With an area of 5 hectares, Catalonia Square is the most central place in Barcelona. It is considered one of the main nerve centres of the city, as it forms a junction between the Ensanche and the Old City.
Originally, the immense area where the current square is located was a wide esplanade that, at the time, was outside the traditional limits of Barcelona. However, after the collapse of the old fortified walls that surrounded the city, the Ensanche was carried out in the 19th century, proceeding to devise a space destined to become a large open-air market.
This idea was modified when it was exhibited in the Rovira Plan in 1859. Both the City Council and the bourgeoisie sought to create a large square in this area.
Among the many attractions in Catalonia Square is a large number of sculptures by Josep Clará, Frederic Marés, Pablo Gargallo and other artists, as well as its proximity to places of significant heritage, recreational and tourist interest such as galleries, shops, a wide variety of cafes and restaurants, and many theatres.
In fact, until the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in 1936, these cafes and restaurants, such as La Maison Dorée, El Colón and El Suís, were very active centres within the Catalan cultural scene, as they served as meeting points for literary gatherings and political movements.
Currently, Catalonia Square is considered the centre of Barcelona and Kilometre Zero of all of Catalonia.