In Barcelona, the winter season runs from December to February. If you’re thinking of spending some time in Barcelona in winter, here are a few things you should know!
First and foremost, the weather. Barcelona in winter is mild compared to most of Europe, with average temperatures hovering around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. The average low is around 42F (6°C) and the average high is a comfortable temperature of 57F (14°C). However, it can get chilly at night, so be sure to pack a sweater.
Is It Worth Visiting Barcelona In Winter?
Barcelona in winter is a great place to visit. The city still has a lot to offer, from its rich culture and history to its food scene and beautiful architecture. You can also take advantage of the quieter tourist season and enjoy some of Barcelona’s best-kept secrets.
- QUICK OVERVIEW
- Average Temperature: 50F (10°C)
- City Discount Passes To Know: Hola Barcelona card and Barcelona card
- Best Thing To Do: Check Out The Sagrada Familia
- Top Hostel In Barcelona: St Christopher’s Barcelona
- Top Hotel In City Center: Casa Camper Barcelona
Barcelona In December
In December, Barcelona is decorated for Christmas. The streets are lined with lights, and the city comes alive with holiday cheer. The city is absolutely beautiful this time of year. The Christmas lights add a magical touch to the already picturesque architecture. If you’re lucky enough to have snowfall, the city turns into a winter wonderland.
If you’re looking for things to do, you can’t go wrong with checking out the Christmas markets, going ice skating, or seeing the Nutcracker ballet.
Barcelona In January and February
January and February are typically quieter months in Barcelona, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do. Most of the attractions and museums Barcelona has to offer remains open for exploration. For fans of art, you’ll want to check out the Museum of Contemporary Art, which has an excellent collection of works by Catalan artists. And if you’re looking for something outdoorsy to do, February is the perfect time to go skiing in the nearby Pyrenees mountains.
Reasons to Visit Barcelona in Winter
Way Fewer Tourists and Crowds
Barcelona is a popular destination year-round, but winter is definitely the off-season. Barcelona in winter is quieter and less crowded than in the summer. This means that you’ll be able to enjoy all of the city’s attractions without battling hordes of tourists. There will also be shorter wait times for popular attractions.
It is the perfect time to dive into the local side of the city and take your time in discovering the cultural elements on offer.
Much Lower Prices Compared To Peak Season
Europe can be a relatively expensive destination to travel to, particularly during the summer peak season. Furthermore, Barcelona is an extremely popular city for holidaymakers. Unsurprisingly, with the demand, comes sky-high prices and sometimes even a lack of availability.
That said, prices in Barcelona drop significantly during the winter months. You’ll be able to find great deals on accommodation, food, and activities. You may also find great deals on airfare and attractions. If you’re looking to save some money on your trip, winter is the time to travel.
Festival Season and Cozy Winter Atmosphere
There’s something special about Barcelona in winter. The city takes on a cozy atmosphere, with Christmas lights and decorations adorning the streets. Winter is also the festival season in Barcelona. From December to February, you’ll be able to enjoy a variety of festivals, including the Three Kings Parade, Carnival, and more.
So if you’re thinking of spending some time in Barcelona in winter, rest assured that you’ll have plenty to keep you occupied. From lower prices to festive events and atmosphere, there are plenty of reasons to visit Barcelona in winter!
Things To Do In Barcelona In Winter
Despite the cooler temperatures, there’s still plenty to do in Barcelona in winter! The city comes alive with holiday cheer, and there are plenty of festive activities to enjoy.
Marvel At The Sagrada Familia
Of course, no trip to Barcelona is complete without a visit to the Sagrada Familia. The church is one of the most unique landmarks in Barcelona and the world. Fortunately, this key attraction in Barcelona remains open during winter. In fact, winter is one of the best times to visit as the crowds are smaller.
This iconic church is one of Gaudí’s most famous works and is still unfinished. Construction started in 1882 and it’s still not finished, even after over 100 years of construction!
Even if you’re not religious, the church is definitely worth a visit. The exterior is covered in intricate sculptures and the interior is equally as impressive. There can be a queue even during winter, get a skip the line ticket for quick access.
Check Out The Museum Of Contemporary Art
The Museum of Contemporary Art is one of the best things to do in Barcelona in winter, especially if you’re interested in art. The museum has an excellent collection of works by Catalan artists. You can also see some international pieces too.
There are often temporary exhibitions as well, which are definitely worth checking out. Even if you’re not a huge art fan, the building is worth a visit. It was designed by American architect Richard Meier and finished in 1995. The clean lines and simple shapes are very different from Gaudí’s work, but just as interesting.
Visit The Christmas Markets
Another great thing to do in Barcelona in winter is to enjoy the city’s Christmas markets. There are plenty of them to choose from. With a selection of festive markets selling traditional Catalan Christmas decorations and gifts, it’s the perfect place to get into the holiday spirit.
The most famous market is the Fira de Santa Llúcia. This market has been held every year since 1786 and is located in front of the Barcelona Cathedral. In addition to unique gifts and trinkets, there’s also a nativity scene exhibition. Don’t forget all the delicious Spanish snacks to feast on.
For something a little different, check out the Fira de Nadal del Raval. This market is located in the bohemian district of El Raval and is well known for its alternative and handmade gifts. If you love Christmas, then Barcelona is the place to be in winter.
Catch A Concert Or Even The Nutcracker Ballet
Barcelona comes alive with festive cheer in winter, and there are plenty of concerts and events to enjoy. If you’re a classical music fan, then you can’t miss the chance to see the Nutcracker ballet at the Gran Teatre del Liceu. The ballet is performed by the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra and is a real treat for the senses.
If you prefer something a little more modern, then there are plenty of concerts to choose from. Barcelona is home to some world-famous venues and landmarks in Spain, such as the Palau de la Música Catalana and the L’Auditori. These venues host a variety of concerts throughout winter, so you’re sure to find something to suit your taste.
The Palau de la Música is an especially popular concert venue and tourist attraction. The building is a masterpiece of Catalan Art Nouveau and definitely worth a visit, even if you’re not attending a concert.
Enjoy A Stroll At Park Guell
Park Guell is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Barcelona, and for good reason. The park was designed by Antoni Gaudi and is full of his unique style.
The views from the top of the park are incredible, and there’s plenty to see and do. Although the park is a good place to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city, it can get really crowded in the peak tourist season.
When visiting Barcelona in winter, Park Guell does feel different with a smaller crowd, and more of a getaway into some nice nature. The park is open all year round, and the views of the city are even more stunning when blanketed in snow. Visit Park Guell for a nice stroll and take in Barcelona’s winter scene.
Feel The Warm Passion Of Fans At Camp Nou
Still feeling cold at Barcelona in winter? How about finding some warmth amongst the passionate soccer fans of Barcelona. Camp Nou is one of the largest stadiums in Europe and can hold up to 99,354 spectators.
Home to Barcelona’s much-loved soccer team, Camp Nou is a must-visit for any sports fan. Even if you’re not a huge fan of the game, the atmosphere is electric and an incredible experience for any visitor. It is a truly local and cultural experience as well.
If you want to learn more about the club and its history, then you can take a tour of the stadium. The tour includes access to the museum, which is full of interesting memorabilia. Therefore, it is still an interesting place to visit, even if there’s no match taking place during your stay.
Take A Local Cooking Class
One of the best ways to experience a new culture is through its food. Barcelona has a rich and diverse food scene, with something to suit every taste. If anything, winter is the best time to eat more and replenish the extra energy used to keep your body warm.
If you’re interested in learning how to cook some traditional Spanish or Catalan dishes, then you can take a cooking class or workshop. There are plenty of classes to choose from, and you’ll get to experience some of the best food that Barcelona has to offer.
Not only is it a great way to learn about the local cuisine, but you’ll also get to meet new people and have a lot of fun. After all, what could be better than learning how to cook while surrounded by delicious food?
Wander Around Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter (Old Town)
The Gothic Quarter is one of the most atmospheric areas of Barcelona. With its medieval buildings and narrow, winding streets, it’s easy to imagine what life was like in this area hundreds of years ago.
There are plenty of things to see and do here. Make sure you visit Plaça Reial, the Cathedral of Santa Eulàlia, and the Palau de la Música Catalana. It feels like you’ve stepped back in time. It’s the perfect place to stroll around on a winter’s day.
Near Christmas, the Gothic Quarter is even more atmospheric. The streets are decorated with Christmas lights, and the air is filled with the smell of mulled wine and roasted chestnuts. If you’re visiting Barcelona in winter, make sure to spend some time exploring the Gothic Quarter. It’s one of the best places to experience the festive atmosphere of the city.
Enjoy A Traditional Flamenco Show
Just want to stay indoors and warm yourself up? Flamenco is an important part of Spanish culture regardless of the season.
If you’re interested in learning more about this traditional art form, then you should see a live Flamenco show. Barcelona is home to some great flamenco clubs, such as Tablao de Carmen, Casa del Flamenco, and El Cordobés.
A traditional flamenco show is a must-see for any visitor to Barcelona. It’s the perfect way to experience the passion and energy of this unique art form.
Take A Day Trip To Montserrat
Visiting Montserrat is one of the most popular day trips from Barcelona. Located just over an hour from the city, this mountain is home to a monastery, hiking trails, and incredible views.
In winter, Montserrat is even more beautiful. The snow-capped mountains provide a stunning backdrop to the monastery. If you’re lucky, you might even get to experience a traditional Catalan Christmas carol service. You might also still find wineries doing wine tasting tours in the winter.
Ski In The Pyrenees Mountains
One of the best things to do in Barcelona in winter is to go skiing. The city is just a few hours away from the Pyrenees mountains. You can find some great ski resorts here, such as Baqueira Beret, Boí Taüll, or Vall de Núria. They offer a wide range of slopes for all levels, from beginner to expert.
If you’re not a fan of skiing, don’t worry. You can still enjoy the stunning scenery and mountain air. There are plenty of other activities on offer, such as snowshoeing, sledding, and ice skating. Or you can just enjoy a hot chocolate in one of the many mountain chalets.
How to Get Around Barcelona In Winter
There are plenty of things to do in Barcelona in winter, but how do you get around the city? The good news is that Barcelona is well-connected and easy to get around.
The best way to get around the city is by public transport. The metro system is efficient and reliable, it is also covered making the weather less of a factor. There are also plenty of bus and tram routes.
Despite the season, the hop on hop off bus is also another way to get to various attractions easily. There is a sheltered option at the lower deck which ensures you can still get around if it is raining.
Some days in Barcelona winter can be quite cold and wet. Make sure you dress warmly and wear comfortable shoes. And if you’re planning on doing a lot of walking, consider investing in a good pair of walking shoes.
Where To Stay In Barcelona In Winter
If you’re staying in the city center, you’ll probably find that you can walk to most of the places on your list. That convenient access to almost everything makes this my choice of where to stay in Barcelona in winter. Besides, accommodation prices will likely be lower in winter, so take advantage of it. Enjoy the convenience that you might not get when visiting in peak season.
There are many accommodation options in Barcelona catering to all kinds of travelers. Here are some popular and well-rated ones.
St Christopher’s Barcelona Hostel: Spacious hostel right in the center of the city. The modern, clean and stylish interior is great for hanging out with other travelers. There are also both dorm and private options.
Casa Camper Barcelona: Stylish yet homely hotel right between Las Ramblas and the MACBA art gallery. Rooms and spacious and near major attractions. The relaxed atmosphere makes it a comfy and peaceful stay.
Hotel El Palace Barcelona: For some winter luxury, consider the 5-star Hotel El Palace Barcelona. You can get a whole bunch of amenities here including a Mayan-style spa and sauna. Great for relaxing indoors during a cold winter day.
Events In Barcelona In Winter
Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean there aren’t any events happening in Barcelona. In fact, there are plenty of things to do in Barcelona in winter. Here are some of the best annual events and festivals happening in the city each month.
Christmas in Barcelona: Of course, Christmas is a big event all over the world. But in Barcelona, you’ll find some unique traditions There are also many markets and nativity scenes set up around the city.
New Year’s Eve in Barcelona: Another big event happening in December is New Year’s Eve. The main event happens at Plaça Espanya, where there is a large concert and fireworks display. But all over the city, you’ll find parties and events happening.
Three Kings Parade: The parade happens on the evening of the fifth of January to celebrate the Epiphany. It is one of the most important events in Barcelona, and you’ll find a large parade with floats, marching bands, and people dressed up as kings making their way through the city.
Santa Eulalia Festival: This is one of the biggest winter festivals in Barcelona. It is a celebration to honor Santa Eulalia, who is one of the patron saints of Barcelona. The festival usually happens around 12th of February, there are a lot of events and activities happening all over the city. You will see parades encompassing folklores like giants and dragons; you can imagine this is a particularly fun festival for children.
What To Expect When Visiting Barcelona In Winter
As you can see, there are still plenty of things to do in Barcelona in winter. So don’t write the city off just because it is not the regular season.
Of course, some outdoor activities like swimming might not be feasible, and it’s important to be prepared for the colder weather. However, you can expect lower prices, lesser tourist crowds, and more local vibes. Furthermore, with its festive atmosphere, Barcelona in winter can be a magical place and a perfect destination for a winter getaway.
From exploring the Gothic Quarter to watching a traditional flamenco show, there is an abundance of things to do in Barcelona during winter to keep you busy.