What to do in Barcelona in Octomber
Explore by bike…
Barcelona is a city perfect for exploring from the saddle, as it’s flat and dry and has plenty of bike lanes – at least once you get out of the overcrowded Old Town – and October is one of the best months to go for a pedal without dying of heatstroke. Whilst the red and white “Bicing” public network of shared bikes is only available for residents you’ll find plenty of companies that will rent you a set of pedals, and many more that will show you some of the secrets of the city. Our favourites are the friendly folk at Steel Donkey bike tours!
Say “hasta luego” to the beach bars
Barcelona’s beachfront bars (or “chiringuitos” as the locals say) shutter their doors in October, not to be opened until the following spring. While drinking on the beach is at best gently discouraged by local police, there’s something special about enjoying a cocktail whilst comfortably seated at one of these trendy bars pumping out only the trendiest tunes from their speakers. Enjoy it while it lasts!
See the castellers perform
“Castell” translates to “castle”, and the “castellers” work together to build a human castle or tower. It’s pretty impressive stuff to see in action – the “castells” can reach upwards of nine stories of people high. The season tends to slow down significantly in November, so see if you can catch a performance in October while there are still plenty going on. The traditional time for castellers performances is Sunday at midday at the local town hall.
International Jazz Festival
Held in various locations across the city, the International Jazz Festival hosts top jazz artists from around the world, including Diana Krall, Chick Corea & The Vigil, and the Angue Jazz Quartet. There are also a handful of classes and special events, like the Jazz & Food celebration in the Parc del Poblenou. Check their Facebook page for more info.
Head to a Halloween party
While not a local tradition by any stretch of the imagination, Halloween celebrations are increasingly popular in Barcelona. Lots of clubs and bars put on special events, particularly Irish pubs and clubs that draw in lots of students. Costumes here are decidedly scary rather than sexy, so party supply shops do a roaring trade in fake blood and fangs on the days leading up to the holiday.