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Best summer festivals and events in Barcelona!!!

There so much to do in Barcelona during the summer. Sure you’ve always got fun in the sun along Barcelona’s coastline, but you can also revel in huge music festivals such as Sónar and Cruïlla, outdoor film festivals, big local festivals including St John’s feast day and the Gràcia neighbourhood’s big party. There’s also Gay Pride, the CaixaForum Summer Nights series of concerts, the city’s huge performance arts Grec festival, and more.

1. Sónar – The International Festival of Advanced Music and New Media Art, also known as Sónar, is requisite for anyone interested in electronic music, contemporary art and media technologies.

2.Sant Joan Festival- The main celebrations for Sant Joan in Barcelona take place on the evening of June 23 the night before the public holiday on June 24.

3. Festival Cruïlla Barcelona

A three-day music festival, Cruïlla is an annual event in mid-July. The festival started in nearby Mataró and moved to Barcelona in 2008 and it has now become one of the city’s best summer festivals.

4. Primavera Sound – Primavera Sound (pictured above) is an annual three-day music festival that takes place just north of the city center by the Mediterranean Sea at Parc del Fòrum in late-May/early-June.

Easter in Barcelona – From traditions to chocolate

Maybe the most important and significant day of Easter is Palm Sunday. In the Gothic Quarter there is a procession known as La Burreta, or ‘Little Donkey’, that commemorates the return of Jesus to Jerusalem. Children bring their palm leaves in anticipation of getting them blessed with holy water, and some of them even hide sweets and toys within their intricate designs. Olive and palm leaves are also hung from doors as they are said to give protection from evil forces.

Though the Sunday procession is one of the more lively and therefore more well-known celebrations, there are also two other famous ones that take place on Good Friday, which are Nuestra Señora de las Angustias (Our Lady of Sorrows) and Nuestro Padre Jesús del Gran Poder (Our Lord Jesus of Great Power). These processions are all concentrated to pass through Las Ramblas and the Gothic Quarter.

As Christian tradition dictates, meat is not to be eaten on Good Friday, which is why those taking part in the Easter celebrations in Barcelona eat cod on this day. There are various ways to prepare it, for example cod with sanfaina (a ratatouille of sorts) or esqueixat (raw and shredded). Cod is one of the main ingredients used in typically Catalan dishes, and during these celebrations it becomes a traditional dish.

When it comes to sweets and desserts, in addition to the typical easter eggs you’ll find around the world, Catalonia has its own thing called La Mona de Pascua. It’s a time-honoured easter dessert that started off as a cake decorated with cooked eggs, ribbons, and hand-made chicks and adornments. Today they incorporate well-known characters from children’s popular culture. Custom has it that the godparents gift the Mona to their godchildren on Easter Sunday, but these days everyone goes and buys one as early as Palm Sunday or even earlier.

What started off as a cake from Arabic and Roman conventions has turned more into an art-form these days, with cake-shops and bakeries building complete scenes from popular culture out of chocolate. There are some amazing works of art that you can enjoy simply by visiting these locales during this time of year.

There are also other sweet treats like pestiños — fried pastries with sugar and honey — and the more local Bunyols de Quaresma, which are fried balls of dough sometimes served with cream and chocolate fillings.

Happy Easter!!!

Gothic Quarter in Barcelona

The beautiful neighbourhood known as the Gothic Quarter is so called because it used to be the Roman village and thus has some remnants of its glorious past. These days because of the constant modernization it is easy to spot an ancient building right next to one built in the 90s. It is this mix of old and new that brings people from all over the world to stay in the Gothic Quarter.

The narrow, winding streets create quite a labyrinth and means that it may take a while to get your bearings. I recommend that you should always look up and around you or you may miss some of the best bits.

The Gothic quarter has many peaceful squares (plaças) where you can relax and enjoy your surroundings. However one of the main attractions, right in the heart of the district is the huge Cathedral which has a stunning courtyard full of plants and oddly, geese.

You will be spoilt for choice of restaurants and bars, especially around Plaça Reial which is always full day and night. The night-life in the Gothic Quarter is lively to say the least and you will always find somewhere to have a drink or a dance. Calle Ferran, which is just to one side of Plaça Reial and leads up to Plaça Sant Jaume with its imposing government buildings is also good for bars and cafes.

Shopping is also amazing in the Gothic Quarter, from the more commercial area of Calle Portal de L’Angel to all the little boutiques on Calle Avinyo. Make sure you walk around to experience all you can, the Gothic Quarter is perfect for that afternoon stroll.

There are metro stops on both sides of the Gothic Quarter, there are 3 on Las Ramblas which runs up one side of the area, and on the other is Jaume 1. However you are in the centre of the city and many of the city’s attractions are a walk away.

At the top of Las Ramblas is Plaça Catalunya from where you can go onto Passeig de Gràcia if your shopping tastes are slightly more designer orientated, or if you want to see Gaudí’s buildings.

El Raval is another interesting area worth a visit, you can get there by crossing Las Ramblas.

The Barri Gòtic area is the first choice for many visitors to Barcelona. It is the cultural hub of the city and suitable for any type of traveller.

 

Free Tour of Barcelona !

The Free Tour of Barcelona starts just outside the Jaume I Metro Exit in front of Hotel Suizo. Just look for the teams in red SANDEMANs NEW Europe T-shirts!

Barcelona has an irresistible creative energy: you feel it on the bustling streets and market squares, you see it in the incredible architecture and museums, you taste it in the fabulous food, and you live it in the legendary nightlife. Explore the lifestyle of the most exciting city on the Mediterranean with this 2½-hour walking tour. The incredible rich history and culture of Barcelona will be brought to life for you by the enthusiastic and knowledgeable independent local guides with whom we work.

From Hercules, the legendary founder of the city, to Christopher Columbus; from Wilfred the Hairy, a heroic Catalan knight, to Pablo Picasso; Barcelona’s history is full of great adventurers, merchants, artists and warriors. The city has been shaped by many of the great seafaring civilizations of the Mediterranean. The sense of commerce, creativity and reaching for the horizon is what makes Barcelona such a unique place. Despite two millennia of proud history, for Barcelona the past is not enough. This is a city that is constantly reinventing itself to embrace the future.

On this 2.5 hour* tour you will see:

  • Barcelona Cathedral
  • The Gothic Quarter
  • King Martin’s Watchtower
  • The Generalitat
  • The Council of One Hundred
  • El Born District
  • Santa María del Mar
  • Roman Necropolis
  • Catalan national identity
  • The Olympic legacy
  • La Llotja
  • Plaça Nova
  • Port Vell historic harbor
  • Santa María del Pi
  • Catalan legends & heroes
  • Picasso in Barcelona
  • Spanish Civil War

 

The Chocolate Museum – Barcelona

The Chocolate Museum is a dynamic facility promoted by the Barcelona Confectionery Guild and located in the former Sant Agustí monastery. It provides a journey through the origins of chocolate, its arrival in Europe and its spread as an element between myth and reality, its medicinal properties and nutritional value, relating tradition with the future and forming part of our collective imagination.

The Chocolate Museum is located in a historic building that already had a relationship with chocolate: in the 18th century the Bourbon army was a fanatical consumer of chocolate and, according to the ordinances, chocolate was present on the menus of the 18th-century military academies: “For breakfast each cadet and company officer shall be given one and a half ounces of chocolate with a quarter of a pound of bread…”. When the troops were in barracks, acting as garrison, chocolate was also commonly eaten. The halberdier corps, the monarch’s personal bodyguard, was enviously known as the “chocolateros”, because, as they were a pampered, elite corps, they consumed a great deal of chocolate.

Since the age of discovery in the 15th century, chocolate has played a role in the economic and social fabric of Barcelona. Along these lines, Barcelona port acted as a starting point for the sale and distribution of the product all over Europe.

In addition, the first workshop that transformed drinking chocolate into a solid product is recognised to have existed in the city at the end of the 19th century.

Mobile World Congress 2018

Mobile World Congress 2018 will once again take place at Fira Gran Via with selected events, including 4YFN, taking place at Fira Montjuïc. View Map

Mobile World Congress is the world’s largest gathering for the mobile industry, organised by the GSMA and held in the Mobile World Capital, Barcelona, 26 February – 1 March 2018.

Mobile World Congress (MWC) returns once again to Barcelona with the aim of overtaking the figures reached at the last edition in which more than 108,000 people attended the event and the program of presentations. In this year’s edition, 2,300 companies from all over the world will showcase the latest in technology.

Under the motto “Creating a better future” this edition will show how mobile technology and connectivity has been empowered as one of the engines of digitalization of cities, companies and, of course, users. With more than 5 billion subscribers, the mobile connects more than two thirds of the world’s population and has become the driving force behind innovation.

Industry leaders will gather, network, showcase, and exchange ideas – and you don’t want to miss it. Make your plans now to see how Mobile is Creating a Better Future.

Valentine’s Day in Barcelona 2018

Barcelona is definitely well known for its astonishing architecture, beautiful Mediterranean beaches and delectable dining, so what better place to spend your Valentine’s Day this year than in Gaudí’s city? Whether you seek a romantic escape in a quiet and cozy area of Barcelona, or you are just looking for somewhere different to spend your Valentine’s weekend, the Catalan capital has something sure to cater to every couple.

 

  • Picturesque Park Güell: This colorful Gaudí park is the ultimate backdrop for the perfect Valentine’s experience! From here you can enjoy astonishing views of Barcelona as you soak in the greatness of this revered Catalan architect. With plenty of places to have a picnic around the park, why not surprise your other half with a romantic lunch for two overlooking the city?
  • Breathtaking Barceloneta Beach: However cliché it may seem to some, sometimes a simple walk along the beach with your partner can be equally as romantic as an intimate dinner. Amble along the famous Passeig de Colom, then take a stroll through the picturesque port and finally end with a walk along Barceloneta beach. You could even stop for a drink at one of the fantastic seaside bars along the promenade.
  • Time-Old Tibidabo: Get transported into a whole other world atop this magical mountain, which is home to the oldest amusement park in Spain. Mount Tibidabo also offers numerous hiking trails, as well as some great bars with amazing views of the city, like Mirabé at Manuel Arnús, 2!
  • A Romanesque Romance: Looking to do something truly memorable? Surprise your loved one with a magical day trip to Tarragona, and lose yourself amidst Roman ruins, ancient aqueducts and medieval buildings, all just an hour outside Barcelona. Don’t miss your chance to stroll down the winding streets lined with brightly colored orange trees, and be sure to top off this romantic outing by watching the sunset from the ‘Mediterranean Balcony’ lookout point.
  • The Cherry on Top of a Lovely EveningWhy not complete your evening with some of the finest wine around? Become a wine connoisseur for the evening at one of Barcelona’s top wine bars – truly an unforgettable experience. If sampling wine isn’t really your thing, why not take your partner to a traditional Spanish Flamenco show at Tablao Cordobes? Sure to get your heart racing…

     

     

 

Gaudí’s Pedrera: The Origins

If Gaudí brought you to Barcelona, you can’t miss this amazing experience

“Gaudí’s Pedrera: The Origins” is an spectacular night-time experience that will amaze everyone. Live an absolutely unique immersive experience, full of surprises, set in one of Barcelona’s most emblematic buildings.

Gaudí believed that nature is like a large open book; one we should make the effort to read and interpret. Accompanied by a guide, you will experience an unforgettable journey through different areas of the building: Passeig de Gràcia and Provença Courtyards, Espai Gaudí (the attic) and the Roof-Terrace (The Apartment not included), in which the highlight will be a videomapping at the Roof-Terrace of La Pedrera. We use the unique architecture of this space to present a magnificient audiovisual show which allows to make an unforgettable journey to the origins of life, the essence of Gaudí’s architecture, with multiple projections in the “badalots” (stairwells), special lighting and a soundtrack that will accompany it all.

The visit includes:

  • Projections in the Passeig de Gràcia Courtyard
  • Discovering the building’s most remarkable treasures (Passeig de Gràcia and Provença Courtyards, Espai Gaudí and the Roof-Terrace)
  • An extraordinary audiovisual show on the Barcelona’s most remarkable Roof-Terrace
  • Guide of La Pedrera, which will discover the building.
  • A glass of cava to finish off the evening

Don’t miss this highly sensory tour at night to discover the nooks and crannies of La Pedrera, that culminates with an audiovisual show beyond the imagination.

Museum of Illusions

Take a trip on the Titanic, play amongst gigantic toys or have your photo taken with Antonio Banderas. Who is big and who is small? Others like to stand amongst the football fans in the Camp Nou stadium and sing along with all the fans. A visitor to the Museum of Illusions isn’t just an observer, but a full part of the artwork being shown. Buy your tickets for the museum here.

Taking photographs is expressly permitted here and is a direct part of the exhibition. The Museum of optical Illusions fills photo albums with the most expressive and unusual photos taken by visitors. Everyone will find a motif here which they can personally relate to.
All this and much, much more are waiting for you at the Galería de las Ilusiones Ópticas, Europe’s first photographic project devoted to optical illusions. As you walk along its corridors, you’ll be able to delve into your imagination like you did as a child and encounter the settings of masterpieces by Dalí, Goya and Picasso, the landscapes of Catalonia and even fictional characters, famous singers and footballers from around the world.

Let yourself be carried away by the art, colour and fiction of this parallel universe and don’t forget to take part in the Barcelonarium, a theatrical adventure where the characters from famous paintings will step out of the frames. At the end, you’ll be able to take away an amazing photo as a souvenir of this unforgettable, fun experience

10 Insider Tips on What to Do in Barcelona

1. Walk down Passeig de Gracia and admire the many architectural works of art of Antoni Gaudi. Don’t forget to visit the “House of Bones”, officially known as Casa Batlló. The house is open to visitors 365 days a year from 9am to 9pm.

2.See a free exhibition in Palau Robert (on Passeig de Gracia) or one of the many galleries in the city.

3.Eat fresh tapas in a bar near the Barceloneta beach (Jai-Ca or Can Mano) and follow it up with a delicious paella at Can Ros.

4.Go to a live flamenco show, dance and drink a glass of vermouth on a Saturday afternoon at Bar Leo (Barceloneta)

5.Hunt for antiques and trinkets at the Mercat dels Encants (Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays).

6.Get a bird’s eye view of the city from the Montjuic Cable Cars, Teleferic de Montjuic. To get there, take the funicular from the Parallel metro stop (line 2 & 3).

7.Observe the vibrant cultural melting-pot that is the Rambla del Raval.

8.Get lost in the labyrinth of the park “Laberint d’Horta”.

9.Go to a concert at the Palau de la Musica, enjoy the fantastic acoustics and architecture.

10. Unleash the Catalan rhythm and see a concert by the Barceloneta beach.