Traveler's Genuine Article columnist Laura Morelli is back this month with a buyers guide to selecting traditional Catalan ceramics. Here's a peek at where you won't find the most authentic urns, bowls and plates (and where you actually will).
Barcelona—despite its reputation as one of the world's greatest shopping cities—is not the place to buy Catalan ceramics. At the pottery shops on the streets surrounding the cathedral, you will not find the best selection or prices, nor will you get the chance to see the wares being made. When you're ready to buy, arrange a trip to one of the regional towns known for pottery, including Argentona, outside of Barcelona; La Bisbal d'Empordà, near Girona; and La Galera, near Tarragona. These rural villages contrast sharply with the stylish Catalan capital, offering a more authentic experience, as well as a better value on traditional Catalan pottery. The best part: few of these towns figure in a guidebook, so it's a great way to experience Catalan life outside the tourist mainstream.
Photo: Ingolf Pompe 26/Alamy