Saturday, October 2, 2010


Boulevard. A wide, usually tree-lined road in a city, often used as a promenade.

An untypically quiet moment on Rambla Poble Nou
Often it takes an outsider to notice something special you've always taken for granted.

Last week we had some visitors from Canada. What struck them most on our walks through Barcelona were the
long pedestrian and bike-friendly avenues, which here is called a rambla.

What would you call this in English? Perhaps it's boulevard, "
a broad city street, often tree-lined and landscaped." Though a boulevard often refers to something on a larger scale and more traffic-orientated, like the Champs-Élysée in Paris or our own Passeig de Gràcia.

Whereas the majority of ramblas are the arteries of day-to-day life on foot in the neighbourhood. Maybe promenade would suit them better: "a public place for leisurely walking as a social activity".

Whatever their name, boulevards make beautiful and walkable cities.

Take for granted
. To underestimate the value of.


  1. nice picture of a quiet Rambla. "La Rambla" is unbearable to walk down during the day, and I try to avoid it as much as I can. And don't get me talking about the new kiosks...

  2. Oh, I haven't seen the new kiosks Mike. (You can tell how often I walk down there!) What's up with them? Will investigate!

  3. I try to avoid it too, honestly, both day and night. NI love walkable cities, but I am not in love with las Ramblas..

  4. Me neither. My latest love is Rambla Poble Nou, specially the old village bit and "Tio Che" ice-cream, love biking down there to the sea (needless to say do not love quite as much biking back up).