This is one of the green spaces on the seafront that offers more direct access to the beach, with paths that take users to the sand. It mimics the landscape typical of some of the meeting points between land and sea: beaches, dunes and groves.
Parc del Poblenou, which lies at the end of Vila Olímpica (the old Olympic Village) is a large pine grove and, as you approach the sea, a space full of dunes sheltering the park from easterly winds. The first section, next to the C/ Salvador Espriu entrance, briefly follows the final part of Parc de la Nova Icària, clearly identifiable by one of its wooden bridges.
This area stands out for the lake and a large esplanade ideal for sport. It lies at the start of a long paved strip that crosses the park from end to end and which borders on a wide road with three names, depending on where you are, and lots of traffic.
Parc del Poblenou is one of five large, green spaces, together with Parc del Port Olímpic, Parc de la Nova Icària, Parc de les Cascades and Parc de Carles I, that were built on Poblenou’s old industrial land at the start of the 1990s.
Barcelona reclaimed that land and assigned some of it to the creation of new public green spaces, as part of a major facelift carried out on the city’s seafront for the 1992 Olympic Games.
In the area round the outer path, white poplars (Populus alba) stand next to hedges, many of which are bamboo (Phyllostachys sp). There are numerous privet (Ligustrum lucidum), sweet bay (Laurus nobilis) and mastic tree (Pistacia lentiscus) hedges too.
The area closes to the pool, between the stone pines, boasts Aleppo pines (Pinus halepensis) and a few carob trees (Ceratonia siliqua). As you approach the dunes, level with the beach, you will find more and more date palm trees (Phoenix dactylifera) and petticoat palms (Washingtonia filifera). The park also has several eucalyptuses (Eucalyptus globulus), while the pathways lying on the other side of the park, parallel to the main path, are full of aromatic species, such as thyme (Thymus vulgaris), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) and large scrubs consisting of French lavender (Lavandula dentata) and baby sage (Salvia microphylla).
Landscaping and Design
The park is separated from the traffic by a wide access path with a very long row of white poplars and numerous, tightly packed and curiously sculpted rectangular hedges. These hedges are irregularly distributed, creating a progression of spaces leading away from the traffic towards the silence of the park.
As you head from the esplanade to the sea, the land rises slightly. There are large meadows here and places to rest, separated by little walls under the protective boughs of the trees, pines in particular.
The end of this first stretch is where the most naturalised part of the park begins, a long pine grove standing over an extensive meadow crossed by small pathways. When the weather is good people look for a place in the shade, or the sun for sunbathing, where they can lie down and enjoy the scent of the pine trees and the sea.
Finally you reach the dunes. They are a little cut off from the park as a whole by Av Litoral. The biggest ends on the beach, at the point where the park and the Mar Bella Beach merge. It is a very sunny place, covered with sparse vegetation capable of resisting the salinity of the sea nearby, and by far the most natural and wildest.
Art and Architecture
The wreckage of a boat bearing a Lebanese flag, the Ashraf II, lies scattered among the park’s dunes. These consist of the funnel and two pieces from the stern, one with part of the boat’s deck and the other with its bronze propeller and rudder. They lay abandoned on the beach for a long time until the architects Manuel Ruisánchez and Xavier Vendrell, who designed the park, decided to turn them into some of its prominent features.
- Av Litoral, 59*71