MUHBA – Barcelona City History Museum | Barcelona Bus Turístic

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MUHBA – Barcelona City History Museum

More than 2,000 years of the city’s history

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In addition to its main site in the Gothic Quarter, Barcelona City History Museum (MUHBA) has heritage centres distributed throughout the city. The MUHBA explains more than 2,000 years of Barcelona’s history, from the Roman settlement called Barcino to the present day, through a series of archaeological findings and interpretation centres for sites and works key to the city’s life and history.

Why visit the MUHBA?

The MUHBA, which opened its doors in 1943, is the Barcelona museum dedicated to the conservation, documentation, dissemination and exhibition of the city’s historical heritage and even though its main site is in the Gothic Quarter, specifically at Casa Padellàs, one of the buildings that form the Plaça del Rei Monumental Complex, the MUHBA has centres distributed throughout the districts of the city.

Its origins date back to 1931, when the opening of Via Laietana forced Casa Padellàs, a Gothic palace from the 15th century, to be moved from Carrer de Mercaders to Plaça del Rei. When the foundations were being dug at the new site, the remains of an important part of old Barcino were discovered, giving way to an ambitious archaeological intervention undertaken throughout the square until the start of the Civil War. At the same time, in 1932, the Palau Reial Major was recovered in the same square and, subsequently, the Saló del Tinell, a hall with six semicircular diaphragm arches considered to be the most impressive examples ever built in Europe, was renovated. It is said that when Columbus returned from America he was received by the Catholic Monarchs at this site.

The visit to the underground area allows you to stroll through the streets of Roman Barcelona, see the wall from that period, enter a 2nd-century dyeing workshop and see the remains of the city’s first Christian community. The Palau Comtal space contains a permanent exhibition on Barcelona in the Middle Ages (8th-13th centuries), from where you can access the Saló del Tinell and the Chapel of Santa Àgata, two Gothic spaces that house temporary exhibitions.

The MUHBA also has various heritage centres distributed throughout the districts of the city that explain their history in their own settings such as the Temple of Augustus, Jewish Quarter and Park Güell centres.

 

How do you get to the MUHBA?

Hop off at the Barri Gòtic stop on the Red Route of Barcelona Bus Turístic to explore the Gothic Quarter and Plaça del Rei, where the main MUHBA site is.

 

For the most curious of you

  • Did you know? Casa Padellàs was not originally located at Plaça del Rei; it was transferred there in 1931, when Via Laietana was opened. It was one of many buildings that were moved or modified when what we now know as the Gothic Quarter was restored.
  • Local’s tip: If you want to learn about the evolution of Barcelona in a visual and explanatory manner, the MUHBA offers a virtual Historic Map of Barcelona that allows you to take a trip through the city without moving an inch!
  • A must: For those who want to explore the real Barcelona!