Largely hanging from the side of Montjuïc, Mirador del Poble-Sec enjoys the features of an urban and a forest park, enabling visitors to stroll along the hillside looking down on Passeig de Colom and the port, as well as sit and rest in the large space near Passeig de Montjuïc, while admiring the waterfall that descends from the highest part of the park.
Just by the Passatge de la Vinyeta side of the park lies one end of Parc de la Primavera, while the part that climbs parallel to Passatge de Josep Carner ends at the Jardins de Mossèn Costa i Llobera.
It had been a recreational area for Barcelonians from the end of the 19th century up to the middle of the 20th. People would climb this small, domesticated mountain to hold barbecues or refresh themselves at the various fountains. Apart from the military castle, the land was privately owned and divided into three large estates for hunting and agriculture. But planning for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition meant the City Council began to buy up land on Montjuïc and Jean-Claude Nicolas Forestier was commissioned to landscape it.
Even though Montjuïc experienced a second burst of urbanisation around the 1992 Olympics, which enabled further landscaping of large tracts of the bare mountainside to the south, some parts, especially those near the port and Poble-sec neighbourhood, remained occupied by shanty dwellings, improvised allotments, workshops and poorly constructed buildings of every kind. When Parc del Mirador del Migdia was created between 1995 and 1997 it brought planning to a large part of this land.
The tree species in this park include jacarandas (Jacaranda mimosifolia), hackberry trees (Celtis australis), Mexican ash trees Fraxinus berlandieriana, holm oaks (Quercus ilex), acacias (Robinia pseudoacacia), Siberian elms (Ulmus pumila), pagoda trees (Sophora japonica), cypresses (Cupressus sempervirens), Aleppo pines (Pinus halepensis), stone pines (Pinus pinea), peppercorn trees (Schinus molle) and numerous Judas trees (Cercis siliquastrum), which have been given a shrubby appearance. The large resting area is dominated by golden rain trees
(Koelreuteria paniculata) and a pergola covered in Chinese wisteria
(Wisteria sinensis) and Virginia creepers (Parthenocissus tricuspidata).
Landscaping and Design
The first part built is the largest and reproduces a rural forest landscape with Mediterranean vegetation. The land slopes considerably and the route round is arranged along wide, gravelled paths that occasionally connect with stairs offering access to the miradors higher up.
A large jet of water squirts out from one of the stone walls that form a large balcony and, carried by a small, iron conduit, 28 metres long, it ends in a small pool which flows down the mountain in a waterfall. Nearby, an extensive flight of stairs takes you down to the park’s lower area, which was built during the second stage.
Here Mirador del Poble-Sec turns into an urban garden that acts as a bridge between Montjuïc’s forest landscape and the Poble-sec neighbourhood. It has pétanque courts and children’s play areas, as well as recreational spaces shaded by trees and a pergola covered with climbing plants. A pond full of aquatic plants at one end collects the water from the 18-metre, stepped waterfall, which comes from the small pool higher up.
- Pg Montjuïc, 59