Map of the Commercial Area
I Shopkeepers associations
The commercial tradition of Bilbao's Old Quarter dates back to the 14 th century, when merchants settled in the area started bringing goods from cities as far away as Bordeaux and Brugge.
Nowadays, Bilbao's Old Quarter is one of the most important street commercial areas in Europe, a bustling combination of historical monuments, cultural centres such as museums and libraries, and over 800 shops, 200 accommodation facilities, and the largest covered City Market in Europe, in an inviting pedestrian area where you can enjoy yourself and spend some free time.
BilbaoCentro (Central Bilbao)
Central Bilbao is host to the "backbone" of Bilbao's commerce. Traditional shops, department stores and international firms are all here, adding to the Village's modernity and turning Bilbao into a model of economic and urban revitalisation.
A modern public transportation system links this area to the rest of the city and Vizcaya, and there is also a wide array of central parking areas. There are several ways to reach the commercial centre of Bilbao, whose pedestrian streets make walking and shopping more comfortable and attractive: the Underground, which literally goes along the commercial axis San Mamés - Indautxu - Moyúa - Abando; the Tramway, linking the Uribitarte and Abandoibarra districts; Renfe's trains, reaching Plaza Circular; and finally, Bilbobus and Bizkaibus buses.
This area is the driving force for the development of the service sector, and the heart of shopping expense, since foreign visitors and people coming from other towns in Vizcaya or other districts in Bilbao, and those who live here also, do their shopping in this dynamic district.
The explosion of Central Bilbao as a huge urban commercial area took place in the 90's, with the Guggenheim phenomenon, when the city took its first steps in urban and commercial transformation. Many different shops and offices opened in BilbaoCentro, such as lawyers' offices, surgeries, specialised clinics and many firms of international renown. Moreover, new top restaurants and hotels opened, as well as new establishments for leisure or cultural activities and business meetings, such as the Euskalduna Palace, the Guggenheim and Fine Arts Museums, and numerous art galleries. All these make Central Bilbao an exclusive and high-quality commercial district in the economic and institutional heart of the city.
Apart from the most elegant commercial area in the Village, BilbaoCentro is the place where the main financial institutions in the country are located. And despite its hustle and bustle, typical of any big metropolitan centre, it still has room for a long, peaceful, relaxing stroll. www.bilbaocentro.com