Església de la Mercè and square

©Esme Fox/Lonely Planet

Basilica de la Mercè

La Rambla & Barri Gòtic

Raised in the 1760s on the site of its Gothic predecessor, following designs by architect José Mas Dordal, this baroque church is home to Barcelona’s most celebrated patron saint. Though it was badly damaged during the civil war, what remains is quite a curiosity. The baroque facade facing the square contrasts with the Renaissance flank along Carrer Ample. Climb the steps behind the 1361 altar for a close-up view of the Virgin Mary statue for whom the church is named.

Guided tours (€8) run in Catalan or Spanish on Saturdays at 11am.

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