August in Barcelona: it’s sweaty, sticky and stormy, and with this year’s heatwave, everyone is feeling like autumn can’t come soon enough. It’s not just a change in the weather that we’re looking forward to; September is one of the best months of the year in which to visit our amazing city. The sun is still shining, the city is still buzzing and BarcelonaTours has some great tips on what to do in Barcelona in September.

What are these street festivals in Barcelona about?

“Why September?” we hear you ask. Well, Barcelona is famous for its awesome street parties which take place throughout the summer and through to the end of September (you may have heard of the Fiestas de Gracia which take place mid-August and feature incredible street decorations), but they’re all just warm-ups and practices for the mother of all fiestas: La Mercé. If you’ve never heard of this week-long celebration of all things Barcelona, then fear not, this blog is here to guide you through. By the end of this article, you’ll have everything you need to enjoy the La Mercé celebrations like a local – and enjoy your Barcelona holiday in September.

Barcelona Fiestas: Gracias and La Mercé

From early spring, through the summer and into the autumn, different neighbourhoods in Barcelona throw their street parties. From the winding alleys of the Gothic quarter to the slanted hillside roads of the Poble Sec, local people get together to celebrate, drink beer and make the most of Barcelona’s famously warm summer nights. When the sun goes down, bands begin to play on small stages that have been erected around the neighbourhood, and local bars will set up in the street in front of their establishment to make the most of the crowds.

Ok, but what is La Mercé?

This annual, week-long festival is held in Barcelona in September and is the last big street fiesta of the year.

Although only an official festival (“official” meaning it is acknowledged by the government as a local holiday) since the 1870s, La Mercé has been celebrated since the 1680s! Much like other local celebrations, La Mercé has its origins in religion. It was time to revere the “Virgin of Grace”, who supposedly relieved the city of a plague of locusts in 1687 (anyone else feel like there were a lot more locust plagues in the old days than there are now? Maybe celebrating La Mercé is keeping them at bay). The Virgin was declared a patron saint of Barcelona – alongside Santa Eulalia, to whom to the Cathedral of Barcelona is dedicated – 200 years after this miraculous saving of the city, and as time went on, La Mercé evolved into the massive celebration of all things Mediterranean, with a particular focus on Catalan and Barcelonese, that we have today (Barcelonian? You know what we mean).

Sounds amazing! What should we see?

During La Mercé, it’s difficult to decide what to do as there is so much choice. Get ready to learn some unfamiliar words for some extraordinary activities…

Castells

The castells (Catalan for “castle”) are one of the most incredible cultural traditions in the region of Catalonia, and La Mercé draws teams from all over the area to compete and perform during the festivities.

These human towers are a 200-year-old tradition and, although their exact origin is unknown, it is believed that a strong “castell” was a representation of a strong community, with the older and stronger members supporting the younger generation.

The key to these towers is the base, where dozens of people stand tightly together in order to support the structure that will be built. Men, women and children alike take part, and the tower is not considered complete until there is a young child (very young – we’re talking 6 or 7 years old!) has climbed to the very top! And when you consider these castles can reach 10+ meters in height, that’s a long way for those little legs to climb!

The castells displays will be on show throughout the weekend in local squares – keep an eye out in front of the Cathedral of Barcelona and Plaza San Jaume.

Gegants

The gegants, meaning “giants”, might seem pretty self-explanatory. They are called giants, they’re giant in size – what else do you need to know? Well, these figures form an important part of the parades that take place throughout the Mercé festival. The figures are hollow structures (made as light as possible as they are carried by one person) and are carried through the streets to music, often in a procession to a local square or church where they will stop to be displayed for a period of time. The people represented are usually characters from local legends or just townspeople dressed in traditional dress. Every neighbourhood of Barcelona has its own signature gegants, so there’s plenty to see over the course of the festival.

Correfocs

The wooden and papier-mâché gegants are put away once evening comes, and with good reason. The sun might go down, but the streets of Barcelona light up with the most exciting parade of the weekend – the enormous correfoc. This translates to “fire run”, and that is a pretty spot on description of this evening parade through the city streets.

Like the castells, these are teams of people that come from all over the region – however, these teams consist of pyromaniacs, who like to dress up and devils and wave around pitchforks with fireworks attached to them.

Like the gegants, it involves structures that are carried through the streets – however, these are enormous dragons operated by the devils, pushed along and spitting fireworks as they go.

This may seem dangerous (and you should probably wear long sleeves and keep long hair tied back!) but these professional fire lovers are well versed in how to keep their fireworks under control. This parade goes all the way down one of the biggest streets in Barcelona and is a spectacle not to be missed.

The big finish

Of course, such a huge celebration would not be complete without a huge firework display. Head over to the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, the Catalan Art Museum, in the early evening to join the crowds of people that will watch the spectacular display. The fireworks will explode overhead, lighting up the beautiful Montjuic Mountain. The fountains that sit at the bottom of the hill with also be lit up, and the whole event will be choreographed to an amazing soundtrack that changes every year. What a way to end your experience of this unparalleled celebration of all things Barcelona.

I’m in! When is La Mercé?

La Mercé is celebrated from the 21st to the 24th September 2018, with Monday 24th September being a city wide holiday (that’s right, just the city of Barcelona! It’s not a day off in any other city in Spain).

But wait, I’m not here then…

Don’t worry! There are fantastic celebrations throughout the month of September in Barcelona, and the city’s usual awesome attractions are all still there waiting for a visit from you.

Castells regularly happen in different squares around the city during the month of September, and in local town halls and churches, you will find the gegants on display. For example, in the Santa Maria del Pi church, in the Gothic quarter, there are gegants that date back to the 17th Century – you’ll agree when you see the man and woman, named Mustafá and Elisenda, that they look brilliant for their age!

You might also be there for the celebration of La Diada, or the national day of Catalonia, which takes place on September 11th. It’s a great day to experience all things Catalan, including the castells and the gegants; head to Plaza San Jaume, the parliament square, to see the best castellers showing off their best towers.

And when it’s time to relax…

The beaches, the bars, the terraces… there’s so much choice. Many hotels across the city have rooftop “terrazas” with gorgeous views and cocktails to die for. There’s also many a terrace at street level for a beer and some patatas bravas – fried potatoes with a signature spicy sauce – for those looking to be in amongst the local culture.

Visit our Barcelona activities pages to choose a Spanish Cooking Class or Flamenco Class to complete your weekend of Mediterranean magic.

Contact our dedicated team for a personalised proposal. You can email us at info@barcelonatours.net or give us a call on +34 935 008 226.

The conference industry in Barcelona has exploded in recent years, with scores of companies flocking to this wonderful city to hold or attend these events. From January to December, almost every weekend, you can find exciting and innovative conferences across the city. With excellent hotels, first-rate facilities and a beautiful setting, it’s easy to see why companies are choosing Barcelona as the location to bring their employees and clients from around the world.

The Barcelona Olympics, 1992

Barcelona as a city has been through some difficult times. Following the death of the Fascist dictator, Franco, in the 1970s, Spain as a country started the long, slow journey towards healing itself and its people. In time, they would begin to open their doors to the world and seek ways to bring international business and travel to the city.

In October 1986, Barcelona, with its coastal location, beautiful architecture and inspiring history, competed against five other cities to host the 1992 Olympic Games. Winning this bid marked a turning point in the development of this Catalan city. The 1992 games brought much-needed investment from international sources and made it possible for modern sports facilities to be constructed in various locations around the city.

This money also improved the general infrastructure of the city, with the cash being used to construct or restore buildings and hotels, developing the beaches (that are now so much a part of life in the city, it’s hard to believe they’re not even 30 years old!) and modernising transport, including the highways and airport.

Without the Olympics, Barcelona may not have become the popular conference location that it is in 2018.

What’s on this autumn in Barcelona?

Throughout September, October and November, a full range of conferences will take place in Barcelona. A large number of the conferences are related to medicine, pharmacology and pioneering technology, which makes it hard to choose which ones to feature in our blog. We think we have selected some of the most intriguing conferences, as well as conferences that are dealing with hot-button issues in 2018.

Alzheimer Europe Conference

Subject: Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Location: Barceló Sants (map link)

Dates: October 29th – 31st

Dementia and Alzheimer’s are devastating diseases that we are still struggling to understand. Dementia is an umbrella term to describe symptoms that include impaired memory and thinking, while Alzheimer’s is a disease that can cause dementia.

The focus of the 28th Alzheimer Europe Conference will be “Making Dementia a European Priority”. On their website, they identify that they had asked for abstracts for posters and talks on five different topics:

  • Policies and strategies
  • Care approaches
  • Care services
  • Rights and dementia-friendly society
  • Genetics, prevention and treatment.

By using broad topics, they want “to promote a multi-disciplinary and multi-professional approach to dementia.”

Other Alzheimer’s conferences: 11TH Clinical Trials on Alzheimer’s Disease (CTAD) OCTOBER 24th – 27th.

International Conference on Advances in Artificial Intelligence

Subject: Artificial Intelligence

Location: H10 Universitat (map link)

Dates: October 6th – 8th

For many of us, the phrase “artificial intelligence” conjures up images of robots and intelligent computer systems from our favourite science-fiction movies (C3PO, anyone?). In 2018, it is so much more than that.

The first ICAAI conference took place in Thailand and featured talks such as “Challenges & Researches of Software Engineering for Autonomous Robot Software”. Do we know what that means? No. Are we excited to find out? Absolutely!

While they haven’t released the talks that will be featured yet this year, we can’t wait to see what advances have been made, both through research and practical application.

Pharmacy and Medicine in Ancient Egypt

Subject: Ancient Egyptian medicine, illnesses etc. in both people and animals

Location: Hotel Alimara (map link)

Dates: October 25th – 26th

From the modern advances in AI to ancient history, Barcelona clearly has the full spectrum when it comes to conferences!

It may seem strange to say that ancient Egypt is a hot button topic in 2018, but increasingly, as a society, we are looking backwards as much forwards for ways to treat illness. This is the third international conference on Pharmacy and Medicine in Ancient Egypt and the first time it has come to Barcelona (the previous two conferences had been held in Cairo, Egypt and Manchester, United Kingdom).

The conference will be presenting and discussing recent studies on human remains, organic matter and plants from ancient Egypt. With speeches from Professor Rosalie David (Emeritus Professor of Egyptology at The University of Manchester), who has pioneered techniques on studying mummies without destroying the remains, and other experts in the field, the conference will strive to further demystify disease and medicine in ancient Egypt.

European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Congress

Subject: Everything under the umbrella of Neuropsychopharmacology. Examples of talks: “The gut-brain connection in psychiatry”, “Scientific basis of mindfulness and meditation” and “The use of neuroimaging to improve drug development in mood disorders”.

Location: Barcelona International Conventions Centre (map link)

Dates: October 6th – 9th

The 31st ECNP Congress promises to be four days of fascinating talks on the most mysterious organ in the body: the brain. From treatment of brain diseases to understanding psychological disorders (such as schizophrenia and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), this conference has the additional segment called “Love Your Brain”. This part of the conference includes yoga classes and nutritional advice, as well as a zone to relax in with puzzles like Sudoku, providing stimulation for body and mind.

As they say on their website: “The ECNP mission [is] to advance the science of the brain, promote better treatment and enhance brain health”.

Other brain-related conferences: The Lancet Summit: Inflammation and Immunity in Disorders of the Brain and Mind – November 15th – 17th.

Humanities in Transition

Subject: Humanities subjects and study and their role in our society

Location: Palau Macaya (map link)

Dates: October 23rd – 26th

Moving away from medicine and tech, the “Humanities in Transition” conference asks us to look beyond facts and figures.

In their introduction on the conference website, they note that “Every academic discipline is concerned in some way or other with the human being, but among the great variety of branches of knowledge there are some that focus more closely on the human condition and its capacity for cultural creation: as a whole these are referred to as the humanities.”

In recent years, more and more focus has been placed on “hard sciences”, and the so-called “softer subjects” are facing criticism and ridicule for being “less valuable” than other subjects. “Humanities in Transition” will ask, through different talks over three days, where humanities fit in the modern world and why it is so important for the contingency and development of us as human beings.

The three central themes this year are:

  • Humanist thinking today
  • Soft vs. hard sciences
  • Posthumanism: Beyond humanism?

There will also be workshops, including “Humanities in the age of conflict” and “The humanities and communication”.

Visiting Barcelona for a conference?

Whether it’s your first conference in Barcelona or your 30th, the city has so much to offer. At BarcelonaTours, we have years of experience in helping conference attendees make the most of their free time. We can help organise ice-breaker evenings as well as excellent team-building activities, from exploring the city through our Photo Treasure Hunt to enjoying the Sea with a Private Catamaran Charter. We can also organise personalised tours of the city, dinners and parties – everything you need for a great experience in Barcelona.

For more information on entertainment and activities for your group, get in touch today on info@barcelonatours.net or give us a call on +34 935 008 226.

Barcelona is a culturally rich and diverse city with so many different options to amaze and entertain a school group. Usually sunny and always exciting, Barcelona has an awesome quality to it, from the beautiful Modernist works of Antoni Gaudi to the narrow twisting alleys of the Gothic quarter. School children of all ages will leave Barcelona having fallen in love with the city and excited to return or learn more about this two-thousand-year old place. It can be hard to know what to choose to show young people in just a few days – don’t worry, BarcelonaTours.net has some brilliant suggestions and solutions for every type of school group.

  1. Gothic quarter Tour

Take in some of the most important sights of the city with a tour around the old Gothic quarter. The Gothic quarter is home to beautiful old buildings and has one of the highest concentrations of attractions that are within easy walking distance of each other. These attractions include Roman ruins, almost as old as the city itself, such as the Temple D’August (the remains of a temple that was built in the 1st century) and the Muralla Romana (part of the old Roman gate into the ancient city). It also has the largest collection of buildings from between the 13th and 15th Century, and of course the magnificent Barcelona Cathedral, which took more than 200 years to build. Young people can be easily distracted, and because you don’t have 200 years to get them interested, use one of BarcelonaTours.net’s engaging guides to bring history to life for them in just a few short hours. We can provide a bilingual guide with an excellent knowledge of the city and we even offer tailor made options if you already know what you would like to show the kids.

  1. Bike Tour

While the Gothic tour is perfect for seeing all the attractions that are nearby, a Bike Tour offers more freedom of movement for your group and the option of visiting places that would otherwise take too long to reach on foot. You could take in some of the sights around the beach front with ease, traveling along Barcelona’s two miles’ worth of beaches and stopping to appreciate your surroundings while hearing all about Barcelona and its huge connection to the Mediterranean Sea. You can go from there to the beautiful Ciutadella Parc, which has a grand fountain that everyone will want a picture with. It also provides the perfect spot to sit and take a moment to think back on the fun that you’ve had on your trip. These tours are also divided into smaller groups so that way the kids will get a more personalised experience.

  1. Photo Treasure Hunt

Like the idea of groups being able to explore the city in a more interactive way? Then a Photo Treasure hunt is the best option, and also inspires a bit of healthy competition among friends! Each team is provided with a booklet with questions about the surrounding neighbourhood and, the most fun part, a polaroid camera with which to capture certain things that they will see around town! It will take team work and keen eyes to carefully answer all of our questions and complete the booklets, while at the same time practising Spanish as they will have to ask locals for help. A guide will meet you to hand out the booklets and cameras and then be ready and waiting when you return to count up the points and hand a prize to the winner. Even if they don’t win, each team will then have a selection of awesome photos to show off when they get home.

  1. Beach Volleyball

Just like the Photo Treasure Hunt, a Beach Volleyball tournament can inspire some healthy competition while the group enjoys one of the best parts of Barcelona – the beach! Our bilingual guide will explain the basics and then you’re ready to play. This activity is even good on colder days as it will warm people up! Jumping and running to hit the ball can be thirsty work so we also provide water for your hard working teams and you have the option of a one or two-hour tournament.

  1. Top Museums

On the off chance that it’s too cold or you have a particular focus for your trip, be it art, history or something else, Barcelonatours.net can provide entry into the best museums in Barcelona. For those interested in history, we have the MUHBA (Museu d’història de Barcelona or the Barcelona History Museum) – here you can walk on the old Roman roads under the city and see how Barcelona would have looked 2000 years ago. Take your group on an adventure underground and back in time to explore Barcino, the name Romans gave their walled city. For a wider history, there is the Museu d’història de Catalunya to help demystify this intriguing province of Spain. Learn about the Catalans, their language and their struggle for independence against the backdrop of political instability and uncertainty. This museum often has special exhibitions relating to Catalonia which can really help visitors understand the area. For the art enthusiasts, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya offers insight into the art work that has been born out of Catalan life. For a more well know name that might appeal to school groups, consider the Picasso Museum. Even though Picasso was only in Barcelona for a short time, he was greatly influenced by the city and its contradictions. This museum also has a great room where it’s possible to see Picasso’s movement away from Realism to Cubism and other more experimental art forms.

Get in touch today at info@barcelonatours.net.

​We love nothing more than to blow off some steam at a good festival, so you can imagine our excitement at discovering November’s full to rafters with live music events and musical merriment.

Jazz Festival

First up is the 45th edition of the Barcelona Jazz Festival. This is a big deal for all music lovers, as the whole city is taken siege by jazz musicians performing in every corner of the city. The gigs are scattered across the town from pop-up stages, to historical venues like Palau de la Musica through to custom-made Jazz haunts such as The Harlem Jazz Club and Jamboree. The lineup this year is huge and the good news is that it is going on from the 19th of October until the 1st of December, leaving no excuses to miss out on this epic jazz fest.

Because of the huge range of venues used for this event there is something available for every budget and every taste. Previous years have seen the likes of Jimmy Cobb, Marcus Miller, Wayne Shorter and Kings of Convenience head-lining this international celebration of Jazz music.

The events held in public places and pop-up stages will be free of charge, but for the rest you will need to buy individual tickets for each event. Because this event is so well established ,and sees some of the biggest names in jazz music playing in world famous venues, it is recommended to snap up tickets pretty darn rapido to avoid missing out.

Razzmatazz

Also tickling our ‘gig-buds’ this month is the 13th anniversary of the world famous Razzmatazz. This world-renowned music venue has hosted some of the top musical acts from across the globe so this celebration is going to be pulling in a pretty impressive musical entourage. They will be covering all musical genres to cater for all tastes with the opening weekend rocking out with Mani (Stone Roses/Primal Scream), Mykki Blanco, Skream, Editors, Balthazar, Angel Molina and Castle. Other head-liners across the course of the 10 week celebration will be Suede, Foals, Biffy Clyro and The 1975. Razzmatazz is such an iconic name in the music scene and Barcelona’s nightlife so this is going to be one birthday party you will never forget. Find out more details at:

https://www.salarazzmatazz.com

Primavera Sound Shop

If you’re looking for live music on a slightly smaller scale then the Primavera Sound Shop in the Born area could be your perfect music hit. From the 2nd of November onwards the shop will be opening their doors to those seeking intimate concerts and small-scale music events. Whilst you’re there you can take in their impressive catalogue of international and local musicians and unique collection of music books and gadgets. For the full line-up, check out the website below.

Mira Festival

For a completely unique music experience, to hit all the senses, venture down to the 3-day Mira Festival. The original concept hinges around combining music and the visual arts, bringing together DJ’s and instillation artists to create a truly sensory experience. The event promises a feast for the eyes and the ears by combining innovative music and visuals and it will be held in several locations with an all-inclusive pass costing €120.

So if, like us, you’re a live music junkie, Barcelona is definitely the place to be over the coming weeks so come and join us for a month of pure, unadulterated musical excellence.

After all the atrocious weather we’ve been having in Europe recently it’s no wonder people are choosing to stay wrapped up and cozy at home. We have to admit to being in hibernation mode a little over the last few weeks ourselves but one weather spell that’s been doing us proud here in Europe has been this year’s amazing snowfall.

Only a couple of years ago, many ski resorts had to use artificial snow to satisfy avid skiers looking for their annual winter sport fix. This year however has seen some of the best snow for years and the slopes in Catalunya have never looked more inviting. Here is our run-down of some of the best resorts in Catalunya, a mere couple of hours drive from Barcelona city.

La Molina

La Molina is one of the oldest ski resorts in Spain and is renowned for its diverse range of slopes appealing to all ages and levels. Located in the breathtaking Pyrenees, in the province of Girona, La Molina is the hotspot for locals and foreigners alike for its staggering 46 pistes and skiing area of over 53km. The perfectly groomed pistes offer a peaceful, calm skiing destination so is perfect for families and skiers that are looking for a relaxing skiing experience.

Baquiera Beret

This is generally considered the most complete ski resort in Spain. This is reflected in the amazing scale of the facilities and installations on offer. This top winter sport destination is a well-known hang-out spot for the rich and famous so keep your eyes peeled for well-known faces skiing alongside you. This is also the chosen destination for the royal family so best get practicing your royal courtesy on-the-move. The restaurants here are of a very high quality so expect to pay a little more here than you would at other smaller, less busy resorts.

Boi Taull

The Boi Taull ski resort towers over the others as its set amongst the highest peaks of the Lleida Pyranees in the amazing Vall de Boi Valley. Die hard skiers and snowboarders flock to this resort for its untouched, fresh pistes, ideal snow conditions all through the season and an all-round stress-free skiing destination. This is an unspoilt gem as visitors enjoy zero queues at the lifts and the resort has an intimate close-knit ambiance as there are only 2 restaurants and 3 pubs in the village.

Port de Comte

Arguably one of the most breathtakingly beautiful areas of the Calalonian Pyranees. This resort is surrounded by forests, woods and meadows and is easily accessed by surrounding cities. The picturesque surroundings keep skiers coming back to these amazing stretches of slopes time and time again.

Contact us for ideas

The shops are already brimming with Christmas temptations, and as we are well into November, we think it’s an acceptable time to talk Christmas and Barcelona.

It’s not likely to be a white Christmas; the last decent amount of snow the city saw was back in 2010! It was certainly a rare sight to see La Sagrada Familia with a dusting of crisp white snow.  Nevertheless, Barcelona has its fair share of festive activities to get us in the Christmas mood.

Christmas Market

Probably the most charming of all the Christmas frivolities, and let’s face it, who does not enjoy a stroll around a cute Christmas market?

Barcelona has a few on offer for you to peruse and generally ease into the Christmas Spirit.

In the heart of the Gothic Quarter, the market, Fira de Santa Llucia, has a grand backdrop offered by the Gothic Cathedral.  This market is where locals can buy a real Christmas tree and all sorts of adornments to decorate it with.  You will also find ornaments which are mini figurines of all sorts of prominent public personas, from politicians to footballers, which are crouching and seemingly ‘going to the toilet’!  Your eyes are not deceiving you, this is in fact what they are imitating and locally they are called ‘carganers’.  They appear in local nativity scenes, although their origins are unknown, it’s a strong Catalan Tradition.

You may also see wooden logs with faces, legs and a cheery Christmas hat.  Locally know ass Caga Tio, children feed the animals until just before Christmas, and then to proceed to hit them with sticks to make them ‘pass’ sweets.  Another quirky tradition for you!

Other notable Christmas markets are ‘Fira de Nadal Sagrada Familia’ located right by the famous monument and also ‘Fira de Reis a la Grand Via’.

Markets normally open from the beginning of December:

https://www.xmas-markets.org/barcelona-christmas-markets/

 

Ice Skating

Without real snow or ice to play with, Barcelona makes its own fun with a temporary ice rink that opens at the beginning of December.  Historically this was located in Placa Catalunya, but has since found a new home in the area of town called Hospitalet.  A great activity for families and adults alike.  Gets those boots on and enjoy a few laps on the ice to the hits of the moment normally blasting out to create that party atmosphere.  The link below does not contain a typo, GEL is the Catalan word for ice, see what they did there?

https://www.barcelona.cat/en/

 

Pudding

This you can do at any time of year, but there is something decidedly Christmassy to us about a steaming cup of hot chocolate and a huge slab of cake.  The weather in Barcelona in the winter is relatively mild, but when the sun goes down, the chill arrives.  What better way to warm up than overloading on Christmas calories!  (We worry about the excess weight in January…).  These two lovely cafes, serve scrumptious homemade cakes and an array of hot beverages to warm right down to those cold feet.  Apart from the yummy offerings it is the theming and decoration that make these places such cosy hideaways.  Pudding have a fairy tale style café in Pau Claris, and a newly opened Harry Potter based one on Diagonal 515.  Well worth working a visit here into you schedule.

https://www.puddingbarcelona.com/

 

Christmas Lights

Like many cities the Christmas light displays are worth a visit in themselves.  In previous years the local government had cut back in this area but now the twinkle and shine of Christmas cheer is making its mark once again.  The most impressive displays are normally to be found on Paseo de Gracia, Placa Catalunya and the Ramblas area of the city, but as lights are still be switched on a time of writing, let’s see  what new additions this year may bring.  One place for a great view of the lights around Placa Catalunya, whilst nursing a glass of bubbles, is the restaurant at the top of the large department store ‘El Corte Ingles’.

 

Three Kings

You may not know this but the festive season here in Barcelona and the rest of Spain extends to the 6th of January which is also a bank holiday.   The tradition from the visit of the three kings to Jesus is an important one in Catholic Spain and highly celebrated by locals.  Santa Claus being a relatively new phenomenon here it is the ‘Reyes’ (kings) who deliver children most of their presents on the 6th. In fact the three kings make quite an entrance on the 5th of January; in Barcelona they arrive by boat and begin a procession around the packed streets of the city, distributing sweets to the children along the way.  A great event to witness if you are visiting.

https://lameva.barcelona.cat/culturapopular/en/festivals-and-traditions/three-kings-parade

So what are you waiting for, gets that last-minute festive break booked to Barcelona today!

Contact us today on: +34 935 008 226 or info@barcelonatours.net

This article reveals the spots for those who are searching for some inner peace, while visiting Barcelona. So, you are packing your suitcase with souvenirs and maybe some tasty local snacks to take home, surely there is room for some spiritual happiness as well!

If your next destination to meditate and relax is Barcelona, we will nudge you in the right direction. Barcelona is, despite being a modern, vibrant place, a city for repose and contemplation. In no small way, the topography plays its part, embraced as it is by the Mediterranean Sea and flanked by green hills, with mighty mountains in the near distance. Barcelona itself has no shortage of spaces for searching for that elusive peace of mind. Let´s discover a few places in Barcelona that will feed your spirit and imagination!

 City view from ¨ the Secret hill¨

While in Barcelona, you should visit the Bunker and get the 360´ city view from the hill, where an old Spanish civil war bunker was built in the 30s. It can be considered as a ¨secret hill¨, because even many locals don’t know about this place yet. Probably one of the best panoramic view of the city – you can see almost everything – the vastness of the sea, the narrow avenues of the down town, the lights and the high mountain peaks. It is spectacular no matter at what time you get there, but it is highly recommended to catch the sunrise or the sunset. Barcelona is a city of lights as well; the nights will be illuminating in every sense. If you’re lucky with the timing, you can also catch the full moon; that is bound to make an impression!

¨Sailing towards tranquility¨

Barcelona is one of the best beach cities in Europe on the Mediterranean coastline. If your visit is in summer months, feel fortunate; beaches are easily accessible to the general public with a long boulevard of many bars, restaurants, clubs, and amazing temporary sand sculptures. The neighbourhood close by is called Barceloneta and is the perfect place to enjoy fresh seafood . Sailing along the Costa Brava coastline is a perfect activity to find mental, if not necessarily physical, balance! This is where you’ll hire your yacht for a day in Barcelona.

Before doing anything, though, starting the day with some yoga classes will get you in the right frame of mind for  what the day has in store.

¨Parks in Peace¨

The moment when you want to escape the city bustle, and when you are looking for something more tranquil, maybe somewhere greener, then a visit to the parks around Barcelona is in order. The magical wonderland of Park Guell, the impressive atmosphere at the Park of Montjuic, or the Park Ciutadella. For the more spiritually minded,  the Labyrinth Park is the place to spend a quiet moment just doing nothing, while contemplating the 18th century neo-classical garden with a wonderful hedge maze.  This park has the added advantage of being on the outskirts of the city and not overrun by visitors. The parks are usually crowdy, especially on the weekend, so pick your time wisely, ideally a weekday morning.

¨Touch the Sky¨

Did you ever feel the ambition to “touch the sky”? The mountain region of Montserrat is a destination with breath taking sights. Here you will come across a truly spiritual environment, where you can admire the architectural beauty of the famous monastary perching on top of the mountain. Get your place on a top peak, let your mind be free and feel like ameditating monk!  Arrange your trip to this unique site here: Half Day Tour Montserrat

There isn’t really a single answer to what brings spiritual happiness to your life. Some people can make this happiness happen through the new adventures. Travelling is always a good idea, book the flight to Barcelona, come and find your inner peace here. Be surrounded by lovely people, get to know a different culture, find quiet corners frozen in time, immerse yourself in the sea and take a trip to the mountain. Hope the article will help you to have a pleasurable or satisfying Barcelona experience in tranquillity. To get more ideas to pique and ease your mind in Barcelona, stay updated with us!

For a relaxing trip to Barcelona, contact us on +34 935 008 226 or info@barcelonatours.net