Gràcia is the best overall area to stay in Barcelona on a budget because it is located  just north of the city center, and has a variety of budget-friendly accommodations, including hostels and affordable hotels. It also has a vibrant nightlife scene, bohemian atmosphere, and is well-connected to public transportation.

About Author: Linda Smith

I'm Linda Smith, the Hotel Expert, an experienced travel blogger who passionate about traveling. I'm here to share with you all my travel experiences and tips. I cover a wide range of travel topics, specializing in sharing information about the best areas, neighborhoods, and hotels in each city. I hope all these things will make your travel easier.

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