Festes Majors in Barcelona 2020

With another year coming to a close, we’re already thinking about 2020 and the celebrations it will bring with it. 

If you’ve not had the chance to experience a local festival in one of Barcelona’s many buzzing neighbourhoods, we’re sure that 2020 will be your year. With over 70 festivals set to be scheduled, you’ll be certainly spoilt for choice.

As 2020 is just around the corner, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite festes majorswith their preliminary dates so you can start planning your next trip!

Festa Major de Sant Antoni

Dates:17–26 January 2020

2019 was this festival’s debut year, so we’re sure its second year will be an event not to be missed. Enjoy a range of activities centred around the neighbourhood’s recently renovated market.

Festes de Santa Eulàlia

Dates:7–12 February 2020 (tbc)

Coinciding with the day of former patron saint of Barcelona (12 February), expect to see the centre of Barcelona come alive with castellers(human towers) and an array of parades in her honour.

Festa Major de la Sagrada Família

Dates: April–May 2020 (tbc)

Experience this renowned Gaudi masterpiece with over a week of various events and activities suitable for all ages. 

Festa Major del Casc Antic

Dates:June 2020 (tbc)

No one can deny that Barcelona’s old quarter has a unique charm – so why not discover its more traditional side. Head to Sant Pere and Santa Caterina i la Ribera to see castellers, parades of giant puppets and the modestsardanes dance.

Festa Major del Raval

Dates:June 2020 (tbc)

In honour of the neighbourhood’s patron saint, this bright and colourful festival in the centre of Barcelona stands out thanks to its castellers and artisans selling local craft products.

Festa Major del Poble-sec

Dates:July 2020 (tbc)

The festival of Poble-sec will take you on a journey through its most emblematic, local locations, from the Semblador square and the El Molino theatre. Be sure not to miss its blazing correfoc fire run.

Festa Major de Gràcia

Dates: 15–22August 2020

Perhaps the most eagerly awaited of all the festes majors of Barcelona, discover how the streets of Gràcia are transformed by the local residents with decorations of every colour.

Festa Major de Sants

Dates:August–September 2020 (tbc)

From concerts, decorations and correfocs, the Festa Major de Santstransforms this residential and professional district for a week of celebrations in honour of patron saint Bartholomew. 

Festa Major de Poblenou

Dates:11–20 September 2020

One of the largest of the festivals with around 500 activities, this event is not to be missed. Discover the magnificent cercavilaparade, sign up to run the 5 or 10 km race or take part in some of the artistic workshops that run alongside this celebration.

Festa Major de la Rambla

Dates:September 2020 (tbc)

This special celebration of one of Barcelona’s most renowned landmarks sees the façades of its buildings decorated with fresh flowers. What’s more, museums in the area are free during these celebratory dates.

Festes de la Mercè

Dates:18–24 September 2020

In honour of the patron saint of Barcelona, the entire city comes together to celebrate with popular culture, live music, castellers,correfocs and much more. There’s something for everyone at a range of locations throughout the city centre.

Festa Major de la Barceloneta

Dates:September 2020 (tbc)

In this beachside festival that celebrates the best of one of Barcelona’s most traditional neighbourhoods. We recommend catching a havaneresconcert (colonial songs sung by local groups) on the beach.

Is the festa majorof your favourite neighbourhood missing? Don’t worry; very soon the entire list of Barcelona’s local festivals will be published here, where you will also be able to check their exact locations on the map. 

We hope to see you there!

A Guide to Christmas Concerts in Barcelona

The nights are drawing in earlier, the mornings are chillier and soon lights of every colour will illuminate the streets of Barcelona. 

This can only mean one thing! Christmas is almost upon us.  And if you’re spending Christmas in Barcelona this year, we can recommend a different plan to ensure you make the most of time with your loved ones. Amidst the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping and preparing for the many family gatherings and meals, take some time out to enjoy a unique musical experiences.

christmas concerts in barcelona

We’ve compiled this short guide to concerts during the festive season for you to sit back and be regaled by local choirs and orchestras. What better way to get in the festive mood!

Christmas on Broadway

Where: L’Auditori

When: Friday 20 and Saturday, 21 December 2019

Join the Symphonic Orchestra of Barcelona on a journey through the musicals of Broadway in a fantastic gala show to kick off the festive season in style. With music from works by Rodgers and Hammerstein (2015), Lloyd Webber (2017) and Bernstein (2018), there’s something for everyone.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Where: Gran Teatre del Liceu

When: Saturday, 21 and Sunday, 22 December 2019

Enjoy this Christmas classic surrounded by loved ones. Music by Albert Guinovart together with Symphony Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu and the Amics de la Unió children’s choir.

Star Wars & OCM: Original Soundtracks by John Williams

Where: El Palau de la Música Catalana

When: Thursday, 19 and Saturday, 21 December 2019

Relive some of John William’s most emblematic soundtracks from the big screen including Star Wars, E.T., Harry Potter, Jurassic Park, Schindler’s List. We’re sure that you’ll laugh, cry and be entertained by the favourites of this renowned and prize-winning composer.

Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci

Where: Gran Teatre del Liceu

When: Various dates from 5–22 December 2019

This December enjoy a unique double opera session of two acclaimed Royal Opera House productions. These two Italian classics set in the 1950s will be performed side by side in what is sure to be an epic evening of emblematic opera.

The Magic World of Hans Zimmer

Where: L’Auditori

When: Wednesday, 25 December 2019

What better way to spend the most magical day of the year than enjoying music from some of the most epic films of the century. From The Lion King, Gladiator, Pearl Harbour, Pirates of the Caribbean and many more, bring this special day to a close surrounded by your loved ones.

St. Stephen’s Choral Concert: Christmas at the Palau

Where: El Palau de la Música Catalana

When: Thursday, 26 December 2019

Take part in this festive tradition of Catalonia with this unique concert held every St. Stephen’s Day. The charming melodies of the Orfeó Català and a combination of choirs are sure to bring the whole family together in an enchanting venue.

If you’re spending Christmas season in Barcelona, we’re sure one of these magical concerts will make for an unforgettable experience with your loved ones.

The 8 most traditional bars in Barcelona

If you’re looking to really get to know Barcelona during your stay, where better place to do so than in its oldest and most typical bars. Before becoming the cosmopolitan melting pot it is today, Barcelona was littered with simple bars serving home-cooked food and local spirits.

Many of these spots still stand to this day, and despite their often dark-looking interior, you’ll soon discover they are warm and welcoming.  From classic bodegas to traditional watering holes, we’ve hand picked selection of the best traditional bars in Barcelona that have withstood the test of time. 

Bodega Pàdua 

To the north of the city, this bar has been standing since 1949 and is well known among locals. If you don’t mind taking a detour, this typical bodega promises the best Catalan dishes at a very affordable price.  Pull up a wooden chair, take in the strange and wonderful decoration and order a glass of homemade vermouth.

Quimet & Quimet

Just a short walk from Plaça Espanya, this family-run bar exudes tradition. With space for less than 30 patrons, make sure you get there early to grab a spot at the bar. With a huge selection of wine, conservas (conserved tinned food) and montaditos (small sandwiches), you’ll be spoilt for choice.

Els 4 Gats

Perhaps the most famous of Barcelona’s traditional bars, Els 4 Gats (The Four Cats) was frequented by Hemingway, Dalí and Picasso (who even designed the menu). The first building by architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch (who also designed Casa Amatller and Casa de les Punxes), it is said to take inspiration from Paris’ le Chat Noir. Enjoy the daily set menu or drop in for a coffee or a beer. You won’t be disappointed. 

Bodega La Puntual 

Located in the heart of El Born, this spacious bodega finds the perfect balance between traditional Catalan tapas and that contemporary touch. Despite being a little on the expensive side, the quality of its dishes makes up for it. You’re sure to love the patatas bravas and the octopus!

El Xampanyet

Right next door to La Puntual is most possibly Born’s most famous bar: El Xampanyet. Known for its sparkling wine and tapas and given its proximity to the Picasso museum, it’s often packed with tourists and locals alike. Grab a stool at the bar to order a drink and few tapas, or join the queue for a table to order from the menu. 

La Bodega d’en Rafel

Tucked away in the charming neighbourhood of San Antoní, not far from the San Antoní market, you’ll find this simple, life-long bodega. Here you’re sure to get great service and great food, including fried anchovies, padrónpeppers and snails. If you’re looking for a buzzing, local atmosphere, drop by during the weekend at lunchtime – just don’t expect to get a seat!

Bodega Electricitat 

Right by La Barceloneta Market, this no-frills bar stands out thanks to its curious name and huge red sign. Called the “electricity” bar as it is located in the building that used to supply electricity to the neighbourhood, its marble tables and barrels of wine really make this a unique place to refuel.

Bodega Lo Pinyol

Found in Gràcia, not too far from Passeig de Gràcia, Lo Pinyol is a curious bodega with three different spaces. With a selection of local wines and pinchos, and even shelves stacked with books to exchange, this bodega’s tranquil atmosphere and low lighting make it perfect for romantic evenings or catching up with friends.

If the walls of these bars could talk, they would be sure to tell many a story from over the hundreds of years their doors have been open.  Take in their history as you enjoy local atmosphere, fantastic tapas and a selection of traditional drinks. 


Things you cant miss at La Mercè 2019

For another year running, the streets of Barcelona will be filled with music, activities and events galore during the city’s biggest celebration of the year. From 20 to 24 of September, La Mercè will take over the city together with this year’s special international guest, the city of Beirut.

With over 500 things to do for the whole family, we’ve compiled this small guideto ensure you don’t miss out on a thing!

Diades Castelleres (Human Towers)

In the biggest events of the year on the castellers calendar, Plaça Sant Jaume plays host to these spectacular Catalan human towers.

In this 50 th anniversary of the Castellers of Barcelona, don’t miss the best groups of the city battling it out from noon on Sunday 22 and Tuesday 24 to see who makes it to the top.

Correfocs

Head to Via Laietana on Saturday 21 from 6:30 pm onwards and you’ll be greeted by giants and devils. Although it may sound like a fairytale, these are two Catalan traditions that are not to be missed.

Watch how these enormous giant-like figures are paraded through the city centre and let yourself be amazed at the jaw-dropping fire run in this fabulous display of colourful sparks.

Live music concerts

La Mercè is synonymous with music and this year is no exception. With three musical programmes underway – BAM (Barcelona Acció Musical) Mercè Música, y BAM Cultura Viva – there is sure to be something for everyone. From the old Estrella Damm factory, Plaça Catalunya and MACBA to various beach locations, there will be almost 100 open-air concerts for all to enjoy completely for free.

Museum open days

In addition to all the festivities and celebrations, many of Barcelona’s museums open to the public completely free of charge on Tuesday 24, the official day of La Mercè.

From the National Museum of Catalunya and the Castle of Montjuic to the CCCB Cultural Center and the Museum of Modern Art, be sure to snap up this unique chance to discover the history and culture of Barcelona.

Town hall mapping

In celebration of “Any Brossa” (the Year of Brossa), the façade of Barcelona’s town hall will come alive with art. Discover the creative world of this renowned Catalan poet, playwright and visual artist in a 3D projection from 20–24 September.

Cursa de La Mercè

Unlike other years, this annual race will be held after La Mercè celebrations. Grab your trainers and set out on this emblematic 10-km run around the city that starts on Avinguda de Maria Cristina. Sign up here

Piromusical

This traditional Piromusical show concludes the celebrations in a grand mix of music and fireworks. This year tribute will be paid to the Beatles, the Liceu Theatre and Glenn Miller. The event will also welcome typical music from Beirut as the guest city of La Mercè 2019. Don’t miss this free feast for the eyes and ears on 24 September at 9 pm, Avinguda de Maria Cristina.

What’s more, on Sunday 22, the city will respect the global “Car-free Day” with Via Laietana and Gran de Gràcia giving priority to cyclists and public transport. Join everyone in raising awareness about reducing pollution in the city.

See Barcelona in all its splendour and take part in the celebrations with locals and tourists alike. Check out the official programme here where you will find listings for the four days of the festival. And so you don’t miss any of the action, book with bizflats.com to find the ideal apartment for your stay.

Sant Jordi’s Day- Why we celebrate it and how?    

Sant Jordi’s Day falls on April 23, which is also international book day. As Sant Jordi, otherwise known as Saint George, is one of the patron saints of Catalonia, it is considered a very important day in our country and holds romantic significance similar to that of Valentine’s Day.

If you are lucky enough to be in Barcelona on Sant Jordi’s Day, make sure not to miss this festivity that brings joy throughout the city. Throughout the streets, especially in the centre, you will find book and rose sellers, which will delight you with all their colour. As Sant Jordi’s Day is still a working day, many locals go and visit the celebrations in the afternoon when they can have a walk around and enjoy the festivities. 

Origin of Sant Jordi 

The story of Sant Jordi is one that is well-known throughout many cultures. In Catalonia the legend goes like this: a dragon was terrorising the local village of Montblanc, eating all the animals and people he was found throughout the town, so the King had to find a solution to the problem. He decided that they had to feed the dragon, and chose one person per day at random to offer as a sacrifice, so the Dragon wouldn’t attack the rest of the town. However, one day the Princess of Montblanc was chosen as a sacrifice. Luckily, just as the dragon was about to eat her, a knight rode in on a white horse to save her. It was Sant Jordi! He nailed his spear in the heart of the dragon and killed it, saving the Princess. From the blood of the dragon, a rose appeared and Sant Jordi gave it to the Princess.

Sant Jordi’s Day is recorded as being celebrated as a rose fair as far back as the 15th century. As the celebration was particularly popular with couples, it is thought that this is where the tradition of giving a rose to a loved one began, as a homage to the rose given by Sant Jordi to the Princess. 

The Sant Jordi’s day traditions associated with books began in the early twentieth century. The Valencian writer, Vicent Clavel, proposed that the Official Chamber of the Book and the Booksellers’ Guild set a day to promote the sale of books. They chose October 7, 1929, to coincide with the Universal Exhibition that took place in Barcelona, ​​and it was so successful that they decided to change the date to a time when the weather encouraged even more people to go out. The chosen day was on April 23, when two important writers died: the Spanish author of Don Quixote, Miguel de Cervantes, and the English writer William Shakespeare.

How we celebrate Sant Jordi’s Day?

Sant Jordi’s Day is a celebration of culture and love, where traditionally men buy roses for women and women buy books for men. Nowadays, it is becoming more common for men to also buy books for women, as well as giving them roses. As well as being a romantic gesture, roses are also given to friends or from parents, so it’s possible to see women with more than one rose!

Sant Jordi's Day

The centre of Barcelona comes alive with book stands and rivers of people with roses in their hands. The best streets to wonder through are La Rambla, Rambla de Catalunya and Passeig de Gràcia, as well as Plaça Catalunya. Throughout these streets there are hundreds of book sellers offering up many different types of books, from children’s books to cook books, the latest novels and much more. It is also quite common to see authors at the stands signing their books, often with long queues forming. If you want to buy a book for your loved one on Sant Jordi’s Day, strolling down these boulevards is the perfect place to do so.

If it’s a rose you are after, you can find stands on almost every corner in the city. These days, as well as the traditional rose, it is also possible to find original creations, such as roses made from silk or other materials. Even if you are not looking to buy anything, there is a fantastic atmosphere in the city. By the way, do not miss the chance to see Casa Batlló decorated in roses!

If you are going to be in Barcelona over Sant Jordi’s Day, make sure not to miss out on the romanticism and book one of our beautiful apartments in the city centre. 

Medical Tourism in Barcelona

Medical tourism in Barcelona is booming and it’s easy to see why. 

Catalonia is particularly well equipped with internationally renowned clinics and hospitals, along with being a pioneer in several medical and scientific fields. This includes excelling in technology relating to cancer treatments, heart and circulation diagnosis and bone diagnosis and treatment.

It’s not just locals who benefit from these fantastic services though, as more than 20,000 foreigners per year come to Barcelona for medical attention, with a complete range of public and private healthcare options available.

If this is something that interests you, look no further than our guide to find out which hospital or medical centre would be best suited to your needs.

Hospital Clínic de Barcelona

Probably one of Barcelona’s best known hospitals, Hospital Clínic is the main provider for public healthcare within the region. It has a wide range of services, that include almost all medical and surgical procedures, and as such also works as a tertiary level hospital – meaning patients from all over Spain, and even Europe, are referred there for medical procedures. In particular Hospital Clínic specialises in liver and kidney transplants, with over 20% of all of Spain’s transplants happening there. As well as this, it is well-known for being a pioneer in the treatment of tropical diseases, with the department having run for over 30 years and now having been designated as the national referral unit for tropical diseases in Spain.

Hospital Clínic also partners with other hospitals around the city, such as Sant Joan de Déu Hospital, one of the leading paediatric centres in Europe. In fact, Sant Joan de Déu Hospital is particularly helpful for medical tourism as it has a department that specifically arranges care for international patients.

Clínica Barraquer

Clínica Barraquer is one of the world’s most renowned eye hospitals. Open by the Barraquer family in 1941, the centre is well known throughout the ophthalmology world as a point of reference for corneal transplants. As well as this, Clínica Barraquer was the first centre in Spain to implement revolutionary eye chips for artificial sight, as well as holding the first eye bank in Europe. With all of these credentials you can be sure you’ll be in good and experienced hands for any sort of eye problems here.

Hospital Quirónsalud Barcelona

One of the leading private healthcare providers in Southern Europe, Hospital Quirónsalud continually aims to improve the lives of its patients. With a vast variety of procedures, Hospital Quirónsalud uses the most cutting-edge technology available, as well as priding themselves on the high quality of their doctors and comfort of their whole experience. Along with this, they cater towards medical tourists with their accessibility for foreign visitors. 

Hospital Universitari Dexeus

Dexeus Hospital is one of the largest clinics specialising in women’s health in Spain. This clinic is particularly great for those suffering with fertility issues or who are at danger of a risky childbirth, with the clinic having a long history of delivering at-risk babies. Not only this, but Spain’s liberal laws can make this a great place to come for single mothers, or lesbian couples, who will get full access to medical care that they might not be able to find in their home countries. 

Centro Médico Teknon

Cancer treatment is just one of the things that Centro Médico Teknon specialises in, particularly for those with blood cancers such as leukemia. This department includes figures like Professor Emili Montserrat who is one of the leading experts in his field backed up by various scientific awards and his work on the World Health Organisation panel.

Along with this, Centro Médico Teknon, covers multiple other specialities and is one of the leading private hospitals within Spain thanks to its use of the latest technology and excellent medical staff. The facility places high importance on comfort, and as a testament to this is often frequented by patients from the world of sports, entertainment and politics – from Spain and abroad. 

Policlínica Barcelona

With over 50 years of experience, Policlínica Barcelona offers a wide variety of procedures to focus on cosmetic and health needs. These can include anything from invasive procedure like plastic surgery and gastric bypasses to non-invasive dermatological and filler-based ones. As well as this, you can be assured that all pre and post-operative tests, or anything else you need, will be performed at the clinic to avoid having to move to other centres. 

Best apartments to stay for your medical trip to Barcelona

If you have decided to try medical tourism in Barcelona, staying in a hospital room can feel a little bit lonely, impersonal and not to mention, costly. You may consider renting an apartment for yourself instead for some much need privacy and normality. It also means that if your family members have accompanied you for the trip, you can stay close to them during the recuperation period and have all the support you need. Keep reading for our apartment recommendations:

Dandelion Apartment

Close to Clinica Dexeus, this luxury apartment is filled with flowers and bright colours to keep you in an optimistic and peaceful mood post-surgery. Its great location allows the sun to pour in through the windows, so that you can fill up on Vitamin D and fresh air, helping to ensure your wellbeing.

Ferran Batik Apartment

Located close to Centro Médico Teknon, and Clínica Barraquer, this luxury apartment in Pedralbes area exudes pure and healing energies, and comes with a fully equipped open kitchen to help you nourish your body back to health – the perfect apartment for your stay in Barcelona. 

La Mimosa Apartment

This luxury apartment on Passeig de Gràcia has beautiful oil paintings and candles, which create a therapeutic atmosphere – perfect for your recuperation process.

Dandi Apartment

Dandi is perfect you. The unique buildings that surround this charismatic apartment include La Pedrera and La Casa Batlló.

Our Dandi apartment in Barcelona has everything you need:

  • a) a large overall size, especially the living/dining area and the master bedroom,
  • b) a terrace in the master bedroom,
  • c) a construction with very well original Modernist elements,
  • d) everything being brand new.

Everyone knows that a tranquil resting environment is key to a smooth and speedy recovery, so to find that perfect place for your medical tourism stay in Barcelona, check out our full list of offering on Bizflats.com.

Most fashionable hairdressers in Barcelona

Getting your hair cut can sometimes be challenging, especially when you’re in a foreign country and don’t know where the best place to go is. However, in Barcelona you can find plenty of options to suit all your different hair needs. And due to it being a multicultural city, it’s easy to find hairdressers who speak your native tongue. More than that, due to Barcelona’s eclectic nature, it’s possible to find a variety of fashion forward options. Check out our favourite salons below.

Anthony Llobet English Hair Salons

With the slogan ‘Don’t let your Spanish come between you and your hair’ and their international team of hairdressers who speak over 11 languages, this is the perfect option for the international crowd. Anthony Llobet founded this chain of salons 17 years ago and as the ambassador for the well-known TRESemme brand in Spain, you can be sure he has the experience to back it up. His passion is reflected in the thought he puts into his hair dressing spaces, adding and finding vintage style accessories for a truly unique experience. Not only that, but their six locations dotted around Barcelona mean it’s easily accessible for everyone.

Anhony Llobet - Most fashionable hairdressers in Barcelona

Locations: Eixample: Roger de Llúria, 9. Raval: Ronda de Sant Antoni, 60. Gràcia: Ros de Olano, 19. El Born: Carders, 24.  Gòtic: Avinyó, 34. Barceloneta: Almirall Churruca, 8.

Pódame

If you’re looking for something a little more edgy, why not try Pódame? Having been on the scene since 2010, this hair dressing salon revels in being different and seeing haircuts and styles as a form of artistic expression. The hairdressers at Pódame aim to reflect the rhythm and energy of the Barcelona streets in ever cut they make, accepting all ages and styles at their salon.This might be the place for you if you’re looking for a bold new colour or want to try something new and completely unexpected.

Podame - Most fashionable hairdressers in Barcelona

Location: Bonavista, 25

TheRoom

Sometimes just getting a haircut isn’t enough to revamp your whole look and that’s exactly what founder of TheRoom Jose Lucker believes. Instead of just stopping at a new hair style, Jose has developed a more holistic approach, to combine his passion for fashion and hair styling. This led to his three-story concept store in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona, with each story representing events, clothes and hair respectively. With TheRoom you can expect to come out with the latest looks, both on you head and on your body.

The room - Most fashionable hairdressers in Barcelona

Location: Duc, 5

5 1a Salon de Belleza

 If you want a truly indulgent experience, head to 5 1a Salon de Belleza to treat yourself to a luxury haircut. Housed in a 5th floor penthouse with a terrace, you’ll get a bird’s eye view of Barcelona centre, while you relax in the natural light and tranquil setting surrounded by vibey music, knowing you are in the professional hands of the team at 5 1a Salón de Belleza. For an extra treat, head there for your on Friday afternoon or Saturday morning when they open up their cocktail bar, and sip on a “Blondie Mary” with a view, while you get your own blonde put in.

Location: Ronda Universitat, 20

5 1a salon de belleza - Most fashionable hairdressers in Barcelona

Le Petit Salon

Hair smoothing and straightening treatments, like Keratin smoothing, the Brazilian blow-dry and Japanese straightening, are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. If you’re someone who struggles to get your hair under control, especially in the humid Barcelona summers, one of these options could be the ideal solution. At Le Petit Salon they have a full catalogue of these treatments, with hairdressers specialised in each practice, meaning there is something for everyone here. This also includes the option to get hair extensions put in, as well as other beauty treatments, including eyebrow and eyelash maintenance, body hair removal and massage and facial treatments.

Le petit salon - Most fashionable hairdressers in barcelona

Location: Buenos Aires, 15

So, whatever kind of hair treatment you are looking for – whether you need someone who will understand your language, if you’re looking for a specific type of hair treatment, or if you simply want to get your hair done in luxury surroundings, you can find the perfect option in Barcelona. 

Barcelona Carnival– Program 2019, dates and activities

Carnival is a great time to be in Barcelona, with loads of fun events happening, there’s plenty to see. This year, Barcelona Carnival will happen between February 27 and March 6, with events happening throughout the city and also in cities like Sitges, very close from Barcelona and with a spectactular carnival with several parades.

Origin of the carnaval: Why we celebrate it?

Carnival is held seven weeks after the first full moon past the Winter solsitce, traditionally ending the same day as Ash Wednesday, 40 days before Easter. As such, carnival is thought to be the last party before the start of Lent, a period in which people are meant to abstain from vices, such as alcohol. A festival with Roman origins, the holiday was first documented as having been celebrated in 1333. Little by Little the party began to take shape as we know it today, with costumes becoming commonplace by the 19th Century. 

Structure of the Carnival in Barcelona

Arrival of the Carnival King

This will happen on February 28 and is when the Carnival King will arrive at La Rambla, in front of the Arts Santa Mònica museum. The Carnival King arrives to inaugurate the crazy carnival week. Jumping, dancing and singing, the parade will arrive at the Palau de la Virreina, the Carnival’s Republic. 

Carnival Parades

Parades will start to take place on March 2, when throughout the city there will be over 30 different parades, ending with the main parade through the old town. Here you will see people dressed in colourful and traditional costumes for Barcelona Carnival, music and dancing filling the streets. If you want to check out all the details of Barcelona Carnival Parades, you can find the full program by district here.

Barcelona Carnival

The Burial of the Sardine

This takes place on the last day of Barcelona Carnival, which this year will be March 6. This marks the end of the carnival period and is a symbolic burial of the past to allow society to be reborn and transformed over the period of Lent. 

Enterrament de la Sardina - Barcelona carnival

If you want to make the most of Barcelona Carnival, you can also head to Sitges, just a short train ride away from Barcelona. Here a large and extravagant carnival is hosted, and residents dress up in mourning to signify the end of carnival. The Sitges Carnival is famous throughout Catalonia for being a great party. Check the program here.