It feels like spring has been a long time arriving this year, but the temperature is finally peeping over 22 degrees and people are starting to leave their coats at home! Spring in Barcelona is one of our favourite times of year because of all the festivals that happen all over the city. We’ve picked out our top five festivals for celebrating the arrival of spring!
Primavera al Raval
For anyone who missed out on Primavera tickets, Primavera al Raval is a free festival held at the CCCB on the first weekend in June. There will be three stages featuring over 70 artists and bands – an outdoor stage in Plaça Joan Coromines, and more intimate gigs indoor in the Sala Teatre of the CCCB. There’s also an industry stage showcasing emerging artists. Among the performers will be Mudhoney (for lovers of 90s grunge), the Black Lips for garage fans, dreampop pioneers A.R. Kane and lots of upcoming artists including Julien Baker, Downtown Boys and Old King Cole Younger. Local and national bands will also be taking part.
CCCB, 3rd – 5th June
The Barcelona edition of the biggest LGBT celebration in the world comes to town in July. There are a whole host of different events between the 28th of June and the Pride parade on the 9th of July and they’re being held all over town. Highlights include a Holi colour party, a waterfight, a foam party, a Miss Pride Drag competition and of course the main event, the Pride parade which goes from Plaza España down to Moll de la Fusta on the waterfront. For more details check out their website with all the dates and locations.
Around town, 28th of June – 9th of July
Verneda All Day Reggae
The perfect event for any reggae fans – this one day festival takes place in the big park in the centre of Sant Martí this Saturday. There will be activities for kids, food stalls and music on all day from a variety of DJs including Jah Life Soundsystem, Badalonians Sound and Chalart58. The forecast is sunny, so head along for a dance in the sunshine!
Parc de Sant Martí, Carrer de Menorca 64, 28th of May
La Revetlla de Sant Joan
One of our favourite Catalan celebrations, this feast day celebrates summer solstice in Barcelona.Fire is a central symbol of the Festa de Sant Joan, and one Catalan tradition which plays a big part in the festival is ‘La flama del Canigó’. This flame is from a holy mountain in the French Pyrenees called Canigó, and in the week before Sant Joan hundreds of volunteers carry the flame from the Pyrenees to city councils and cultural organisations in Catalunya and in Catalan areas of France – it is estimated that 3000 bonfires are lit by a flame from Canigó. In Barcelona the flame arrives on the evening of the 23rd of June in Plaça de Sant Jaume, and from the central square volunteers light torches and set off to light bonfires in the different barrios of Barcelona. In Plaça de Sant Jaume there are the traditional gegants, as well as a firework display from the roof of city hall, and you can buy firecrackers and sparklers in the weeks leading up to Sant Joan. The best place to celebrate after the parade is the beach, where the shore is transformed into one huge party. There is music, dancing and fireworks, and it’s traditional to swim in the sea too. The official starting time is 9pm but it is always very busy, so if you want a good spot to watch the flames best go a little earlier.
Plaça Sant Jaume I and Barceloneta, 23rd June
Don’t miss out on the last 2016 Sunday party from Brunch Electronik. This event at Poble Espanol runs from noon until 10pm and features local and international DJs. It’s child-friendly and there are events for kids from 1.30pm until 4pm. Brunch is served betweeen noon and 5pm – eggs benedict, florentine or royale with a side of fries and an orange juice for 12€, not bad! The lineup on the 5th includes She Made Monster, Daniel Avery, Andrew Weatherall and Ivan Smagghe. For more information and tickets check out their website.
Poble Español, 5th June