The Industrial Revolution in the Iberian Peninsula began in Catalonia, which became one of the most industrially dynamic regions of Europe. The new steam-based industry brought changes to manufacturing processes, transportation systems and even to the way workers lived. These changes can be seen in numerous examples of industrial heritage conserved in Catalonia, located around the Llobregat and Ter rivers.
In Catalonia, the modernist art movement is closely associated with the Industrial Revolution. The modernist imprint is evident in factories like the Vapor Vell de Sants in Barcelona (one of the first in Catalonia), the Anís del Mono factory in Badalona, and the Freixenet Cava winery in Sant Sadurní d'Anoia.
One of the most characteristic elements of Catalan industrial heritage are its textile factory colonies, located in rural areas by the river. Some examples are Colonia Güell in Santa Coloma de Cervelló, the Viladomiu colonies in Gironella, and the Borgonyà colony in Sant Vicenç de Torelló. These small villages have all the services necessary for the workers, dedicated exclusively to the factory and their families.
Throughout Catalonia there are examples of this industrial heritage, and of factories still in operation, in the fields of food, design, cars, wine, etc. More information is available from the Catalan Industrial Tourism Network or from the Museum of Science and Technology in Terrassa.