In the southwestern part of the Passeig del Born is Barcelona's there is most beautiful Catholic church, Església de Santa Maria del Mar, which means about St. Mary of the Sea. The church was built in the 1300s by the architect Berenguer de Montagut. Excavations made in the church in the 1960s uncovered the findings which showed that the site has been used as a burial ground since Roman times.
An excellent example of the Gothic architecture that characterizes the whole Catalonia
Santa Maria del Mar is an excellent example of the Gothic architecture that characterizes Catalonia. The church is octagonal tower with flat tops, large bare surfaces and a generous headroom. The high columns is probably an idea taken from architect Antoni Gaudi's life's work, the Sagrada Familia.
The entire interior was burned down in 1936 during the Spanish Civil War. The soot from the fire is visible in the church crevices and crannies even today.
Opening hours and prices
Santa Maria del Mar is located on de Montcada middle of the Gothic Quarter, and is open daily from 09.00 to 13:30 and from 16:30 to 20:00. At one o'clock on Sundays, there is a fair and sometimes there are performances of baroque and classical music. It costs nothing to visit the church, however it can be a good part of your Barcelona day tour.