Neighbourhoods in the centre-west of Murcia
The historic centre of Murcia covers a large number of neighbourhoods that together make a wonderful tourist attraction with no end of monuments, shopping streets and street life to discover. You can easily reach the centre-west of the city from the heart of the grandiose area around the cathedral; the centre-west is home to around 20,000 inhabitants and includes the neighbourhoods of San Antolín, San Nicolás, San Miguel, Santa Catalina and San Pedro, among others.
A good way to find your way as you explore Murcia is to use Gran Vía del Escultor Francisco Salzillo as way to divide the city up into different areas. In this post we’re focusing on the area that lies to the west of this road, neighbourhoods that contain delightful spots such as animated Plaza de las Flores, where you can sit on a café terrace and watch the world go by before visiting the nearby Church of San Pedro. Art lovers will be happy to find themselves just steps away from the Palacio Almudí Exhibition Hall, where the pleasure is double because the 15th century building that houses the collection is magnificent too. It’s also well worth visiting the Ramón Gaya Museum, housed in a beautiful stately home.
Murcia’s bustling street life can also be found at the Mercado de Verónicas, the city’s main market, where you can discover the different types of produce that is grown in the region and the products that are made. The market was built in the Modernist style and the bars housed inside are a great incentive for spending a morning among its fruit, fish and meat stands. You can also see a section of the wall next to the market, so make the most of being in the area to discover the remains of the Alcázar and even go for a drink at La Muralla café (a little further out.)
One museum you cannot miss on your visit to the centre-west of Murcia is the Salzillo Museum, which is dedicated to Francisco Salzillo, Spain’s most important 18th century sculptor. A visit also includes a tour of the Church of Nuestro Padre Jesús, a 17th century Baroque building, alongside the new building that focuses on the artist. No one can fail to be moved by the Salzillo’s religious sculptures and they can be seen during Holy Week in Murcia.
While Murcia has an endless selection of churches to visit and it’s well worth seeing them all, one civic structure that you shouldn’t miss is the Puente Viejo or Old Bridge that crosses the Segura River and joins the centre of Murcia to the neighbourhood of El Carmen.