Things to do in Barcelona During the Summer
Summer is finally here! With only a finite number of days with sunshine, we have organized the best of the things to do in Barcelona to help you make the most of your time. From unique music festivals on the beach to outdoor movies at a 17th century castle, your summer in Barcelona will definitely not be boring! Here are the top 18 things to do in Barcelona this summer:
This three day long music festival features a variety of genres including artists such as Macklemore, Jack Johnson, Band of Horses, and Calle 13. Held at the Parc del Forum, the concerts begin on July 11 and go through the weekend until the 13th. With so many artists prepare to last until 5:00 in the morning! The full lineup is on Cruilla’s website.
2014 Barcelona Beach Festival
Looking to party with the some of the best DJ’s in the world? This is the place to be! The event takes place on July 26th at Platja Port Forum in Sant Adria de Besos. Staying true to its name, prepare yourself to entranced by the EDM scene on the fantastic beach venue. This year’s lineup is unreal- it consists of performances by Avicii, David Guetta, and Steve Angelo. It doesn’t get better than this! More info can be found on the Facebook page.
2014 Grec Barcelona Summer Festival
The Festival includes 45 events of musical, dance, and theater performances that take place at Teatre Grec. Last year the festival attracted almost 120,000 spectators. The venue is located on the Montjuic hill and is an outdoor Greek-styled amphitheater. The countless performances can be found on their website. The festival formally begins on July 1st.
Another event that takes place on Montjuic. This festival aims to mix the the EDM party scene with family friendly picnic areas! Taking place every Sunday June through August, Piknic draws big crowds and we are here to tell you to be one of them! The lineup changes weekly so there is definitely an incentive for repeat Sundays. The event opens at 13:00 and can last until 22:00. Check it out!
Sala Montjuic Open Air Cinema
What better way to spend a summer evening then an outdoor movie! Join hundreds of other movie-goers in the grassy grounds of the Montjuic Castle on the top the Montjuic hill in the city. Enjoy panoramic city views before and after the start of one of the films in the venues movie line-up. Flicks include the likes of Gravity and Django Unchained and play every Monday, Wednesday, Friday starting July 6th. Doors open at 20:30 and tickets are a steal at €6. You can find the schedule here.
Montjuic isn’t the only place you can enjoy an outdoor film! If you are into more the indie styled short-films, you are welcome during the summer in Barcelona as well. Mecal Air takes place outside the Poble Espanyol Museum and shows films from the Mecal Barcelona International Short and Animation Film Festival. If you use Mecal’s flyer, you will receive discounted tickets for €3.30. Films start in August and are every Friday night!
Watch the 2014 FIFA World Cup
We have already picked out the top bars in Barcelona for you to watch all the glorious football action. The venues will not disappoint and prepare to cheer for the powerhouse Spain as it will get rowdy! For many of the places it’s necessary to plan in advance and tables can be booked. Expect to make some new friends over beers and goal celebrations. The Spanish national team features many FC Barcelona players so the city will become electrified for match victories!
2014 Joan Gamper Cup
After the conclusion of the World Cup, it’s time to get ready for the La Liga season! The Joan Gamper Cup is a friendly football match where FC Barcelona invites a rival club team from around the world. The match takes place on August 2nd, and it is a great chance for you to check out new club recruits before the start of the season!
2014 Basketball World Cup
Barcelona is one of the six cities in Spain to host the Basketball world cup. The tournament runs from August 30 – September 14. Barcelona’s games will be held at the Sant Jordi arena and can hold almost 18,000 fans.
The qualifying nations competing include: Spain, USA (defending champs), France, Lithuania, Croatia, Slovenia, Ukraine, Serbia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Angola, Egypt, Senegal, Iran, the Phillippines, Korea, Australia and New Zealand.
This catalan tradition is a must see. Locals compete to see who can build the tallest human tower. The formations resemble a pyramid and consist of one to five people on every level and reach as tall as 10 stories. The events take place in plazas all over the city during the summer and a calendar can be found here (catalan).
Get a taste of Spanish flair! Fun, sexy, and elegant, Flamenco Dancing, is a unique cultural experience that leaves a lasting impression. The rythmic dance is set to guitar and handclapping. Shows can be experienced all over town. A couple of the better known clubs are Tablao de Carmen, Tablao Cordobes, and Tarantos. Your show often comes with a drink or a meal so make a night out of it!
Barcelona is the capital for Sardana! Sardana is a type of folk dance specific to the region of Catalonia. The official dance of Catalonia is done to light yet lively sounding music by cobla bands. Instruments consist of variations of flutes, tibles, and trumpets. The dancers form into many groups of circles that can take up entire plazas! If you are trying to get in on the action and learn the dance try checking out the Barcelona Cathedral Sundays 12:00-14:00 or the Plaza Sant Jaume Sundays at 18:00. If you are trying to experience a more professional performance, check out this schedule of events.
From June 19th – 22nd, the festival is a local Catholic tradition honoring the Eucharist. The first procession throught the city starts on the 22nd at 19:15 at Placa de Sant Jaume and ends at Placa Nova. It is known as the Giant’s Dance and features (of course) giants, an eagle, lion, dragon, and ox – all prominant figures in local legends. The second procession, “Processo de Corpus Christi,” begins shortly after the first at 19:45 at the nearby Barcelona Cathedral and continues in a circle around many plazas before returning to the church.
One of the unique oddities you see at this festival is the “I’ou com balla”- Catalan for dancing egg. Check out the fountains in many areas around the city. You will find a hollowed out egg placed in the jets of water spraying upward. It has been part of the tradition since 1637, and supposedly brings good luck through the next year if it does not break.
Festival of Sant Joan
Immediately after Corpus Christi the celebrations of the start of summer begins. While the actual feast day is on the 24th of June, everyone celebrates the night before. The summer solstice is welcomed in by what is called the “Nit del Foc” or the Night of Fire. This is definitely on the must list of things to do in Barcelona. All over the city people take to their balconies and the streets to set off fireworks and light small bonfires outside. As a visitor, your best option is most likely to head to the beach! Picnics are set up to watch fireworks and prepare for a night of drinking and dancing until the early hours! If you are staying in the city, you may have no choice but to attend as you shouldn’t expect to get much sleep!
Festa Major de Gracia
Perhaps the biggest street party of the year! Known for its fun, quirky atmosphere this week-long party August 14th- 21st attracts 1.5 million people every year! In the seemingly innocent family-friendly neighborhood of Gracia, the streets transform at night to give way to guilty pleasures. Prepare to get weird! Streets all have there own theme ranging from Star Wars to Antarctica. Best yet, you can party on the cheap! Entrance is free as is the music in the street and beers can be downed for a few coins.
Barcelona is home to beautiful beaches, not to mention the gorgeous residents to fill them. Our well-known, curated guide will turn you into a beach lounging professional this summer in Barcelona. Whether you want to soak in the rays with a cold mojito or ditch that annoying (and oh so restricting) bathing suit attire at a nudist beach, there is the perfect beach for you. Our favorites include:
Tourist hotspot yet tons of dining and shopping options near the active downtown district
Nova Icaria Beach
Short but wide beach perfect for beach and water sports!
Great sand and awesome for laying out
Marbella & Nova Marbella Beach
Neighborhood beach and the southern part allows you to get your naked bougie on
Clean and less crowded, and the there is a marine zoo under construction here!
Download our beach e-book to get more details.
Illa Fantasia Water Park
Beach not exciting enough for you? This water park includes many slides, playgrounds, and a giant wave pool. Prices range from 15 – 26€ for partial and full day tickets. Illa Fantasia also hosts many concerts throughout this summer in Barcelona! Also, every Wednesday in July through August from 15:00 to 18:00 they throw Aqua Sound Pool Party!
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya
There are many things to do in Barcelona for museum junkies. The city houses more art and history than is possible to take-in in a lifetime! On a humid day do yourself a favor and take advantage of the indoors. Whatever your tastes are you can find a beautiful gallery to drool over. Some of the best include:
A modernist art museum that rotates some of the most famous works of art in the world
Like the name suggests, many of Picasso’s pieces live here! The museum also explores Picasso’s life and travels
The museum features the work of Miro himself as well as other contemporary artists
Museu d’Historia de la Ciutat
The museum is actually the remnants and recreations of the Roman city of Barcino! You can learn about the way of live 2000 years ago
The facility holds the secrets to the city’s nautical past as well as awe-striking gothic architecture
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya
Exhibits here feature roman and gothic art and the building itself is one of the most incredible places in Barcelona. Starting in July, they are holding a special exhibit to show the history of the Spanish Civil War through art!
Yep. This is a museum dedicated to the origins and transformation of Chocolate. Tons of fun and you can even take part in chocolate making!
And that is our list! The top things to do in Barcelona this summer. Do you have any other suggestions for what to do in during the summer in Barcelona? Write us in the comments below.