Roman remains in Barcelona
Enjoy Barcelona’s history
To get to know the Roman remains in Barcelona we have to go back to the city’s origins. Historians place the beginning of Barcelona at around 15-10 BC. It was first called Colonia Iulia Augusta Paterna Barcino Faventia.
Barcino was a small town populated by around 1,000 people. It was located on top of a low hill and covered around 1.5 km². The town centre was cordoned off by a wall with gates coinciding with the main streets. The town was very important for the mercantilism of the time.
Roman Villa of Can Terrers
The Roman Villa of Can Terrers is located in the town of La Garriga, 20 minutes from Granollers.
This villa was built on a fluvial terrace and demonstrates Rome’s power at the time. It’s one of the most important Roman sites in Catalan history.
The building covers 200 m² with 6 main rooms. You can still see the halls where its owners used to tread two thousand years ago, as well as finding out a wealth of details about one of Catalonia’s most important rural Roman sites.
One of the most typical attractions of this villa are its baths, which are in a very good state of conservation.
There are different options for a visit: guided tour or with an audio guide. The time required to visit the villa is estimated at between 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Roman baths of Caldes de Montbui
Cultural Asset of National Interest
In Roman times, the town of Caldes was a thermal spa founded on hot springs that exist there. We know that the origin of the hot springs of Caldes de Montbui is directly related to the activity of the Vallès geological fault.
The primary function of this complex was to cure the numerous sick people who arrived at this location from different points of Roman Hispania. The building that can be seen in the Plaça de la Font del Lleó is only a small part of the grand thermal complex that existed in Roman times.
This complex occupied at least the Old Hospital, a large part of the Rius i Broquetas spa and the current Font del Lleó square. To date, fifteen areas of this Roman thermal complex have already been found.
In the Roman Baths, you can currently see, on the one hand, a rectangular pool about twelve meters long, with five steps like a grandstand, which still has its original water inlets and outlets. It was a caldarium (hot water pool). And on the other, two small pools in the shape of semicircular exedra which were probably used for individual baths of different kinds.
Museu d’Història de Barcelona
The Museu d’Història de Barcelona, just 30 minutes by car from Granollers, covers 4,000 m² and contains the most important archaeological finds from the 1st century BC up to the 6th century AD.
The Museum traces some of the streets in the ancient town of Barcino, as well as explaining how families lived at the time. You can see the different rooms in their homes and get to know the industrial district. A visit can last up to two and a half hours.
Badalona Museum is just 30 minutes by car from Granollers. The basement of the Museum contains remains of the baths and main streets in the Roman city of Baetulo.
The Museum shows the customs and lives of the ancient Romans, offering individual and group visits as well as educational workshops. The latter can be combined with visits to the Museum’s different areas. To buy tickets or find out more information, you can consult the Museum’s official website.
Tour around the Roman remains of the city of Barcelona
The route starts at the Plaça de la Vila de Madrid, 45 minutes by car from Granollers. In this square you can see what used to be the area covered by the Roman town. This was the site of the cemetery, as the necropolis was not allowed to be inside the city in Roman times.
Afterwards we go on to Plaça Nova, where there are two branches of the Barcino town wall and two square towers that used to guard over the entrance.
The square also holds the Casa Arcadia, which contains the arches from the aqueducts. Carrer Paradís is the location for the remains of the Augustus temple, an offering for the Caesar.
Finally, in Carrer del Correu Vell, you can see the remains of two defensive towers from the second town wall and the Museu d’Història de Barcelona, which is highly recommended.